New Console Promises To Be ‘The Most Powerful Ever Built’

Slightly Mad Studios

Slightly Mad Studios, the company behind games like Project CARS 2 and Need for Speed: Shift have come out swinging in 2019, claiming that they plan to release the most powerful console ever built by 2022. 

Slightly Mad CEO Ian Bell tweeted that “the Mad Box is coming” on Wednesday (January 2) before going on to explain in a subsequent Tweet exactly what we can expect from this Mad Box.

He wrote:

What is the Mad Box? It’s the most powerful console ever built… It’s literally ‘Mad’… You want 4k, you want VR at 60FPS? You want a full engine for free to develop your games on it? You have it.

It’s worth noting that, at the time of writing, Bell’s Twitter account is unverified and was only created at the start of January, presumably specifically to announce the news of the Mad Box.

That alone would have been enough to convince me this wasn’t entirely legit, someone playing a prank or conducting a social experiment about the nature of social media hype, for example.

However, the official Slightly Mad Twitter account later retweeted Bell, and Variety then received an email from an official Slightly Mad email address, in which Bell discussed the console further.

Slightly Mad Studios

He told Variety

It will support most major VR headsets and those upcoming and the specs will be equivalent to a ‘very fast PC 2 years from now’. We’re in early talks with manufacturers of components so we can’t say much more right now other than we have the designs specced out in detail.

Bell went on to claim that there are “several interested parties” looking at the Mad Box right now, as well as “multiple investors already offering the required funding for us to see the product to completion.” The console will reportedly ship in around three year’s time, and will compete with Xbox and PlayStation.

He said of pricing:

Prices will drop with ship quantity but we’re not planning on taking as large a cut as other console owners to enable us to cut prices massively. We fully expect to be matching the best of the rest early in the lifecycle though.

Slightly Mad Studios

His comments on the kind of games we can expect to see on the Mad Box were also pretty interesting, with Bell suggesting that it’ll welcome games from “all developers, old and new.”

On console exclusives for the Mad Box, Bell said:

We think exclusives are ‘exclusionary’ but given that we’ll be shipping a cross-platform engine to all developers it will be their choice. As of now we have no plans to pay developers ‘incentives’ to exclude other hardware vendors […] We think the industry is a little too much of a monopoly or a micro oligopoly.

Dev kits will apparently be a while, as Bell revealed on Twitter, but we can apparently expect to see images of early design builds in the next four to six weeks.

It’ll undoubtedly be fascinating to see if a new console can really come out and compete with Nintendo, Microsoft, and Sony; the big three that have been dominating the home console market for the better part of the last two decades.