Why Did Microsoft Ditch Handheld Gaming?

Microsoft is a tech giant as they not only have a very competitive operating system but they also have one of the best game consoles in the market today.

With the emergence of the Xbox One S and the future of console gaming in the form of the Xbox Scorpio, one would think that Microsoft did the right thing by joining the console gaming industry.

Microsoft is not only a great tech giant but it also went toe-to-toe with two of the best game console companies, Nintendo and Sony.

Both Sony and Nintendo already have their own line of portable gaming devices and a lot of people are wondering why Microsoft didn’t enter the fray.

Just recently, former Xbox Officer, Robbie Bach, revealed some information as to why the tech giant didn’t venture into the portable game console business.

According to Bach, Microsoft and their team of developers did have the idea of creating their own line of portable gaming console devices.

In fact, the company ventured into the idea many times. They even have strange names for it like the “Xboy” or anything with an X in the beginning.

But, like every major company, they had to make decisions and their decision of ditching the handheld gaming industry was actually one of their best decisions yet.

When asked why Microsoft ditched the idea of handheld gaming, Bach said that they focused their efforts on the Xbox 360 (because that was the time when the company thought of releasing portable gaming consoles).

Bach also went on to say that the company just didn’t have a lot of “bandwidth” to focus on many things. That is why the company just focused on their main game consoles and it turned out to be a success as the Xbox 360 game console was considered one of the best game consoles at that time.

Lastly, Bach was also happy that the company steered clear from portable game consoles because of the emergence of Mobile phone gaming.

You see, mobile phone gaming cannot be ignored and thanks to the recent success of Pokemon Go, it is undeniably one of the most legitimate gaming platforms today.

Since Microsoft has ditched every idea of a handheld gaming device, they can now focus their efforts on improving their new game consoles.

The Xbox Scorpio, according to Xbox’s director Phil Spencer, is “one of the best game consoles to date”.

The company is still silent about the real specifications of the upcoming game console but fans are assuming that the Xbox Scorpio will have VR support and 4K resolution support since most of the gaming companies nowadays focus on those two technologies.

Furthermore, Microsoft can go the innovative route and actually create their own unique controller, for example.

There is still more than 12 months to wait for the Xbox Scorpio but since the company has focused their efforts on their flagship game consoles, I am pretty sure that the Xbox Scorpio will not disappoint.

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Pillars of Eternity

Baldur’s gate is probably one of the best PC RPG games of all time. I’ve played Baldur’s gate 2 which was touted to be the best in the series and I will have to agree; it is one of the best games I’ve ever played.

Now, Obsidian software, makers of the iconic Baldur’s gate game, didn’t release a specific Baldur’s gate title in many years.

Many fans were clamoring for a new game in the franchise because well, who doesn’t want to have a new game in an already successful series.

Obsidian software responded that they will not create a new Baldur’s gate game in the near future. Instead, they’re going to create a game that is the spiritual successor, Pillars of Eternity.

The story begins in the world of Eora. The player’s character arrives at a place called Dyrwood which is a former colony of the Aedyr empire.

Upon their arrival, the player’s caravan was hit by a sudden storm, killing everyone but the player character.

The player character rushes towards a cave where he/she witnesses a group of cultists performs a ritual. Apparently, these cultists used some form of a machine that can strip the souls out of someone’s body.

During the ritual, the player character was immersed with the souls’ energies and thus, turns the player into a “Watcher”. A watcher is a person who can read souls.

It was believed that a soul has fragments of memories from their past life. It was also believed that a soul can just reincarnate into a new body, but that the memories will be erased.

Having Watcher abilities may seem cool on the surface, but this very power can turn them into madmen.

The player is set out to seek the cultists and reverse or undo the effects of the watcher’s curse.

Apparently, Dyrwood suffers from a curse known as the Hollowborn plague. Some newborn babies in the village will have no souls at birth, leaving them in a vegetative state.

It was then later found out that this was due to a cult called as the “Leaden Key” who is led by an evil priest who calls himself Thaos.

The player character must amass his own party of heroes in order to defeat Thaos and free Dyrwood from this plague.

The Pillars of Eternity is a PC game that has an almost similar playstyle to Baldur’s gate. The game has a unique real-time-with-pause tactical gameplay in which a player can control up to 4 characters.

Since the game is challenging, you can pause the game in order to recalibrate your party members to do whatever it is that you want. Don’t just move them mindlessly, however, as enemies are quick to punish people who do not have a robust strategy in play.

Since this is an RPG game, Pillars of Eternity also has tons of side quests that you can do. I suggest doing some of them as they are really entertaining and rewarding at the same time.

If you love Baldur’s gate and you want to play a game that has a near-similar style of play, then I highly urge you to play Pillars of Eternity.

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Blu Vivo 5

Since the inception of mobile phones and our greater need for it in modern times, a lot of mobile phone companies have joined the fray.

Blu, a Florida-based OEM mobile phone company, has joined the mobile phone industry to create not only great looking phones but bang-for-the-buck phones as well.

In this article, we are going to talk about the Blu Vivo 5. This phone is intended for the mid-range market, but does it have what it takes to warrant people’s money? Let’s find out.

Let’s start off with the design of the mobile phone. The Blu Vivo 5 sports an all-metallic design which gives it a premium luster. The chamfered edges of this mobile phone appeal to me as it not only helps with gripping the phone but it absolutely looks gorgeous as well.

It’s not only the design that is premium, but also the durability of the phone as well. The mobile phone comes with 4 colors in Black, White, Metallic Gray, and Gold. The gold color just looks absolutely fabulous and it really does accentuate the phone’s stylish and premium looks.

The display of the Blu Vivo 5 is, to put it bluntly, a little bit lagging behind. It comes with a 5.5-inch AMOLED display which has very good color saturation. The only problem being that the resolution it supports is only a measly 720p. Couple that with a pixel count of only 267 ppi, some images will be a little bit pixelated here and there, which is a little bit of a bummer if you’re looking to use this mobile phone for media usage.

Although it lags behind other competitors when it comes to its screen, the Blu Vivo 5 comes with a respectable spec sheet. Under the hood, you will find the MediaTek MT6753 octa-core processor with clock speeds of 1.3GHz. It also comes with the Mali-T720 GPU and a beefy 3GB of RAM. Daily usage of this mobile phone is a dream because of its 5.5-inch screen which gives you a really good screen estate and coupled with the specs, it should be enough to allow you to multitask and have multiple apps run at the same time.

The battery of the Blu Vivo 5 is also quite good as it comes with a 3,150 MaH, non-removable battery. Since the resolution of this mobile phone is not that great, it means that you can have this phone run for more than 48 hours. If you’re watching movies and other media on your phone, it should last you roughly around 10 hours of usage (considering you do not crank up the settings).

Lastly, the mobile phone’s camera. The Blu Vivo 5’s camera is also a bit of a bummer. Although the Blu Vivo 5 comes with a 13-megapixel camera, that is pretty much it. The camera software is lacking with features, and it also lacks a dual LED flash to help you capture images in low-lit conditions.

Since the Blu Vivo 5 is bound to be a mid-range and affordable phone, it is understandable that there will be some features lacking in performance. Still, for the price of roughly $200, the Blu Vivo 5 is a promising mid-range phone.

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