Microsoft made a splash at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) last week by showing off a number of fantastic looking games for its upcoming Xbox One console. It was hard not to get excited by some of the titles, including Dead Rising 3 and Forza Motorsport 5, but as it turns out, the game demos we saw might have actually been running on Hewlett-Packard PCs running Windows 7.
Before we go any further, let's be clear that it's not all that unusual for game developers to use PC hardware to show off future titles, so that in and of itself isn't reason to rake Microsoft over the coals. However, it's at least a little bit interesting that these tech demos were being run on Windows 7 rather than Windows 8, which the Xbox One's OS is partly based on.
Secondly, it was discovered that the HP PCs were equipped with Nvidia GeForce GTX 700 Series graphics cards. Given the risk of exposure, it would have made more sense to use machines running AMD graphics cards since the GPU in the Xbox One is an AMD part that's comparable to a mid-range Radeon HD 7790.
All of this came to light when Julian Rignail from U.S. Gamers posted to Twitter a message saying, "I just played an Xbox One game using an Xbox One controller that crashed... to a Windows 7, Hewlett Packard-branded desktop. Magic!" The Internet demanded pics, and lo and behold, there are a couple shots of Windows 7 PCs tucked inside Xbox One cabinets.
Again, using PCs to show off console games isn't unusual, but the choice of OS and GPU certainly raise an inquisitive eyebrow. And according to Cinema Blend, which first broke the story, developers have confirmed that PlayStation 4 game demos shown off at E3 were running on PS4 Dev kits, not PC hardware.
File this under "T" for "Things that make you go hmmm."
Update 12:30 PM
Or maybe not. A developer for Twisted Pixel's LocoCycle claims that his game was the only one of the bunch running on a PC, and that the choice of hardware was "solely [Twisted Pixel's] decision," not Microsoft's. That would certainly explain a few things, and hopefully blunt those pitchforks and douse the torches.
Kudos to "dracx619" for the update in our comments section.