Slightly Mad Studios, known for developing the racing franchise Project CARS, has announced plans to enter the video game console space. The studio’s CEO and founder Ian Bell created a Twitter account today, and posted a cryptic tweet saying “The Mad Box is coming.” Bell would go on to expand on what the Mad Box is by tweeting that “It’s the most powerful console ever built…”
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.
— Ian Bell SMS (@bell_sms) January 2, 2019
In a report by Variety after Bell’s initial tweets, Bell stated that the Mad Box will be on par with the PlayStation and Xbox consoles, and will release in “around three years time” for a price that is “competitive with upcoming console prices.” Bell continued to expand on this by saying “the specs will be equivalent to a ‘very fast PC 2 years from now’.”
Bell stated that the studio is in talks with component manufactures, but gave no other specifics about what will be powering the Mad Box console. Bell went on to say that the Mad Box “will support most major VR headsets,” and expanded on his initial tweet by saying VR will run at 60 FPS “per eye.” Essentially, Bell confirmed that VR titles will be able to run at 120 FPS.
Bell noted that the Mad Box will “allow games from all developers, old and new.” “New” developers being classified as “those that benefit from our completely free development engine,” Bell said. Developers also will be able to decide on making games exclusive to the console or not. The studio sees exclusives as “exclusionary” and won’t incentivize developers to make them.
Slightly Mad Studios plans to release the Mad Box worldwide, and already has been meeting with investors for the funding needed for the new console. It will be interesting to see how a fourth competitor fares in the video game console market. The Nintendo Switch is achieving outstanding success already, while Microsoft and Sony are also preparing for the future with their next generation of consoles.