Announced to raised eyebrows just a few short months ago, Project Cars developer Slightly Mad Studio’s Mad Box console looks like it may not even reach the start line, let alone gain pole position.
“Google’s announcement of Stadia hasn’t helped the project with our investors,” said Slightly Mad’s online marketing director Nathan Bell. “We had some solid investment lined up but Google saying ‘the future of gaming isn’t in a box’ hasn’t done us any favours.”
“Two investors pulled out after the announcement of Stadia. All I can say at this stage is the future of the project is questionable,” he added.
The console probably won’t even be called Mad Box if it ever does make it to market, a French games company called Madbox have opposed the name when Slight Mad filed for the trademark, saying that there ‘exists a likelihood of confusion on the part of the public’. Slightly Mad withdrew their application for the trademark on April 5th, “Discussions are still on-going internally as to the naming of the console,” said Nathan.
The Mad Box was announced with the claim that it was going to be full 4K and do VR at 120FPS, and would be aimed at high end gamers. However, the console wasn’t due to ship for another three years and we are expecting the next PlayStation within two, and we know that will be able to output games in 8K making the Mad Box look rather under powered and very late to the market.
The Mad Box aimed to tempt developers and publishers by giving away an engine that could be used to create games for the console. They also stated that there would be no exclusivity deals for the box, “We think exclusives are ‘exclusionary’ but given that we’ll be shipping a cross platform engine to all developers it will be their choice,” Bell wrote when the console was revealed. “As of now we have no plans to pay developers ‘incentives’ to exclude other hardware vendors.”