The original Xbox cost $299.99 when it went on sale in the United States in 2001. However, GamesIndustry.biz reports that if some at Microsoft had had their way, the console would have been significantly cheaper — as in $299.99 cheaper.
Oddworld Inhabitants’ Lorne Lanning recently told GamesIndustry.biz that during the early days of the Xbox’s development, some Microsoft employees suggested that the company give its inaugural games console away for free. “At the time, [Microsoft] thought that the core market was going to be casual,” he said. “They were going to be the casual gamers’ machine. Now, that’s why they approached us because they said, ‘We think you’ve got something that competes in that Mario space, and we think Mario’s the thing to kill… We see that space. We want that audience. We love Oddworld, so why don’t you get on this bandwagon? And we might give the box away.'”
His story was corroborated by Seamus Blackley, the console’s co-creator. “In the early days of Xbox, especially before we had figured out how to get greenlit for the project as a pure game console, everybody and their brother who saw the new project starting tried to come in and say it should be free, say it should be forced to run Windows after some period of time,” said Blackley.
Just Add Water has announced that Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee New N’ Tasty will release for multiple platforms, including Xbox Live Arcade about a year from now, during autumn of 2013. Formerly known as Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee HD, the game is a high-definition remake of the game that started it all, the PSOne classic, Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee. Known for its unique visual style, blend of puzzles and platforming and truly one of a kind humor, Just Add Water’s update does more than just lay on a shiny new coat of paint.
Gone are the days of “screen-flipping” that the original Oddworld games were known for. Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee New N’ Tasty is being built from the ground up as a three-dimensional side-scroller. While approximately “eighty to ninety percent” of the game’s puzzles remain the same as the original game’s, the change in presentation and other small user friendliness related updates are said to have changed the way gamers move through the depths of the industrial dangers that await Abe. Don’t take our word for it however; Above you will find a video of the footage that Just Add Wated presented to the crowd at the Eurogamer Expo, in high-definition.