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Gaming equipment

A look at the design concepts of The Mad Box - the most powerful console ever built

The CEO of the studio behind The Mad Box has shared concept designs and plenty of details on Twitter.

Last week, Slightly Mad Studios - the developer of Project CARS 2 - announced that it would be joining the world of console developers, and the company's CEO, Ian Bell, tweeted about the upcoming hardware, The Mad Box. Today, Bell shared some concept images on his Twitter account, asking for community feedback on the designs, which you can view below.

Bell mentions that the internal elements in some of the images have been blurred out because the studio is "still in discussions."

He shared a total of four concepts, but described the first one as "bright," saying that Slightly Mad will "probably tone it down" for release.

"I would have it in my living room, I would celebrate it. We should be proud of our game boxes! But I don't think the entire potential market would have them in their living rooms." Hence, this is a WIP concept build. We will watch the response rates and act accordingly," he added.

Additional tidbits about this particular console design include a "one-touch detachable carry handle," several different variations of which can be seen in the fourth photo in the gallery. Bell explains that the large flares at the bottom "have heat dissipation and speakers built in," and while any of these concepts can be changed or removed, "it's just about making the 'M' appear." This particular console design "is not centered due to PCB and memory placement."

Current specs suggest that The Mad Box will be "very lightweight" and capable of wireless syncing with other Mad Boxes. Bell explains that the first design concept in the gallery houses the "antenna and communication hardware" in mounts.

In terms of size, the console will be "equivalent to the competition in terms of dimensions," and in terms of price, Bell made it clear that early adopters will have to lay out more cash, and that the price of the hardware will drop as sales increase, though "it will be competitive."

The studio is currently considering a "digital-only" version, with Bell noting that none of the mockups include a DVD slot.

Twitter conversations indicate that the studio has a partner for the controller, which is in "heavy development" and will be made available "when it's ready."

The second design concept is a "much less 'out there'" cube with "standard cooling". The third, a rectangular design is "very standard" and inspired by the Project CARS logo, while Bell describes the fourth as his "personal favorite."

As for what the console will be capable of, Bell said: "We will be implementing a cross-platform engine that allows 'almost' one-click deployment to all major consoles. We want to support Xbox, Playstation and Mad Box, as well as PC. The technology is ready to make that happen."

Mad Box will run on one of two possible operating systems, and console dev kits will run on both.

Console exclusives have also come up in conversations, with Bell admitting that "There will be exclusives yes, but it's the developers' choice. I personally am not fond of it and would prefer, at most, temporary 'exclusives'.... ".

Bell also announced a slogan contest, insisting that "The best slogan for 'Mad Box' will get 10K and free games for life. This is no joke. Hit me up."