reasons why the Phantom will succeed
For those of you who donít know, Infinium Labs, a new up-start
company based in Florida that has never released a product ever plans to
revolutionize the video game industry with their first foray in the market
with the Phantom.
The company hopes to release the console late this year and have a
playable showing at E3.
sites have already been counting the days until the Phantomís failure,
they have been saying thereís much more to the systemís name than it
would first suggest. Could the Phantom really be just that, a Phantom?
Well, those rumors have been put to rest thanks to several new
photos of the Phantom in action. But the big question is, can a system
that has no disc-based games and tons of super-new technology succeed in
todayís market - the market that has been dominated by Sony, Microsoft
and Nintendo? The Phantom will truly be the David fighting three Goliaths
when it debuts.
There are tons of rumors floating through the internet, but weíll
try to wade through them and give you the facts that are out there.
Hereís eight reasons why the Phantom will succeed and be able to run
with the big boys.
The system, which might be the coolest looking system ever made,
has no controller ports, no disc tray, or even any openings in the front
at all. All you see when the Phantom is turned on is a cool looking blue
Phantom emblem glowing in the darkness.
The first version was absolutely massive, even dwarfing the Xbox,
but as the company promised, they were able to reduce the size 50 percent.
Itís still not as small as the Dreamcast or Gamecube, but itís not
going to be so big you canít fit it in your entertainment center.
Since the system will have no controller ports, you might have
guessed the controllers will be wireless. Similar to the Gamecubeís
Wavebird, the Phantom controller will use radio signals to communicate
with the system.
The sleek look and nice, wireless controllers will turn gamers
heads when they see one and possibly peak and interest when they see it in
The Games, after all thatís the most important thing, right?
At first, speculation among game websites was that one of the
Phantomís only launch titles was Where in the World is Carmon San Diego.
That title might end up coming to the system, but the rumors of it only
playing kiddie PC games are really far from the truth.
In fact, the Phantom will be able to support all PC games and the
company also promises to have an exclusive MMORPG and a Halo-like FPS
called Falling Stars at launch.
Youíll also never have to worry about losing or breaking your
games ever again thanks to the systemís hard drive. No more worries of
having your kid brother come through your room like Godzilla eying
Japanese cities and coming annihilate your video game collection. No sir,
all these games are stored on the systemís hard drive.
And whatís even better than that is Infinium Labs is going to
keep a database for every member of their service. This database will keep
track of every game youíve purchased, so if your hard drive ever goes
kaput or you need a new Phantom, you can always go back and download the
game again for free. Hey you bought it, itís yours after all, isnít
If the Phantom has a few AAA titles under its belt at launch
time, it will go a long way to get gamers to buy the system. Time will
tell if gamers can warm up to the fact that they wonít have any physical
game copies and only electronic, though. But if Infinium Labs can do this,
it will go a long way to getting more developers to come on board as well,
thanks to the reduced production costs of not having to manufacture discs
I wanna get to know ya on the inside!
The Phantom will come standard with an AMD XP 2500+ 333Mhz
Processor, but you can upgrade it all the way to a AMD XP 3200+ 400Mhz FSB
Processor, and it will be running a version of Windows XPe. The console
will come with a Custom Nforce-2 Ultra 400 Motherboard, 256MB Dual Channel
DDR RAM (which can also be upgraded all the way to 1 GB Dual Channel DDR
RAM), an 80 GB hard drive and comes with Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
with digital audio out. To put it lightly, this system will be able to
push some nice looking games.
The Phantom will succeed in this area because it will be the
console to unseat the Xbox as the most powerful console ever.
The Virtual Phantom Game Network is a secure broadband game
distribution network. All content streams from a central server farm
maintained by Infinium Labs. User file sharing is disabled. Only the
Phantom console can connect to the VPGN; a standard PC cannot.
I know that may not sound like a big deal, but in fact, the VPGN is
where you will get all of your games. Plus, you will be able to play demos
and rent various games exclusive to the Phantom, PC games and some games
that are available on other consoles.
Much like Microsoftís Xbox Live but to a far greater extent, the
VPGN will also allow users to compete in tournaments, participate in
online play, features free hosting for clan and guild sites, participate
in peer-to-peer video conferences and will allow you to use all major
instant messaging services.
Can you imagine how cool it will be to meet some friends online,
start a guild together, video conference with fellow guild mates and then
keep in touch through AIM with all of your guild? The possibilities of
this alone are really awesome.
The Price is Right?
The Phantom should cost any where from $300 to $500 depending on
the kind of upgrades you get. The console should come with one wireless
Also, there are several plans you can get on when you register for
VPGN. There is a monthly, one-year, two-year, three-year
or a lifetime-plan for the service.
People who are paying for the monthly service will most likely pay the
$10-$15 industry norm, while people who ante up for the 1,2 or 3 year
service will most likely be paying a discounted price which gets cheaper
the longer you sign up for. Also, the lifetime plan is will cost
Yeah, I know thatís kinda steep, but if you think about it, it will end
up being equal to about two years at the regular price, so itís not as
bad as you might first think.
While the price is pretty steep compared to the other systemís,
the price tag is no different than they were at launch time. But the
sticking point will be if Infinium Labs advertises the ďbang for your
buckĒ mentality. At $300, you are getting an extremely powerful machine
that can do things all the other systems could only dream about.
Getting Shimming With It
When downloading games from the VPGN, players only have to wait to
download the necessary files to begin playing, while all the other files,
like later levels are being downloaded as you play. The company is calling
this process ďShimming.Ē There isnít anything much better than that.
This is an extremely important step for Infinium Labs because it
will greatly reduce the down time in between selecting a game you want and
actually being able to play it once youíve purchased it off Phantom.net.
With broadband internet coupled with only having to download the
minimal files to play, gamers will be able to pick up and play multiple
times faster than would be the case of having to download the entire game
like PC gamers have to do.
The Bachus Effect
One of the pioneers of Microsoftís Xbox, Kevin Bachus, has joined
the team at Infinium Labs recently. Bachus will take control of chief
operating officer for the company.
This is important because IL needs as much experience it can get
from the video game industry, and a head honcho from Microsoft should help
them make sound decisions regarding the system in the future. Infinium
Labs officials have even said they are trying to put as many people with
experience in the front lines for the Phantom. They have said they have
other important additions to their team, but at this point, they wonít
release who they are.
For a new company that has no previous experience in the
industry, getting the right people in place to make good decisions will
help them succeed in a business where one wrong move can cost millions and
spell doom for a company.
Other cool features
One thing the Phantom will have that hasnít been seen since the
days of the Dreamcast is a web browser. Infinium Labs said they donít
want to bother with Internet Explorer because of security reasons, (It
might also have something to do with supporting the competition.) but they
plan to use a version of Mozilla Firebird. ďThe Phantom is a secure
system; we do not want rogue content entering without our full and
complete awareness,Ē a release from the company said.
Something equally cool is Infinium Labs is thinking about making a
movie and music service so you can download movies and music and play them
on your Phantom for a small service charge.
Also, the system will come with Bluetooth technology so you can
hook up other Phantom consoles without any network adapters of any sort.
With so many awesome features to give gamers, itís hard to not get
excited about the potential of the Phantom. If Infinium Labs can
actually put its money where its mouth is, the future should be bright for
So that does it, eight good reasons why the Phantom will succeed
once itís unleashed upon the gaming hordes of the world. Next week,
weíll give you seven reasons why the Phantom will fail. Talk about this
article on the DC Realm forums at http://dcrealm.proboards22.com/
one of the first looks at Infinium Labs' Phantom. The company hopes to
revolutionize the video game industry with it, and it very well may do
a look at all the neat little plugs in the back of the system. There are
even four USB ports, pretty nifty eh?
Phantom in action, at last! Could this be a still from Falling Stars?