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Battlefield 3: Your Xbox 360 is Now Officially a PC

DICE confirms you'll have to install Battlefield 3 to your Xbox 360's hard drive if you want to access the game's high-definition textures.

I'm interrupting this week's scheduled Arkham City gripe-a-thon to talk about: consoles! Because they're so easy—you just pop the disc in and presto, you're playing! Installs? Texture packs? High-def versus low-def texture mucking about? What do you care—that's for all those un-showered PC gamers, right?

Not if you want to play Battlefield 3 with all the trimmings on your Xbox 360, says developer DICE.

Running low on hard drive space? Time to make some tough choices, because chances are you'll want to play Battlefield 3 with high-definition textures enabled when the game ships worldwide next week, which means installing it to your hard drive. That's right, you'll have to choose. The default option, as I understand it, is to play without, or what DICE is informally calling the "standard-def" version.

"There's nothing magic about it," said Battlefield 3 executive producer Robbie Bach, speaking to GamerZines. "It's the same thing we do for PC and PS3, so there's nothing extra." (That's right, PlayStation 3 owners, your PS3's have been PCs for some time already—shocking, I know.)

"I think the controversy about this is that we actually let you do it on 360 for once," adds Bach. "So what it does is it gives you the same abilities, kind of, as the PC and PS3. You can actually stream information from the hard drive."

In fac the only reason they're not making the install mandatory, says Bach, is that some of you might have Xbox 360s without hard drives.

Worth getting your bandoliers in a tangle? Of course not. I can't remember the last Xbox 360 game I didn't install to the hard drive. The newer slimline Xbox 360 DVD drives are surely quieter than the original models, but still loud enough that playing from the hard drive's preferred.

"That's new for Xbox 360, but it's not a new idea for the gaming industry as a whole," says Bach. "No one has really tried to do it properly, so us doing it will create question marks." Even if it shouldn't.

In other words: "Nothing to see here, move along."

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