The lights are on
UPDATE TWO: Microsoft's press conference just confirmed the worst kept secret in the industry: the Xbox 360 Slim. What you didn't know, however, is that it is shipping today. Yeah...in a matter of days, you'll be playing a smaller, sleeker, and "whisper quiet" (Microsoft's words) version of the console, all for the same price as the regular 360.
UPDATE ONE: Kinect has been confirmed as the new name for Natal and a list of some of the early games in development for it has been released. Check out the full story.
ORIGINAL STORY: We're mere hours away from Microsoft kicking off E3 with a Natal event tonight and less than 24 hours from their big press conference tomorrow, but two of their biggest surprises may have been leaked today.
A super-sleuth over at the NeoGAF forums stumbled onto the ad banner (above) on an Italian game site. According to a forum member, the ad's animation advertises that it includes a 250GB hard drive, built-in wi-fi, and compatibility with "Kinect."
So what's Kinect? We've heard rumors that Natal isn't the final name for Microsoft's upcoming motion control device and that we'd probably find that out either at the Natal event tonight or during the press conference tomorrow. If this ad somehow got accidentally posted early, could the new name for Natal have been leaked in advance with it? And is Kinect the actual name we'll get in North America or a regional variation on whatever will be announced tomorrow?
Keep in mind that for the next few hours, at least, this is all completely rumor. There have already been several big E3 leaks faked, and it's possible that some devious forum-dweller wanted to wait until just before the show kicked off to fool the gaming world with their masterpiece. We'll know the truth one way or another very soon.
[Thanks to Ben Jones and workinonit24 for the tips]