Xbox 360 Slim (not) spotted in the wild

Dutch site Game Kings touts photos of rumored downsized model of Microsoft's console…but is in fact the long-dead HD DVD peripheral.

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Source: Dutch site Game Kings.

What we heard: Two weeks after rumors of an Xbox 360 slim surfaced on a Chinese message board, Dutch site Game Kings is touting what it claims are photos of the device, reportedly code-named "Napoleon" after the diminutive French emperor.

Hey, it's (not) the Xbox 360 Slim!
Hey, it's (not) the Xbox 360 Slim!

The unconfirmed and very much unofficial photos show a flat model about 60 percent of the area of the full-sized Xbox 360, which launched in November 2005. Since no sidelong photos are presented, it's unclear what the thickness of the device is, although it appears to not have the detachable faceplate of its elder sibling or a place to attach the external hard drive. Curiously, there are also no head-on shots of the device.

Remember this?
Remember this?

There's a reason for that. The device pictured is none other than the discontinued Xbox 360 HD DVD player. Microsoft had given the now-dead format lukewarm support via an optional peripheral versus the PlayStation 3's internal Blu-ray player. The high-definition format was locked in a life-or-death struggle with Blu-ray until January 2008, when Warner Bros. opted to support the latter exclusively. Mega-retailer Wal-Mart soon followed suit, with format creator Toshiba finally pulling the plug on HD DVD in February of that year.

The official story: Microsoft reps had not responded to requests for comment as of press time.

Bogus or not bogus?: Bogus. Apparently April Fools' Day falls on March 30 in Holland.

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