When new Xbox 360 can’t stand the heat, it shuts down the kitchen

Microsoft has sprained its wrist patting itself on the back for “solving” the catastrophic system failure-signaling “Red Ring of Death” in the latest hardware cycle of the Xbox 360, but according to reports, all the slapping might be premature.

It seems that though the new console doesn’t display the notorious three flashing red lights around the power button when the console bricks, a problem widely attributed to heatsinks that melted faster than Nazis’ faces under the sweet glow of the Ark of the Covenant, it still has problems with overheating. That’s because they got rid of the red ring by making it so the ring can’t turn red.

With crimson hues having been banished entirely from the ring of lights, hardware failure will be now be signaled by the power button turning from green to red, or the “Red Dot of Death.” On the up side, the red dot seems to be a “precursor to” rather than “indicator of” your gaming system’s untimely demise. Somewhere between seeing the power button go HAL 9000 and packing the whole thing into a Microsoft-provided cardboard coffin, the console will display a message that it is shutting down to protect itself from “insufficient ventilation.”

How many times it will do this before it becomes self-aware and burns your house down in your sleep remains to be seen, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Microsoft already has a statement prepared.