Microsoft has confirmed the first iteration of Xbox’s next generation, the Series X, will launch with backwards compatibility from day one.
The news was confirmed by Xbox chief Phil Spencer in an interview with GameSpot (thanks, Gamasutra), who revealed some Xbox 360 and Xbox One titles will be available on the next-gen system from launch.
“We wanted to make sure we had that, day one, we could deliver on the compatibility promise, and so I’ve been playing quite a few [Xbox 360] games on my [Xbox Series X] and Xbox One games on the [Xbox Series X] and that’s just to ensure that we can be there day one,” Spencer said.
Xbox’s partner director of program management, Jason Ronald, went even further, telling the outlet that he wants the “thousands of games” currently available on Xbox One will to be available on the Series X, too.
“One of the biggest challenges is console games are usually hyper-optimised to the unique hardware capabilities of the device, and this is a new generation of hardware,” Ronald said. “It is a new chip architecture. At the same time, we did design the silicon with [backwards] compatibility in mind, so we did make certain decisions to try to lessen that work, but I don’t want to trivialise how much work the team’s actually doing because there is a tremendous amount of work.”
Almost a full year before its release, Microsoft chose the Game Awards to reveal its new console, previously known as Project Scarlett, the Xbox Series X. But while fans and the press alike have been reporting that the console is called the Xbox Series X, Microsoft has clarified that this generation will merely be called “Xbox”, and “Series X” the name of the first console of this next generation.
“The name we’re carrying forward to the next generation is simply Xbox,” a Microsoft representative said, “And at The Game Awards you saw that name come to life through the Xbox Series X.
“Similar to what fans have seen with previous generations, the name ‘Xbox Series X’ allows room for additional consoles in the future. We’re excited to offer fans a glimpse at the next generation of gaming with Xbox Series X. But beyond that, we have nothing further to share.”