While console launches normally mean the winding down of the previous generation, with a flurry of games that will exclusively run on the latest hardware, that won’t be the case with the Xbox Series X. Instead, Microsoft isn’t planning on releasing any games that won’t work on the Xbox One in the first year of the next generation of consoles.
“As our content comes out over the next year, two years, all of our games, sort of like PC, will play up and down that family of devices,” Matt Booty, head of Xbox Game Studios told MCV.
This is because Microsoft wants “to make sure that if someone invests in Xbox between now and [Series X] that they feel that they made a good investment and that we’re committed to them with content,” Booty explains.
This is a strange prospect, considering you would expect a platform holder to be trying its absolute best to get people to upgrade to the latest hardware. However, the Xbox Series X, heck, the Xbox One, too, have been moving into a place of gaming legacy. The Xbox One can play select games released for previous generations, from the library of the original Xbox and the 360, and the Xbox Series X consoles will do the same.
What will be a tempting prospect to upgrade, even if there aren’t games exclusive to the new consoles to play, will be all the features and systems that are hinted to be coming with the Xbox Series X – game streaming, for instance.
This is also good news for Xbox owners who feel starved of current-gen exclusives, and who are looking at all those new studios that Microsoft has snapped up in the last year. While Booty didn’t say specifically which games would be released in that window of overlap, it might mean your Xbox One will be able to play Hellblade 2, for example.
In that sense, it sounds similar to how The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild was both the final exclusive released for the Wii U and the first exclusive released for the Nintendo Switch. It meant the Zelda game Nintendo fans had been waiting on for a whole generation didn’t miss out on the fun, but it also acted as a big sell to people who wanted the new console and had skipped the Wii U. There will likely be a lot of people who bought a PlayStation 4 instead of an Xbox One who are eyeing up the Xbox Series X, and Xbox One owners who are eyeing up all those next-gen titles. This approach pleases both parties.