Discussing what it calls “the most powerful and compatible next-gen console” in a new blog, Xbox Series X director of program management Jason Ronald reiterated that the system will be backwards compatible with existing Xbox One games and accessories, including backward compatible Xbox 360 and original Xbox titles, which will “look and play better than ever before”.
Ronald said Xbox Series X is capable of increasing the resolution of selected older games up to 4K and doubling their frame rates from 30 fps to 60 fps or 60 fps to 120 fps, with all the heavy lifting carried out at a system level, meaning no extra work is required by developers.
Backwards compatible titles “also see significant reductions in in-game load times from the massive leap in performance from our custom NVME SSD”, while Xbox Series X’s Quick Resume feature works with new games and can be enabled for older ones.
Ronald also discussed how legacy games will be improved with HDR support.
“In partnership with the Xbox Advanced Technology Group, Xbox Series X delivers a new, innovative HDR reconstruction technique which enables the platform to automatically add HDR support to games,” he said.
“As this technique is handled by the platform itself, it allows us to enable HDR with zero impact to the game’s performance and we can also apply it to Xbox 360 and original Xbox titles developed almost 20 years ago, well before the existence of HDR.”
Xbox Series X is scheduled to launch during the 2020 holiday season, as is PlayStation 5.
In a follow-up statement, Sony Interactive Entertainment’s Hideaki Nishino said the company believes “the overwhelming majority of the 4,000+ PS4 titles will be playable on PS5”, although he didn’t say when that might be.
“We’re expecting backward compatible titles will run at a boosted frequency on PS5 so that they can benefit from higher or more stable frame rates and potentially higher resolutions,” Nishino added.
“We’re currently evaluating games on a title-by-title basis to spot any issues that need adjustment from the original software developers.”