A leaked presentation has revealed that Microsoft and PC accessories manufacturer, Razer, partnered to bring keyboard and mouse support to Microsoft’s Xbox One family of consoles.
The presentation was used to show game developers how keyboard and mouse support would work and the options available to them. It is reported (via Windows Central) that Razer showed off its Razer Turret keyboard and mouse peripheral, as well as showing off how the Chroma RGB lighting works currently on PC, and how this feature could be brought to Xbox.
Information within the presentation showed that, if keyboard and mouse support were to become reality, a single Xbox console would only support having 1 keyboard and mouse connected at a time, instead of supporting multiple inputs, like it currently is with controllers. Additionally, the presentation detailed some of the features for developers, which include:
- Support for up to 5 buttons
- Support for wheel movement (horizontal and vertical)
- Ability to query for mouse capabilities
- Ability to report absolute pointer location
- Ability to report relative pointer movement
- Ability to set cursor glyph and visibility
- New API for polling the above data
Developers would be able to detect if a keyboard and mouse is detected, and if so, limit the player to certain playlists, or change how the gameplay works. This could provide multiplayer games such as Call of Duty, where having a keyboard and mouse could provide an immense advantage over traditional controller players, so therefore the developer may want to take keyboard and mouse players into a separate playlist.
Here is what Microsoft says about game balancing and multiplayer when it comes to keyboard and mouse support:
- Multiplayer balance is completely up to the title
- Presence of keyboard/mouse can be queried
- Keyboard/mouse vs gamepad usage should be monitored throughout gameplay
- Highly suggested that usage of mouse/keyboard be used as part of matchmaking rules
Also noted is that all USB mice that are supported on Windows would be supported on Xbox. This also includes mice that make use of wireless dongles.
Support for keyboard/mouse and Razer’s Chroma RGB lighting would be arriving in then April 2018 XDK update for developers, however, it’s unclear if developers have received this or not.