Microsoft has put in a lot of effort in recent months to promote the fact that a lot of their first-party games would be playable on both the Xbox One and Xbox Series X consoles at release. Because of this, many were surprised when the company revealed that so many of the upcoming titles shown during their Xbox Games Showcase last night were listed as coming to the Xbox Series X console (and Windows PC) with no mention of Xbox One in sight.
We’re not talking just a few games either. In total, eight upcoming Xbox video games shown last night are currently set to be console exclusives on the Xbox Series X.
Here’s the eight Xbox Series X console exclusives announced:
- Forza Motorsport
- Stalker 2
- State of Decay 3
- The Medium
- Warhammer 40,000 Darktide
Did Microsoft go back on their word? Well, not really. The exact messaging for a while has been that the Xbox Series X would launch with (almost) full backwards compatibility for Xbox One video games (in addition to support for backwards compatible Xbox and Xbox 360 titles) and that all first-party Xbox video games released around launch would be playable on both the Xbox One and Xbox Series X.
It was always assumed that game support for the Xbox One would fall away over time as newer titles needed to take full advantage of the Xbox Series X hardware to such a degree that adding support for the Xbox One would be a restriction. In fact, Phil Spencer reiterated this fact in a blog post just a few days ago where he stated that this Xbox One/Xbox Series X support mission really only applied to first-party titles due for release in “the next couple of years.” Third-party developers would also be free to design for whichever platforms they wished.
All those announced games in the above list? Most were just given a title screen or a very brief teaser video during the showcase and won’t release until late-2021 at the earliest though I personally wouldn’t expect them until 2022 or even 2023.
The lack of console exclusive titles at launch may be a problem for Xbox Series X sales but it could be a boon for the Xbox ecosystem as a whole as more people will simply be able to play Xbox video games. While watching the Xbox Games Showcase last night, I tweeted that the presentation had actually convinced me to hold off on an Xbox Series X purchase as all of the games coming out this year will still play fine in 4K on my Xbox One X. This is probably the main reason why Microsoft discontinued the Xbox One X console recently. If Xbox gamers want to play in 4K, they’ll need to buy an Xbox Series X now.
While, I likely won’t be getting an Xbox Series X at launch, the showcase did convince me to sign up for Xbox Game Pass to play a lot of these games for a fraction of the cost of buying them outright. In retrospect, the entire presentation seemed to be more geared towards getting Game Pass signups than Xbox Series X pre-orders which could potentially be the smartest play long-term.
Besides, I’ll just upgrade my console in 2021 or 2022 when the above exclusives start coming out. It should be cheaper then too.
What do you think? Did you want the new Forza and Fable games to be playable on the Xbox One or are you fine with them being Xbox Series X exclusives? Has this affected your decision to buy an Xbox One X? Share your thoughts with the community in the comments below and then follow us on Twitter and Facebook for more Xbox gaming news.
Edit: As Dusk Falls has now been confirmed for Xbox One so updated the article accordingly.