“It’s about preserving the art form that we know and love,” says Microsoft’s Jason Ronald.
Microsoft have been pushing backward compatibility as a central part of their strategy for a few years now, and with the upcoming launches of the Xbox Series X and Series S, they’ve taken that a step further. At launch, both consoles will be able to play every single Xbox, Xbox 360, and Xbox One games playable currently on the Xbox One, while each of them will also benefit from various enhancements- from shorter load times to improved frame rates to added HDR and more.
So what exactly is it about backward compatibility that has caught Microsoft’s fancy? Why is it such an integral part of their strategy? According to Jason Ronald, Director of Program Management at Xbox, it’s not about selling more copies. Speaking in an interview with Inverse, Ronald said that Xbox’s backward compatibility program is all about “preserving the art form that we know and love.”
“There’s no other medium — like music or movies or whatnot — where if you choose to buy a new device, your catalog doesn’t come forward with you,” Ronald said. “We want that same kind of experience with games. When people choose to invest into our ecosystem with their time or their money, we want to respect that investment.”
“It’s not about selling more copies. It’s about preserving the art form that we know and love.”
The Xbox Series X/S will launch worldwide on November 10. With the exception of a few games that require a Kinect to be played, every game that is currently playable on Xbox One will be playable on the next-gen machines as well.