Now that the dust has settled somewhat with Microsoft’s Xbox One announcement, a few lingering issues remain a huge talking point for those interested in picking one up at launch. The first is the unsolved mystery over always-on connectivity, and the other is Microsoft’s confirmation that the Xbox One system will have no way whatsoever to play Xbox 360 discs, or games already purchased through Xbox Live Arcade.
Microsoft has said that the main reason for the lack of Xbox One backwards compatibility, is that the new console is incompatible with Xbox 360 discs, due to being based on the x86 architecture. You may be already aware that this is a similar setup to the way the Sony PS4 has been built, but Sony has already confirmed that they will be offering a workaround PS3 backwards compatibility with the PS4.
Sony has said that Gaikai will play a part in this, with users able to stream PS3 games and possibly even PS2 and PS1 games in the future. Microsoft on the other hand has already confirmed that no such plans are in place to offer a similar service. With the vast library of Xbox 360 games now redundant on the Xbox One – some consumers may be wondering if Microsoft’s system is really the right choice for them.
To make matters worse, Don Mattrick, Head of Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft has been quoted as saying to the Wall Street Journal that “If you’re backwards compatible, you’re really backwards.” – if you can believe that. The exec which you saw introduce the console to the world a few days ago added that only “5 percent of customers play games from previous generations” on new consoles, which is a statistic that may come back to haunt him in the months to come.
Then again, some of you may be thinking he is spot on. Keep your Xbox 360 console to play Xbox 360 games and use the Xbox One for the latest in next-generation gaming that Microsoft has to offer – it’s simple right? Not so simple for consumers who would like to have the functionality included in a new console to play some of the old titles that they have spent fortunes of hard earned cash on.
At the very least, make those Xbox Live Arcade purchases transferrable over to the new system. It isn’t happening though and if Sony can make their Gaikai streaming service value for money – they may be greeted with some new consumers who have become disillusioned with Microsoft’s new business motives.
What are your honest opinions on the death of Xbox 360 games on the Xbox One? Do you think this is a big deal or not?