At E3 this year Microsoft unveiled what would be the next-gen Xbox console for the world to see, codenamed Project Scarlett. The company didn’t divulge any of the detailed specs or show of the hardware in its entirety, what we do know are a few tiny morsels of information such as- it holds a solid-state hard drive (like the PS5) and will be four times more powerful than their recent console release the Xbox One X- which at the moment holds the grandeur of the worlds most powerful console.
But overall, what is Microsoft’s main focus for Project Scarlett?
Playability and loading times
With the extra power contained within its outer shell, this will give developers a lot more to work with to produce more stunning pieces of art for the gaming world. However, visuals are not the only aim of Microsoft’s plan for Project Scarlett- they want how smoothly games run to be a central element for the next-generation.
All quotes are from an exclusive in-depth interview Gamespot had with the head of Xbox Phil Spencer.
“I think the area that we really want to focus on next-generation is frame rate and playability of the games,” Spencer said. “Ensuring that the games load incredibly fast, ensuring that the game is running at the highest frame rate possible. We’re also the Windows company, so we see the work that goes on [for] PC and the work that developers are doing. People love 60 frames-per-second games, so getting games to run at 4K 60 [FPS] I think will be a real design goal for us.
Project Scarlett is pushing for 4k 60fps across all titles, even though the console is 8k compatible this is something they are urging developers not to focus on. Playability and loading are the biggest aspects.
“The thing that’s interesting is, this generation, we’ve really focused on 4K visuals and how we bring both movies through 4K Blu-ray and video streaming, and with Xbox One X allowing games to run at 4K visuals will make really strong visual enhancements next generation. But playability is probably the bigger focus for us this generation. How fast do [games] load? Do I feel like I can get into the game as fast as possible and while it’s playing? How does it feel? Does this game both look and feel like no other game that I’ve seen? That’s our target.”
As well as looking predominantly to the future, they are also glancing behind back towards older-generations. Primarily in terms of compatibility, to ensure that all generations of Xbox will have access to its predecessor’s games. The PS4 and Nintendo Switch both neglected backwards compatibility, but this is something that Microsoft took to heart and has built up an extraordinary library for the Xbox One and this shall continue on for next-generations.
“We really like the reception and the use that we’ve seen through the [Xbox One backwards compatibility] program. Making sure that all four generations of content–so the original Xbox games that run on your Xbox One today, the OG Xbox; the 360 games that run on your Xbox One; your Xbox One games; and the new generation games–all run on the next platform is important to us. We want to respect the games that you’ve bought from us. We want to make sure that the generations can play with each other, so if you happen to adopt the next generation early and somebody stays back, that if their games are on both platforms, you’ll be able to cross-gen play.
Two Consoles in the making?
If rumours are to be true, Microsoft is developing two different Project Scarlett consoles under two different codenames, Xbox Anaconda and Xbox Lockhart. Anaconda according to reports is going to be the higher-end console between the two, and Lockhart is going to be the lower-cost-orientated version. Microsoft’s goal here is to broaden the gap of audiences with a lower prices entry title, so for those not willing to fork out a sum of money for the higher-end version they have the option for a lower-entry one. Jeux Video has reported the following specs for the two Scarlett consoles:
|Xbox Anaconda||Xbox Lockhart|
|CPU||Custom eight-core||Custom eight-core|
|GPU||Custom NAVI 4+ teraflops||Custom NAVI 12+ teraflops|
|RAM||12 GB, GDDR6||16 GB, GDDR6|
|Storage||1 TB SSD, 1 + GB / s||1 TB SSD, 1 + GB / s|
Project Scarlett is set to launch Holiday 2020 with the highly anticipated Halo Infinite as a launch title. Will you be picking up Project Scarlett as it arrives next year? Are you happy with the main focus of Project Scarlett? Let us know in the comments below!
With the Project Scarlett, launching will Halo Infinite be ignored on the Xbox One? Find out here.
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