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Albert Penello on Project Scorpio and the future of Xbox (Inner Circle Podcast)

SOR5

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GAF's own Albert Penello who leads planning for Xbox answered a few questions on TiC Podcast the other day, here is the link to listen

A few snippets of information regarding Scorpio, whats to come, and some other things. There might be some stuff you already know and some stuff you don't so:

  • Microsoft's own goal of Scorpio's 'uncompromised 4k' means allowing for the same framerate, enemies on screen, assets etc. of an XB1 game to be taken into native 4K by developers (dont stop reading here)
  • HOWEVER there is absolutely no mandate on how developers can use this power, they can upgrade framerates, resolutions, assets however they like. Native 4K isn't an absolute necessity, its an optional guideline.
  • This means theyre striving so that if a game was originally performing at 60fps it can run at 4K 60fps if the devs choose that, Uncompromised 4K means Scorpio is 4K 60fps capable
  • Microsoft persistently working with devs to make sure Scorpio development is easy
  • No worries about Xbox One S being announced and launched at this point because the product was "Rad"
  • MS wants consumers to have a choice between base model Xbox or go premium with Scorpio, all Xbox games and accessories will work across this family though should a consumer want to upgrade.
  • Microsoft seeing the future of Xbox like a PC, game's dont have to be abandoned at all, any of the hard stops will be removed
  • Each Xbox from now on will be a natural extension of the last one without disrupting progress made in the gaming industry, a big "family" from now on
  • Play Anywhere is an effort to create an ecosystem of both Xbox and PC gamers, to allow gamers to use all the devices they own, to stay in touch across them.
  • Play Anywhere allows for bigger userbase and added revenue will go towards creating and supporting new IP's at Microsoft, however theres still "plenty of work to do"
  • Xbox team feeling very optimistic
  • Strict ethic that Scorpio couldn't be a half-step, has to hit the right milestone at the right time and be the most technically accomplished console possible
  • No concern at Microsoft that gamers will suddenly jump to PC, people will play where they want to play. In most cases people use party chat just to talk to friends, this has been brought into connect XB1 and W10 players.
  • No plans to phase out Xbox One, such a topic is for the "very very far away future"
  • No faceplates for Scorpio :(((((, its over (more of an inside joke with the hosts)
  • Albert got his big breakthrough in the industry by ramming into the car of a Sega employee (turns out it was an old college roommate)

EDIT:
 

Three

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Oct 26, 2014
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"all games and accessories will work across this family"

Why do they keep repeating this incorrect information?
 

gamz

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Nov 11, 2015
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"all games and accessories will work across this family"

Why do they keep repeating this incorrect information?
It's not incorrect. All xbox accessories will work.


Anyway, thank you OP!
 

R dott B

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Microsoft's own goal of Scorpio's 'uncompromised 4k' means allowing for the same framerate, enemies on screen, assets etc. of an XB1 game to be taken into native 4K by developers
So it'll be an Xbox one game in 4K basically.
 

Caayn

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Mar 10, 2013
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Wonder if that means they already have the design done.
Doubt it. It probably means that they aren't willing to limiting the design to user customization and aren't willing to make it slightly more expensive to build.

Faceplates were nice on the 360. But all I ever did was remove it just to see how it looked without it and instantly put it back on.
  • Microsoft's own goal of Scorpio's 'uncompromised 4k' means allowing for the same framerate, enemies on screen, assets etc. of an XB1 game to be taken into native 4K by developers
  • HOWEVER there is absolutely no mandate on how developers can use this power, they can upgrade framerates, resolutions, assets however they like. Native 4K isn't an absolute necessity.
These are two good points.
  • Albert got his big breakthrough in the industry by ramming into the car of a Sega employee
I'll keep this in mind whenever I can't find a job. Ram into someone :p
  • Play Anywhere is an effort to create an ecosystem of both Xbox and PC gamers, to allow gamers to use all the devices they own, to stay in touch across them.
I'm personally really happy with Play Anywhere. It allows me to play with max graphics on my PC while still playing with my friends on XB1 and only needing to buy the game once.
 

Electret

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May 14, 2014
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Play Anywhere allows for bigger userbase and added revenue will go towards creating and supporting new IP's at Microsoft, however theres still "plenty of work to do"
This is what I've wanted to see from MS and (part of) what they need to do to broaden the Xbox brand's appeal generally and, in particular, worldwide. Hopefully they deliver. The proof will be in the pudding, and they've got much work to do as their recent investment in new IP has been pretty conservative and dotted with some studio closures. I also hope that part of 'new' IP investment includes revitalizing old IPs (PD, Banjo, Flight Simulator, AoE, etc.)
 

Three

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Oct 26, 2014
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It's not incorrect. All xbox accessories will work.


Anyway, thank you OP!
They don't say xbox accessories. They say accessories. Unless the scorpio doesn't support VR and VR games are not counted as games then that statement is nonsense.
 

SOR5

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They don't say xbox accessories. They say accessories. Unless the scorpio doesn't support VR and VR games are not counted as games then that statement is nonsense.
Sorry, it meant Xbox accessories. Probably will use Xbox Connect as the standard to retain that support.

Also, games running in 4k native? Is that doable?
Yes
 

gamz

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They don't say xbox accessories. They say accessories. Unless the scorpio doesn't support VR and VR games are not counted as games then that statement is nonsense.
Huh? Accessories means xbox accessories. What else would it mean?
 

etta

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Mar 24, 2015
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  • Microsoft persistently working with devs to make sure Scorpio development is easy
  • Each Xbox from now on will be a natural extension of the last one without disrupting progress made in the gaming industry, a big "family" from now on
  • Xbox team feeling very optimistic
  • No concern at Microsoft that gamers will suddenly jump to PC, people will play where they want to play. In most cases people use party chat just to talk to friends, this has been brought into connect XB1 and W10 players.
Good stuff.
They gotta try to make good with the indie developers, too. Drop the archaic parity rules.
 
Jan 12, 2008
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The faceplates thing was simply a joke to the hosts. Last weeks' podcast one of them mentioned we should do faceplates for Scorpio.

So don't read anything into that, it was an inside joke on the hosts.
 

Salty Hippo

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Do they ask software related questions or just hardware? Information about their library is all I care about. TIC managed to get out a lot from prople like Ken Lobb and Phil Spencer. But then again almost everything they said in that regard turned out to be bollocks, or vague answers, so why do I even care.
 

Trago

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This is all sounding great. If by "plenty of work to do" he means making UWP a hell of a lot less shit, then I'm interested and excited to see how Microsoft pull this off. Also good to hear that expanding the userbase could lead to new IP's being developed.
 

Blobbers

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Oh man, 4K isn't mandated? That means not every game will have uncompressed pixels in their purest form. There goes one of the major selling points. Down with muddied subpixels
 

Bits N Pieces

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All sounding really good. Exciting times ahead.

Slowly but surely the Xbox division are starting to remember what it was that made the 360 a great console. How half the shit they originally planned for the OG Xbox One got out of the first brainstorming meeting is mind boggling.

Hopefully we get some concrete info about Scorpio before the end of 2016 or early 2017 at the latest.
 

wapplew

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Why don't MS just give us full feature PC box in console form factor? Like give me a reason not to.
It does everything they try to achieve, fix every problem an Xbox ever facing and more!
A unify ecosystem, forward and backward compatible, buy one copy use across all devices (duh), your library follow you forever, VR solution, no more start from zero, tons of biggest exclusives that other console doesn't have, lots of Japanese support, retro gaming, productivity, all the App you ever need, everything, you name it.
Such console will destroy all competitions. Why go through all the trouble and resource when you have the perfect golden goose right in front of you?
 

R dott B

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With 6 Teraflops If they use the extra power for 4K Resolution, that's about all you should expect.
That's what I've been thinking for a while tbh. It reminds me of Forza where yeah it's 1080/60 but it's ugly so I expect the same for 4K Scorpio games "Yeah it's 4K but look at it".
 

Guymelef

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Going for 4K with XBO assets would be really stupid.

MS wants consumers to have a choice between base model Xbox or go premium with Scorpio, all Xbox games and accessories will work across this family though should a consumer want to upgrade.
Strict ethic that Scorpio couldn't be a half-step, has to hit the right milestone at the right time and be the most technically accomplished console possible
You can have 1300 TF but if your software has to be compatible with XBO it's a half-step.
 

Darklor01

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Oh man, 4K isn't mandated? That means not every game will have uncompressed pixels in their purest form. There goes one of the major selling points. Down with muddied subpixels
I don't know if you would actually be able to force 4K on devs. I mean, the complications of that sound really bad when I think about it.
 

SOR5

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This is all sounding great. If by "plenty of work to do" he means making UWP a hell of a lot less shit, then I'm interested and excited to see how Microsoft pull this off. Also good to hear that expanding the userbase could lead to new IP's being developed.
hope so, there needs to be big strives in curating creativity and ownership with UWP as much as they can
 

Trup1aya

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Why don't MS just give us full feature PC box in console form factor? Like give me a reason not to.
It does everything they try to achieve, fix every problem an Xbox ever facing and more!
A unify ecosystem, forward and backward compatible, buy one copy use across all devices (duh), your library follow you forever, VR solution, no more start from zero, tons of biggest exclusives that other console doesn't have, lots of Japanese support, retro gaming, productivity, all the App you ever need, everything, you name it.
Such console will destroy all competitions. Why go through all the trouble and resource when you have the perfect golden goose right in front of you?
Because without the 3rd party software sale royalties, being in the industry would be pointless...
 

Dizzy

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So they're advertising it as a 4k console, yet developers are free to leave 4k and push other graphical options with the power instead.

That's actually very misleading with how much they've been hyping it as a 4k machine. Glad I didn't jump on the 4k bandwagon or I'd be pissed off.

Not that I have a preference for 4k over other options, but if I was to buy a 4kTV and a console expecting every game to be native 4k then I would be very disappointed.
 

Angel_DvA

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Honestly, go with a beautiful game running at 1080p@60FPS or a gorgeous one running at 1440p@30 FPS, 4K is great and shit but if the games are ugly because of it, just drop it.
 

Bobnob

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What do you think the devs will do with that power ? Will they prefer 4k or 1080 with better assets fps etc ? I'd personaly like 1080 with the bells and whistle's because i don't fancy buying a 4k tv. I want to know is it worth my while.
 

SOR5

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So they're advertising it as a 4k console, yet developers are free to leave 4k and push other graphical options with the power instead.

That's actually very misleading with how much they've been hyping it as a 4k machine. Glad I didn't jump on the 4k bandwagon or I'd be pissed off.

Not that I have a preference for 4k over other options, but if I was to buy a 4kTV and a console expecting every game to be native 4k then I would be very disappointed.
Saying that its capable of native 4K gaming isnt misleadiing
 

singhr1

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Honestly, go with a beautiful game running at 1080p@60FPS or a gorgeous one running at 1440p@30 FPS, 4K is great and shit but if the games are ugly because of it, just drop it.
Not every game gets a huge additional benefit from 60 fps. Sure 60 is great but some games benefit it far more than others. Like adventure games benefit far less than shooters or racers.
 
Aug 22, 2013
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Seeing as PS4 and Xbone games usually use the same settings albeit at different resoultions. Xbone games running at 4k isn't going to be ugly.