With very little support to stand on, the reasons to buy an Xbox One get lesser and lesser as the current generation cycle continues. Boasting moderate sales on Halo 5, less console sales throughout this generation and less overall power in the console as compared with PS4, things haven’t been great. The one up-side? Xbox One recently added backward compatibility, which is expanding regularly to include new Xbox 360 titles.
There is a core issue with backward compatibility however, and it’s been true for a long time. As was an issue with the second-generation of backward compatible PS3 units, old games don’t work well on Xbox One. At its core, titles that play from last-generation systems in current consoles were simply not made to work with current console processors. While PS2 managed a fully functional reading of old PlayStation (One) titles, The PlayStation 3 lagged at the sight of a PS2 game without placing an ENTIRE PS2 PROCESSOR in the unit along side the actual PS3 processor. With PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, the same core issues arose – a proprietary processor. Building specialized processors was all the rage with these units, squeezing more power out of every dollar. Conversely, this hurt development on games, though they could be much more sophisticated. Today’s PlayStation 4 system adverts the intense processing issues by simply not allowing PlayStation 3 games to play. Simply put, proprietary processors take so much more work for a standard style processor to complete the same thought.
As with these multiple generations of PlayStation, Xbox is meeting the same wall today. Case in point, Kotaku reports on Halo: Reach, now available on Xbox One through emulation play from the Xbox 360 disk/download. While Microsoft’s core library of Xbox 360 games is ever-expanding into this generation, the tri-core processor functions of a custom processor don’t translate the same way in their coding as does the current octo-core processor. Sony changed the definition of development by switching to a more standardized processor, as did Microsoft but their policies on backward compatibility changed as well. Where Microsoft ditched backward compatibility early in their list of Xbox 360 priorities, Sony chose to ignore it entirely, and Kotaku’s example is a perfect reason why.
Citing Reddit’s users as samples, they hit on frame rate dips as low as 10 FPS, exaggerated by the all-new 60 Frame Per Second experience of Halo 5. Keep in mind this is much less impressive graphically of course – it’s just a core issue with the conversion from specially built processors to standardized. These frame rate issues might seem like a basic issue, but in the world of professional (or serious) gaming, low frames per second can effect your ability to shoot, see and generally play.
Thanks to the modern standardization of consoles in the PlayStation 4/Xbox One era, next-generation systems shouldn’t have an issue playing current generation titles in 5 years’ time, but as it stands things are looking rocky. Have a look at the video below for a reference and leave a comment below on how playable you think Halo: Reach and other Xbox 360 titles have been on current-gen systems.