During the week of the E3 conference, Microsoft announced that the Xbox One would adapt with an upcoming update that would allow owners of console to play Xbox 360 games. Some of the interesting features of Microsoft’s idea for backwards compatibility include the ability to transfer saved game data from old Xbox 360 hard drives to the Xbox One and resume where you left off. Also, gamers have the privilege of playing their old games online via Xbox Live. This all seems fair given that the update is free and that we won’t have to repurchase Xbox 360 titles (given you didn’t sell them a while ago). However, the real question is: why did it take so long for Microsoft to come out this?

If anyone  was wondering, Microsoft Executives originally did not care for the idea of backwards compatibility. In fact, one executive stated that “To include backwards compatibility would mean moving backwards.” Many were both pleasantly surprised and frustrated at the news that the Xbox One would soon include free backwards compatibility, but it led people to ask questions. Why was it an issue for the console to be backwards compatible in the first place? What kind of problems can we expect from this update? It’s all relevant and everyone needs to know the answers.

First of all, Xbox director of program development, Mike Ybarra has been contradicting the original opinions and statements of Microsoft as a result of the displeased consumer. “Many told us it would be impossible…consumers should be able to play their content on the devices they own.” Ybarra stated in an interview with Xbox Wire. While that’s all well and good, there was massive demand from Xbox One players for backwards compatibility from day one. If anyone said it was impossible it was the company that makes millions upon millions of dollars in revenue headed by one of the richest men in the world. Backwards compatibility isn’t a challenge, but it certainly will be the way that it’s been set up.

At the end of the day, it’s an unfortunate occurrence that Microsoft decided to include backwards compatibility so late in the lifespan of the Xbox One. Gamers will be the recipients of a much deserved function that all consoles should have. However, it seems a little unnerving that the benefit that Microsoft is most concerned about is their observation that backwards compatibility generates sales. The feature hasn’t even been released yet and their sales have gone up in the last two months.

Anyways, enough of the rant. Enjoy your spoils, Microsoft. Enjoy the backwards compatibility to your hearts content. And good luck, gamers.

  • Nettrick Nowan

    Ybarra said in an interview, that apparently occurred before backwards compatibility was officially announced, that they had been working on it for three years. THREE YEARS!! (okay, do the math in your head) So instead of blowing backwards compatibility off (or tell us that any way), why didn’t Microsoft tell us what was going on? The more I hear about what went on surrounding the Xbox One, the more I question Microsoft as a “straight shooter.” As things stand, I dumped my 360 titles around the same time I got my Xbox One.

    • Fweds

      No company is going to tell you something about a project that was almost impossible to do until they done it, that would be plain stupid for obvious reasons.

      Even Sony Shuhei Yoshida said at E3 about Microsoft’s solution, “The technology involved must be very challenging.”

      It’s an amazing achievement by the MS team and something they can now take forward to next gen if hardware backward compatibility is not feasible due to cost or size.

      • Sam T.

        I completely agree. Backwards compatibility at this point must have been extremely difficult. However, I’m only concerned as to why the comments that Microsoft Execs weren’t originally that they planned on making backwards compatibility a reality. That’s the thing with goals. You set them so that you have something to reach for. I wouldn’t have been upset if every single Xbox 360 title couldn’t be played on the Xbox One, but I would have been disappointed if they hadn’t even tried.

  • Thegg81

    What? Companies like to make money? Weird.

  • Sam T.

    @thegg81:disqus I know right? I understand that money is what keeps the world happy, but we’re talking about a multi-billion dollar coorporation that is looking to benefit from the misinformed consumer. @nettricknowan:disqus I would never blow backwards compatibility off, it’s a necessity. I wouldn’t have bought a next gen console without the hope that backwards compatibility would be imminent. However, I’m just pointing out that these Microsoft Execs contradict what they say and try their hardest to put a spin on their current agenda to replace the previous comments that at this point shouldn’t have been said in the first place. Microsoft is a great company and the Xbox One is flawed but I love it. I just want people to be aware that they shouldn’t believe everything that they see, hear, and read.

    • Thegg81

      Sure but there was a changing of leadership after the disaster that was 2013 and the launch of Xbox one. In the end all it will do is push some people to upgrade to the xb1 sooner with the hope that all their old games will work. I’m excited to see that some of them will and some late games last gen that I missed because of the new hardware I might pick up if the become backwords compatible. (Splinter cell, fable anniversary, ac rouge, South Park). But profiting on misinformed is part of business. If you make a bad purchase it’s your loss. Do your own homework and figure it out.

      “Give a man a fish, feed him for a day. Don’t teach a man to fish. He’s a grown man, and fishing isn’t that hard.” -Ron Swanson

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