First plans for Xbox Project Scarlet have finally emerged

A bit of information has made its way to the public through Xbox Boss Phil Spencer expressing his hopes, dreams, and potential plans for the upcoming next-generation of console gaming expected to be launched in November of 2020 or 2021. We will continue to update all information regarding the next-gen Xbox Project Scarlet platform as the next few years should be some of the most interesting in gaming history.

Editor’s Note: Project Scarlet is a code name for use during the development of the next Xbox and will probably not be the final name of the product(s) developed under this frame work. The following post includes the latest information but this project is a work-in-progress and subject to change over the next few years.

Please check our Project Scarlet section for the latest info as it becomes available.

Faster load times, or none at all – Phil Spencer discussed the Xbox team’s goal to remove or reduce loading screens, this will likely be made possible through high-speed connections between solid state, memory, and logic units paired with next-gen APU architecture.

Higher Framerates – While sadly we don’t have an exact figure on this yet, Phil Spencer has confirmed that the next-generation of Xbox hardware will drastically increase the frame rates of games going forward in all resolutions, with or without HDR. Over the next few years we should be able to find out if that means a solid 60 fps minimum across the board, 120 fps coming to some console games, or possibly better in rare cases (for those who have the televisions and monitors to support such visuals). Improved hardware should be able to make this possible without losing texture quality, but gamers on console have also been hoping for more enhanced settings menus in games which allow for the player to set custom settings for shadows, resolution, anti-aliasing, texture quality, and more in order to try and control the image quality versus frame rate performance of a game similar to the way PC Gaming players adapt settings based on their hardware limits and personal preference.

More Exclusives – Xbox announced that they are already hard at work developing their next-generation of consoles at E3 2018 in which they also announced the acquisition of several big name studios plus the founding of brand new game development companies. All of this is a clear strategy for Xbox to address their number one problem, not having enough exclusive game franchises. In the past we saw Microsoft attempt to create deals and developer tools with third party companies to produce exclusives. This didn’t really work out well as titles like BioShock and Mass Effect eventually made their way to other consoles.

More First Party Studios & New IPs – Interestingly enough, Microsoft has also recently tried pitching ideas to big studios only to later cancel projects that didn’t turn out the way they envisioned them (Scalebound, and a few others the public never heard of). Finally, the team at Xbox understands that they need to put their money where their passion is, game design. Phil Spencer has committed to spend more on the IPs players already know about from Xbox as well as amplify investing into New IP for exclusive Xbox games. Microsoft now owns Undead Labs, Playground Games, Ninja Theory, Compulsion Games, and has created a Santa Monica studio called The Initiative.

No Installs – The team at Xbox is also working hard to attempt to get rid of the need to install games, possibly by using a fast Blu-ray disc reading drive. In the past, consoles like PlayStation 2 did not require games to be installed on a hard drive. This became necessary because the amount of data read by Blu-ray drives wasn’t fast enough to keep up with High Definition games. There are higher versions of Blu-ray that haven’t been used yet by consumer electronics, and it sounds like Phil Spencer wants Xbox to explore implementing that tech to get rid of, or heavily reduce installs for games on physical disc format.

Download & Start Digital Games Faster – Part of the E3 2018 announcements from the Xbox Press Conference included FastStart, a new technology which will analyze which parts of games players actually use first. Instead of just providing a multiplayer or story mode first, every aspect of a game’s usage will be determined in order for digital game files to be downloaded in the right order, start up faster, and finish downloading in the background while playing. This time there should be much less interruption and unexpected brick walls, and an overall quicker experience for digital library users.

Choose Your Price – We’ve also been told that Microsoft is looking to launch more than one console as part of Project Scarlet. While Project Scorpio ended up becoming the Xbox ONE X console (high power for a slightly higher price), the next generation Xbox platform could see an immediate choice rather than making players wait for an optional upgrade. It could be a great benefit to consumers to be able to choose right away if they’d like to spend more on a higher spec machine or go for the more affordable option. We aren’t sure what each system would offer just yet, but there will be of course more hard drive space with possibilities of more ram and a more powerful graphics processor.

5 thoughts on “First plans for Xbox Project Scarlet have finally emerged”

  1. I’m very iffy on the idea of multiple console variants as I can see compatibility issues arising but I am excited to see disc and install speeds improving because I absolutely hate waiting hours to play a new release because of day one patches and disc installs.

  2. After that E3 I really am excited to see what they do. I haven’t heard about it for a while but this was shown to me and now I can picture new generations actually making a big difference.

  3. Microsoft almost seems to be working themselves to a potential lead against Sony..but the only thing they need to be careful of is leaking out too many hints or complete info on future projects. Phil already kinda said too much when he mention a team working right now on the future XBOX Consoles. Thing is about 2 Years ago they said Project Scorpio was their last console..which now seems like they meant it will be last XBOX One console they’ll do. Slowly but surely I hope Microsoft learns more and more while utilizing better the resources they continue to obtain more of without having them nearly die out. I think if Microsoft goes beyond the limits of what resources they now own..then they almost might make such a lead that even Japanese Gamers may even consider them over a Sony or Nintendo Console..but that’s truly far-fetched goal to even accomplish if they ever happen to do so. They have so much openness with things than Nintendo and Sony would ever allow..but they need to stop making the same console 3 times while making us install the disc which makes many feel they secretly just bought a Gaming PC that also has far more Media and App capabilities than PS4 or Switch. I think Nintendo is in a safe place..but Sony needs to stop being so full of themselves and telling Gamers would they should do and giving them whatever they feel like giving Gamers just because they still think they are the Cool Kids or the Gaming Industry and claim to know what’s best when they seem to no longer do anymore.

  4. You know it is kind of funny how Phil Spencer was talking about Xbox 2

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