Photo by Lukas Schulze/Getty Images

Photo by Lukas Schulze/Getty Images

Backwards compatibility has always been a big selling point for gamers when investing in a new generation of consoles. Knowing the massive library we’ve accumulated over 6-7 years will work on the new hardware will always sway us toward it, even if we don’t ever plan on playing them again.

Microsoft is taking that one step further with their consoles going forward. Starting with the Xbox Series X all games developed by Microsoft will be forwards and backwards compatible. What this means is that you will be able to play them regardless of what Xbox you have.

“As our content comes out over the next year, two years, all of our games, sort of like PC, will play up and down that family of devices,” Matt Booty, Head of Microsoft Studios confirmed.

LONDON, ENGLAND – MARCH 28: A detailed view of an Xbox One controller during day one of the 2019 ePremier League Finals at Gfinity Arena on March 28, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images)

Robbie’s Thoughts: This is great for consumers, but as with a lot of Microsoft’s business decisions in the game space it has me worried. Sony and the PlayStation 4 won the last console generation. Even if it wasn’t a true war or a race, it’s indisputable. They sold twice as many consoles lifetime so far and when the Xbox One X released most of the the retailers in Japan didn’t even stock it unless it was pre-ordered.

For past several years Microsoft have been doing everything in their power to give gamers reasons NOT to buy their consoles despite coming out with newer versions at an increasingly fast pace. As a one time Xbox owner, the 360, there have been quite a few games I never thought I’d get to play unless I picked up a new Xbox console. This generation solved all those problems when Microsoft started releasing their games on PC as well. Now that GamePass can be utilized on PC, I don’t even have buy most of these games anymore.

With this newest revelation from Microsoft and Matt Booty, they’re essentially crippling themselves going into the next generation on what should be their biggest concern; fan retention and conversion. If gamers don’t have to buy the new Xbox to play Xbox games, that makes it more likely that Sony may have a chance to convert them to PlayStation owners. The only difference is that Sony does need that conversion and Microsoft does. 2020 and beyond is not looking good for the Microsoft Gaming market.

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