Microsoft E3 2017: Xbox One Backwards Compatibility For OG Xbox Games Won't Be As Extensive

"It won't be as big as Xbox 360, I'll tell people that."

170 Comments

Earlier this week at E3, Microsoft announced that the Xbox One's backwards compatibility lineup will add original Xbox games later this year. Don't expect the library of OG Xbox games playable on Xbox One to be as extensive as the Xbox 360 backwards compatibility lineup.

Speaking on Giant Bomb's live show tonight, Xbox boss Phil Spencer set expectations for the breadth of the library of OG Xbox games for Xbox One. He said the lineup will not be as large as the number of Xbox 360 games. Why? One part of it is the rights; it is more difficult to lock these down, Spencer said. And secondly, it is more technically difficult, Spencer explained.

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"It won't be as big as Xbox 360, I'll tell people that," Spencer said.

The fact that the library of original Xbox games will be comparatively smaller than Xbox 360 is why Microsoft did not make as big a deal of OG Xbox backwards compatibility as it did when it announced Xbox 360 backwards compatibility at E3 2015.

There are only two OG Xbox games confirmed for the Xbox One's backwards compatibility library so far: Crimson Skies and Fuzion Frenzy. The program launches later this year. By comparison, there are more than 385 Xbox 360 games playable on Xbox One through backwards compatibility--you can see them all here.

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ThatsWild89

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007 Nightfire. The best of the three or four 007 games released in that generation in my opinion.

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derpyderp

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I want the OG Star Wars Battlefront 2 to be BC. Honestly, I'm not surprised that the amount of BC is going to be smaller, and I'm okay with that because licensing is pretty hard. We should be thankful that MS decided to undertake this at all!

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EdwardNygma

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Wow that's terrible news.

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uncle5555

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At this point the XBX should be powerful enough to run a homegrown emulator (or some kind of emulation wrapper) for OG XB, there's literally no reason it shouldn't be able too.

What this also says to me is that MS isn't going to allow disc based BC with OG XB, it's going to be digital only.

I can understand the rights thing, but there's only 700-ish games worldwide for it released during it's lifetime, no reason it shouldn't be able to play them on the format they were released on.

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navyguy21

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Edited By navyguy21

@uncle5555: What Gamespot failed to mention (on purpose....you know.......for clickbait) is that Phil Spencer also said that they cant get the license for a lot of the OG Xbox games because a lot of those studios have closed, were bought, or just dont exist anymore.

Also, these console disc drives dont spin fast enough to have games run from the disc. You need to not only read the emulator instructions but also game data. Its very complicated even if you own the software.

Being digital is the only logical way but that, then, requires licences from the publishers since its being downloaded to another platform.

PC emulation works the same way. Very rarely do you have a game running from the disc. Its just not feasible.

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suicidesn0wman

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@uncle5555: The disc drives in these new consoles weren't built to spin for 6 hours straight, that's why it's all digital. At least that's what I believe. Gotta be some reason they put so much effort into reducing the time spent spinning a disc.

As for the game count, it's 864 in the US.

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ThatsWild89

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Let's not forget Madden 2005. Another title left out from the Xbox 360's backward compatibility with the original Xbox which was arguably, for its time, better than every Madden released afterward on the X360 and now Xbox One.

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emerin76

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Edited By emerin76

Hey, if I can get Dreamfall to play, i'll be happy. I have the disk, but if I have to buy it again, then so be it.

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waelse1

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Morrowind, Thief, Kotor 1 and 2 and other SW games if possible, Dreamfall, Brute Force among others. Want an Xbox website for voting on these too.

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wildhoney66

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really Phil, you want us to spend that much on a console that cost to fucking much to begin with and you say it's going to have X Box the original system games backwards C. for it and than you say yeah it will have it but it will only be for only so many games because instead of saying we are currently working on getting the rights to this or that game we will only say it will have a small libary.

i asked somewhere else and they said that discs will work on it. but is that all X box OG ? or just certain ones? like when the 360 did have it but only for like 130-150 games i think it was? they should work on getting the rights to their games than than put it on. i dunno how much money and time that will be.if some of the games were also put on the 360 than there's some games you don't have to worry about. but for others there's plenty the fans i'm sure want

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jlenoconel

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Xbox is a damn joke. I would have loved to have seen almost full backwards compatibility for Xbox. So many games I've never played on that system and would love to.

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Kyletheheck

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Is this where we leave requests then? I want Prince of Persia: The Two Thrones. I never got to complete that series.

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sladakrobot

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@Kyletheheck: yes,google xbox feedback site

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ThatsWild89

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Edited By ThatsWild89

Please add Rallisport Challenge 2 this time around. The original RSC was a backward compatible title on the Xbox 360 and the incredible sequel was forgotten. Easily the best rally racing game on the original Xbox and one of the best racers, period. Completely flawless and fluid that game was. The graphics can easily pass as an early X360 racer at that. Also Outrun 2006 Coast 2 Coast and its predecessor if anyone can afford the original Xbox version these days.

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GirlUSoCrazy

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Edited By GirlUSoCrazy

@thatswild89: Not sure why they ditched the series, at least there's Dirt

Outrun on Xbox is fetching high prices? I still have my discs for that and the PS2 and PSP versions, and have my 360 Outrun installed

Quick check shows ~$10 on eBay oh well

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ThatsWild89

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Edited By ThatsWild89

@girlusocrazy: I was referring specifically to the Xbox version of Outrun 2006: Coast 2 Coast. The PS2 and PSP versions are still affordable but the original Xbox version is slightly more rare and was the superior version in graphics and internet play I suppose. The disc alone in a sleeve sells for about $45 on Ebay. See for yourself.

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GirlUSoCrazy

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Edited By GirlUSoCrazy

@thatswild89: Oh that's interesting... Ok

They seem remarkably similar: https://youtu.be/NDgzZ2rEQTM

But I heard Outrun 2 has better graphics overall than coast 2 coast, which supposedly has lower res textures and more shimmering

Glad I have them all just the same, great game

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dlCHIEF58

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@girlusocrazy: One reason is that it was developed by DICE which is now owned by EA.

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ThatsWild89

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@dlCHIEF58: And wasn't XSN Sports, part of Microsoft Game Studios the publisher? I remember hearing that RSC2 was part of a defunct project of Microsoft that ended in the beginning of the X360's lifespan with Amped 3. Not into snowboarding games, but almost everything released by this project was a decent game in its own right.

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dlCHIEF58

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@thatswild89: It was, but they sold off all those franchises before the end of life on the original...2K got Amped, Top Spin and Links (which they have left dormant for some unknown reason).

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GirlUSoCrazy

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@dlCHIEF58: Damn

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mariokart64fan

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Edited By mariokart64fan

Why the fucking hell do they even have to go get right to games people already have purchased makes no sense

The wiiu played every single Wii game ever made the. Wii played every single game GameCube had PS2 played all PS1 games and they're not having to track down owners

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navyguy21

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@mariokart64fan: You are essentially talking digital vs disc.

Gamecube discs could play in Wii so there was no need for licences (Wii was essentially 2 gamecubes anyway)

PS3/PS2 could also read discs.

Once you go digital........they have to be re-licensed.

As technology gets more advanced, it becomes A LOT harder to emulate from the disc. PS3 got around this by having the actual hardware on the motherboard.

This is why 99% of PC emulation is done with ISOs. You cant feasibly run old games from the disc and also decode instructions for the emulator without introducing more problems. Console games operate on a extremely tight instruction window. This is why PC needs to be a lot beefier to run old games on disc.

Its hard to explain on a forum but its not as simple as downloading an emulator and running from disc. These drives (and more importantly CPUs) are far too slow and weak to do on the fly from the disc

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JoshRMeyer

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@mariokart64fan: What you mentioned is real BC... The games runs exactly as coded. MS has to mess with the code to emulate it. You aren't actually playing the original game. The disc only tells the machine that you own the game and then you download the digital version (which wasn't around back then).

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dlCHIEF58

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@joshrmeyer: Technically that is not correct, the original code is still intact - they do not have the authority to alter the original game code. But they added an emulator wrapper that tricks the One into thinking it is launching a One game while in actuality it is booting up the 360 virtual machine/emulator which then boots up the 360 game within it. That is why every 360 game downloaded is approximately 500MB larger than the regular 360 game file.

What you meant to say he was referring to hardware BC as opposed to software based or emulation. Many people have the false conception that only hardware based BC is "true" BC.

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JoshRMeyer

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Edited By JoshRMeyer

@dlCHIEF58: Yeah, you said it way better than I did. What I meant by the true BC thing was that the game will run exactly how it runs on the original hardware... Software emulation does a good job but isn't exact(Some people may want those 15fps drops for nostagia lol)

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dlCHIEF58

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@mariokart64fan: They need to get the rights/licenses in order is because none of the games were ever licensed to be distributed to the One (since the game plus emulator needs to be downloaded and installed after inserting your disc the first time) and few were available as digital distribution on the 360. If they ran directly from the discs, then none of this would be an issue but the system was not designed to run ANY game from the disc drive.

And FYI, not all PS1 discs played as BC titles on the PS2 - there were a handful of exceptions.

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GirlUSoCrazy

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I guess no Outrun 2 or KotOR on One

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dlCHIEF58

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@girlusocrazy: Why? Outrun 2 may not due to music or car license issues, but nothing stopping KOTOR from happening. Bioware owned by EA who has exclusive Star Wars rights so this is very likely.

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GirlUSoCrazy

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@dlCHIEF58: OIC, good news then

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moose3469

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Edited By moose3469

Since everyone is making a wishlist: JSRF, Shenmue 2, Panzer Dragoon Orta, Ninja Gaiden, Phantom Crash, ect... Basically Japan's greatest hits on the console.

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GirlUSoCrazy

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@moose3469: I wish there were more current Japanese games on One at all, getting OG games would at least be something

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Elranzer

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No one mentioned Toe Jam & Earl 3.

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GirlUSoCrazy

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@Elranzer: Good catch

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Elranzer

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Original Xbox and Xbox One are both x86-based, so technically there should not be any reason for it to be more complex than the PowerPC-based Xbox 360 emulation. It's a matter of running the code, as they don't have to emulate hardware. Plus many Original Xbox games were Microsoft first-party titles, and it seems Sega is onboard.

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dlCHIEF58

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@Elranzer: You seem to forget the original Xbox had a custom nVidia video card which was one of the major hindrances in getting BC titles on the 360. Also the OSes are completely different so it is not a matter of just "running the code" - PCs and Macs share the same processor family now but Windows programs do not run natively in a Mac OS X environment and vice versa.

But the real hurdle is licensing and redistribution over Live as it is for 360 BC titles. Every game that had licensed material (music, cars, movie license, sports teams, etc) from the original Xbox has long expired as most are only licensed for 5 years. Then you have the quagmire of defunct studios and publishers, having to track down who may now retain the rights to certain franchises in order to get permission to redistibute them on the One (which they obviously were never licensed for distribution, especially given the majority never saw a digital release).

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deactivated-59d93003b3a2e

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It's simply ridiculous that Microsoft just don't put an Xbox OG emulator in the X so that you can play all OG Xbox games. If the X is half as powerful as promised it should not be an issue. Sure, emulation is rarely perfect but that is not a big deal in my book. My educated guess is that M$ want to put the OG games on sale digitally and possibly physically for a nice little profit. Good thing I have two original Xboxes so I don't have to deal with this shenanigans.

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JoshRMeyer

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@Mickeplask: You do realize that playing a game on an emulator is illegal right? Even if you own the game. MS would still need to get permission to run the game on a different piece of hardware than it was licensed for.

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deactivated-59d93003b3a2e

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@joshrmeyer: Yeah but criminals like me break the every day by playing PS1 games on PS2 & PS3, GameCube games on the the Wii and OG Xbox games on the 360. The only problem is that that it is perfectly legal so don't understand your point? We are taking about console backwards compatibility, not some shady PC emulator. Why would you not expect full backwards compatibility on the X?

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JoshRMeyer

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Edited By JoshRMeyer

@Mickeplask: I'll make it easy for ya... It's only legal if Sony or Microsoft get permission from the developer to allow the game to be emulated on a system other than it was intended for. I may be wrong saying this, but if the game plays on a new console(say a Wii game on wiiU), Nintendo wouldn't need permission since no emulation, it actually is the same hardware running the game. I'm assuming this is how the Pro and soon the X will be able to play all games PS4 and Xbox One without needing permission.

Edit: Look at PC games from 10 years ago. They should still be able to run on a new PC without breaking the law. Because the game was licensed for PC, it can technically be any PC. I'm not sure if games strictly made for Windows 10 will be the same way but I'd think so.

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darkfox3

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Give me Steel Battalion, Kung Fu Chaos, and Crimson skies and I'd be perfectly happy.

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suicidesn0wman

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Edited By suicidesn0wman

@darkfox3: And how are you going to control Steel Battalion?

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deactivated-5a60f921620ed

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@suicidesn0wman: Og xbox controllers work on Xb1X Via cable adapter to usb!

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dlCHIEF58

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Edited By dlCHIEF58

@sdecker425: Facepalm on this - you do realize that this requires a 40 button controller to play the game and the emulation does not support any previous gen peripherals? That is why there are no Kinect games in BC or any other peripheral based games supported.

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deactivated-5a60f921620ed

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@dlCHIEF58: Phil Spencer was quoted saying OG xbox controllers like the big fat one will work on Xb1,Xb1s,Xb1x, and there are about 30 articles about it all over the web! Those controller are not wireless, so either there will be an adapter, or a module. Also during this interview he stated all Xb1 peripherals will work on all xbox's going forward.

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suicidesn0wman

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@sdecker425: Far as I know there are no such cables for X1X. If there were though, I might have to pull out the old duke from the closet to get the FULL original Xbox experience. :D

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deactivated-5a60f921620ed

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@suicidesn0wman: If you do you must send pics of the beast!

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suicidesn0wman

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@sdecker425: Well I've got several dukes, the steel battalion controller, and all 864 US retail games for the console... lol

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DustbusterGF

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if I cant put a 360 game in this new machine I don't want it

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bentleyj10

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Edited By bentleyj10

@DustbusterGF: pretty sure you can :) you are welcome.

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