Microsoft Needs to Get the Scorpio Launch Just Right

Posted on March 27, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Xbox One with 47 Comments

Microsoft Needs to Get the Scorpio Launch Just Right

Microsoft is set to launch a true second-generation Xbox One console this year. It’s critical that they get everything right this time.

I bring this up now because Microsoft Head of Xbox Phil Spencer recently tweeted about the importance of having great games ready for the Project Scorpio launch. “Having our [first-party] games ready for Scorpio is critical,” he wrote in response to a question about launch-day games.

Obviously, having a great games selection at launch is critical, but that’s just one item in a long list of things that need to go right for Microsoft this time around. That’s not a dig at Mr. Spencer: He gets it, and more to the point, he was answering a very specific question in that Twitter conversation. But it’s impossible to think ahead to the next Xbox One console and not think back on that first, horrible launch.

As you may recall, the Xbox One was formally announced in May 2013 at a press conference that focused on the coming console’s multimedia capabilities, for some reason. Microsoft corrected that by highlighting video game functionality at that year’s E3, but continued the shaky messaging in a series of missteps that have since cost Microsoft dearly.

The firm originally promised that the Xbox One would launch in 21 markets, but later changed that number to 13, angering customers. It originally stated that the Xbox One would require an Internet connection to even work, pretty much baffling everybody. It would only sell the console with the expensive and unpopular Kinect, which drove the base price of the console to an incredible $500, about $100 more than the PlayStation 4. And it was even going to require an Xbox Live Gold subscription at one point, though few remember that. Finally, it confused everyone with a byzantine policy regarding used games, which it later abandoned.

When the topic of PlayStation 4 and Xbox One sales come up—the general consensus is that PS4 continues to outsell Xbox One by at least 2-to-1—-people generally point to those 2013 issues as the reason, collectively for the gap. But I don’t believe that to be the case, given that Microsoft actually addressed many of those issues before the console even launched in 2014. And then subsequently addressed the rest—like the Kinect requirement—after the launch while adding tons of value to the entire ecosystem as well.

That said, the gap is very real, and exists, and it doesn’t show any sign of changing. Indeed, it’s interesting to note that Microsoft did in fact get everything right with the Xbox One S launch in mid-2016, and that has done very little to change the platform’s fortunes. Yes, Xbox One did outsell PS4 for four of the final six months of 2016. But it lost the crucial holiday months—November and December—and lost that time frame, and the entire year, too. Microsoft offers so many sales on Xbox One these days I can’t even keep track of them.

But there’s a new Xbox One coming in late 2017. Currently code-named Project Scorpio, this console has the chance to leapfrog over Sony’s PlayStation 4 platform, and put Microsoft in the lead, technically. That is the very least that it must accomplish. In fact, the worry here is that it doesn’t matter what Microsoft does, or how good Scorpio is. That the PS4’s lead is just that solid.

There’s no way to see the future. But in thinking about this console launch, I’d like to see Scorpio achieve at least the following:

Full compatibility with Xbox One and backwards-compatible Xbox 360 games. Project Scorpio can’t be mostly-compatible. It needs to work with everything.

Full compatibility with Xbox One peripherals. I’m assuming that all Xbox One controllers and other peripherals will just work as well.

True 4K gaming. Sony launched its 4K-capable PlayStation 4 Pro in late 2016. But that consoles doesn’t actually play games at 4K. If Microsoft can pull this off, they’ll make a compelling case for gamers of all kinds to jump ship.

A compelling VR/MR story. Sony launched PlayStation VR in late 2016 too, and it has been well-received. But PSVR hasn’t really taken off in any meaningful way—no VR/AR/MR solution has—and it remains to be seen whether this type of thing will ever be popular. Scorpio needs to offer high-quality VR in addition to market-leading mixed-reality (MR), thanks to Windows Holographic support and compatibility with the coming generation of Windows Mixed Reality headsets.

Premium pricing, but reasonable. The Sony PlayStation 4 Pro costs $400. Scorpio cannot come in much higher than that: I’d say $500 to $600 is the maximum. But even at that pricing—which is, honestly, unreasonable—Microsoft will have a hard time attracting platform switchers. Right, this will never happen.

A better story around games. Obviously, games are the lifeblood of any console system, and it is here that Xbox One has really fallen short. I noted above that the launch foibles aren’t the real issue for Xbox One. And that’s because it’s the games: Sony has very aggressively courted platform-exclusive and platform-first titles for PS4, and Microsoft has fallen short. Scorpio needs to come out of the gate with great games. And those games need to look better on that platform than they do anywhere else.

Smart messaging. The current group running Xbox is doing a much better job explaining themselves than the boobs that first launched the Xbox One. But they need to hit all the right notes as they unveil Scorpio. Any sign that they are backpaddling on previous promises—most games won’t really be in 4K, some Xbox One peripherals won’t work, some game is delayed, or whatever—will be jumped on by critics. And will kill any chance this console has, no matter how good it really is.

For me, the biggest thing here is the quality bar: Scorpio must consistently and obviously outperform PS4 Pro. Otherwise, what’s the point? For the entire span of the Xbox 360 and Xbox One life cycles, so far, Sony’s consoles have been technically superior. Project Scorpio is a chance for Microsoft to set things right. Let’s hope they do it.


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Comments (47)

47 responses to “Microsoft Needs to Get the Scorpio Launch Just Right”

  1. emanon2121

    I think Cortana needs to play a bigger part of the story. Also they need great exclusive games.

    • tboggs13

      In reply to emanon2121:

      I agree about Cortana. But I think they need to release a 1080p webcam with a conferencing quality microphone array to make it shine. Kinnect is overkill for this, so they need something they can include in the bundle. They could alos open it up to third party USB devices.

      • wolters

        In reply to tboggs13:

        Agreed...I still think the Kinect is pretty awesome but acknowledge it isn't popular. I pretty much use it for voice navigation and Skype. Would want both of those options in the next XBOX for sure...

        • Jeffrey Tschiltsch

          In reply to wolters:

          Yeah I'm with you, I've never disconnected my Kinect because I use a lot of the original voice commands (I still like "Xbox Record That!" over any other way to grab video). I know Spencer has promised "all peripherals" will work with Scorpio, but look how difficult they made it to plug a Kinect into the S. Honestly my dream would be that they just include a mic in the front of the Scorpio along with an IR blaster - the S got that half right :) Then I would just leave my Kinect connected to my Forza LTD XBox One.

  2. Patrick3D

    I'm only waiting on games, the Model S is good enough for me, just need the right game to make it worth buying. I'm hoping Crackdown 3 will be that game, Microsoft could put me over the edge by announcing a new Viva Pinata game that is faithful to the first two games. I've been playing videogames since Pong and think taking sides is silly. Buy every system and enjoy all the games, but no sense buying something if it doesn't have games that interest you. Currently enjoying Zelda: BotW on Nintendo Switch and considering picking up a PSVR after moving this Summer, looking forward to seeing what Microsoft announces at this E3. Exciting time to be a gamer.

  3. Elan Gabriel

    As much as I love Xbox, they're doing it wrong again. In 2013, they put emphasis on Software, and not Hardware. This time, it's the other way around. People won't get a 4K console with zero games. Most people don't own a 4K TV, let alone HDR.

    MS needs to quickly work on;

    1. Ad free dashboard experience. With each new update they introduce more and more ads
    2. More games, with more Single Player experiences
    3. Stop ignoring the rest of the world, they're too much US centric. There are more people outside of the US than within it. Just saying.
    4. Lower the social-craze they got to in the last year (to grab youth, I assume ?). Yes, console is a social device, but not everything should be about leaderboards/tournaments/sharing/multiplayer gaming.

    Sadly, I can't how Scorpio will make a difference.

    • Spineless

      In reply to Elan Gabriel:

      You're complaining about the single ad, that's off in the corner, on the Home Screen? Seriously? It's completely benign and unobtrusive. I don't see why it would be an issue.

      • Elan Gabriel

        In reply to Spineless:

        Yes. Unlike you, when I'm getting a premium device I expect to get a premium service.  Which means zero ads. Not to mention the fact that you're naïve thinking Microsoft will stop with just this ad. I'm talking about the 3-4 ads on the home screen plus the new one right in the guide (Currently just for preview members).

    • suicideninja

      In reply to Elan Gabriel:

      No most people don't own a 4k TV and are happy with their 1080p.  However, there isn't much reason to own one at this time, just like at the launch of the 360/PS3.  There isn't content.  4k movies isn't enough on it's own.  I recently bought a 4k TV because I bought a Xbox One S and a PS4 Pro.  I'm glad I did - it does make a difference in streaming, movies and gaming.  Even non-4k content looks better.  People that haven't made the move will need to see it to make the move, so we need that content!

      I've never felt that there wasn't enough single-player experiences.  After I got over Halo, Destiny, and PvZ, I haven't done as much online multiplayer and have plenty to play.

      As much as social doesn't seem appealing, apparently it's something gamers want.  I assume it's a generational thing as you do.  Some of my friends that are even a few years younger do more social sharing and associated BS than I would have thought.

      • Elan Gabriel

        In reply to suicideninja:

        We're (the readers here) are not representative of the common people in regards to tech, I'm not sure about 4K being that important to consumers at this time, and even Spenser said that he doesn't expect Scorpio to be a huge seller (see his latest IGN podcast interview), and that the 1S will sell the most.

        I have lots to play, but most exclusives are MP oriented. So I play a lot on my Xbox, but most of it is 3rd party games.

        Yeah, I guess it's a generational things. I just wish I would've given a way to turn it off on my device (feed/trending etc.) 

  4. Bats

    Wow,..there is a lot of stuff here that makes no sense to me. It's like Paul is trying to revise history again.

    First of all, the fact that MSFT highlighted the Xbox One's multimedia capabilities DID NOT COST Microsoft dearly. I repeat, IT DID NOT. The ISSUE was the Xbox's ability to SHARE GAMES. Sony even mocked MSFT with a short and funny demonstration on how you can share games on the simply hand it to another person. THAT...THAT was the issue! I can SUM this up in 3 letters: DRM.

    Not just that, but really....AM I supposed to believe that Xbox Gamers were really upset that MSFT only launched in 13 markets as opposed to 21? REALLY? The fact that the Xbox One is available in U.S., Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand, the U.K., France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Ireland and Austria? Seriously Xbox Owners were upset by that? These are countries with very established economies, how can you say that effected anything? What is the breakdown of PS4/XB1 sales per country? Can someone give me the phone number of a British or a New Zealander Xbox Owner so I can ask him how upset was he? Fake News!

    To further that note, I remember reading how the PS4 outsold the Xbox One, despite the latter and the 13 markets. In 2014, MSFT increased market availability for the XBox One and for some odd reason, Sony continued to sell more. To say, 2017, availability is a factor for a 2:1 sales difference between Sony and Microsoft is faulty analysis.

    With that said, it's hard to imagine that even a perfect launch can help Xbox One improve it's sales figures. 

    As for the release of Scorpio, it's not going to make a difference. For one thing, NO ONE switches platforms due to "higher specs." If there are difference between Scorpio and the PS4 PRO they will be minimal. The reason for this is simple: MONEY. You have to consider the human factor in all this. Not only that, but Sony has countered every move Microsoft has made with the Xbox One/Windows. You can surely count the same will happen close or on Scorpio launch day. Heck, it's practically a given. 

    With Sony's success of the PS4 Virtual Reality system, it's going to be tough for Microsoft. Yes, I know Paul's take on it, but it's (as usual) faulty. Paul likes to compare sales figures of the $399 VR system to the $99 Kinect. can't. How can you compare a $399 product to a $99 one? We are talking a $300 price difference between units. Which pricepoint is easier to spend $99 or $399? If Sony counters MSFT's Scorpio with a $249-$299 offer for the VR system, then it's game over for Microsoft....for now.

  5. dnation70

    i haven't used any Intel stuff for yrs...too unstable

  6. dnation70

    if i was a gamer i would own one of these

  7. ecumenical

    I agree with most of Paul's specific points, but in the end it's only about one thing: the games. 4K doesn't matter. Technical specs don't matter. I don't mean nobody cares about them, but not enough people care to change MS's position versus Sony in the market.

    The PS2 destroyed the Xbox and GameCube despite being inferior to both. The Wii dominated the 360 and PS3. The DS versus the PSP, 3DS versus Vita. In all cases this was because they had the games the largest number of consumers wanted to play. What matters is whether you have content for everybody, no matter their interests (Wii sort of a special case since they managed to attract a huge crowd of people on the novelty of motion controls - but again, people wanted to play the games so they bought the system. They didn't buy the system and then hope there might be games.)

    The only time that the Xbox got out to a lead over PlayStation (2005-2008), it had a truly impressive lineup across numerous genres. Yes, Halo/Gears (still fresh at the time)/Forza... but also big-names exclusives like Oblivion, Mass Effect, and Fable. They made a very credible effort to get Japanese titles with exclusives like Blue Dragon and Lost Odyssey, getting a cross-platform launch for Final Fantasy XIII, and securing timed or permanent exclusives on smaller games like Eternal Sonata, Star Ocean 4, Last Remnant, etc. They led the way with XBLA and indies: Braid, Geometry Wars, Shadow Complex, and so many others. They had the deal with Activision to give CoD players the first-tier experience on Xbox.

    Now we're back in the PS2 versus OG Xbox world. What does Xbox 1 have as a reason to buy into the platform? Halo 5 single player, a played-out Gears franchise, Forza 6, and Sunset Overdrive? There is virtually no reason to buy the system instead of the competitor. Into big-time multiplayer shooters (CoD, Destiny)? Get a PS4. Into Japanese games? Get a PS4. Into fantastical, genre-defying games (Last Guardian, Journey, the Witness)? Get a PS4. Into third person blockbusters (Uncharted, Tomb Raider, Last of Us, God of War)? Get a PS4. Want to try VR? Get a PS4. And that's true for pretty much any genre or style you can name.

    Until MS addresses this and gets back to software parity they are going to keep losing. Great to hear Spencer make some noises in this regard. As with all things MS, I'll believe it when I see it.

  8. Jose Gomez

    Microsoft needs to get Triple A exclusives & a flood of new games in a consistent way. There are a ton of properties out there that Microsoft needs to nab. I would start with Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, Mega Man X, Mega Man Legacy, Legacy of Kain, Metal Gear Solid, Star Trek, Ghostbusters, X-MEN, Blade, the Mobile Suit Gundam franchise, & pay to make them all Xbox & Windows 10 exclusive.

    I would go after abandoned development & restart them like Star Wars 1313, Mega Man Legacy 3, Suicide Squad, & many more. I would set up a beta program to test games & figure out of you have hits before they are published.

    I'd even love to see original Xbox games get backwards compatibility & brought to Windows 10. It would be really cool that if you've bought an old or current console, all the games purchased get unlocked for Windows 10 automatically.

    On the content side, I'd really like to see Xbox One become a cable box option. Via an app or by a dongle, it would be nice to have all your cable channels, VOD, & PPV as a thing on Xbox Live.

    • Chris

      In reply to Jose Gomez:

      They had three Gundam games on the Xbox 360, then lost the next one to the PS4. Hopefully, if the performance of Scorpio is much better than the Xbox One, they might be able to get Gundam games back on the Xbox platform. They could also try to push Koei and Bandai Namco into releasing the three Dynasty Warriors Gundam games as "backward compatible" games for the Xbox One.

      The Legacy of Kain games were never released on the Xbox, so getting them would be kind of hard, especially since the series has essentially been brought to an end, and Nosgoth was a PVP-based MMO. If it had some PVE instead of just being PVP, it might have survived for longer, and I might have actually played it. I suppose Square Enix could be pursuaded to make a Kain based game, following on from the end of Defiance, but given how poorly Nosgoth went, and the cancellation of Dead Sun, they might not even consider it.

      I would rather Microsoft talk to Hideo Kojima and get his new game, rather than the Metal Gear Solid games. They used to be good, but are quickly becoming rather bland, and I doubt that they can have the same impact as the first few games.

      Instead of just cable stuff, I'd like Microsoft to restart development of their DVR functionality. I bought one of the Digital TV Tuners for my Xbox One so that I could use it as a DVR, but since the cancellation of that system, I've had to start pricing up more expensive equipment, and consider paying for and using Plex and its Pass, to be my DVR instead, with a similar setup I had for the Xbox 360 using Windows Media Center on Windows 7. I also bought a USB 3 external HDD for the storage of the recorded programs (if choosing the location was an option, otherwise I would have moved my games/programs, or music to the ext HDD).

      Microsoft needs to get some coherence to what they say, and do, otherwise a great launch for Scorpio could still end up with them coming behind Sony, and essentially losing the war...

      • Jose Gomez

        In reply to Chris:

        Good ideas all around. However, I think Hideo Kojima is firmly in the Sony camp. His studio maybe Independent but was sponsored by Sony Computer Entertainment. I seriously doubt he's going to publish anything on Xbox One unless Sony has guaranteed him platform independence. Kojima has no problem with publishing just on PlayStation only since Metal Gear Solid 1, 4 being PlayStation exclusives.

        I too would like to see the DVR functionality return. It was such a promising feature. I do think it makes sense to bring it back along side a cable tuner. I know getting the cable companies to play ball will be tough. Since the industry as a whole is losing subscribers by the hundreds of thousands per quarter, cable needs an option to get people from those cable rental cost. Consumers hate renting equipment that jacks up the price.

        Legacy of Kain's sequels were published for the original Xbox. I went back & double checked. Sure enough, we have confirmed published sequels of Legacy of Kain for the Xbox. I don't think it would take much to get them as an exclusive Xbox title & get a HD relaunch of the previous titles in a bundle pack.

  9. Chris_Kez

    Paul, I think you need to amend or clarify the language here: "the general consensus is that PS4 continues to outsell Xbox One by at least 2-to-1." (emphasis mine).

    Perhaps you meant something like "despite Xbox closing the gap in recent months, there general consensus is that Sony has sold twice as many units since launch".

  10. Ugur

    I think it's a mistake by MS to put so much emphasis on the "4k" aspect.

    It will be more capable than the PS4 at 4k, but will it be capable enough to run all content natively at 4k at 60 fps?

    No, totally not. And that makes a lot of sense, because one can buy a geforce 1080 now and it can't run all games at 4k 60 fps.

    So of course a console which is despite a big leap still less powerful than the latest high end pc graphics card, of course will do less.

    It wouldn't be a problem if MS wouldn't put such a big focus on it, but by highlighting that as main selling point, of course they run the risk of getting shunned more when it doesn't deliver completely on the promise and still has many games which either run at lower res and upscaled to 4k or run at 4k but then lower fps.

    Also: the main thing is really as you said the games, MS more than anything needs way more platform exclusives or at least timed exclusives.

    Overall i feel halfway good about the Scorpio, because yes, a more powerful device is cool to me and one of the big issues of the xbox one was really that it is les powerful than the PS4 in several important aspects which then lead to many cross platform games running worse on the xbox one than on the ps4 hence then many who would consider only buying one of the two bought the ps4.

    That then the Ps4 so far had way more and very nice (console) platform exclusives made that decision even easier for many who would only buy one of the two.

    Now the hardware muscle race looks like with the Scorpio MS could get into the lead, so yeah, then with many platform (timed) exclusives they could do better.

    But yeah, there are many other important aspects like you noted, like yes, also the price.

    Regarding VR: I'm a big supporter of AR/VR and do lots of things on those ends, too.

    But i'm only into xbox getting AR/VR/mixed reality support if it's done really well, else i have a pc i use that stuff most on and phones i use lower fidelity versions of such things, not much need for me for a just ok in the middle ground thing for these.

    I also feel like one of the biggest risks to the whole thing has not been mentioned by you at all, which is MS putting all their platforms into danger by trying to force push UWP on all of them instead of going with their strength which is the leading platform for x86/x64 apps/games.

    So if for example now they only bring support for VR/AR on the Scorpio via UWP apps, yeah, automatically much less popular to me than if they would do a coop with Vive and Rift to get all those things.

  11. 12Danny123

    I do think Microsoft needs to go third party and find a way to compete with Valve head on. They already got a big advantage in AR/VR game, where scalability counts. But in the PC world they should have a XB controller based UI for Windows 10 PCs. That loads UWP games using Windows 10 Cloud to sell to OEMs to make PC Consoles.

    They should also have games support touch, MK and controller.

    While people may think that it's hard for MS to make third party consoles due to ensuring the experience works. But since it'll run an OS similar to Windows 10 Cloud, PC gaming development principles apply, so if your UWP game works on full Windows 10, it'll work on a PC console with Windows 10 Cloud. This is definitely a great way to get developers using the Windows Store.

  12. Maelstrom

    I have countless of friends and acquaintances around me, the most part owning a PS4 and a few having a Xbox One and mostly all of them are drooling at the idea of getting a Scorpio just from its rumored specs...

    So, if MS gets it right, it's going to sell!

  13. Athena Azuraea

    The constraints 4K and low price will not go hand-in-hand. I think Microsoft is shooting themselves in the foot by announcing that it's going to do 4K. It's not happening, or it is happening with crippled graphics and/or framerate. That, or a high premium price.

  14. chaad_losan

    I honestly don't know why The One S was not better received. I had one at launch. It's been totally awesome. The 4k UHD drive is amazing and the 4k upscaling of games and 4k streaming is just beautiful. I got the GoW4 Edition and have not regretted it at all. I can't think of anything negative to say about this console. It just works, every time all the time.

    It will be interesting how scorpio does. I'm not going to get it right away. My One S does everything I need and more.

    • Ugur

      In reply to chaad_losan: The One S is a fine device, but regarding games the PS4 got many excellent exclusives before and after the Xbox One S launched, while in comparison the Xbox had very few.

      Since the Xbox One is also weaker in several important to performance aspects, multi platform games also usually ran better on PS4, making lots of people who would only buy one of the two then buy the PS4.

      Now with the Scorpio the performance gap could swing the other way around, making the xbox one scorpio way more powerful than the ps4 pro, but yeah, then MS still needs to make sure to get many excellent (timed) exclusives.

  15. waverunning.geek

    Wait till 2018-2020.  Let the One S sell for a bit and sell Scorpio when it's ready and the VR/MR hardware is out there.

  16. Chris_Kez

    I have no faith that Microsoft can deliver on the kind of launch that Xbox fans are hoping for. I can already see the early-December 2017 post where Paul will link back to this article and describe the various ways in Microsoft has just screwed up the Project Scorpio launch. Microsoft just cannot get out of their own way.

  17. glenn8878

    Since it has an extra year after the PS4 relaunch, can Xbox be released in more markets? This is the bigger key. Like the movie box office, America is no longer where the action is and where most money is made. Xbox should be launched in the Asia market first, followed by Europe, then America. Then Xbox wouldn't be seen as an American brand, which is why is isn't so popular.

  18. awright18

    I agree on pretty much all points.  I think VR would be nice, but I don't think that is required.  Also the price will probably make or break it like it always does.   It really depends on their goals of profitability.  If the price is more than the PS4 PRO then it better knock the socks off of it, and address all concerns of the XBOX One, and have everything you mentioned.   In any case, I hope its awesome and they sell enough to make it worth the time and effort they put into it.

  19. Waethorn

    "Sony launched its 4K-capable PlayStation 4 Pro in late 2016. But that consoles doesn’t actually play games at 4K."

    That's an absolute LIE, and you know it!

    Here's the list of games that play 4K:

    • ecumenical

      In reply to Waethorn:

      Don't worry, the same sort of internet conventional wisdom will kick in for Scorpio as soon as one or two games use checkerboarding, and then it'll all be even. "Scorpio doesn't actually do 4K!"

      • Waethorn

        In reply to emanon2121:

        You're an ass for debating it. It does 4K on several games. Xbox does 4K on exactly ZERO games so far, and I would bet dollars to doughnuts that Scorpio will not actually do 4K on every game unless it either a) costs a second mortgage, or b) the games will be sufficiently lacking in geometric and texture detail to make it "4K".

        • emanon2121

          In reply to Waethorn:

          And the PS4 is much less powerful than Scorpio. Soooo...

          • Waethorn

            In reply to emanon2121:

            It still plays games in 4K. Nobody said it would play all of them - not even Sony - but it does play some. It offers better visual quality than the standard PS4, and far better than the current Xbox One S. The original Xbox One doesn't play games at 1080p, and the new one still doesn't hit 1080p on a lot of targets, yet Paul is quick to defend it for playing them at 900p, even though many of the games on PS4 Pro play at 3200 pixel horizontal resolution, or 3K (4K is a misnomer because it's 3.8K in actuality), and he calls that "not real 4K". That's hypocrisy, and it's #fakenews. Just like your #fakedefense.

            All PS4's offer HDR now too, just so you know.

    • emanon2121

      In reply to Waethorn:

    • evox81

      In reply to Waethorn:

      I think the general idea here is that if Scorpio can render all games natively at 4K they'll have, at least, a marketing advantage. The PS4 Pro can't do that. Is it "good enough"? Absolutely. Probably better than good enough for a vast majority of people. But being able to claim "true 4k" would be big for a lot of people. The question of whether or not they'll succeed in accomplishing this... I'm not convinced.

      • Waethorn

        In reply to evox81:

        Nobody can claim that a game console can play "true 4K - ALL THE TIME" with today's technology costs. To play games on PC with PC graphics cards at 4K, and the relative performance that current and Scorpio's supposed specs contain, they won't be able to do it without compromising other graphics fidelity features. To say that the PS4 Pro just flat-out doesn't play games in 4K is a fabrication.

    • Ukumio

      In reply to Waethorn:

      Out of the 74 games listed, only 31 games are Native 4K. About 10 more are Checkerboard 4K with the rest being some random resolution. When less then half the games that support a 4K console are actually Native 4K then you have a problem.

      Is it a false statement to say it doesn't play 4K games? Yes, but its also false to call it a 4K console when less then 50% of your games don't support it natively, and no checkerboard is not the same thing as 4K, but definition it is half of 4K that tricks your eyes into thinking its 4K.

      Will 100% of Scorpio games support 4K natively? I doubt it, but it has a better chance of having more games reach 4K natively just because its more powerful.

  20. Bart

    I think for Microsoft to be able to say: "it is the better (read: technically superior) console", could do a lot to set things right

  21. Darmok N Jalad

    I suppose they fixed all the concerns before the XboxOne launched, but they made it easy for Sony, who just announced that they intended to do the opposite of all the unpopular choices that MS made. By the time both consoles hit the street, Sony was the hero and MS was the goat.

    MS still seems to have the edge on The subscription service, but Scorpio can't be $600. I don't even know if it can be $500. VR and 4K may not matter much to many buyers, as 1080P games already look pretty good. A big win would be if all existing titles upscaled and/or offered improved frame rates. A user-serviceable HDD bay would be nice as well.

  22. Elindalyne

    Honestly, it's probably too late to get people to convert from PS4 to XBOne. Anyone playing multiplayer games on PS4 isn't going to leave their friends to play on Scorpio regardless of how powerful it is. The only thing that's really going to bring people into the XBOne fold is a really must have exclusive similar to the Uncharted series, Last of Us or Horizon: Zero Dawn.

  23. Rob_Wade

    We bought our Xbox One specifically because it was marketed as being much more than just a gaming console. Clearly, this emphasis ran afoul of hardcore console gamers (I am a PC gaming-only guy for good reasons). But for those of us who, until then, would never ever buy a console, it was attractive to have a device that could be the entertain control nexus for our house. That apparently didn't fly with most, unfortunately, so the UI of Xbox was shifted away from easily-readable, gesture-controllable use BACK to a controller-centric, gamer-centric UI. And, from everything I've seen of the Insider Previews, this gets even worse with the Creators Update. So, now it looks to be completely hard over to gaming moving toward Project Scorpio. While devices like Alexa seem to be grabbing a lot of attention for voice control of more things and services in the home, it doesn't look like ANYONE is jumping into the gesture control arena, which is depressing.

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