New reports claim that Microsoft is encouraging developers to offer next-gen Xbox game upgrades for free.
Microsoft’s next-gen Xbox Series X console is just a few months away, and one of the most applauded features of the upcoming console is Smart Delivery. It allows players to purchase a copy of a game for the Xbox One consoles and play it on the Xbox Series X.
Unfortunately, an Xbox One copy of a game will not benefit from the new technology of the Series X unless upgraded, and new rumours claim that Microsoft has told developers they cannot charge players for these upgrades.
Sources with knowledge of Microsoft’s next-gen policies have told Videogameschonicle (VGC) that Microsoft is pushing for these next-gen game upgrades to be offered for free via the tech giant’s Smart Delivery system or a publisher’s own scheme.
However, game developers or publishers who decide not to use the Smart Delivery system in favour of their own can offer a discount on a next-gen game upgrade via the Microsoft Store. The developers who do not support Smart Delivery can also sell digital and physical cross-gen bundles which include versions for both the Xbox One and the Xbox Series X.
The sources speaking to VGC claimed that Microsoft wants to give developers and publishers several options over how they sell their games across the two generations.
Which Games Have Free Upgrades?
Since the next generation of console is almost here, some publishers and developers have already confirmed that their upcoming games will be upgraded for free. Notable titles include FIFA 21, Cyberpunk 2077, Halo: Infinite, Marvel’s Avengers, Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla, and Destiny 2.
Sports game NBA 2K21 by 2K, however, will not be offering a free upgrade but will instead provide users with a cross-gen bundle priced at £84.99 which includes both a current-gen and next-gen version for Xbox and PlayStation consoles.
A Microsoft spokesperson issued a statement to VGC about their policy on next-gen game upgrades, saying: “Developers and publishers ultimately decide how they deliver their games, and we work with them to provide the best possible experience based on their needs.”
Meanwhile, Sony PlayStation is also encouraging for free upgrades but has reportedly given developers more freedom over their decision to charge players. Regardless, some of the games offering free upgrades for the Series X such as Cyberpunk 2077 will also be offered to players on the PS5.
Although the tech giant, which is also launching a new console at the end of the year, has no Smart Delivery scheme applicable across all console generations, it has confirmed that most PS4 games will be playable on the PS5.
It seems Microsoft is heading the race regarding multi-generational play, allowing users to play all games from past generations and play new titles on their future console too. With the Xbox Series X game showcase just a few weeks away, there’s no doubt that we’ll hear more about this.
Image Credit: Halo Infinite Trailer YouTube Screenshot