Project Scorpio to substantially improve existing Xbox One and backward compatible games

Digital Foundry revealed Project Scorpio’s full specifications today and they’re absolutely incredible. The console blows its competition out of the water when it comes to the CPU, GPU, RAM and features. However, there are a few important take-home messages from the reveal. They are as follows:

  • Project Scorpio’s overwhelming power helps existing Xbox One games run smoother due to increased frame rate.
  • The console eliminates frame rate and screen tearing issues for backward compatible games like Bayonetta and others.
  • Games that support dynamic resolution like Halo 5 and The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt will be locked at their maximum resolution.
  • Existing Xbox One games will load faster due to the unprecedented jump in memory bandwidth.
  • The faster memory will also result in better texture filtering.
  • Forza Motorsport 6 (tech demo) is already running at 4K 60 FPS on the console without much optimization.
  • As reported earlier, the console provides 4K 60 FPS gameplay capturing to help out YouTube content creators.
  • In order to take into account the heat challenges of that much power, Microsoft designed a state-of-the-art cooling system.
  • The form factor of Project Scorpio will surprise everyone.
  • Project Scorpio’s 4K performance could pose a challenge to cards like Nvidia’s GTX 1070 and AMD’s Fury X-Class.
  • Existing games on your external hard drive will plug right into Project Scorpio and work.

According to Digital Foundry, the console is expected to be in the $500 range. The fact that the device can capture 4K 60 FPS gameplay is one of its biggest positives as well. This will not only help gamers produce better content, but it will also eliminate the barrier to entry because right now you need expensive equipment and PC setups to do that.

The Project Scorpio internal components also blow the overwhelming majority of gaming machines out of the water. Everyone expected the standard Jaguar CPU but it’s a custom chip designed by Microsoft and AMD which works great with DirectX 12. The CPU draw calls have been optimized so they only take a dozen or so instructions instead of the thousands typically needed. This has to be one of the most impressive components in the package. Hopefully Microsoft will show us gameplay in the future, reveal its name and price point. Today was definitely a revelation because no one expected the console to be this powerful.

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