Update: With the latest Xbox One Preview build, Microsoft is allowing gamers to download 4K assets ahead of time in preparation for the Xbox One X.
When the Xbox One X was announced, many gamers who own a standard Xbox One or the Xbox One S were wondering how 4K assets would work. Microsoft expects the majority of consoles sold to be Xbox One S units so would those gamers also have to download giant files? For example, Forza Motorsport 7 with its 4K assets is 100 GB. It seems a little unfair that you have to download 100 GB files if you don’t even known an Xbox One X. Well, we finally have confirmation from Microsoft that that isn’t the case.
Only the Xbox One X will download 4K assets, the original Xbox One and the Xbox One S will download 1080p assets so the consoles aren’t overwhelmed. It doesn’t matter if you own a 1080p television with an Xbox One X, the Xbox One X will always download 4K assets. It’s unclear if Microsoft will offer a choice to gamers in the future but right now it looks like the Xbox One X will download 4K assets by default. Considering that 4K assets and supersampling will result in a much better picture even on a 1080p display, those who own the console will probably welcome this.
It’s great to see that Microsoft has a system which doesn’t force everyone to download large files because it would be quite unfair. Not everyone has massive hard drives and not everyone wants an Xbox One X. Many people will be happy with the Xbox One S. Hopefully Microsoft will allow Xbox One X gamers to choose if they want to download 4K assets in the future because even without the 4K assets, games should run with better anisotropic filtering and experience more stable frame rates.