Microsoft Is Done Making Games For Xbox One


In a new interview, Xbox game studio chief Matt Booty confirmed that the company is done developing first-party games for the older Xbox One consoles, explaining that Microsoft has “moved on” from the prior-generation machine and is now focused on Xbox Series X/S. It’s yet another sign that the old consoles are being left behind after a longer-than-usual transitional period.

Released nearly a decade ago in November 2013, the Xbox One had a bit of a rocky launch with jokes about its size, lack of games, high price, always-online requirements, Kinect motion controls, and a misplaced focus on watching TV dominating most conversations about the then-new console. In the longer term, thanks to Xbox’s Game Pass subscription service and the launch of the more powerful Xbox One X, the console stuck around and found fans. But it never was really much of a competitor with Sony’s PlayStation 4, with Sony’s console selling twice as well as the Xbox One. Now, nearly 10 years after its debut, Microsoft is letting the console retire and moving on to focus entirely on its current-gen machines.

In an interview with Axios, Booty was asked about the absence of Xbox One games during its latest showcase. And the Xbox Studio chief explained, bluntly, “We’ve moved on to gen 9.” Booty also explained that no internal teams at Xbox Game Studios are currently working on new games for Xbox One. So don’t expect some long-in-development game that will come out for Xbox One next year, or anything like that. The Xbox exec did clarify that some internal teams are still working on updates and content for existing games on Xbox One to continue to support certain titles, like Minecraft. But don’t expect the next Halo or Gears to launch on Xbox One.

Booty did note that Microsoft isn’t completely abandoning the old console and its owners, explaining that Xbox Series X/S games are technically playable on Xbox One via streaming. “That’s how we’re going to maintain support,” Booty told Axios.

The end of the Xbox One and PS4 era

It’s not shocking that a platform holder like Microsoft would eventually move on to its new console and leave the older one behind. But it does feel like this transition between console generations has, compared to past transitional periods, lasted longer than usual.

That’s down to a number of factors, including how many people still own and use these older machines in 2023, and how hard it has been to find and buy a new console since the PS5 and Xbox Series X/S launched in 2020. Games taking longer to develop due to the covid-19 pandemic has also likely contributed to the extended transitional period.

But that period is ending. Sony’s and Insomniac’s next big Spider-Man sequel is skipping PS4, and the DLC for Horizon: Forbidden West (a PS5 and PS4 game) launched only on PS5 earlier this year. And now Microsoft has confirmed it’s done making Xbox One games. And some third-party releases, like the Dead Space remake and Final Fantasy XVI, are skipping the older machines, too.

So it’s becoming clear that while we went through a longer-than-average transition to the latest consoles, that era is coming to a close as 2023 continues and 2024 quickly approaches.

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