After The Game Awards 2019 wrapped up, its clear that Microsoft won the show after it debuted the Xbox Series X. This puts Sony behind its rival as it is yet to unveil what the production version looks like. Nevertheless, it managed to showcase the highly anticipated PlayStation 4 exclusive "Ghost of Tsushima" and "Godfall" as the first PlayStation 5 game announced. Meanwhile, fans hoping to learn a little more about the console that was formerly known as Project Scarlett are in luck. Phil Spencer was recently interviewed and was willing to share a little more about its upcoming platform.
Microsoft finally confirms the name
It all began at E3 2019, wherein Microsoft indicated during its press conference that it is working on Project Scarlett. Unlike Sony, which regularly follows a particular naming convention, new Xbox consoles in development are usually assigned codenames. Now, the next-generation gaming machine is finally dubbed the Xbox Series X.
There are reports suggesting that this implies the possibility of more than just one model launching next year. When pressed for answers related to why the company opted to label it that way, Spencer declined to go into detail. "In the name 'Series X', it gives us freedom to do other things with that name so that we can create descriptors when we need to," he noted.
Xbox Series X design
Not only did Microsoft reveal the official name, but it even presented the actual design of the console. Journalists and gamers did not expect the Xbox Series X to sport such minimalistic form factor. If not for the illuminated Xbox Logo on the top-left corner it can be easily mistaken for a speaker or a compact CPU.
According to GameSpot, the glowing emblem serves as the power button and directly below it is a disc slot (Blu-ray most likely) with a circular eject push button. Furthermore, the interview reveals that it can be positioned on its side, which is reportedly how Spencer is using it at home.
A powerful console of its calibre is expected to produce a lot of heat. Hence, that noticeable opening on the top actually houses a large ventilation fan. Since the rear section of the game system was never shown, reports speculate that additional vents will be available to efficiently cool its internal components.
Controller, cross-generation compatibility and next-generation software
While the aesthetics are evidently a radical departure from its predecessors, the controller retains familiar elements. Spencer claims that Microsoft listened to feedback from its fans and made small tweaks to make the new gamepad even more accessible and ergonomic. There's a new share button, reduced latency, and improved ergonomics.
As promised, all existing accessories will be cross-generation compatible, which means owners can cut costs when they make the transition. Furthermore, this applies to more than just hardware as backward compatibility instantly gives owners a huge library of games at the start. So far, the only new titles confirmed for the Xbox Series X is "Senua's Saga: Hellblade 2" by Ninja Theory and "Halo Infinite" from 343 Industries. Both game studios are first-party developers for Microsoft.