Home Gaming The Xbox One’s backwards compatibility is about preserving art

The Xbox One’s backwards compatibility is about preserving art

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Xbox One’s 360 backwards compatibility is a feature I really didn’t think I’d be using very much. But when you pair it with the Xbox One Game Pass subscription service, there’s an entire library of older games that I’m happy to have access to again – like the incredible Garou: Mark of the Wolves. Though it’s not part of the Xbox Game Pass, I’ve also been using the backwards compatibility to revisit the original Dark Souls, and BC is handy given that my Xbox 360 is in the back of a cupboard somewhere.

Many believe that the feature is largely pointless. The sort of thing you use once to see it work, and then forget exists because you’re too busy playing new games. There’s another reason it’s important, beyond just playing last generation’s games. So says Microsoft man Phil Spencer. Speaking to Wired, Spencer said that backwards compatibility is also good for preservation.

“I see games as an art form,” Spencer said. “Console games can get lost when hardware generations go away. It can become more challenging to play the games of our past,” Spencer said. “There’s something to be learned from experiencing what I played as a kid. There’s good business there for the content owners, but as players, it’s nice to be able to understand how our artform has progressed.”

And that’s hard to argue with. The Xbox One will soon be able to play games from the original Xbox as well, which means my copy of Ninja Gaiden Black (in the same cupboard as my Xbox 360) can finally get some use again as well.

Last Updated: October 4, 2017


  1. RinceThis

    October 4, 2017 at 11:05

    Nice feature! Come on PS4!


  2. Admiral Chief

    October 4, 2017 at 11:06

    PRESERVING FART????? Oh, wait, nm…


    • RinceThis

      October 4, 2017 at 11:08

      We’re talking about Xbox bro, not the Humour in The Awful *ruuuuuun!


    • Kromas Ryder

      October 4, 2017 at 11:10

      That’s Ubisoft not Microsoft.


  3. Original Heretic

    October 4, 2017 at 11:12

    I like that attitude. Kids should start playing old games, so that they can see the progression over the years. I firmly believe it will allow for greater game appreciation.


    • BakedBagel

      October 4, 2017 at 11:26

      and let kids deal with the all the games that are like dark souls? that doesnt hold your hand through every step?

      you flipping monster… dare i say HERETIC


      • Original Heretic

        October 4, 2017 at 11:43

        It was how I grew up with games. Damn man, I used to play old Atari games when they were cutting edge. The Commodore 64 was my first gaming PC.
        And that’s also why I got my son a SNES (recently released! It arrived on Monday!) so that he can get used to some older games before I allow him to play on my PS4. Too bad for him it only gets opened at the end of November (his birthday).


        • BakedBagel

          October 4, 2017 at 12:27

          Agreed man

          I mean i played crash bandicoot for hours and hours and hours, without actually wanting to finish. It definitely helped me understand persistence in reaching your goal. Even if you dont know what the goal is. Reaching the end of the stage with no deaths becomes the goal.

          As someone who has been on the receiving end of not getting gifts until my birthday. Give it to him the day before and be a cool dad please <3


          • Original Heretic

            October 4, 2017 at 12:50

            Mudderfudder, I AM a cool dad!! My son would tell you that himself, but he’s a bit too young to string the necessary sentences together (he’s only turning 3 in November).
            To be honest, I’m ITCHING to give to him now already so that we can start jamming together. But then, come his birthday, he’s going to be getting gifts from all other fronts, but nothing from me. And even though I’ll justify to myself that “I’ve already given him his gift”, I’ll still wish I could give him something on that day as well. Considering how much I’m spending on his party as well, yeesh man, I can’t buy him more.

          • BakedBagel

            October 4, 2017 at 14:45

            The fact that you can hardly contain your own excitement for giving your child his gift proves you a fun af dad

        • Arena1999

          October 4, 2017 at 20:46

          The SNES Classic came out two days ago? Wow, time flies. I might just buy for one of my nephews. He NEEDS to play Super Metroid – everyone should play that game. Definitely one of Nintendo’s best.


  4. Pieter Kruger

    October 4, 2017 at 14:02



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