The Xbox 360 has one of the best game libraries of any game console. It’s a shame then that the console’s library can’t be played on the Xbox One. For fans of the console that bought an Xbox One, they have to keep the Xbox 360 out to play some of the upcoming games for the console. What if backwards compatibility was a thing though? Is it possible? Microsoft certainly thinks so.
Kotaku Australia reports that Microsoft’s Frank Savage was asked at last week’s BUILD Conference if the company had any plans to build an Xbox 360 emulator for the Xbox One. After all, the Xbox 360 could play select Xbox titles through software emulation. With the Xbox One, it’s not too far out of the realm of reason to assume that it could play select Xbox 360 titles. Well, Savage says it is possible, but there’s a big caveat:
There are [plans], but we’re not done thinking them through yet, unfortunately. It turns out to be hard to emulate the PowerPC stuff on the X86 stuff. So there’s nothing to announce, but I would love to see it myself.
In short, Microsoft is working on Xbox 360 emulation. That’s very good news. The bad news is that it might be a while before we see it. As Savage notes, the Xbox 360 was built on a completely different architecture from the Xbox One so software based emulation will be difficult. It’s not impossible, mind you, but getting it up to a point where most games run satisfactorily will take a while. It will definitely be worth the wait though if Microsoft is able to pull it off.
Speaking of software-based emulation, what about the PS4? Surely it can play PS1, PS2 and PS3 games through software emulation, right? VG247 reported last month that Sony was indeed working on software emulation for PS1 and PS2 titles that would only require a disc. The console would also upscale these games to 1080p. That sounds awesome, but there are some problems with PS2 emulation. If Sony can work out the kinks, we may just have disc-based software emulation for thousands of titles on the PS4. As for PS3, that’s what Sony’s PlayStation Now streaming service is for as software emulation of PS3 titles, including the complex Cell architecture, is all but impossible.
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