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Xbox Backward compatibility guide for the Series X|S

We guide you through the Xbox backwards compatibility functionality and how it works.

Updated: Jan 17, 2022 5:35 pm
Xbox backwards compatability

Backwards compatibility has become one of the biggest selling points of modern gaming, which Microsoft has gone all out on for the Series X|S. When the console first launched, the console was demo’d and partially sold on seeing games like Fallout 3 and New Vegas in better resolutions, frame rates, and graphical fidelity through autoHDR. Since that is one of the biggest selling points and has proven to work, many gamers want to know what old games they own will work on their game’s console. So, we have compiled a basic Xbox backward compatibility guide, informing you of how exactly backward compatibility works for your Xbox Series X|S.

Read More: Xbox One backward compatibility and PS5 backwards compatibility.

Xbox backwards-compatible games

The best place to look for Xbox backward compatible games is over on the official Xbox website. There’s also this link for the Xbox One, which works for the Series X|S as the series inherits the previous efforts at backwards compatibility. We recommend clicking the link we have provided, as you can freely browse the several hundreds of titles that have backwards compatibility associated with it. Some of the stand ou titles we recommend to take a look at on the Xbox backwards compatibility are:

  • Ace Combat series
  • Alan Wake
  • Alien Isolation
  • Batman: Arkham series
  • CoD franchise
  • Dark Souls
  • Elder Scrolls series
  • Fallout series
  • Forza franchise
  • Gears of War franchise
  • Halo Franchise
  • Lords of the Fallen
  • Monster Hunter games
  • Payday 2
  • Saints Row
  • Star Wars Jedi Academy / Knights games
  • Timesplitters series
  • Tomb Raider Triology
  • Witcher series

How does Xbox backward compatibility work for Series X|S

The Xbox backward compatibility feature works by simply allowing the games to work on your new generation console. However, the S is a digital-only console, while the series X allows players to put discs into the console, reading the game instead. The Xbox Series X is infinitely much easier to get your backwards compatible games working. However, the S is a bit of a pain. If you own an Xbox Series S, then you’ll need to own or have access to a digitally enabled backwards compatibility game. You can grab these through the Xbox Store or through services like Game Pass, for example. It does mean having to rebuy games so you have the digital license, which is not ideal if you have a disc version already.

If you’re on the Series X, then you can get your hands on digital backwards compatible games, along with your old Xbox, 360, or Xbox One disc games you have lying around. Note, not all the OG games from the 360 or the original Xbox work. However, almost every game on Xbox One is backwards compatible. Not every game from the original Xbox or 360 are backwards compatible, but, many of the most popular games are, such as the old Starwars Jedi Academy games, Halo, Max Payne, Fable and more.

What is not compatible with the Xbox Series X|S?

While the new generation of Xbox series consoles is largely compatible with most titles released on Xbox One, 360, or Xbox original, there are a few that don’t work. The most prominent examples are the likes of the Kinect games, which is a 360 technology that essentially brought a pseudo-AR experience to gaming. However, the Xbox series X|S does not support such devices, and therefore, Kinect games will not work.

There’s also a few old apps like the BBC Iplayer that won’t work, as well as the old EA hub. However, there are ways you can still get these using the newer systems to interact with these apps. Follow this link and check out the excluded titles. If a game is not on that list and is currently not backwards compatible, it may come in the near future. At the time of writing, Microsoft last added in 76 backwards compatible games during the November Microsoft conference. Therefore, there is always more opportunity for Xbox backward compatibility to expand.

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