Xbox Series S will be an all-digital next-generation console with trimmed-down features compared to the Xbox Series X flagship. The decision by Microsoft to release a sort of nerfed console gets backed by an attractive low price tag to give consumers an option. However, for developers, working on two different hardware specifications within the same console family is not something positive.
Speaking with Wccftech in a recent interview, Quantic Dream Founder and President David Cage admitted that he is “not a big fan” of Xbox Series S. He noted that putting out a low- and high-end console at the same time will be “confusing for developers” and makes for a “questionable” situation.
“When a manufacturer offers two consoles with different specs, there is a strong chance that most developers will focus on the lower-end version to avoid doing two different versions,” explained Cage. “I must confess that I am really not a big fan of this situation. I think it is confusing for developers, but also for players, and although I can understand the commercial reasons behind this choice (a difference of €200 on the street price) I think the situation is questionable.”
Cage, with Quantic Dream, has had an impressive history with PlayStation. He wrote and directed Heavy Rain and Beyond: Two Souls for PlayStation 3 and 4; as well as Detroit: Become Human for PlayStation 4. While all three games were later ported over to PC, Cage has been on record that he along with many other developers prefer to develop games on consoles instead of PC because of having to deal with just one type of hardware. PC, as obvious, can become difficult with numerous hardware configurations in the mix.
Hence, Cage putting a question mark on Xbox Series S comes as unsurprising. He is not alone in this though. Many other developers, as well as critics, have questioned the move which could perhaps hold back the debut of actual next-generation-worthy games on Xbox Series X. The reason being that developers might have to compensate features in order for the same game to run on the low-end Xbox Series S. Id Software, for example, recently mulled that the lower and slower “RAM situation” of Xbox Series S might prove challenging.
Microsoft believes that developers will be able to utilize Xbox Series S to run next-generation games in 60 frames per second at 1440p and in some cases, managing even 120 frames per second but at the same resolution. That will be brought up once both next-generation Xbox consoles launch on November 10, 2020, for $500 and $300 respectively.