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Microsoft unveils Xbox Series X gameplay and a new badge for when games run best on the console

Microsoft unveils Xbox Series X gameplay and announces ‘optimized’ badge that lets customers know when games are designed to run best on the upcoming console

  • Microsoft revealed the Xbox Series X gameplay for several major titles
  • Among the prime ministers were Assassin’s Creed Valhalla and Dirt 5
  • The company also announced a new ‘badge’ signaling when games have been optimized specifically for the Series X.
  • The badge lets customers know when games take advantage of the Series X’s 4K resolution and ray-tracing capabilities.
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Microsoft gave gamers the most comprehensive look yet on what the upcoming Xbox Series X will be capable of.

At a live streamed event on Thursday, the gaming titan presented the in-engine gameplay of several upcoming titles for the Series X, Microsoft’s upcoming next-generation console.

One of the main premiers was the first look at gameplay for an upcoming episode of the latest Assassin’s Creed, titled ‘Valhalla’ and and the racing game franchise, Dirt 5, which was shown ‘in-engine’ – meaning the same engine used which will power the game.

Xbox took the gameplay away from big titles like Assassin's Creed Valhalla (pictured) and announced a new game badge that lets customers know when developers are taking full advantage of the Series X's next-generation hardware

Xbox took the gameplay away from big titles like Assassin's Creed Valhalla (pictured) and announced a new badge for games that lets customers know when developers are taking full advantage of next-generation Series X hardware

Xbox took the gameplay away from big titles like Assassin’s Creed Valhalla (pictured) and announced a new badge for games that lets customers know when developers are taking full advantage of next-generation Series X hardware

The gameplay was designed to showcase a range of new and more powerful Series X hardware, including a solid-state hard drive and a 12 teraflop GPU.

In addition to top-notch gameplay, Microsoft also announced a new ‘badge’ that lets customers know when a game has been optimized to perform best on Series X.

Among other things, those games indicate to customers that they take advantage of the Series X’s improved hardware and the ability to support 4K resolution, 120 frames per second, and faster load times.

The distinction appears to be more extensive than a current ‘improved’ distinction for games that could be given for wider game tweaks, including the use of the latest development tools according to The Verge.

It will also encourage developers to take advantage of enhanced Series X capabilities such as ray tracing, generating real-time light reflections to make games look more realistic.

In an interview last week, Xbox executive vice president Phil Spencer told Microsoft that the company expects the Series X to be released on schedule, despite obstacles caused by a continuing coronavirus pandemic.

“Overall, I think we’re in line with where we thought we would be,” Spencer told CNBC.

On the other hand, Spencer said game production could be a completely different story, meaning some titles may take longer to appear than previously expected.

“I’d say the bigger unknown is probably game production,” Spencer told CNBC.

“Game production is now a large-scale entertainment activity, you have hundreds of people coming together, building resources and being creative.”

One of the upcoming Series X titles is Dirt 5 (pictured), a racing game that showed Xbox in-engine gameplay during the Thursday event

One of the upcoming Series X titles is Dirt 5 (pictured), a racing game that showed Xbox in-engine gameplay during the Thursday event

One of the upcoming Series X titles is Dirt 5 (pictured), a racing game that showed Xbox in-engine gameplay during the Thursday event

Microsoft had previously listed ‘Thanksgiving 2020’ as the Series X’s potential release date on many of its official sites, but has since clarified that the ‘Holiday 2020’ release date will be looser.

Microsoft has already provided a detailed hardware overview on the upcoming console.

The Series X will use an AMD Zen 2 CPU with eight cores running at 3.8 GHz each, in addition to a custom AMD RDNA 2 GPU with 12 teraflops of power.

In addition to the heavy processing power, Microsoft said it will also have room for removable storage in the back of the console – especially 1 TB removable expansion cards.

A new 'optimized' badge (pictured) lets customers know when a game is taking full advantage of Series X hardware.

A new 'optimized' badge (pictured) lets customers know when a game is taking full advantage of Series X hardware.

A new ‘optimized’ badge (pictured) lets customers know when a game is taking full advantage of Series X hardware.

Xbox chief Phil Spencer previously announced that the upcoming console will have 12 teraflop GPU performance, which is two times more powerful than the latest Xbox One X and four times more powerful than the specifications of the original Xbox One.

Thanks to a new solid-state hard drive, Microsoft says the Series X will also be able to immediately pause and resume multiple games.

As previously revealed, this means that players can start playing their favorite games immediately after a system restart.

Microsoft also previously said that the Series X will run games at 4K resolution with the ability to output 8K resolution at frame rates of up to 120 frames per second.

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