E3 2019: Xbox 'Project Scarlett' Releases Holiday 2020

June 11, 2019
NEWS

Project Scarlett — the latest addition to the Xbox family of consoles — will launch in “Holiday 2020”.

As announced during Microsoft’s E3 2019 press conference on Sunday, the brand new console is said to be putting the power behind performance and pushing for a better overall experience for players.

System architects and developers discussed the system in a video not dissimilar to the one that introduced the Xbox One X at E3 2016.

The announcement (which you can see above) talked up the value of choice for gamers — with specific reference to console, PC and mobile — pushing a message that had run through the core of Microsoft’s annual outing. “The games you want, with the people you want, on the devices you want” was a standout phrase, one that linked Project Scarlett to Project xCloud — Xbox’s forthcoming streaming endeavour, which was also discussed during the show.

The other key talking point was Xbox’s choice to keep players in the games they love, upping the power of their console to not just improve visuals, but to make the worlds more immersive, increasing the frame rates up to 120 frames-per-second, upping the detail in the process, and to do away with roadblocks like loading screens.

The system will utilise a new custom processor from AMD, which is four-times more powerful than an Xbox One X. It will support up to 8K, utilise variable refresh rates, and will have next generation ray tracing technology. To help with this, Project Scarlett will utilise a solid state drive over a traditional hard drive. What’s more, this SSD will also be somehow be used as “virtual RAM”. This huge power increase will not only help gamers play games, but help developers tell the stories they want to tell.

On paper, it sounds like an incredible feat of engineering — in this space, at least — and one that will affect games in more ways than may be immediately apparent to consumers. In this video Microsoft makes it clear that these advancements will do more than usher in a visual upgrade.

Project Scarlett will launch in “Holiday 2020” with a lineup that includes Halo: Infinite. Unfortunately, aside from some exciting specs that’s all we know. But now word is out there, we can probably expect to hear more — official or otherwise — in the coming months.

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Ant Barlow

Started with the PlayStation, now I'm here... with a PlayStation. Once skipped school to play the Metal Gear Solid demo repeatedly. I love stories big and small. Trophy hunter. Recent VR convert. Probably a hipster.