The official name for Microsoft’s next-gen gaming console is out there courtesy of The Game Awards: the Xbox Series X. No longer do we need to refer to the console, which will launch alongside Halo Infinite, as Project Scarlett. But you’re probably curious as to why the new, rather straightforward name was chosen. What does it mean? Does it imply anything? Does it hint at what else is in store for next-gen, and how does it gel with Phil Spencer’s comments about the next system’s name explaining the system’s capabilities? In an exclusive talk with Xbox boss Phil Spencer, we asked just that. For now, the answer is quite simple: It’s a unification of all things Xbox. And yes, it does deliberately leave open the door for other models and revisions in the future.
“We know that our Xbox console is just such an iconic part of how people think about their connection to our Xbox brand, and if I asked you what platform you were playing a game on and it happened to be Xbox you’d say, ‘I’m playing on the Xbox,'” Spencer explained. He continued, “Instead of trying to get descriptive [with] our own terms…we talked to people and got feedback. It was just, ‘Xbox is the core of my relationship with this brand,’ and we wanted the console to embody that.”
That might not sound like much to go on, but it’s indicative of what Xbox wants to do moving forward, keeping name convention simple and to have the flexibility for other possible model names in the future. Spencer expanded on this idea a bit, saying, “Obviously in the Series X, it gives us freedom to do other things with that name so that we can create descriptors when we need to.”
The name is also about accounting for Xbox’s past–as Spencer said, “I’ve seen a lot of the speculation, whether it’s [going to be called] ‘Infinite’ or ‘8K’…I just want the name to really follow what this is about. Thousands of Xbox games are going to play on this, your Xbox accessories are going to work on this console.”
With backwards compatibility being such a huge factor in the Xbox ecosystem, it makes sense that Microsoft would go with a name that denotes an all-encompassing feeling. Games across Xbox generations are playable on the Series X, and as Spencer stated, previous accessories and hardware are also part of the equation.
A first-look at an upcoming Xbox Series X game accompanied the console reveal, with Microsoft showing off a stunning trailer for Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II during the show. Microsoft’s other major trailers shown during the Game Awards were for Ori and the Will of the Wisps and Gears Tactics.
Microsoft’s Xbox Series X is scheduled to launch sometime in Holiday 2020, but in the meantime, you can check out all the details we’ve gathered on the next-gen console with our in-depth look at the Xbox Series X or in all our stories below.
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