At E3 2019, Microsoft finally provided some concrete details on its next-generation console, currently known as Xbox 2, while also lifting the lid on some of its mysterious specs and features. To be honest, this is a beast of a console.
The new hardware is known as Project Scarlett, but this is just a code name, with the official titles being withheld for now. A release window for Christmas 2020 was also revealed, with Halo Infinite launching alongside the console. But just how powerful is this machine?
Among other thing, Project Scarlett will implement AMD Navi technology, providing the console with a performance boost making it four times more powerful than the Xbox One X, which is already a force to be reckoned with. Other features that have been confirmed include 8K resolutions, real-time ray tracing, ultra-fast GDDR6 memory and a luscious new SSD set to vastly improve loading times.
Plenty of information is still emerging on Project Scarlett ahead of its anticipated 2020 release, so Trusted Reviews has compiled everything you need to know including all the latest news, release date, specs, games and more.
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Xbox 2 News – Two consoles no longer in the works for next-gen
For months, rumours had been circulating that Microsoft was working on two distinct consoles for the coming generation. The cheaper console, codenamed ‘Lockhart’ was in the works at Microsoft according to several sources, but now focus has shifted entirely to one, more powerful console that we know as Project Scarlett. Microsoft goes into further detail during a recent interview with Business Insider.
“Last year we said consoles, and we’ve shipped a console and we’ve now detailed another console. I think that’s plural,” Spencer said. Right now, we’re focused on Project Scarlett and what we put on stage.” So, players can expect a single console from Xbox in 2020, alongside further refinements to Project xCloud and its other online offerings.
Xbox 2 – What is Project Scarlett?
Project Scarlett is the new code name for the next-generation of Xbox. While we didn’t get a proper look at the console Microsoft’s E3 2019 press conference, we were shown a trailer that teased various bits of information about the incoming Xbox. Have a look for yourself in the video below:
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Xbox 2 release date – When is Xbox Project Scarlett coming out?
Microsoft confirmed its upcoming next-gen console will release for Holiday 2020. That means it will arrive just in time for Christmas next year, which is just what we expected. We won’t be surprised if it’s competing against the PS5, either.
There’s no specific release date just yet, but Xbox did reveal that 343 Industries’ Halo Infinite will be a launch title, which will no doubt whet the appetite of Master Chief fans, set to be the final chapter in The Reclaimer Trilogy.
Xbox 2 price – How much will the Xbox Project Scarlett cost?
There was no mention of pricing, which is no surprise since the Xbox Project Scarlett won’t launch for another 18 months or so. Expect it to be pricey with such high-end hardware though.
Xbox 2 Specs and Features – How powerful is Project Scarlett?
Judging from all the details that were dropped for the Xbox 2, this looks to be a seriously powerful console. Xbox claims the new hardware is 4x more powerful than the current Xbox One X, which is frankly absurd considering that console is already capable of running select games in 4K. With the AMD Zen 2 CPU and AMD Navi GPU running the show. AMD Navi has only recently been revealed, and is yet to properly introduced to the public to experiment with, whether through dedicated consoles or graphics cards.
What kind of performance will these components bring? The Project Scarlett reveal trailer suggests the upcoming Xbox has 8K capabilities. It also suggests Project Scarlett will be able to run games at up to 120fps, although we expect that to be while running games at a Full HD resolution at the very most. That, and many players won’t have displays supporting such silky-smooth refresh rates.
Related: What is ray tracing?
The next-gen Xbox will also be capable of real-time ray tracing, meaning it should be able to match the likes of the Nvidia RTX graphics cards and PS5 for the revolutionary light rendering technique. This sees in-game light look and behave significantly more realistic, and adds a beautiful polish to the visuals. The inclusion of support for variable refresh rate meanwhile, means the new hardware can eradicate screen stutters and the like for a far smoother look.
It’s perhaps not the GPU and CPU power that’s the most exciting though, with the Project Scarlett reveal trailer also confirming the new hardware will sport a next-generation SSD, which will look to reduce loading times by a significant margin. In fact, Xbox claims the SSD performance will be 40x superior to that of the current generation of consoles, which is mind blowing to say the least. This means developers will be able to create more complex open worlds without concerns that players will have to suffer tediously long waits staring at a loading screen.
Head of Xbox Phil Spencer has also confirmed that backwards compatibility will be returning in a big way with Project Scarlett. All of your physical and digital purchases for the past two generations (360 games pending developer support) will be available at launch, ensuring you already have a substantial library to take advantage of Xbox 2 in 2020.
Xbox 2 Design – How will Xbox Project Scarlett look?
Xbox sadly didn’t give us a glimpse of the console, so we’ve no idea what the design looks like. You’ll probably have to wait until E3 2020 for a definitive glimpse.
Xbox 2 Games – What games will be on Xbox Project Scarlett?
Microsoft confirmed that Halo: Infinite will be a launch title for the Xbox Project Scarlett, which is certainly exciting news. Sadly, we didn’t get any confirmation for any other games, although we’re sure the likes of Fable 4 or the new Elder Scrolls game will feature. We’ll likely hear more about the launch lineup of Xbox 2 titles come E3 2020. For now, have a look at the Halo: Infinite trailer which looks absolutely fantastic.
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What would you like to see from Xbox 2/Project Scarlett? Let us know on Facebook and Twitter @trustedreviews or email the editor below.