I got my Project Scorpio Edition Xbox One X in the mail yesterday ( a shout-out to the Blaine Washington Post Office for letting me call in and pick it up!), and I had a good time playing games one it. If you have been following the news around the One X you will know that its primary focus is on delivering 4K games, but Microsoft has been adamant that people with lowly 1080p screens would also see a benefit. Since I have yet to take the plunge on a 4K set, I figured I would let you know my thoughts.
So far out of the three enhanced games that I have played, Hitman, Titanfall 2 and Halo 5, the big difference is that everything just looks cleaner. Hitman and Halo 5 got some new textures that look great. Especially Hitman’s character models if you run in ‘Quality Mode’ instead of ‘FPS Mode’. Halo 5 just swaps out some of the muddier environmental textures, which admittedly makes a big difference. Titanfall 2 has no new textures, so it just runs the game at the highest resolution its dynamic scaling solution will let it, and then super-samples the image down to 1080p for a nice clean picture. Of course I believe Hitman and Halo 5 are doing the same thing as well.
In gameplay terms, I actually saw an improvement to my play for the simple reason that I could more easily pick out enemies and opposing players. I didn’t become a superstar or anything, but just cleaning up the picture let me see everything that much better, so the bad guys had no place to hide, even in busy environments. I still don’t have the skill to top the leaderboard, but I was able to hold my own in all the games I played.
I also played the non-enhanced Turing Test (review forthcoming). For non-enhanced games Microsoft is adding 16x anisotropic filtering and framerate locks to make the picture a little nicer, and while the results were not as good as enhanced games, there were fewer jagged lines and the loading times were much better, so not what you would spend $500 for, but it is still good to see that indeed all games do play a little better on the Xbox One X.
All in all, I am not sure $500 is worth it for everyone who doesn’t have a 4K TV, but for me, I like to see my games at their best, and the Xbox One X definitely does that. Microsoft has stayed true to their word and created the most powerful gaming console of all time, and I am happy to be playing my games on one!