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Xbox Series S console increasingly seen as a next-gen hurdle for game developers as Control Ultimate Edition's boosts for PS5 and Xbox Series X|S are posted

The version of Control for the Xbox Series S (and PS5/XSX) will be launched on February 2. (Image source: 505/Microsoft - edited)
The version of Control for the Xbox Series S (and PS5/XSX) will be launched on February 2. (Image source: 505/Microsoft - edited)
The Xbox Series S console has been criticized by game developers due to its restrictive configuration. Memory and resolution limitations in comparison to the Xbox Series X have been highlighted, just as the next-gen enhancements for Control Ultimate Edition for the PlayStation 5 and Xbox consoles are posted online.
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Microsoft’s Xbox Series S has been the recipient of some thinly veiled criticism from game developers recently. One game developer suggested that it would have been better if there had been just “a single XSX SKU” for this generation while another allegedly pointed out the fact that gaming modes in an upcoming game had to be restricted because of a “limitation of the hardware”. It seems the main issues focus on the amount of memory present in the XSS (10 GB; XSX & PS5: 16 GB) and the maximum output resolution (1440p, 120 fps; XSX & PS5: 8K 60 fps, 4K 120 fps).

In an interview with Wccftech, Exor Studios executive Paweł Lekki discussed development of The Riftbreaker survival game on the Xbox Series X and S. While the process for the former had apparently been quite straightforward, dealing with the cutdown console was more problematic. Lekki had this to say about working with the Xbox Series S:

The size of the memory that is available in the XSS is the actual determining point for the entire console generation as gameplay features have to be fitted to the lowest spec. From the point of view of a developer it would be much easier if there was a single XSX SKU.

The Xbox Series S also appeared to take some flak from 505 Games in regard to the upcoming Control Ultimate Edition title for the PS5 and Xbox Series X|S. The devs have posted the next-gen details about the modes (see image below for information), which show how the XSS is restricted to performance mode only, at 60 fps, no ray tracing, 900p render resolution, and 1080p output.

Obviously having less RAM and a slower GPU (4 TFLOPS; XSX: 12 TFLOPS; PS5: 10.28 TFLOPS) is always going to create a bottleneck situation for the Xbox Series S, but it seems Control’s devs wanted to make sure players knew it was not their fault. An older post purportedly included the slightly salty comment, “This is a limitation of the hardware, not the game”, but this has since been removed. However, at least some have praised the XSS for being easier to develop for than the wide spectrum of PC configurations out there.

The Xbox Series S is sometimes available on Amazon

Original Control comment. (Image source: NeoGAF u/kyliethicc)
Original Control comment. (Image source: NeoGAF u/kyliethicc)
Revised Control comment. (Image source: 505 Games)
Revised Control comment. (Image source: 505 Games)
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Daniel R Deakin
Daniel R Deakin - Managing Editor News - 2339 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2012
My interest in technology began after I was presented with an Atari 800XL home computer in the mid-1980s. I especially enjoy writing about technological advances, compelling rumors, and intriguing tech-related leaks. I have a degree in International Relations and Strategic Studies and count my family, reading, writing, and travel as the main passions of my life. I have been with Notebookcheck since 2012.
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 01 > Xbox Series S console increasingly seen as a next-gen hurdle for game developers as Control Ultimate Edition's boosts for PS5 and Xbox Series X|S are posted
Daniel R Deakin, 2021-01-30 (Update: 2021-01-30)