Microsoft have revealed the first five Xbox One games that will take advantage of the Xbox Series X|S backward compatibility ‘FPS Boost’ mode. The boost is able to take select games running through backward compatibility and effectively double, or even quadruple the frame rate, jumping from 30fps to 60fps, and potentially beyond to 120fps. This occurs without developers needing to release a patch for the game.
The first five FPS Boost compatible games are:
In all cases, the games work at the expected graphical level, but with the frame rate dramatically enhanced. All of the games originally ran at 30fps on Xbox One S, and all of them now run at 60fps on Xbox Series S, except for New Super Lucky’s Tale, which runs at 1080p120!
On Xbox Series X, games can take advantage of Xbox One X enhancements, if they had any, so New Super Lucky’s Tale originally ran at 4K60 and now managed 4K120, and UFC4 now runs at 1800p60 (there was previously a performance mode choice). However, the others did not have resolution boosting modes for One X, and so run at Xbox One S levels. That means Far Cry 4 at 1440×1080 at 60fps, Sniper Elite 4 at 1080p60, and Watch Dogs 2 at 900p60.
Though there are no game patches to download, Microsoft have worked closely with the original developers in each case to ensure that the game’s are working as intended at the higher frame rates – games can sometimes throw a bit of a wobbly when they encounter something they weren’t designed for, like animations linked to a 30fps rate suddenly being twice as fast. It’s for this reason that Microsoft are being selective in their roll out of the new feature. The approach will have broader results than on PlayStation 5, where games such as God of War and Ghost of Tsushima, and Xbox games like Sea of Thieves and Halo: The Master Chief Collection have to be aware of the hardware they’re running on to take advantage of the new console power.
The lack of resolution boost in some games might be a bit disappointing, but it’s also something that Microsoft could feasibly tackle in future. Xbox and Xbox 360 backward compatibility is able to run games at higher resolutions, multiplying each axis two or three times in the process. For now, however, that’s not on the cards, and many would choose frame rate over resolution any day of the week.
More games will be coming in the near future, with FPS Boost announced back in October using Fallout 4 as an example. This spring will also see updates for Xbox Series’ system software to add more flexibility for several system features. A new “Compatibility Options” button will appear on game entries to let you toggle FPS Boost as well as Auto HDR on or off on a game-by-game basis. You will also be notified when FPS Boost is being applied to a game via the Xbox Guide.