It appears that promised Xbox One X enhancements to games such as Firewatch, Rime, and Bulletstorm have been cancelled. All three games were slated to have Xbox One X updates but have been removed from the official Xbox One X enhancements list on the official Xbox website. This is odd considering that some of these, such as Firewatch was to get Xbox One X enhancements right after the Nintendo Switch release of the game. However the feature is no longer being advertised. Xbox One X enhancements include sharper resolution, better frame rate, and at times, even the inclusion of HDR. These usually result in a better looking game.
The removal of these games from the Xbox One X enhancements list was spotted by eagle-eyed users of popular gaming forum ResetEra.
“I understand there are financial and logistical issues in updating these games for the X, but if they’re going to advertise these features for so long they should at least make an announcement detailing the cancellation,” claims one post. “This just feels like trying to sweep it under the rug.”
Xbox One X enhancements aren’t restricted to new games. Even last generation Xbox 360 titles receive enhancements for the Xbox One X, usually seeing a resolution bump to 4K. These include Red Dead Redemption, The Witcher 2, and Crackdown among others. Xbox Platform Lead Bill Stillwell explained the effort that goes into backward compatibility and adding Xbox One X enhancements on top of that.
“We’re having to constantly tune the emulator to make it more precise, but every time you make it more precise, you make it less powerful. The enhancements are a lot of work because we really have to go back and tune the performance profile so there’s no change in the gameplay experience. And we don’t do half measures,” said Stillwell in conversation with Edge magazine (via Wccftech).
He also let slip how Microsoft Engineer Eric Heutchy first devised how Xbox 360 games could get a massive resolution jump when on the Xbox One X.
“We’d just got our first set of devkits in; they were just boards sitting on a mat. Eric started tinkering and said, ‘Okay, I’ve got a lot more power in Xbox One X. What could I do to a 360 game?’ He took what we had done for the Xbox Originals games and applied it to Halo 3 first. We were like, ‘Holy cow – this looks like a brand-new game’,” he said.