X360 Needs HD To Play XBox Games

X360 Needs HD To Play XBox Games X360 Needs HD To Play XBox Games

A marketing brochure released by Microsoft appears to be putting an end to the debate about backwards compatibility for its next-generation, XBox 360 console.

The marketing material released attempts to describe the features of the two versions of the console that will become available on its launch in November, 2005. The brochure includes various diagrams and tables describing the console and one of them (image to your right) explains that backwards compatibility with original XBox games will only be available to those X360 owners who also have a hard drive.

Although details of the level of backwards compatibility of XBox 360 have been scarce, it was always assumed that some sort of extra requirement would be imposed on the console's owners. Microsoft had already mentioned that paying the relevant rights to publishers and developers might be an issue but support for past XBox games also had to depend on previous requirements for those games. There has been a suggestion that MS may be adding a fee to the hard drive that will take care of any charges which may become involved.

It would also seem likely that since games like Halo and Halo 2 require a hard drive on the original console, they would do the same for the new console. Some experts also claim that the hard drive may be necessary in order for certain game-specific files to be downloaded from Microsoft so that original XBox games can be played on the new console but the fact that the brochure does not mention that XBox Live is a requirement for backwards compatibility makes this possibility unlikely.

So gamers who wish to carry their current XBox library over to the new console may have to come to terms with the possibility that backwards compatibility comes at a price.