Microsoft’s big E3 surprise brought VR to its Xbox One console with the Project Scorpio upgrade today. There’s still much to learn about the system, but we do now know what framerate it’s aiming for with VR.
According to Xbox General Manager of Game Publishing Shannon Loftis, Project Scorpio will allow developers working on VR games to hit at least 90FPS. Loftis said as much in an interview with Geoff Keighley for the YouTube Live E3 coverage today. Speaking about the console, Loftis explained: “The more power you can put behind your VR rendering, the more you can ensure that 90 frames per second synchronicity, the better experience a game developer can create. We’re super excited about it.”
That figure’s hardly surprising, as it’s a standard set by Oculus VR itself for games and experiences running on the Oculus Rift. That said, Sony’s reprojection technology for its PlayStation VR HMD for PlayStation 4 will allow games to be displayed at 120FPS in-HMD while running at 60FPS on the console. It’s not up to Microsoft to offer this feature in its supported HMDs, though, unless the company is planning to make such a device itself.
In truth, we don’t know what the company’s plans for HMD support are right now; we simply know that Project Scorpio can support VR. The original report that revealed the console was in the works also suggested that Microsoft was seeking a partnership with Oculus to support the Rift, but the lack of an announcement might suggest that a potential deal is still being worked out. What about the HTC Vive? Could more than one HMD be supported on the console?
Hopefully we’ll be able to find out exactly what Microsoft is thinking in terms of VR in much more depth later this week.
We do know, however, that Project Scorpio offers developers 6 teraflops of GPU, and will also be aiming to offer players 4K resolutions for standard games, which won’t be possible or even relevant to VR systems until they get displays to support them. It’s due for release in holiday 2017, so we’re far from learning a price. Don’t expect to hear from it again for some time past this week, in that case.