E3 2017: Microsoft Predictions

A Full Scorpio Reveal

This reveal is the only certainty heading into Microsoft's E3 showcase -- but it's also the most newsworthy, and arguably the most important. Just what is Project Scorpio? Well, it sounds like a lot more than a high-powered Xbox One.

Based solely on the innards of the machine, the Scorpio is a next-generation console. However, Microsoft has stressed that it won't have exclusive games, thus making it a machine that merely improves visuals and load times for current gen games. And that begs the question: Why does it need to exist? As is the case with the PS4 Pro, if the Scorpio is solely for visual enhancement, then it becomes a baffling waste of resources.

There are two alternative scenarios here: 

1. Microsoft is lying and the power will be used by developers, eventually leading to the standard Xbox One games running poorly and becoming obsolete. If you create a super powerful machine and developers create games for it, then attempt to scale it way down to work on the original Xbox One, chances are the game will not work properly. This happened with Hyrule Warriors on Nintendo 3DS and the New Nintendo 3DS - it ran very poorly on the older hardware, despite Nintendo saying that would never be the case.

2. All that extra power is secretly for use with Oculus VR. It's no secret that Microsoft has a partnership with Oculus, and all the extra power in the Scorpio could be used to make the Xbox One the best place to play the Oculus. Should that be the case, I think there will be a large amount of disappointed Xbox fans, especially considering Oculus is, so far, the least viable VR platform.

What the machine is, and its purpose, will be revealed sooner rather than later, along with an official release date and price. The latter is also a huge matter for Microsoft and fans -- considering the specs, conventional wisdom puts the price tag around $499 (at best), which makes it twice as expensive as its closest competitor. Microsoft is in a huge bind when it comes to revealing the Scorpio, which makes E3 all the more exciting.

Published May. 10th 2017

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