Microsoft is no longer developing Xbox One games — here’s what that means

An Xbox One S console against a green background
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Microsoft has confirmed that it has no plans to develop new games for the Xbox One and is instead focusing its efforts on the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S.

This news comes via an Axios interview with Xbox Game Studios boss Matt Booty who confirmed “We’ve moved onto Gen 9” and announced that no internal teams at Xbox are working on games for the Xbox One, a Gen 8 console. Although, this update was slightly caveated with the confirmation there will still be support for ongoing live service games on Xbox One such as Minecraft and Sea of Thieves. 

What this means is that upcoming Xbox first-party games such as Starfield and Forza Motorsport will be developed and launched exclusively for Xbox Series X (and its sister console, the Series S). This will also be the case in the long term as well with Xbox Game Studios titles such as Avowed, Fable and Clockwork Revolution all set to skip the Xbox One.  

However, current-gen games will still be accessible on Xbox One thanks to Microsoft’s cloud streaming service. We’ve seen this in action in recent months with Xbox Series X games such as Microsoft Flight Simulator, Hi-Fi Rush and Redfall all playable on Xbox One via cloud streaming. And Booty confirms that Microsoft plans to “maintain support” for this feature going forward. 

Microsoft’s move away from supporting the Xbox One with new games is being mirrored by several third-party publishers. Some of the fall’s biggest releases including Alan Wake 2, Mortal Kombat 1 and Avatar: Frontiers of Pandora are coming solely to Xbox Series X. But not all blockbuster games are ditching the console. Assassin’s Creed Mirage, Lies of P and The Crew Motorfest will still be launching on Xbox One later this year. 

Rival console maker Sony is taking a similar approach. After releasing several high-profile cross-generation games over the past couple of years, its focus now appears to be on the PS5 with the PS4 heading towards the sunset. For example, Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 is due in October and will be a PS5 exclusive, and it’s expected that all Sony first-party games going forward will debut solely on current-gen hardware. 

Overall this is pretty exciting news. Xbox One and PS4 owners who don’t want to upgrade might bemoan being left behind, but the PS5 and Xbox Series X launched in November 2020. As we approach their third birthdays it feels like the right time for the gaming industry to leave older hardware behind and focus exclusively on these latest consoles. After all, the Xbox One is almost 10 years old, it's time to move on. 

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Rory Mellon
Entertainment Editor (UK)

Rory is an Entertainment Editor at Tom’s Guide based in the UK. He covers a wide range of topics but with a particular focus on gaming and streaming. When he’s not reviewing the latest games, searching for hidden gems on Netflix, or writing hot takes on new gaming hardware, TV shows and movies, he can be found attending music festivals and getting far too emotionally invested in his favorite football team.