During Xbox’s 2019 E3 conference, we were introduced to their brand-new console ‘Project Scarlett’ which is set to launch in 2020.
Although we have no idea what kind of game catalogue will be supported on the console, or even what it looks like, we do know that Halo Infinite and Project Scarlett will release together.
What Is Project Scarlett?
Project Scarlett is Microsoft’s next-generation Xbox console. The console boasts a custom designed CPU based on AMD’s Zen 2 and Radeon RDNA architecture. They’ve promised that this new console will be four times more powerful than the Xbox One X. Microsoft is also using fast GDDR6 RAM, which will give us resolutions and framerates we have never seen before.
The new console will support 8K gaming, up to 120 frames per second, ray-tracing and variable refresh rate support.
Microsoft is also using the SSD as virtual RAM, which should boost performance by 40x over the current generation of consoles.
Xbox chief Phil Spencer also strongly hinted that the machine was being designed to take advantage of new internet capabilities:
“When we talk about Xbox in the cloud, when we talk about streaming your games, Project Scarlett and all of its power and all of its performance is the foundation of our future in console and the formation of our future in cloud”.
A close up of 'Project Scarlett'
What does this mean for Esports?
The specifics sound fancy, but how does this impact esports and what does it mean for the ecosystem?
With a new machine being introduced into the electronic world, there will be lots of eyes focused on its arrival. With the simultaneous launch of Halo Infinite, a title that is synonymous with esports, the reach could be massive and expand the knowledge of esports to a wider audience.
With Microsoft raising the bar, this will force the hand of other companies to match their efforts in a bid to compete. With so many powerful consoles around, such as the PlayStation 5 or the Google Stadia, we will see other console exclusives reap the benefits of more powerful hardware in their performance; this includes games like Gears 5.
With this upgraded performance, we will ultimately have fewer technical issues and situations where a console’s performance hinders the flow of competitive matches.
Halo Infinite will launch with 'Project Scarlett' in 2020
The biggest takeaway from this is that by using an SSD, load times will be much faster. If you’re an avid viewer of esports events, you’ll know there can be significant delays between games purely spent on loading the world in which you compete on. By reducing this time, we can reduce the amount of time in-between and ultimately reduce tournament times; which can sometimes run past their allocated schedules.
If SSD’s are made to be detachable, they should have the capability to swap in-and-out between consoles seamlessly. This will reduce setup time for players or if a technical issue occurred, a new console could be brought in and the game could be restarted immediately. The only concern here is the potential to modify an SSD to help influence a player’s game.
If Project Scarlett is designed to take advantage of new internet capabilities and streaming games really is the future, we may have a situation where downloading title updates are a thing of the past.
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