Developer claims ‘many’ studios are asking Xbox to drop mandatory Series S compatibility

Bossa Studios dev argues the console had "turned out to be an albatross around the next of production."

Microsoft’s entry-level console Xbox Series S is limiting the potential of new-gen games, a developer at indie studio Bossa Studios has argued.

VFX artist Ian Maclure made the claim on Twitter in response to a comment from veteran games journalist Jeff Gerstmann, who said he thinks the whole ‘Series S is holding back next-gen games’ argument doesn’t hold up.

“Most of these games also come to PC and already have to cover a wide variety of configs,” Gerstmann pointed out.

Maclure, who worked on last year’s Xbox Series X/S and PC game I Am Fish at Bossa, which also develops and publishes the Surgeon Simulator series, responded: “It might sound broken, but the reason you are hearing it a lot right now is because MANY developers have been sitting in meetings for the past year desperately trying to get Series S launch requirements dropped.

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generic-user-name110d ago

You want to know what's anti-consumer? Crippling a generation of games because the only way your hardware can chart is if it's below $300.

rlow1110d ago

How is it anti consumer offering people a cheaper entry point? That’s actually a pro consumer strategy.
What you seem to be trying to infer is it’s anti hardcore, for those willing to spend the big bucks and want all the bell and whistles. Their’s a difference.

generic-user-name110d ago

The anti consumer part is forcing devs to support the S when they clearly don't want to. In doing so, reducing the quality of the game.

CrimsonIdol110d ago (Edited 110d ago )

I don't think you understand what anti-consumer means dude. For a start the developer isn't the consumer.

generic-user-name110d ago


And who do you think buys the product that the developers make? A product of reduced quality to allow for Phil's demands.

CrimsonIdol110d ago

I'm guessing you never lived through the PS2 era then from the perspective of literally any other platform.

generic-user-name110d ago


You'll have to remind me of the PS2 X which was gimped to allow for the weaker PS2 S, I can't recall that.

Crows90110d ago (Edited 110d ago )

It's not a cheaper entry point though. So you're telling me then it's not antu consumer however just 100$ more gets you all the bells and whistles with the PS4 digital?

They artifically created an "entry point" that is more affordable but doesn't actually give you a next gen experience. It's basically a remake of the Xbox one x. It's disgustingly deceptive.

Games are already struggling on the series s. It's not a 1440p machine.

CrimsonIdol110d ago

My point (as it is apparently not immediately clear) is that many multiplatform games were indisputably held back on every other platform by the fact they had to release and run on a PS2 (the PS2 had a mere 4MB of video ram). And yet I would seriously struggle to call this "anti-consumer" to all the other consumers of different, more powerful platforms.

I'm trying to make you apply your logic to a different case to perhaps isolate your blinding bias. Obviously the developer motivation and market situation is different. But we're supposedly talking about consumers here aren't we?

HardKnockKid24110d ago

Get outta here, you know very well he’s referring to the power difference between the PS2/GC/Xbox @generic-user-name
Everything that Sony does is clearly perfect though smh

SurgicalMenace110d ago

You guys are aware that there is no such thing as anticonsumer, right? It's nothing but a buzz word created to provoke unrest between companies and consumers. There are those who can afford products and those who can't. It's simple as that.

-Foxtrot110d ago

Thing is how cheap do you go? There's no end to it.

It's a luxury item and I couldn't afford many of my consoles in the past as a young kid, I had to save or get super lucky as Christmas. If I wanted a new game or console I had to trade the other one in.

If saving up to get a new console means that when I finally get it I'm (along with others who have one) a full on NEXT GEN experience where developers are taking advantage of it then so be it.

Just because I couldn't afford past consoles didn't mean I wanted other games to suffer so developers could cater to me and the old console. I mean what would then be the point of me saving up money if I could just stay on my PS2 or something.

shinoff2183110d ago

The difference with the ps2 you guys seem to be missing is that sony didnt have 2 models of ps2s on the market. Where as ms does. So the ps2 argument doesnt hold up at all.

Hofstaderman110d ago (Edited 110d ago )

It is anti consumer knowing that piece of hardware will become redundant within a timeframe that a consumer reasonably expects it to offer what it was advertising it does. Consoles are not PCs and cellphones. You can’t escape the generational model despite what bullshit Microsoft spouts. People always said that this would happen when the Series S was announced and its why Sony stuck to same specs with their PS5 models.

Angyobangyo110d ago

They why have a more expensive console, only for it to be held back because MS enforces parity? The Series S is a great budget system, but there is no need for the Series X to be held back. Anti-hardcore is something you made up to validate your point. It is holding back devs and limiting what they would like to implement, fact! Let me get this right, you're saying MS enforces an "anti--hardcore" policy because they're against their own superior system with the Series X outperforming the Series S. Wow, such genius.

VariantAEC108d ago

PS2 had most of the best looking games that gen. Ratchet and Clank, Jak and Daxter, Gran Turismo and Tourist Trophy, even games like Ace Combat, Metal Gear Solid 2 and 3 broke new ground in real time animation and graphics.

The irrefutable game that defined the entire generation is one you never heard of, Haven: Call of The King the space opera epic that had you jumping from one planet to the next in a tightly honed linear action adventure. It wasn't the best game nor the best looking but considering the underlying tech and the fact that it was still lightyears better looking than games like GTA: San Andreas and still ran at 60FPS. Imagine Squadron 42 as if it took place in a more fantasy sci-fi world made for PS2 and they got everything right. That was Haven and yet it wasn't made for Xbox or the GameCube.

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Sonyslave3110d ago (Edited 110d ago )

No crippling a whole generation is releasing games on the ps4 and low end pc 😩😩 like you guys got to make it make sense.

Any devs saying other wise is hack and please don’t bring up I’d studio lonely dev, who also said the series s is a fantastic system but he would like a little more muscle but it still a nice system that ran Doom enteral at 120fps at 1440p and that was two years ago.

The Gotham dev who didn’t even work on the game hate Xbox series s going by his twitter history, which is the main reason he deleted his page.

Watch the Witcher 3 devs somehow get the Xbox series s version at 1080p or 1440p 60fps but Gotham Knights with less things on screen and effects struggle with 30fps on all consoles.

generic-user-name110d ago

Please show me Sony forcing Capcom to make RE4 for PS4. You can't.

Every XSX title will be held back as long as Phil continues this anti dev/anti consumer practice.

jznrpg110d ago (Edited 110d ago )

Sony is not forcing anyone to release games on PS4 . MS is forcing devs to make a Series S version even though it’s basically an Xbox One X .

wiz7191110d ago

@jznrpg the series s can do things the one x cannot .. the Series S has the same CPU as the Series X just slightly down clocked. So I don’t see how the series s is really holding the generation back.

ABizzel1110d ago


It's not holding the generation back, but it's creating more unnecessary work for developers by having to optimize for a third device that already struggles with cross-gen content.

It's like you doing your job and completing a month's worth of work so you can go on vacation, only for your employer to tell you well John only did two weeks of worth, so we're canceling your vacation and splitting his remaining work between you and John so your vacation request is denied.

Not to mention the Series S GPU and VRAM are noticeably worse than the One X which is another factor into why developers are complaining. They have to make their games on a pretty straightforward spec with the PS5 and even the Series X. But then they have to optimize a version for a GPU that's at its best is 1/3 the performance of the Series X, with dramatically less CUs, lower clocks, and a dramatically smaller and inferior VRAM solution, only to sell your game on the Xbox platform that has a smaller install base, and a user base that is slowly being programmed to "Wait for GamePass".

Developers aren't really benefitting from this, MS is.

Personally I think the Series S was a good idea, however, the execution was awful again due to the GPU and VRAM. It should have been $349 with better cooling for safer clocks, RX 6600m for TRUE 1440p targets, and 12GB GDDR6 based on the Series X slower pool of RAM. But MS wanted $299 Day 1 without taking a loss like the Series X.

honkler32110d ago

Wow, it can play highly optimized *last gen* games very well. Great argument, dude👍

Profchaos110d ago (Edited 110d ago )

The thing about low end PC's is that phrase is dependant on the date is being said a low end pc today probably has a 2070 card but 3 years back that would have been a higher end card and a high end pc.

So in 3 years time a 3070 may be a low end card which easily trumps the xss and devs will still have to design for that SKU while they can easily abandon a PC gpu or a last gen system you can't do that if you are making a game for current gen and it doesn't run on xss but works on xsx you need to abandon the entire game for the Xbox platform

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Lifexline110d ago

So I guess every company is anti consumer most companies provide cheaper products for those limited with money. Lol. The things people say here.

The thing holding back consoles is developers themselves still making games for last gen. Plus I really doubt and indie developer has the money to really make a AAA game so he is just trying to get attention. It would be nice to get a completely next gen only game but as long as there are 100’s of million of f last gen consoles they will keep making those games I really don’t think it’s about forcing anyone more so of reaching the most consumers and making the most money

generic-user-name110d ago

The judges' scores are in:


LifeXline putting in a good performance in the mental gymnastics event.

Crows90110d ago

No. Gaming is not the phone industry. In gaming each generation brings new capabilities. The series s does not bring new capabilities. It's the same and in some instances worse than Xbox one x.

Lifexline110d ago (Edited 110d ago )

@generic lmao who would have thought I had loser fans on n4g. Kids Who don’t like hearing the truth…..

Stanjara110d ago

You do realize that Xbox one X is more powerful than Series S, but they could not bring that down to $300.

darthv72110d ago

@Stan... no, its not. The only advantage the One X has is 2gb more memory pool. Every other performant aspect of the Series S is better. cpu, gpu, memory speed and bandwidth, ssd... its only blemish is the 10gb memory pool compared to the One X 12gb memory pool.

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SullysCigar110d ago

One developer actually said, when speaking about xbox series S, that the generation was "being hamstrung by this potato". He later apologised, of course, but they feel strongly about it.

There's no point everyone getting up in arms that they haven't yet dropped last gen consoles, when Series S exists. Microsoft's policy states games MUST release on it.

We've discussed the specs before, but the fact is in some ways Series S is actually a step back from last gen's XB one X. This is why devs aren't happy.

darthv72110d ago

Not in some ways... in only one way. memory capacity. it doesnt matter the S has the more efficient and faster memory. There just isnt enough of it. 10gb of faster memory is no match for 12gb of slighly slower memory. Its the pool size that makes the difference.

Series S has the better cpu, gpu, memory speed, hard drive, overall capabilities... but that memory pool is just not bigger than the One X. And it is that reason alone that the One X would be considered better. If they had just stuck with 12gb it then would have been a perfect replacement but as it is it is just a good replacement.

110d ago Replies(1)
agnosticgamer110d ago

Having an additional cheaper option to play games isn't Anti-Consumer. Having an additional cheaper option at $300 would be Pro-Consumer. Forcing games to come out on a cheaper console also is still not Anti-Consumer. The biggest game this studio made is "I am Fish"... What a resume! Maybe they need better developers? Series S has more games at 120fps than the PS5. Is the new God Of War hamstrung because it will also come out on the PS4?

generic-user-name110d ago

"Is the new God Of War hamstrung because it will also come out on the PS4?"

Absolutely. As was HFW, ever wonder why the flying mounts were so slow in that game?

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TicklefistCP110d ago

Come off it. Sony has its Series S equivalent: The PS4.
Or are you going to argue that the Series S is holding back Gran Turismo 7, Horizon Forbidden West & God of War Ragnarok?

shinoff2183110d ago

Actually despite what you might say horizion plays just fine and is one of the best games out on next gen.

VariantAEC108d ago

At some point PS4 will get no new games. Xbox Series S is part of this gen PS4 isn't.

Petebloodyonion110d ago

LOL really?
It's anti-consumer for a company to release a product that ppl are happy to buy due to price/performance ratio and what it offers to consumers?
Wow let me guess Switch is anti consumer, selling the PS4 up to recently was anti-consumer because of the PS5,
Your basic TV at Walmart must be anti-consumer because tv shows don't bother to make things for my 8K tv
Quest 2 must be anti-consumer since it's a cheap VR headset built around an Android chip.

Orchard110d ago

"Releasing a cheaper $300 entry level SKU is anti-consumer"

Welp, there's one I didn't have on my bingo card for today.

Imalwaysright110d ago

It's a stupid statement now and will be even more stupid once we enter the recession stages of the current financial crisis.

JL2930110d ago

That's about the dumbest shit I've ever heard.

shinoff2183110d ago

They did it with 360 gen to when theybstuck with dvd. You cant be switching discs for open world games.

dumahim109d ago

The Xbox came out before HD DVD and Blu-ray were on the market.

The 360 came out Nov 2005. HD DVD first player came out in March 2006 in Japan and Blu-ray was June.

Obscure_Observer110d ago

"The anti consumer part is forcing devs to support the S when they clearly don't want to. In doing so, reducing the quality of the game."

If that was true, Playstation 5 exclusive games should be miles ahead of anything Microsoft has in stores now. And that´s not the case at all.

Forza is miles ahead of Gran Turismo and the same can be said about Hellblade vs God of War
Too much talk too little to show

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dumahim109d ago

"Too much talk too little to show"

Sums up your comments pretty well. How much have we seen of Hellblade so far?

jlove4life110d ago

Yo who is this man I wanna give him a prize straight facts

jwillj2k4110d ago

No one’s forcing a dev to make a game for Xbox. Target ps5/pc if you want no limitations, just understand your maximum audience is a fraction (large fraction) of the whole and adjust accordingly.

ActualEngineer109d ago

There might be more to it, maybe they want to retain processing parity with a handheld dockable future console. Running an x86 soc at 4tflops in dock mode is doable, especially with a clip-in dock that has an aluminum to aluminum cooler.

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LucasRuinedChildhood110d ago

If true, it says a lot that some devs are willing to lose money to avoid having to develop for the S and dealing with its memory constraints.

I've always felt that MS should have just made a Series X Digital Edition like the PS5. All of the stock would have sold out either way.

JEECE110d ago

Yep, even if they were still going to do all digital and a smaller SSD, the CPU, GPU, and RAM should have been the same.

Eonjay110d ago

Correct. Of all of these things you listed the biggest hurdle to current gen development is the memory.

Outside_ofthe_Box110d ago

Their goal was to beat Sony in price AND specs. That's why they didn't go the Sony route of disc and digital X. They want to have their cake and eat it too.

badz149109d ago

and yet still getting outsold regardless. and now they know they can't compete with 3rd party games available on both consoles, they want to buy all the 3rd parties they can tot ake away games from PS. shameful

Crows90110d ago

Exactly. But MS marketing is even more deceptive as they tout the series s as a next gen machine. It's a easier point of entry into a false narrative. Therefore...deceptive.

Petebloodyonion110d ago

And how so?
Does it use the same core processor?
Does it use a similar chipset?

wiz7191110d ago

@Pete the exact same , that’s where I’m confused at to where ppl can say the series s is really holding back this generation. It runs the same games as the Series X just in a lower resolution.

gerbintosh110d ago (Edited 110d ago )

There is also the difference in RAM as well. (More and higher speed on the X). If there really wasn't that big of a difference between specs then MS wouldnt have to force developers to support the series S. It is not as easy as PC where a user can turn down graphics capabilites and settings to make a game run on older/inferior hardware. There is no option for that on consoles so those developers have to essentially spend more time developing an inferior version of their product

It appears they gimped the S so that it can appear cheaper and sell. However, all i see available at stores are the Series S while the X and both PS5 versions are consistently sold out

Crows90109d ago

@[email protected]

Not just resolution but also frame rate and graphical settings. Well yeah but guess what...the Xbox one x could also play the same games so that argument is meaningless. To that same point right now many titles are cross gen and on Xbox pretty much all are that so downs it make it not a next gen machine? What's the difference? Yes exactly...the difference is the power of the machines and the series s is more close to the Xbox one x than the Xbox series X...therefore it's a last gen machine that is going to struggle like the one x to play next gen games.

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blackblades110d ago

Its just another bad decision by MS obe after the other. Yet people dogged on Sony over some small sh*t decision.

roadkillers110d ago

How? When every single game is being made for last gen as well?

Either way it doesn’t matter to me. Just make the game playable on Cloud (que the downvotes) and I will be able to enjoy on any console.

execution17110d ago

And if they do that it screws over people with potato internet if they made future games cloud only for the series s. Good idea for an entry level next gen system but they shot themselves in the foot for making it weak incomparison

roadkillers110d ago

How did they shoot themselves in the foot? I was a Sony Nintendo guy before the Series S and Gamepass. They made a new customer.

porkChop110d ago

Personally I don't see how this person would know what the rest of the industry thinks. They made I Am Fish and Surgeon Simulator. If they had trouble getting those games to run on Series S that speaks volumes about the technical ability of Bossa Studios.

Profchaos110d ago (Edited 110d ago )

Devs are not focused on money typically that's the publisher who will also determine the scope of the games target ie we want this game on everything including mobiles they tell the dev team who design it around the lowest common denominator.

So devs will happily not work on a painful console if they can avoid it just like if your job was to was cars but someone decided to go home and do it themselves no skin off your back you still get paid it's the bosses that lose out

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XiNatsuDragnel110d ago

The series S was a mistake imo Microsoft change this soon.

Brazz110d ago

Normaly i would agree, but in times of low Chips production séries S is a genius move! I mean, that mother board is [email protected]$# small, they can likely produce almost 2SeS for each SeX. Consumers want next gen consoles, and If you can't find Sex or PS5, SeS is on shelves ready for you.
It's a bad move from MS that due to current chip production problems turned in a genius move!

abstractel110d ago

The series S is not a proper next-gen console, that's what devs are trying to say. It's holding back this generation.

When you look at when the PS4/Xbox One launched, for 1-2 years while we got a true generational leap in games people complained about PC performance, called devs lazy, etc. So the PC argument doesn't hold a lot of water. You need a great baseline to step from one generation to the next. The series S has ruined that baseline for this generation.

crazyCoconuts110d ago

I don't think they can change course this generation. Imagine the backlash from existing owners

abstractel110d ago

This is unfortunately the problem.