Backtracking on backwards compatibility

It started last week, when Xbox guru Peter Moore's statements to website Kikizo made the rounds. When asked about the Xbox 360's ability to play original Xbox games, Moore responded, "Nobody is concerned anymore about backwards compatibility. We under promised and over delivered on that. It's a very complicated thing... very complex work. I'm just stunned that we have hundreds of games that are backwards compatible. More are coming, but at some point, you just go, there's enough, let's move on, or people aren't as worried about a game being backwards compatible - and I like to think we've upheld our end of the bargain in making at least two or maybe three hundred games backwards compatible."

Naturally, that set off a public outcry from gamers who bought the Xbox 360 with this feature in mind and felt they were getting screwed. This week we're seeing blog comments from other Microsoft personnel reaffirming the company's support for making old games run on new hardware. "Rest assured, we're not done yet," posted the Microsoft marketing team members who run "We know for a fact that there are lots of people who continue to care about backwards compatibility, including the 'Emulation Ninjas' who are working full-time on the updates. And those of us posting on this blog.And, of course, many of you."

Hard details, like dates or new titles due to be supported, were not announced, so it's back to wondering when we'll see beloved games like Conker: Live and Reloaded, Psychonauts and Lego Star Wars receive some 360 love - if ever. For the official list of Xbox games currently playable on Xbox 360, just clickhere.

June 5, 2006