Phil Spencer – Head of Xbox at Microsoft – wants to bring the original Xbox games to Xbox One, but the lack of time and resources is probably why we won’t see it for a while.
The Xbox One compatibility program at the moment offers games from the Xbox 360 – after all, the last generation consoles gave us some masterpieces, and losing them would be a shame – so fans have always wondered, what about the masterpieces that the original Xbox offered?
One such fan, asked that question from Phil Spencer on Twitter and managed to get a reply:
@James1o1o We haven't ruled it out but we aren't working on it right now. I'd like to find the time to do it.
— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) October 12, 2016
The thing is – time can be made, and resources can be diverted; if only there were more demand for the original Xbox titles on Xbox One, we could have some progress towards this. The original Xbox – unlike Xbox 360 – ran on a custom Intel Pentium III processor with DirectX 8.1. Yeah, that’s ancient, but it, in fact, makes it easier to port the original Xbox library to Xbox One.
The current-generation Xbox One and the original Xbox both share the same architecture; with a bit of tweaking, original Xbox games should be able to run on Xbox One natively. In theory, the process should be much easier, when compared with Xbox 360; even if this proves difficult or impossible, the hardware is old enough for emulation.
We can only hope that the Xbox team finds the time and resources to figure these things out; convincing 3rd-party developers to remake some of their oldest games for the latest generation console can be quite challenging, to say the least.
This can go down as one of the benefits of a PC – a PC can run every PC game ever made, and emulate many of the classic consoles such as NES. The Xbox One could do it too if Microsoft allowed. Unfortunately, there isn’t much interest for an original Xbox emulator on the PC.