If you’re nostalgic for original Xbox classics, Microsoft now has a cure for you. Initially announced at E3, the Xbox One can now play select original Xbox games with increased performance. The list includes instant classics such as Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and Prince of Persia: Sands of Time, as well as cult hits like Psychonauts. Here are all of the Xbox One backward-compatible Xbox games available now.
Backwards compatible Xbox games
- BloodRayne 2
- Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge
- Dead to Rights
- Fuzion Frenzy
- Grabbed by the Ghoulies
- King of Fighters Neowave
- Ninja Gaiden Black
- Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time
- Red Faction II
- Sid Meier’s Pirates!
- Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
If you want to play one of these games for the first time (or sold your copy), you can purchase these games digitally from the Xbox Marketplace. Each game is priced at $10 except for Red Faction II, which is $15.
The Xbox One update also makes it possible for physical editions of these games to be playable on Xbox One. If you already have a copy of, say, Crimson Skies on your shelf, you can simply pop it in and play.
If you prefer physical copies of games and you don’t already own a copy, you have a few options. GameStop has Psychonauts ($10), Ninja Gaiden Black ($15), and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic ($5) available to purchase online.
If you have a retailer specializing in older games near you, we suggest checking there. You can also take a gander at eBay listings. We looked and found that most of the games can be found for under the $10 digital price. (Fun fact: King of Fighters Neowave is oddly expensive).
What difference will you see?
For those who haven’t played some of these games, playing them on Xbox One may be worth it regardless, but if you already experienced them, why should you care?
For starters, all games are upped from 48op or 480i to 1080p resolution. They also have higher/smoother framerates and quickened load times. On Xbox One and Xbox One S, these games have four times the original pixel count for increased texture clarity. If you’re planning on picking up an Xbox One X, expect 16 times the pixel count. Most games still use 4:3 aspect ratio, but at least Ninja Gaiden Black runs in 16:9 widescreen.
Online multiplayer is not supported since original Xbox servers have been inactive for several years, but every other feature, including system link multiplayer, is at your disposal.
When will the list expand?
Microsoft’s “first curated batch” of games focused mainly on mega-hits and cult favorites. While it doesn’t seem like the program will ever encompass a large swath of the original Xbox library, the next set of backward-compatible games is expected next spring.