The new customized PCIe 4.0 NVMe M.2 SSD in next-gen Xbox consoles can significantly reduce loading times by default without requiring upgrade patches from developers.
The Xbox Series S/X SSD is a game-changer, and can natively boost loading times in games that aren't even optimized for the system. As shown in a recent Series S showcase video, the 2.4GB/sec PCIe 4.0 SSD cuts loading times in games like The Outer Worlds by more than 70%.
The Outer Worlds on a Series S loaded in just 12 seconds, compared to the 53 seconds on Xbox One S. That's a 77% reduction in loading times. The game wasn't optimized for Series S/X and was simply running in backward compatibility mode.
This isn't a surprise, though: We've already discussed in length how both the PS5 and Xbox Series X/S consoles will natively boost in-game performance on a number of levels, including faster loading times by virtue of the super-charged SSD and the benefits it brings (efficient flash memory with no seeks, faster lanes via PCIe 4.0, boosted memory controllers, Velocity Architecture enhancements like DirectStorage API), tighter frame rates, and even boosted resolution.
- Read Also: Xbox Series X SSD natively drops load times by 4x without code changes
- Read Also: PlayStation 5's SSD is boosting speeds without any developer work
The Outer Worlds has abysmal loading times on stock PS4 and Xbox One HDDs and is notorious for its 1-minute transition points. This will be very welcome to new and returning gamers alike.
This kind of speed is made possible by Microsoft's new Velocity Architecture toolset, which synergizes the PCIe 4.0 SSD with the Zen 2 CPU, Navi GPU, and GDDR6 RAM. All of these components were designed from the ground up to complement and enhance one another to create a true next-gen evolution in gaming.
Velocity Architecture features a number of improvements via DirectX 12 Ultimate including:
- DirectStorage - a new API specifically designed to optimize data streaming to CPU, GPU, and RAM
- Sampler Feedback Streaming - Devs now have much more granular control over how assets are fed into the GPU, textures take up less space and can be targeted
- Smart Delivery - Devs can make available higher-end assets and textures to next-gen owners, game performance is scaled across variable-perf form factors like Series S and X
The Xbox Series S and Series X release on November 10, 2020 for $299 and $499 respectively.
Check below for side-by-side spec comparisons:
- > NEXT STORY: Saints Row V leaks: Saints Row 4 retconned, GTA 5-level performance
- < PREVIOUS STORY: Crazy Spider-Man PlayStation 5 visuals teased by Insomniac Games