Microsoft's Phil Spencer has confirmed that Xbox One's lack of backwards compatibility also extends to Xbox Live Arcade games, and advised Xbox 360 owners who've built up a healthy stockpile to keep hold of their current generation consoles.
"Those games will continue to run on your Xbox 360 for as long as your Xbox 360 runs," he told Gamespot in a new interview. "The box is not backward compatible and we think for somebody who invests in a large digital library that you want to keep your [Xbox 360]. Keep that as a vibrant part of the ecosystem."
"That's why we've made sure that your identity, your friends, are constant between both platforms," Spencer continued. "You don't have a separate identity on Xbox One or [Xbox 360]; it's the same, you are you. My friend's network is the same on both boxes, my achievements are the same. So we think that service component is an important component to keep constant across both devices."
Microsoft has made much of its continued support for Xbox 360, promising a "huge" announcement at E3. The company's Yusuf Medhi has suggested that Xbox 360 will sell past 100 million units during the next five years.
In future, all games released on the Xbox Live Marketplace will appear under an all-purpose Games label - smaller-scale indie (or at least "indie-styled") releases won't get their own, separate channel. Microsoft assures us that its new trending systems and curation policy will ensure that relatively niche titles aren't lost in the rush.
I'm a bit disheartened by the inability to transfer my XBLA library, myself - the service accounts for many of this generation's best games, such as Fez, Mark of the Ninja and Trials Evolution, and given the distribution method, there would seem to be fewer obstacles to compatibility than there are with Xbox 360 discs. Hopefully, Microsoft will find time to port the best of XBLA over to Xbox One, or introduce software emulation for a select roster of titles.
What do you reckon? Here's some Bastion music to lift the mood.