Does Xbox Series X play used games?

Xbox Series X Vent
Xbox Series X Vent (Image credit: Microsoft)

Does Xbox Series X play used games?

Best answer: Yes. After the planned policies regarding not playing used games were abandoned before the launch of the Xbox One, used games have been playable and will be playable on Xbox Series X.Go digital instead: Xbox Game Pass Ultimate (opens in new tab) ($25 at Amazon)

Does the Xbox Series X play used games?

All of your Xbox One games will play on Xbox Series X. Any Xbox 360 or Original Xbox games that are currently playable on Xbox One will also be playable on Xbox Series X as part of the approach Microsoft is taking to backward compatibility. This will quite naturally include used games as if you start playing a game on your Xbox One; it is used when you first install it on your Xbox Series X.

In 2013, before the launch of the Xbox One, Microsoft planned several features around a digital ecosystem, even for people who bought the physical versions of games. As a result, however, people wouldn't be able to use their used games. The backlash Microsoft received from this approach caused them to abandon the idea, allowing the Xbox One to play used games. This policy will continue on into the next generation so that Xbox Series X will play used games.

Microsoft is committing to Smart Delivery, which means that if you buy an Xbox Game Studios title, such as Halo Infinite, it will be upgraded on Xbox Series X for free. This is an opt-in program, so while some third-party companies like CD Projekt Red may provide free upgrades with Cyberpunk 2077, other companies are not required to join. Even so, these games, when used, will be playable on Xbox Series X.

What about Lockhart?

Windows Central has received credible reports that there will be two next-generation Xbox consoles: a higher-end console, the Xbox Series X, and a lower-end console, currently codenamed Lockhart. All of the information revealed so far lines up Windows Central's report. However, Lockhart has not yet been unveiled. If Lockhart is real, there is a chance it will not include a disc drive. If so, Lockhart will not play used games and would be a digital-only machine in line with the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition.

For more information about Microsoft's currently announced next-generation gaming machine, you can read everything we know about Xbox Series X right here.

Samuel Tolbert is a freelance writer covering gaming news, previews, reviews, interviews and different aspects of the gaming industry, specifically focusing on Xbox and PC gaming on Windows Central. You can find him on Twitter @SamuelTolbert.