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UWP games are getting access to more horsepower on Xbox One this fall

One of the benefits of the convergence of operating systems between Windows and Xbox is that developers can target both platforms with a lot of shared code by leveraging the Universal Windows Platform (UWP) for development. However, games published to Xbox One through the Windows Store have thus far been relatively limited in terms of access to hardware resources on the console. Now, in a move that will please developers, Microsoft has announced it will free up access to more system resources for UWP games on Xbox One this fall.

Currently, UWP games can tap into 4 shared CPU cores, 1GB of RAM, and access to only 50 percent of the GPU for Direct3D11-based games. With the next big update coming to Xbox One this fall, UWP games will now have access to 6 exclusive CPU cores, 5GB of RAM, and full access to the GPU for Direct3D12-based games. Put simply, UWP developers should be able to eek out vastly better performance for their games on Xbox One.

Ultimately, Microsoft says, expanded resource access will have an impact on Windows Store games like Fallout Shelter (opens in new tab), which was built on the Universal Windows Platform and is now available across Windows and Xbox One. Similarly, games created as part of ID@Xbox and the Xbox Live Creators Program on UWP will be able to access the extra horsepower as well.

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the Editor in Chief for Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl. Got a hot tip? Send it to daniel.thorp-lancaster@futurenet.com.

21 Comments
  • I'm confused as to why this was limited in the first place
  • That's what I was going to comment. Why limited?
  • Begs the question right?
  • Unlike real console games that are given full access (or more resources)  UWP shares the Windows environment with other apps and games built with UWP.  Using UWP for game development is not the same as using the full development kit.  UWP on the Xbox are not designed to be full system app/games. They are two different virtual environments.  If a game is being developed to currently take advantage of the system they will need to use the Xbox development kit not the UWP framework. UWP gives you certain power to the system that games do not and vice versa.  E.G. UWP allows you to be a background task.   
  • Thanks for the explanation!
    btw, is Middle Earth, Gears, Forza (those AAA Play Anywhere titles) uwp? I thought only uwp apps/games are allowed on Win10 Store?
  • Because of that, this happened 👉There’s No Profit Margin for Microsoft on the Xbox One X
    https://www.extremetech.com/gaming/251038-theres-no-profit-margin-micros... 😌
  • Yep. Not sure why its limited, I'm sure there is a reason, but that reason can't be a good one.
  • You can make your app/game a background services, and if your app/game eats too many resources...
  • I could be wrong but I'm guessing it could be related to other things running in the background or multitasking? One application or game shouldn't take up 100% of the resources?
  • wait, aren't games like Gears of War 4, Forza Horizon 3, Cuphead, etc that are in the WIndows Store also UWP?   What's the difference?
  • I assume Forza Horizon 3 has access to a lot more than 1 GB RAM and four cores. Especially since it is made by Microsoft Studios. Heh, otherwise we have a lot to look forward to pretty soon ;)
  • Exactly what I was about to ask.
    ps: Middle Earth and Lucky's Tale is also on win10 store.
  • Those are standard games, like all of the 99% of them. not uwp. What developer has the nerves, time and resources to waste, to be a guinea pig for Microshit's failed UWP thing...?
  • A standard games? *.exe can be published on WinStore? Are you saying...
    A freshman or a startup in 2017, should, code their own mechanism to install, upgrade, crack-proof, uninstall, advertise like... old times?
    It's another story if you work for big names such as Adobe, or if you are skipping standard win10 pc, win10s and win10.arm all together. uwp.xbox SKU, xb360 / xbOG bc, fc, xpa, GamePass, free-unlimited-cross-platform-cloud-sync, MsStore, uwp.ar/mr SKU, uwp.iot SKU, etc. You think MS's gonna abandon these investments? If there's no ecosystem to keep users from leaving Windows, Windows will become a niche OS. Can Steam keep users from leaving? Steam MAU is only around 11m. Most people don't play game, and most gamers, don't game on PC. (PC and console are different markets.)
  • Microsoft is just doing this to kill steam. UWP must be killed.
  • Steam must be killed! :rolleyes
  • I'm not saying Steam should die but MsStore cannot fail...
    One day, ARM would become powerful enuf to run traditional Windows applications (e.g. Adobe)... without a ecosystem to prevent users from leaving, Windows will become a niche OS.
    Can Steam keep users from leaving? Steam MAU is around 11m as we speak. Most people don't play games.
    Besides, not everyone wants to game on a trouble box, bc/fc is much easier to achiev with Xboxes. PC don't have Instant-On and Steam doesn't have store-region-hot-swap feature either.
    * Do Steam games write data into your registry? would they get properly cleaned up during uninstallation?
  • Does this now mean even UWP apPS like Netflix, iPlayer, Kodi (soon) can utilise this for a performance boost?
  • So what are they saying? if a game is built on UWP, the game will now support 1080p @ 60 fps in the current graphical fidelity of the Xbox One/PS4?
  • UWP :)))) lol. what games? you don't even need two hands to count them :))) UWP FAILED! There is no UWP without mobile, so FYOU Microshit. I need normal games, not uwp crap!
  • Mobile < replaced with win10.arm. So...
    A freshman or a startup in 2017, should, code their own mechanism to install, upgrade, crack-proof, uninstall, advertise like... old times?
    It's another story if you work for big names such as Adobe, or if you are skipping standard win10 pc, win10s and win10.arm all together. uwp.xbox SKU, xb360 / xbOG bc, fc, xpa, GamePass, free-unlimited-cross-platform-cloud-sync, MsStore, uwp.ar/mr SKU, uwp.iot SKU, etc. You think MS's gonna abandon these investments? If there's no ecosystem to keep users from leaving Windows, Windows will become a niche OS. Can Steam keep users from leaving? Steam MAU is only around 11m as we speak. Most people don't play game, and most gamers, don't game on PC. (PC and console are different markets btw.)