Xbox 20th Anniversary: Everything Microsoft announced

Xbox 20th Anniversary
Xbox 20th Anniversary (Image credit: Microsoft)

It has been a long journey for the Xbox brand since the original console launched on Nov. 15, 2001. To celebrate its 20th anniversary, Microsoft hosted a livestream event looking back on the history of the Xbox, the impact it has made on the gaming community, and made several big announcements for Xbox fans.

The biggest announcement is that Halo Infinite's multiplayer mode will be available to download for free right now on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, and PC via Steam. Do note that this multiplayer mode is in a beta form and it does not contain the full single-player campaign which will launch on Dec 8. 2021. In addition, a teaser for the long-awaited, live-action Halo TV show was shown off along with a release date for 2022, and it will premiere on Paramount Plus.

The second biggest announcement is that over 70 games have been announced for Xbox Backwards Compatibility. These games include the Max Payne series, the F.E.A.R. series, FromSoftware's Otogi series, Dead or Alive: Ultimate, Star Wars: Jedi Knight II and many more. In addition to new Xbox Backwards Compatibility games, 37 existing games in the Xbox's library will getting a FPS Boost. Titles such as Kameo: Elements of Power, NIER, Alan Wake, the entire Gears of War series, Fallout 3, Fallout: New Vegas, F.E.A.R. 1 and 2, and much more can now be played at higher framerate for a smoother gameplay experience.

Lastly, a six-part documentary titled Power On: The Story of Xbox will be debut on Dec. 13, 2021 and it will premiere on Youtube, IMDb TV, Redbox, Roku, and more. This documentary will chronicle the development history of the Xbox brand from the initial conception of the original Xbox all the way up to the modern Xbox Series X.

Microsoft have certainly pulled out all the stops this year to honor the Xbox's legacy. With the growing success of Xbox Game Pass and releasing critically-acclaimed titles like Psychonauts 2, Microsoft Flight Simulator, and Forza Horizon 5, Microsoft is not planning on stopping anytime soon.

Alexander Cope

Alexander Cope is a gaming veteran of 30-plus years, primarily covering PC and Xbox games here on Windows Central. Gaming since the 8-bit era, Alexander's expertise revolves around gaming guides and news, with a particular focus on Japanese titles from the likes of Elden Ring to Final Fantasy. Alexander is always on deck to help our readers conquer the industry's most difficult games — when he can pry himself away from Monster Hunter that is!