'Red Dead Redemption' Hits Xbox One Backwards Compatibility Friday, Currently On Sale

Scott Grill

Xbox One owners got a brief test of Red Dead Redemption as a backwards compatible title, but now it is officially on its way. Microsoft announced Tuesday that Rockstar Game's open-world western action adventure game is coming to Xbox One backwards compatibility this week. At the same time, it is on sale for less than $10.

Larry "Major Nelson" Hyrb, Xbox LIVE's Director of Programming, and Rockstar Games both announced Red Dead Redemption will be added to Xbox One's backwards compatibility program later on Friday, July 8. This comes after the game was accidentally made available to download in February of this year.

Microsoft eventually pulled the availability of Red Dead Redemption and disabled the games for those who downloaded them. It was all due to an error in how Microsoft was testing the titles prior to officially adding them to the backwards compatibility list.

"Microsoft tests all Xbox 360 games with our emulator to ensure a quality experience across a breadth of titles," Hyrb wrote on Reddit at the time. "Due to an error, some of the games currently in test were accidentally made available. We have since removed access to those games, and apologize for any confusion this may have caused."

The good news is Red Dead Redemption performance held up well even as an early release. YouTube channel VG Tech executed an early frame rate comparison test that showed only minor frame rate dips at the time. The town sections would occasionally drop the frame rate down to 25-28 fps, but it performed well overall. It will be interesting to see if things improve with the official release.

Xbox One manages backwards compatibility by emulating the entire Xbox 360 operating system, as previously reported on by the Inquistir. This allows Xbox 360 games to run on the Xbox One without any special coding or other workarounds. The major hurdles remaining are the licensing agreements with development studios and publishers to allow the games to be played on the Xbox One and listed for sale on the Xbox Store for the console.

Following that, testing to make sure the game runs correctly on the Xbox One appears to be a time-consuming task. Microsoft has to test each game from beginning to end to ensure the emulator runs the title correctly. This can take hundreds of hours depending on the title.

Xbox 360 backwards compatible titles can be purchased through the Xbox Marketplace website or through the Xbox Store on the Xbox One console. Note that the purchasing Xbox 360 games on the Xbox One is not the same as purchasing Xbox One titles.

What do you think of Red Dead Redemption finally coming to Xbox One backwards compatibility? Sound off in the comments below.

[Image via Rockstar Games]