The next generation of Xbox hardware is out, but one of its big features is about its previous gen library. In a new console update, Microsoft is making it clearer which games are getting Auto HDR and other boons on the Xbox Series X and S.
Detailed in a blog post today, Xbox is identifying which games can use Auto HDR with a new set of tags. When the option is turned on, the console will now note that Auto HDR is running when you open the guide while playing. Basically, if you notice a visual bump and you're curious, just hit the guide button.
Also included in this month's update are badges that let you know which games are "optimized" for Xbox Series X and S, and an achievement status tracker in the Game Activity tab. For Game Pass owners, there's a really cool addition too: you can pre-install select upcoming Game Pass games. If you're overeager for next month's crop of Game Pass titles, you can now download them and stare at the icon as it stares back, taunting you with the crawling passage of time.
The notifications are nice because, as you might imagine, some folks are getting confused about what version of a game they're playing. The lines between this new generation of consoles and the last have been a little muddy, resulting in some players booting up last-gen versions of games on their new consoles by mistake.
In Xbox's case, it's just nice to be reminded that Auto HDR is on and working, and supporting that beautiful sheen over the waves of the seas of Subnautica. Part of the fun now might even be going back and finding which games do support it. It might be strange to say that playing old games is part of the excitement of a new console, but the first game I played on my new computer this year was a remaster of a decades-old RTS.
If you're still on the fence, be sure to check out our review of Microsoft's Xbox Series X console, and what it's doing to soup up old games.