Microsoft brought out a different move into the video game industry recently. Rather than deal with just strictly new console hardware and exclusives for that platform, we’re getting an ecosystem. Xbox is no longer just about the consoles, thanks to cloud gaming. With Xbox Game Pass, players have access to a lot more video games readily available, and you can even enjoy those games on your smartphones to PC web browsers.
Recently, Mckinsey had a chance to speak with Microsoft’s Gaming Ecosystem Organization head, Sarah Bond. It was questioned how Microsoft views themselves within this gaming ecosystem during the conversation. According to Sarah Bond, Microsoft has a strong viewpoint that anyone should be able to play any game they want. Through their cloud gaming services and Xbox Game Pass, Microsoft is hoping to achieve that goal.
“Our vision for the gaming industry is that anyone should be able to play any game, anywhere they want. That’s not how the industry works today. [Right now] the industry is split up by platform. It’s split up by type of game. It’s not actually possible to play seamlessly across devices.”Sarah Bond – Mckinsey
Still, there is quite a bit of work to be done before making their goal a reality. Fortunately, the team at Microsoft is crafting up the necessary tools to allow developers access to even more players. For instance, there are tools that allow cross-network multiplayer. Likewise these tools can enable cross-save, and their cloud API can allow gaming to be streamed. Of course, things get broken up even more depending on the device. You have UI and local conditions, but this looks to be how Microsoft is viewing the future.
While Microsoft is pursuing a future where gaming is seamlessly streamed or digitally available, it might be bad news for physical media. It wasn’t long ago that we saw Microsoft move towards a digital future with the announcement of the Xbox One. Unfortunately, that didn’t turn out so well, and now it looks like there’s a gradual pace to going back to the concept of all digital. Fortunately, fans are taking up with the Xbox Game Pass service, and it’s clear that Microsoft wants developers to use their tools. Of course, now it’s a waiting game to see just how Xbox Game Pass and cloud gaming evolves throughout this latest platform generation.