clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Microsoft: PC gaming is very important to Windows 10 and the company's success

New, 63 comments

The biggest obstacle Windows 10 faces as a gaming platform is Microsoft's spotty history.

Gamers, especially longtime PC gamers, know what it's like to have Microsoft promise big on PC gaming then simply never deliver, or stop trying.

The history of Windows operating system roll-outs is a trail of disappointment for PC gaming and Phil Spencer, head of Xbox, says he knows that.

When a reporter asks if there is room for both Windows 10 gaming and Xbox One gaming at Microsoft, and says that to PC gamers "it looks like it's more important for Microsoft to push Xbox than PC gaming," Spencer says that's a "fair perception."

"I will tell you, for the company, if we just want to get to the company level, the success of Windows 10 is critically important to this company," Spencer continued. "And gaming will be a very important part of success for Windows 10.

"I love the Xbox business that we run. I love the console. But if you just look at the scale inside of Microsoft, of [the] Xbox One console [compared to] Windows, I don't think that anybody would be fooled to think that the console somehow outweighs what we do there."

Spencer said that as a gamer, he wants to be the one in charge of where he plays the games he likes.

When he's at work, he games on his PC, sometimes at home he plays on a console sitting in front of a big plasma TV.

"I kind of don't love, today, that I play completely different games — like, the same games aren't available to me wherever I want to go," he said. "Yes, there's input differences and other things we'd have to work through. I think this idea of 'a game has to only live on a certain piece of hardware, and you can never reach out anywhere else,' that somehow that's good for the gaming ecosystem, I'm not really so sure. "

"The success of Windows 10 is critically important to this company and gaming will be a very important part of success for Windows 10."

So Spencer says he sees Windows 10 as an opportunity to make gaming on PC and console "kind of symbiotic with one another."

There is a huge opportunity, he says, in trying to grow the number of people who are connected and the amount of content that's available on both platforms.

"I don't feel like there's some kind of financial motivation for me to keep things off of PC," he said. "At the Microsoft level, clearly that's not true. And in the Xbox side, I want Xbox gamers to be proud that Windows is a Microsoft product and Xbox is a Microsoft product. So I think we'll be able to thread the needle and do both."

Of course, even now that's not happening.

Just this past summer, Microsoft announced that Rise of the Tomb Raider would be an "Xbox exclusive," seemingly cutting out, at least initially, not just other consoles but Windows.

When asked about the deal, Spencer didn't have a good answer.

"Yeah, I mean, Tomb Raider's not my game, so that was kind of &mdash it's a deal, and you kind of go in on 'Here's what deal's available' and you're going to sign the deal or not sign the deal," he said. "I don't control it."

Spencer instead talked about the possibilities found in games like Forza and Fable.

"I want to make all of those better. And I want to make the fact that I'm an Xbox customer mean that I can move between the content and my friend's list fairly seamlessly, whether I'm on Windows or I'm on an Xbox One."