The head execs at Microsoft have some lofty plans for the wider gaming world if several statements are anything to go by. The company held a pre-brief ahead of this year’s E3 showcase featuring a number of gaming executives, all of whom talked up big strategies to expand Microsoft’s reach into the gaming market – one that includes exclusives like Starfield.
First, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella stated Microsoft’s push to go “all-in on gaming” with the goal of “[playing] a leading role in democratizing gaming and defining that future of interactive entertainment, quite frankly, at scale.” The plan is effectively threefold: lead the way in cloud gaming, build Xbox Game Pass value, and focus on empowering creators.
On the first point, corporate VP of gaming experiences Liz Hamren talked about plans to bring Microsoft’s xCloud and Game Pass services to more countries and more devices, including development of its own streaming device; introducing games streaming to Edge, Chrome and Safari browsers in the next few weeks; expanding the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate service to Australia, Brazil, Mexico, and Japan later this year; and expanding Game Pass subscription offerings to provide different services for different countries and budgets.
This outward growth of Microsoft’s game services was further echoed by Microsoft CFO Tim Stuart, who stated that the company “[needs] to expand [its] audience beyond console to new demographics and geographies [the company hasn’t] reached before and provide meaningful value for that audience to choose to spend their money with us.” Additionally, work is being done to include more accessibility options, accessibility guidelines for developers, and partnerships with underrepresented communities and groups among other things.
Finally, Xbox Game Studios head Matt Booty acknowledges that Microsoft has not been releasing many first-party games, but that’s about to change. “We want to get to a point of releasing a new game every quarter,” says Booty. “We know that a thriving entertainment service needs a consistent and exciting flow of new content so our portfolio will continue to grow as our service grows.”
For those who would rather not blip through all of the source links for all of the granular details, Xbox Wire has effectively summed up the company’s goals as well as shared a variety of stats about Game Pass, which should all be interesting to the armchair industry analyst.