It has appeared that Microsoft was expanding to release its games on other platforms with Ori and the Blind Forest and Cuphead on the Nintendo Switch, and Gears 5 coming out for Steam. Microsoft’s general manager of games marketing Aaron Greenberg has been recently clarifying Microsoft’s stance on this.
Greenberg said that going forward Microsoft’s internal development studios will focus on making games for their own platforms; Xbox One, Microsoft Store on Windows 10, and the Xbox Scarlett when it finally comes out.
“Going forward, all of our internal studios, and the new studios we’ve added, will be focused on making games for our platforms and we have no plans to expand our exclusive first-party games to any other consoles,” said Greenberg.
“People should recognise how excited we are with our internal development studios more than doubling. Those teams, going forward, will be focused on making games for our platforms. So, while we know there’s existing commitments in place, take The Outer Worlds as an example, there was already a commitment to make that game available as a multiplatform title and we’ll continue to honour that.”
Studios that Microsoft have bought will have outstanding projects on the table, once they’re done, those studios will follow the same trend.
“Thinking about the next game from Obsidian, InXile or Ninja Theory, all those studios, just like our existing internal studios, whether it’s 343 or Turn 10, they’re going to be focused on making those games for our platforms,” added Greenberg. “So we have no plans to expand any of those exclusive first-party titles to any other consoles.”
“Ori is built by Moon Studios, which is an independent, external studio. They came to us with a desire to bring the original Ori to the Switch. We thought that made sense, and we’re happy to work with them to enable them to bring that to Switch,” said Greenberg when asked about Ori and the Blind Forest release on the Switch.
Greenberg was also asked about the release of Gears 5 on Steam, he stated; “We know there’s a big PC audience out there which may not own an Xbox and they want to be able to play some of our big IPs. And bringing Gears 5 to that audience makes a lot of sense.”
“Steam reaches PC gamers in a lot of markets that are traditionally not as console heavy. [Steam] has relationships with those customers there. It’s a very engaged PC audience and so to be able to bring a title like Gears 5 at launch to PC players in Eastern Europe, Germany, Russia and China, in these big PC markets, is a great way to reach a broader audience.”
“We’ve always focused on putting the gamer at the centre of everything we’re doing,” he added. “When we think about growing the amount of people playing our games, we want to do it in a way where we support crossplay, cross progression, with people playing on the console and the PC together. So, the community of people you’re going to play with isn’t determined by where you actually bought the game.