Gaming Allows “a Diversity of Business Models”
Microsoft has been piling on support for all of their online network, most especially their Xbox Game Pass service. With their library of over 100 games available for one affordable monthly subscription, Game Pass is practically a system seller in its own right. The company’s dedication to games as a service has convinced the industry that they’re taking incremental leaps toward becoming the “Netflix of gaming.” According to Microsoft, however, the nature of the industry wouldn’t allow that.
Speaking with Gamesindustry.biz, Microsoft’s head of gaming services Ben Decker and Game Pass head of planning Matt Percy spoke on the fundamental purpose Game Pass. Realistically, the service cannot replace the traditional commercial model for games. There will always be developers who make their games and publishers who sell them at a retail price. Microsoft’s simple but groundbreaking goal is to include their own AAA titles as part of the service.
“When we launched it, we thought an ever-increasing number of titles might be something that was really important to gamers,” Decker said. “But as it turns out, that’s not really what they’re asking for. What we get from our customers isn’t, ‘I want a subscription that has thousands and thousands of games.’ What we heard from them is, ‘I want a subscription with 100, or a little more than 100, games. But I want them to be really good games. And I want a curated portfolio where I know what’s in there is going to be really great to play.’
“We don’t have a goal of being the subscription where you get all your content. This is meant to be additive to the ecosystem. We don’t see a future where subscriptions are dominant. We see a future where customers have choice between a subscription and purchase-to-own, where there’s a mixed ecosystem because that’s what customers want, and that’s what developers want.”
According to Decker, the purpose of Game Pass is to supplement industry models, to offer the player more alternatives. Microsoft has no agenda that involves flipping the economy of purchasing games. You can say their focus involves the delivery of quality titles, giving players access to franchises they wouldn’t otherwise play, and building up the Xbox Live ecosystem.
In news related to Xbox Game Pass, Microsoft recently announced an updated Master Chief Collection for the service. But before you get to gunning down classic covenant waves, let us know your thoughts on Decker’s comments by commenting down below. Where do you think the Game Pass model will eventually lead?
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Microsoft: Xbox Game Pass Isn’t a Replacement for Traditional Gaming