Lately Phil Spencer spoke to The Guardian about the state of the Xbox and gaming in general. One of the things that we noticed is that Xbox is going to leverage Microsoft Azure cloud server to attract the smaller developers.
Azure Cloud is a service which is like Amazon’s AWS, it’s a cloud computing platform. Xbox hopes that smaller developer who don’t have the money in reach of the bigger developers can use this service to develop create and deploy games using it’s massive amount of servers. Xbox is also looking to become the Netflix of gaming also using that Azure cloud service.
The second that stood out to us was that he dismissed Zelda Breath of the Wild and Horizon Zero Dawn because they don’t have the same impact as a service based game would have. He’s referring to multiplayer games also games like Destiny, games that require large investments in the servers to run something that smaller developers can’t do.
Games that provide a constant stream of content updates, those are the service based games that he’s talking about. Something that Destiny does provide. Here’s the full statement:
The audience for those big story-driven games… I won’t say it isn’t as large, but they’re not as consistent,” says Spencer. “You’ll have things like Zelda or Horizon Zero Dawn that’ll come out, and they’ll do really well, but they don’t have the same impact that they used to have, because the big service-based games are capturing such a large amount of the audience. Sony’s first-party studios do a lot of these games, and they’re good at them, but outside of that, it’s difficult – they’re become more rare; it’s a difficult business decision for those teams, you’re fighting into more headwind
This comment by Phil Spencer just reeks of sour grapes. He is downplaying the fact that Xbox is losing out on exclusives. But this is the guy who went all-in with the Kinect. Xbox tried to copy the magic of the Wii and how it innovated with the motion controls, where’s the Kinect now? This is the same guy that wanted to go Xbox to go full digital.
Phil Spencer is betting on something else and he wants the Xbox to be the Netflix for games. He’s trying to mimic the success of Netflix which by the way is close to a 100 million subscribers.
Xbox has a new service called game pass, right now it’s about a 100 games from the Xbox One and the Xbox 360 library $10 a month. Hopefully Xbox Scorpio bring in a good first party exclusive with awesome graphics and fun gameplay.