Xbox has decided that there will be no exclusives and that Xbox Series X games will also be available on PC, Xbox One and xCloud.
People have been debating whether Xbox's policy to accommodate for older hardware is holding devs back from making more graphically intensive games. In an interview with gamesindustry.biz (opens in new tab), Microsoft's executive vice president of gaming and Xbox chief, Phil Spencer, said, "Frankly, held back is a meme that gets created by people who are too caught up in device competition."
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What Xbox thinks about exclusive games
"I just look at Windows. It's almost certain if the developer is building a Windows version of their game, then the most powerful and highest fidelity version is the PC version," Spencer added. "You can even see that with some of our first-party console games going to PC, even from our competitors, that the richest version is the PC version."
He continued, "The highest-fidelity PC games rival anything that anybody has ever seen in video games. So this idea that developers don't know how to build games, or game engines, or ecosystems, that work across a set of hardware... there's a proof point in PC that shows that's not the case."
I encourage you to read the entire interview, but Xbox is trying to be more inclusive in how it thinks about games. Xbox has been outsold by PlayStation at almost every turn in recent years, so pivoting to a strategy about the games rather than the console itself is a smart move.
Xbox Game Pass is incredibly successful and has become the backbone of Xbox's entire gaming infrastructure. Treating the Xbox family of consoles like PCs, so that you can buy a title and still have access to it on different hardware, is a dream for gamers, and yet Microsoft continues to face backlash. We'll see how gamers react to the company's choices this holiday season when both the PS5 and Xbox Series X are released.