Microsoft is still 'extremely committed' to Xbox, Games for Gold will be improved

In the face of persistent rumors that Microsoft could sell or spin off its Xbox division, one of the company's gaming executives stated this past weekend that its new leadership is "extremely committed" to the brand.

Polygon reports that, in a panel during the South By Southwest festival in Austin on Sunday, Microsoft Studios leader Phil Spencer gave no indication that new CEO Satya Nadella or Stephen Elop, who will soon be leading the hardware division, will be reducing efforts on Xbox projects. Spencer stated that the Xbox brand is one of the "most beloved" that Microsoft has. He added:

In terms of Microsoft's commitment in the space, I know both Satya and Stephen Elop, I know them well. I've had explicit conversations with them about Microsoft's commitment to Xbox — they're extremely committed to Xbox.

In another part of the panel, Spencer hinted at some improvements that will be coming to the Games for Gold program, which offers at least two free games every month to Xbox 360 owners with a paid Xbox Live Gold membership. Some fans have complained that the games that are offered are much older titles.

Spencer said that he has been meeting monthly with the team in charge of the program and has become more involved in picking the games that will be included each month. Spencer said that in the future, "I think you'll see at least something that feels, at least, more true to what I think Games with Gold should look like with the constraints that are there."

Source: Polygon | Xbox store image via Shutterstock

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I'm starting to feel the same way. The gaming industry has gone to crap with how they want to do business nowadays, and most games they put out put me to sleep faster than Ambien.

I too, don't get it. Take Forza Motorsports V (http://forzamotorsport.net/en-us/) I always paid for games, so that's the same. I can drive as fast as I can, when ever I want, so that's the same. I never do but I could trade it, sell it or give it to my brother to play on his XO. It is all the same to me and I love the excitement and challenge, that the same too. It's OK if I like it right?

Jarrichvdv said,

I'll never understand the 'reasoning' behind these comments. You buy a game, you basically do whatever you want with the game. Yet you act like you lost your 'freedom'.

No dedicated servers, little support for user created content. Content held back to be released as paid DLC at a later date.

I remember when I played UT 2004 on the PC, the amount of user created content for that was impressive. Now if you want some new maps for a game you have to buy the season pass which ends up costing more than the game its self did.

InsaneNutter said,

No dedicated servers, little support for user created content. Content held back to be released as paid DLC at a later date.

I remember when I played UT 2004 on the PC, the amount of user created content for that was impressive. Now if you want some new maps for a game you have to buy the season pass which ends up costing more than the game its self did.


i agree with this and remember these times,fondly, ut2003/2004 had hundreds of quality maps available, the gameplay was amazing and the community spirit involved was top. It got me into map design and while i only made a few maps it was very rewarding to see others playing a game on something you made.

the dev tolls were free.
the server code was free.
no one can 'turn the game off'

from a game publisher point of view its a horrendous model, as they cant charge for anything past the first sale, but from a user perspective its freedom!

those days are sadly gone.

off course. they are finally making money. all the calls to sell it neglect the fact companies like google kept youtube losing money until it didn't. They didn't turn around and sell it once it did.

neonspark said,
off course. they are finally making money. all the calls to sell it neglect the fact companies like google kept youtube losing money until it didn't. They didn't turn around and sell it once it did.

Microsoft has yet o profit from the Xbox division.

Deihmos said,

Microsoft has yet o profit from the Xbox division.

They have been profiting from the Xbox division for years. Sadly, they haven't been profiting from the Devices and Entertainment division as a whole. Too many other products and services bringing that division down.

Deihmos said,
From the beginning to date the division hasn't profited.

Saying it twice doesn't make it less wrong.
formerly (Entertainment divison) have been operating in the black for a few years now.
Add on top the sale of Mediaroom to ericsson and they're doing ok.

Do you get the shareholder financial statements?

I think Microsoft made some really bad moves this time. The Xbox one should have been just as powerful as the ps4 and they could have skipped useless features like connecting to a cable box. How many players will use such a feature? Kinect should have also been optional making the console cheaper.

Deihmos said,
I think Microsoft made some really bad moves this time. The Xbox one should have been just as powerful as the ps4 and they could have skipped useless features like connecting to a cable box. How many players will use such a feature? Kinect should have also been optional making the console cheaper.

Everyone I know connects their cable box to their Xbox One.

Edited by Andrew, Mar 11 2014, 9:07pm :

I hadn't heard that before? Anyway, my family has enjoying games, & video on the Xbox One sense Nov 22. The games look and play great, voice control is very handy, and every day when it logs me in via facial recognition I'm amazed.

Kvally said,

Everyone I know connects their cable box to their Xbox One.

Exactly. It's a really nice feature.

As for the asinine criticizm regarding the inclusion of the Kinect that just won't die, it should be more than obvious to everyone that this was to drive the experience forward. Accessaries do not have a great adoption record, which results in developers not committing to them and developing new uses for them. In this case, everyone has a Kinect, so developers going forward can dedicate real time and resources to using the Kinect Accessory. Whereas, who's going to be making use of the Playstation Eye?

Edited by Andrew, Mar 11 2014, 9:18pm :

JonathanMarston said,
I use the connection to my cable box daily. It's very handy.

Yup same here. It's one of the features that really sold it to me over the PS4. Being able to manage everything from within the XB1 environment is beautiful!

Deihmos said,
I am sure the stats on connecting to a cable box will be low. Especially since most people use a DVR.

It's my DVR that's connected. Next.

When I tried it I found it to not work well especially since I use WMC as my cable box. There is no way I am paying the cable company ridiculous fees to rent a box.

It seems to be a waste of electricity to have the xbox and cable box or HTPC on at the same time. A better solution would have been to make use of network tuners thus eliminating the need for a cable box.

Deihmos said,
I am sure the stats on connecting to a cable box will be low. Especially since most people use a DVR.

Uh no. I have a DVR connected to each of my Xbox One's.

Deihmos said,
.... WMC ...
cable company ridiculous fees to rent a box .....

Here is your problem.

You're already deprecated.
You need to move into the new model where it doesn't matter if you're IPTV / QAM / Docsis, your provider's device does the heavy lifting.

Since Microsoft are not planning any further development of WMC (expect it to be absent from Win9) due mainly in part to getting slammed by the competing factions, you either move forward or get left behind.

As a WMC lover myself, it's hard to let go. I use WMC via 360 extender more often than I use Xbox ONE video passthru, but when I do, it's on a DVR.

Looks like that pic was taken at a Futureshop in Canada (judging from the price stickers). Look at all those Xbox One's sitting on the shelves! Can't find PS4s anywhere here.

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