Microsoft confirms that the Play Anywhere program, which allows gamers to purchase one digital copy of a game to be played on both PC and Xbox One, will not require Xbox Live Gold.
Although Microsoft still showcased a number of games during its E3 2016 presentation, it’s fair to say that the company also made viewers aware of a large number of updates on the hardware side of things. Among these announcements was the reveal of the Xbox Play Anywhere scheme, which allows gamers to play specific games on both Xbox One and PC, providing that they have purchased a digital copy. Now, Microsoft has confirmed that users of this program will not need Xbox Live Gold in order to access it.
The news was revealed by a Microsoft representative during an interview held with GameSpot. “Xbox Live Gold isn’t required for playing games that are Xbox Play Anywhere other than enjoying online multiplayer with those games on Xbox One,” said the Microsoft representative.
It was also confirmed that Gold would not be required for some of the other features arriving through summer updates for the Xbox One. Both the background music and language region independence will be available for any Xbox One users, although given the lack of online gaming focus that was not in any doubt. Meanwhile, Arena – Xbox’s upcoming competitive gaming platform – was confirmed to need Gold to function, with the representative stating “Xbox Live Gold is needed for playing online multiplayer on Xbox One through Arenas on Xbox Live.”
Although details on exactly how Xbox Play Anywhere will work are expected to arrive at a later date, already Microsoft has announced a number of games that will be eligible for the program. Gears of War 4 multiplayer has been confirmed for crossplay and for cross-buy, while the remastered version of Phantom Dust is also set to include the feature when it launches in 2017.
This gaming flexibility was one of the key themes of Microsoft’s E3 2016 presentation. Indeed, some games have even made a big deal of this flexibility and lack of restriction at an individual level. As one example, Minecraft is going to receive crossplay through the launch of The Friendly Update. The creativity-focused title is hoping to make crossplay possible between mobile devices, PC, and Xbox One versions of the game, with the possible inclusion of other consoles going forward.
The cross-buy program, meanwhile, is undoubtedly going to be appreciated by gamers. Not only does it mean that users will only need to buy one copy of a game, but it also allows a greater level of control over exactly where and when the player can take control of the game. Hopefully, the system will prove to be a success when it is available for use.