Xbox boss Phil Spencer takes some time out of his busy schedule to address fan concerns over the direction Microsoft’s video game department is heading in.
Things may have been looking a little bleak for Microsoft’s video game presence heading into E3 2016 after years of market dominance exhibited by Sony in the console department, but business picked up in a big way after the week long exhibition wrapped up. Microsoft had what was arguably the most surprising E3 2016 presentation, featuring a games lineup that looked stronger than anything the company had offered in recent years and two different console reveals in the same show.
It might surprise gamers, then, to learn that earlier this week, a research group accused Microsoft’s gaming business as being the “ugly step-child” of the tech giant’s revenue plan. The report also suggested that it wasn’t a question of “if”, but rather “when and how” Microsoft would quit the gaming business altogether. Luckily, Phil Spencer isn’t one to shy away from criticism, and he addressed the claims directly on Twitter:
@Nahkapukki Yes, announcing 2 consoles, to me, would be a strange lead in to that.— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) June 22, 2016
This isn’t the first time that Phil Spencer has had to defend Microsoft’s intentions in the gaming industry, but this time, the accusations seem out of place. Whereas previous reports followed disappointing sales figures in 2013 and 2014, the newest report comes after a Xbox One conference that seemed to clearly indicate Microsoft’s commitment to video games for the foreseeable future. After all, as Phil said on Twitter, it would be odd to announce two new consoles in preparation of calling it quits on a video game industry that is so profitable for some.
That being said, however, the reports surfacing about Microsoft this time around do make a few valid points, mostly regarding how Microsoft may have hurt itself quite badly by revealing the Xbox One S and then announcing the much more powerful Project Scorpio just an hour later. The common response from gamers thus far has been to question the point of buying an upgraded system soon when they know another, more powerful one is just a year away, and if that is the mindset most Xbox players have adopted, it isn’t unreasonable to suggest the Xbox One S could be a huge flop.
Regardless of the success of the Xbox One S or the curious timing of the Project Scorpio announcement, though, Phil Spencer’s claims that Microsoft is still deeply invested in its video game services doesn’t seem like it needs much more support than the existence of two new consoles to back them up. Whatever the future may hold for gaming, fans can fully expect Microsoft will be involved in some capacity for a while yet.
What do you think about the reports suggesting Microsoft is considering leaving the video game industry? Have there been enough reports regarding Microsoft and gaming that you just tune them out now, or do you still pay close attention? Let us know in the comments below.