Xbox boss Phil Spencer spoke about Microsoft’s future with regard to the future of exclusives on Xbox at the ChinaJoy event this week. Dualshockers translated an interview he had with Gamecore, where Spencer told fans to expect less third-party deals and more first party exclusives in Microsoft’s future.
Among the games making into the Xbox line up of third-party exclusives this year is Rise of the Tomb Raider, which comes to the Xbox One and Xbox 360 in November, but not to PC or PS4 until 2016. Spencer described having Rise of the Tomb Raider as a part of Microsoft’s lineup as ‘great’, however he remains adamant that it is in their best interest to focus on their first-party content – we’ll know more about what’s to come at Microsoft’s Gamescom conference next week.
‘My strategy is more around our own first-party franchises, and investing in franchises that we own, and probably fewer exclusive deals for third-party content,’ he said. ‘I want to have strong third-party relations, but paying for many third-party exclusives isn’t our long-term strategy.’
Microsoft will be shipping Halo 5: Guardians, Gears of War, Forza 6 and Fable, as some of the larger titles in their exclusive lineup. Spencer went on to say that they can ‘only do that and build that best lineup we’ve ever seen really on the back of franchises that we own.’ The man does have a point, because for the amount of players that Tomb Raider will attract, Microsoft have still got to stick with what they know works; supporting their already successful franchises like Halo.
What is interesting to note is that this is the exact opposite to the strategy that Sony’s executive Andrew House came out with at E3. House maintains that third-party content deals (seen in Sony’s move on Destiny, Street Fighter V and Call of Duty: Black Ops III) are ‘integral’ to the company’s plan for the future. Now we see Spencer completely throw Microsoft’s ball in the other direction, with emphasis on their first-party games… I guess we’ll see who’s business plan works out best; for the moment, PS4s are still majorly outselling the Xbox One.
Kill count 1, for Sony?