We’ve talked a lot about our “player-first” approach to gaming over the past few years. In the past, this may have meant different meanings to different people, especially those who identified themselves strongly as a console player, PC player, or mobile gamer. If you were to walk through the (virtual) halls of Xbox today, you would find that the idea of “gamer” to us means someone who plays many types of games on many different devices. PC games are part of that; “Player first” must also apply for the PC. To that end, we’ve invested across the entire PC gaming ecosystem to ensure that the PC is an integral part of the way people can play games.
Building communities around games, not devices
A big part of our role as platform owners and game makers is connecting players to games no matter where they play. For the past 18 months we’ve launched PC-like games Age of Empires II and III DE, Gear Tactics, Badlands 3, Minecraft Dungeons, and Microsoft Flight Simulator, many of which topped the Steam charts at launch. We look forward to adding more PC content, including Age of Empires IV, later that year. Whether it’s new genres for established franchises, the next iteration of a classic favorite, or building a well-known PC brand, we create games that PC gamers love to play.
We know many of you not only play on your PC, but also on Xbox and mobile devices. Therefore we are happy to inform you Halo Infinite will support multiplayer cross-play and cross-progression when released later this year. That said, if you’re playing on a PC, you can be with your friends on Xbox One and Xbox Series X | S play. It also means that your multiplayer customization and progress will follow you on all platforms.
We worked closely with the PC community to make sure of this Halo Infinite delivers a premium PC experience, including coveted features such as ultrawide and super ultrawide monitor support, triple keyboard shortcuts, a variety of advanced graphics options, and much more. We want to make sure Halo serves the PC community.
We’re also using the cloud to bring console games to even more PCs. While Xbox Cloud Gaming is not intended to be a replacement for native PC gaming, it does allow Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members to play over 100 console games on a variety of computers, from entry-level computers with lower specs to older devices that otherwise don’t Games that could handle that requires more power.
Create experiences tailored for PC gamers
We believe it is important that players have a choice of where to buy games and we want to make content even easier to access. We know the PC community uses multiple storefronts, which is why we brought along too Sea of thieves, Halo: The Master Chief Collection, Microsoft Flight Simulator, Age of Empires I, II and III: Definitive Edition, and Forza Horizon 4 to dampen.
There are also millions of people who choose to use their Xbox Game Pass membership to play. We started Halo: The Master Chief Collection On PC in late 2019 as part of Xbox Game Pass for PC; Since then, over 10 million players have played it, the vast majority of whom are brand new to the franchise. We’re encouraged by the community’s response and we’re continuing to bring more games to the Xbox Game Pass for PC library from publishers and developers across the industry. We’re only four months into 2021 and we’ve already added 100 titles, including award-winning Bethesda games and brand new PC games. We partnered with Electronic Arts to make EA Play a part of Xbox Game Pass for PC and Ultimate memberships at no additional cost. More than 50 leading device partners, including Acer, ASUS, Lenovo, MSI, and Razer, offer Xbox Game Pass for PC with qualifying devices and provide access to the library for gamers around the world.
We are regularly working on features and functions that improve and / or enable a more personalized experience such as the Xbox Game Bar. We’re also bringing more quality of life improvements to PC gamers, including improved installation reliability and faster download speeds over the next several months. We look forward to sharing more details on this soon.
Helping developers deliver exceptional experiences
Game developers are at the heart of delivering great games to our players and we want them to succeed on our platforms. That’s why we’re announcing today that we’re updating our Microsoft Store Terms for PC Game Developers. As part of our commitment to empower every PC game developer to achieve more, starting August 1, the developer’s share of Microsoft Store PC game sales will increase from 70% to 88%. A clear, no-obligation revenue share means that developers can make more games available to more players and thereby achieve greater commercial success. Read more about this new revenue sharing and our collaboration with developers from CVP, Head of Game Creator Experience and Ecosystem Sarah Bond.
We enable developers to choose how they want to deliver their work based on their creative vision. Developing for the PC was a priority for Microsoft Flight Simulator Last year using Azure AI, machine learning, Azure Cognitive Services, and Bing Maps to bring the entire planet to life. . We look forward to the publication too Age of Empires IV This fall modernizes the legendary RTS franchise for new and returning players with the first brand new title in the last 10 years. We’re building on our PC gaming history and adding inXile Entertainment, Obsidian, and Bethesda to our development teams. In doing so, we bring their world-class talent and heritage to the Xbox team.
We pride ourselves on providing all developers with the platform and services they need to realize their vision and deliver exceptional PC experiences. We introduced DirectX 12 Ultimate for both the Xbox Series X | S as well as for the PC; coupled with the newly announced DirectX 12 Agility SDKThis enables incredible graphics experiences like ray tracing for an even larger number of PC gamers. We’re bringing the work we did on Xbox with our Auto HDR technology to PC gamers is currently being tested
The future of PC gaming is better than ever
We know we still have a lot to do, but based on the response from both PC gamers and PC game developers, we believe that with the investments we have made, we are heading in the right direction for this community. We have never been in a better position to be an organization for PC gamers. Xbox Game Studios and Bethesda developed content for PC and Xbox. The Windows and DirectX teams developed technologies that empower developers and provide PC gamers with features specifically designed to take advantage of PC hardware, Xbox Game Pass for PC with games for all types of PC gamers with Xbox Game Studio- Day 1 play, plus the continued development of the Xbox app and Xbox Game Bar. We’ll continue to listen to the community to make sure we keep our promises and respect the way players play. This is especially true in the second half of 2021, when our work across the PC ecosystem has the potential to come together in a way that will propel the industry forward and bring great games to more players around the world.