Liveblog: Xbox Head Phil Spencer Talks About The Future Of Gaming On Windows And Xbox

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Phil Spencer

Xbox head Phil Spencer is at GDC today to give a talk on the future of gaming and game development on the Windows and Xbox platforms.

It’s an interesting time for Microsoft’s gaming division. Windows 10 will bring unprecedented integration with the Xbox platform, letting you stream games running on Xbox One hardware to any PC. Meanwhile. the Xbox One is currently in second place in the current generation of consoles, though slashed prices seemed to boost demand toward the end of 2014. And with HoloLens on the way, Microsoft might become an early power-player in the VR/AR gaming ecosystem.

We’re here at the talk, and will update this post as Spencer provides interesting tidbits.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:52 am

Hopefully the DirectX 12 panel later today will have more new information.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:50 am

Windows Store still seems like the weak link here — the selection is nowhere close to comparable to Valve’s Steam store on the PC.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:49 am

This has mostly been a recap of things Microsoft has discussed before. They want to make it easier to make games for both (though engines like Unity and Unreal are kind of doing most of the work for them), and they’re looking to assure indie developers that Xbox likes them just as much as PlayStation does.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:48 am

I don’t know that people actually move between systems like that, but maybe Microsoft thinks that having the option will encourage new behavior.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:46 am

Your Gigantic win/loss records and purchases will automatically show up in the Windows and Xbox versions as you move between them.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:44 am

Microsoft has indie studio Motiga on stage to show off Gigantic, a MOBA that plays like a third-person action game.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:40 am

Oh hey, Microsoft is going to release an adapter to use the Xbox One controller wirelessly with your PC.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:40 am

Indie games ended up filling in the early PlayStation 4/Vita libraries, so it’s not a surprise to see Microsoft court developers who aren’t making tentpole games.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:39 am

Now we’re talking about ID@Xbox, Microsoft’s effort to get indie developers to make Xbox One games

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:36 am

With a shared controller design (if you can get PC gamers to use them) and the continuous social experience, cross-platform development between Windows 10 and Xbox seems to make a lot of sense for developers.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:34 am

As expected, Spencer says the Microsoft games team sees HoloLens as a full Windows 10 PC, but we won’t here more about game development on it until the BUILD conference.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:33 am

Now we’re watching a demo of cross-platform play between a Surface running Windows 10 and an Xbox One.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:32 am

We got to see a bit of footage of Unreal Tournament running on DirectX 12.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:31 am

Spencer says the upcoming DirectX 12 graphics API is improving CPU performance by as much as 50% and GPU performance by 20% in testing with partners.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:24 am

There’s a new Xbox Live SDK available today for Windows game developers to start integrating Xbox social features into their games.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:23 am

Cross-buy has been a thing for PlayStation gamers for quite some time, but there are far more Windows PCs out there than PlayStation Vitas.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:22 am

Gamers will be able to buy a title on a Windows 10 device and play on their Xbox without two purchases.

Kyle Russell March 4, 201511:21 am

Spencer is talking about the Windows Store.