Future Microsoft games could come to increasing numbers of PC storefronts. In a statement given to PCGamesN, the company’s executive vice president of gaming, Phil Spencer, said that while more and more games will be heading to Steam, the option to buy games on other marketplaces might appear in future.
Spencer says that Microsoft wants to “make our Xbox Games Studios PC games available in multiple stores, including our own Microsoft Store on Windows, at their launch. We believe you should have choice in where you buy your PC games.”
As a result, a flurry of Xbox titles will release on Steam in the near future, including Gears 5 and all three Age of Empires Definitive Editions. However, Spencer also says that while “millions of PC gamers trust Steam” as a place to buy their games, “we’ve heard the feedback that PC gamers would like choice. We also know that there are other stores on PC, and we are working to enable more choice in which store you can find our Xbox Game Studios titles in the future.”
While there are, of course, plenty of PC storefronts out there, I’m willing to bet that Spencer isn’t referring to Uplay or Origin. Going out on a limb, I’m also going to suggest that GoG isn’t going to prove a particularly good home for games like Gears 5. While not mentioned by name, the elephant in the room here is the Epic Games store.
Microsoft probably has little to gain from Epic exclusives, and I imagine that any new games would also be available via the Microsoft Store, at the very least. Spencer’s comments regarding Steam and player choice also suggest that exclusives aren’t a direction that Xbox is looking towards.
Spencer also revealed the existence of a dedicated PC version of the Xbox Game Pass. Dubbed the Xbox Games Pass for PC (imaginative, I know), the new service will feature more than 100 PC games from the likes of Bethesda, Sega, and Paradox. Details are relatively scarce for now, but we should know more after Microsoft’s E3 conference next month.