What is Xbox Play Anywhere?

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This week, futuristic action-adventure game ReCore was the first Xbox Play Anywhere title to launch on both the Xbox One and Windows 10. For those unfamiliar, Xbox Play Anywhere is a new initiative supported by Microsoft Studios which lets you buy a digital game once and play it for free on both your Xbox One and Windows 10 PC (with no additional charge). Microsoft is just getting started with the program, and the Xbox team published yesterday a new blog post to explain all the details. Stay with us as we’ll try to make it all clear for you.

What do you need to purchase an Xbox Play Anywhere title?

Xbox Play Anywhere is only supported on Windows 10 PCs and Xbox One consoles running the Anniversary Update. On the Xbox One, the update rolled out to everyone in late July, a few days before the release of the update for Windows 10 PCs on August 2. However, be aware that the update is still gradually rolling out to Windows 10 PCs as we previously reported this week that the process could take up to three months. If you have yet to receive the update on your PC via Windows Update, you can install it manually by downloading the ISO file from this support page.

Where can you purchase an Xbox Play Anywhere title?

Xbox Play Anywhere is only available for digital games, and you can purchase eligible games from the following store destinations:

  • The Xbox Store on Your Xbox One console
  • The Xbox App on Windows 10, iOS and Android devices
  • The Windows Store on Windows 10 devices
  • The Xbox.com and Microsoft.com websites
  • Digital Game Codes from participating retailers

Be aware that you will need to purchase Xbox Play Anywhere games with the same Microsoft account that you use on both your Windows 10 PC and Xbox One to enjoy the cross-play feature.

How do Xbox Play Anywhere Games work?

Xbox Play Anywhere titles just work like any other games. Once you have installed an Xbox Play Anywhere title on both your Windows 10 PC and Xbox One, you can start playing on one platform and continue your gaming session on the other. Even better, your game progress, achievements and DLCs will all be saved on Xbox Live. There is one limitation though: it’s not possible to play Xbox Play Anywhere games on both platforms at the same time.

What are the other upcoming Xbox Play Anywhere titles?

Following the release the Recore earlier this week, the next Xbox Play Anywhere titles to be released in the coming weeks are Forza Horizon 3 (coming on September 23) and Gears of War 4 (available on October 11). As of today, only 12 Xbox Play Anywhere titles have been announced by Microsoft Studios including Halo Wars 2, Sea of Thieves, Scalebound and more. We invite you to check the dedicated website to see the full list.

Overall, Xbox Play Anywhere seems like an interesting way to bring PC and console gamers closer together. While the program doesn’t mean the end of Xbox exclusive titles, the initiative will benefit everyone including PC gamers who don’t have an Xbox One. It’s also great to see that more AAA games are coming to the Windows Store, though Microsoft may still have some work to do to convince hardcore Steam users that its Store and UWP platform delivers a no-compromises experience. Sound off in the comments if you think Microsoft’s Xbox Play Anywhere initiative is a good thing for gamers and developers.

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