At E3 this week, Microsoft’s Phil Spencer, Head of Xbox, announced that they’re bringing Original Xbox Backward Compatibility to Xbox One and Xbox One X. Additionally, not too long ago Microsoft launched their new Netflix-style game subscription service, Xbox Game Pass.
Now, Spencer has taken to an interview with PC Gamer to elaborate on a couple points regarding OG Backward Compatibility and Xbox Game Pass, particularly as to the future of them, and where if Microsoft is turning its focus to UWP games on Windows 10.
When asked if we could see OG Xbox Backward Compatibility on Windows 10, Spencer replied with “Yes,” to which he then elaborated:
“Emulation is hard. Xbox 360 specifically is a PowerPC chip, emulated to x86, which is difficult. It’s a little bit easier when you have a fixed spec, when you think about Xbox, Xbox One S, and Xbox One X. And you think of the variable specs of the PC space, so you’re taking a fixed-spec PowerPC emulator and then moving it over to run on PC, so there’s a lot of work there.
“The original Xbox, OG Xbox, is a little bit easier, because that was an x86 chip it was running on. Obviously when we think about UWP and the ability for games to run across console and PC, we’re getting closer. I want developers to be able to build portable applications, which is why we’ve been focusing on UWP for games and even apps that want to run on multiple devices.
“So I think we’ve got work to go do there, but I think it’s in our future.”
While it isn’t a definitive “yes,” it does tell us that Spencer is fully aware of the idea, and wants it to become reality, seeing it arriving in the future.
The interview then moved over to Xbox Game Pass, the subscription game service offered by Microsoft on Xbox One. Spencer talked about bringing Xbox Game Pass for Windows 10; interestingly, he spoke of pre-announcing it, which may hint to it actually already being in the works – more than just an idea floating around:
“I’ve said I want to bring Game Pass to the PC. The team doesn’t love it when I pre-announce things, but I definitely want to bring Game Pass to PC.”
“It’s a business model that I think could be good for creators, and when business models work for creators, it usually means good content will come for gamers. I like that. We don’t have the deep catalog of games on PC that we do on console, so I’ve had some pushback from the marketing team that, well it wouldn’t necessarily be the best feature right now, because we won’t have enough games, but I just want to start. So I’m putting a lot of pressure on the team to go get enough content lined up to do something on the PC, and then make sure we have a long-term commitment to build.”
As noted, Spencer is pushing the Xbox team to bring more games to the Windows Store, so that Microsoft’s marketing team give the go ahead for Xbox Game Pass on Windows 10. It is highly likely we will see it arrive in the future.
What do you think to the Xbox teams’ plans? Would you like Original Xbox Backward Compatibility and Xbox Game Pass on Windows 10? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!Further reading: Microsoft, Original Xbox Backward Compatibility, Phil Spencer, Windows 10, Xbox Game Pass