If you recall, last year Phil Spencer made mention that the Xbox team would love to see Xbox Game Pass come to every platform possible. As you can imagine, this was an ambitious dream that only the likes of a tenacious company like Microsoft could tackle. Since then, Nintendo Switch has had some minor connectivity to Xbox Live through Minecraft, but never a full-blown integration into the Xbox Live experience.
Game Pass then expanded into Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which brought Xbox Game Pass to the PC. Now, this September, xCloud will be joining Xbox Game Pass Ultimate program at no additional cost, bringing Xbox games to both iPhone and Android devices. The service is undoubtedly going to morph even further, now that Xbox Live Gold is no longer being offered in a 12 month plan.
So, what about that master plan?
In an interview with GameStar, Phil Spencer basically nixed that idea, indicating that “competitive consoles” would ever get Xbox Live. GameStar asked Spencer if Microsoft would give gamers the choice or ability to play Xbox games on PlayStation 5 or Nintendo Switch, as was originally suggested. Spencer replied that, “It’s not just an offering of choices for choices sake, but rather offering gamers the ability to choose how they want to experience our platform and games.” He further explained that “they are not able to bring the full Xbox experience on those platforms.” Microsoft, wants a particular experience when gamers use their service and they are not able to control that experience.
While sad, it’s hard to imagine this would have ever come to fruition. Nintendo beats to it’s own drum, and Sony has their own user experience that they don’t want others to tinker with. As it seems now, if you want to experience Xbox Live, you’re choices are limited to the Xbox-based platforms.
No surprise there.