With the nearly forced conversion of Windows 7 and 8 users to Windows 10 earlier this year, Microsoft also announced their Xbox Play Anywhere program that promises all Microsoft published Xbox One titles will be available on PC via Windows 10 and the Microsoft Store. Given some teething problems with games through the Microsoft Store and the Universal Windows App (UWP) format, no one would fault you for being concerned.
The first experience that I’ve had as a result of Microsoft’s push of Windows 10 as a gaming platform is Forza Motorsport 6: Apex. Unlike the upcoming Forza Horizon 3, this isn’t a full release of Forza 6 on PC but rather a jumped up tech demo. While Forza 6 is a decent experience and certainly worthy of the Forza franchises comparisons to PlayStation’s Gran Turismo series, I can’t help but think that Apex is a little lacking.
One of the recurring themes of the Xbox press briefing on Monday was that games that are Xbox One exclusive will also be exclusive on PC to Windows 10. For PC gamers who have upgraded to Windows 10, this was the press conference that they’ve been waiting for from Microsoft. However, there was another treat in store for PC gamers. Microsoft announced their new Xbox Play Anywhere program that allows gamers to buy a select game once and play it on both Xbox One and Windows 10.
Day Zero of E3 featured both of the big console manufacturers showing off their wares. Microsoft went first leading with the Xbox One S and taking about 90 minutes to kill it by announcing the Scorpio. In between that, they had a number of games to debut with a few games getting featured billing like Gears of War 4 and ReCore and a number of smaller games.
How many of you have heard of the Microsoft Store? I don’t mean a physical retail location like the Apple Stores. I mean a digital store. If Steam’s operating system stats for its users are to be believed, about 34% of you might have heard of it since the Microsoft Store is only available to Windows 10 users.
I bring this up in the wake of the recent announcement that Microsoft is launching Quantum Break on PC alongside Xbox One. While Quantum Break will be the first game in Microsoft’s own renewed push towards making Windows a prominent gaming platform, the vast majority of PC gamers won’t be able to play it. That’s because Quantum Break won’t be coming to Steam but will be a Microsoft Store exclusive.
In the gaming sector, Microsoft is often criticized for seemingly being opposed to cross-platform play opportunities. For those outside the gaming space, Microsoft isn’t open to Xbox console gamers playing with those on the likes of PC and PlayStation at the same time. A leak from a technical preview of Windows 10 shows that Microsoft might be willing to integrate a little more cross-platform functionality.
The much-anticipated (and needed) next step for Microsoft’s popular Windows operating system was unveiled yesterday. After two years of the miserable failure that is Windows 8 (and the slightly less terrible Windows 8.1), Microsoft has given up on Windows 8 and is moving on to the next iteration of Windows to be called Windows 10.