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Microsoft’s “not keen,” on formerly exclusive-PSN titles hitting XBL

Wednesday, 24th August 2011 19:34 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

European Xbox boss Chris Lewis has said it is extremely important for Microsoft to nab exclusive Xbox 360 games and DLC, and because of its importance to the firm, this is one of the reasons why formerly PSN-exclusive titles rarely if ever land on Xbox Live.

Speaking with Eurogamer during gamescom, Lewis said DLC windows of exclusivity such as the Black Ops content, are not only critical for differentiation, but because the firm feels the “cross-platform experience is better on Xbox.”

“We enjoy great success with Call of Duty,” he explained. “Live is the oxygen that runs through our business. The experience users have through Xbox Live is a fundamental differentiator for us versus other platforms. Our ongoing commitment to experiencing better and playing better on Xbox is partly a function of what we do with Xbox Live. So, exclusive IP is critical, of course. You’ll see more of that over time. You’ll also see us, though, committed to working with people like EA and Activision on their cross-platform consoles to make sure they play better, and they integrate better across PC, phone and the console in a way other people’s just simply can’t.

“We’re a little biased, so obviously we’re going to look to protect our own space as best we can and get exclusivity. Whilst I can’t be specific about the terms and conditions, you can be very confident we seek to maximise our own advantage to ensure the playing field is even, and certainly plays to our advantage wherever possible.

“As you can also imagine, our partners have to be mindful of the relationship they have with all platform holders, and they need to be equitable. But there are contractual situations where we get agreement with different people to do different things, and through what we have available on Xbox Live, we are able to offer things other people can’t offer, that allows that exclusivity and unique elements to it that might not otherwise be available elsewhere.”

Lewis said this is one of the reasons why a downloadable usually doesn’t receive a launch on Xbox Live Arcade it happened to be released via PlayStation Network first.

“We’re not keen to do it, I wouldn’t say never,” he said. “We wouldn’t be specific about that. But I’d be surprised if we saw that as something we’d encourage. But, honestly, and this is going to sound a bit contrived, we just want what our consumers want from us.

“We want to be where they want us to be. We want the quality bar of what they experience from us to continue to go up. I think it has to happen. Everybody’s got to do that. If we want to continue to command healthy average selling prices, which we all do, that which we offer our consumers has got to keep getting better. Despite the fact it can be irksome to have such strong competition all the time, it actually does keep us on our toes. It’s great for everyone, and it makes for a very healthy race to higher and higher levels of quality of game experiences.”

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25 Comments

  1. hitnrun

    Hey, Microsoft, remember how you took advantage of Sony’s ridiculous pride in your winning of the Internet space?

    #1 3 years ago
  2. Lord Gremlin

    So, in the end it boils down to Xbox 360 NOT getting content. All for some timed exclusives? Only retarded fanboys care about them. Way to shit on your customers, Microsoft.
    Unless they believe most 360 players are retarded fanboys, and that would be offensive to say the least.

    Real results? You can play Limbo and Castle Crashers on PS3, but you will never get Trine on 360. Nice job, MS.

    #2 3 years ago
  3. TerraZet

    Seriously? Grow the fuck up, Microsoft.

    #3 3 years ago
  4. OrbitMonkey

    This just sounds like the same *you only get this experience with us* mantra Apple keep peddling. Of course people buy into it & by the time they realise their are other equally pleasurable experiences to be had on other formats, their too invested to want to break free…

    #4 3 years ago
  5. joshua nash

    so this is what it mean to get fuck in ass by MS, i feel really dirty for giving them my money if they ain’t going to give me the games i want to see

    #5 3 years ago
  6. DaMan

    #4 I know right, why waste money on a Porshe when you can take the bus. You only have one life, why spend the hard earned money on making it easier.

    I think caring about others being or nor being able to play something on another box of wires is what disturbing folks do… I don’t get the whole game A vs game B thing. If I enjoy CoD should I also enjoy Fifa, I suppose for some people it’s all about some invisible war of exclusives, where the system chooses the titles they play. I mean, fair enough if you got an xbox for Gears but why on Earth should i automatically want to play Gears just because I have an xbox?

    If you read more than the article’s headline, then he’s saying they spend money on making the X360 versions of the best selling titles more appealing. Which is right on. The sole reason PS2 got the headstart was because people didn’t want to wait for games like GTA3 to arrive on the xbox.

    #6 3 years ago
  7. hitnrun

    @6: I can’t speak for OrbitMonkey, but as a 360 owner I care about what I can play on my box of wires. And if your suggestion is to buy a PS3, well, yeah, that’s kind of the point.

    “The sole reason PS2 got the headstart was because people didn’t want to wait for games like GTA3 to arrive on the xbox.”

    I think the sole reason the PS2 got the headstart was because it came out a year earlier under an established brand.

    #7 3 years ago
  8. doa766

    maybe they shouldn’t feature Amy then

    #8 3 years ago
  9. strikkebil

    if sony embraces the same policy too, timed exclusives would seize to exist. cos the whole reason that theyre timed is cos thats cheaper. ps3 and xbox install bases are too big for sony or ms to buy full exclusivity for all these small games. in the long run i think this can lead to fewer exclusives.

    #9 3 years ago
  10. DaMan

    #7 I should’ve clarified better, my point is why would you mind if someone who owns a Ps3 will be able to play your xbla games. I was questioning whether people care about the amount of exclusives on their box.. because i for one don’t like to play every single genre in existence.

    That’s why it was successful obviously, among other factors. Not the reason for skyrocketing sales though, or those sales staying above the competition. But regardless, software decides hardware sales in the case of consoles. Best selling software that is.

    #10 3 years ago
  11. Ireland Michael

    Now see, when you own both formats, none of this matters in the slightest…

    #11 3 years ago
  12. OrbitMonkey

    Er I don’t care what you play on? I was making a statement on the fact that execs like this douche really try to draw lines and barriers around performance & experience that really don’t exist.

    It’s not so much about buying a Porsche when you could catch a bus, more like buying into the corporate bullshit that their Porsche is better than the next guys ferrari…

    Their scrambling for some unique selling point & coming up empty. Timed exclusive? Exclusive indie titles? Wow. The holy grail of LIVE? The best thing MS did was charge peopl3 for It. If LIVE was free it wouldn’t be so rated.

    #12 3 years ago
  13. DaMan

    ‘ Wow. The holy grail of LIVE? The best thing MS did was charge peopl3 for It ‘

    If I recall correctly there’re a couple of dozen xbla games that never made it to psn, no? I do believe they’re arseholes for making you pay for it, but see I do like the fact that I can start a party chat by pressing a single button. I tend to use my Mac’s web browser though, since I’m at home anyway.

    You mean I didn’t have to wait a year to play Star Ocean 4, I payed for a fake? Apparently I wasn’t playing GTA SA for a year by the time the trilogy only came out on the xbox, it was all a dream. See, I think it’s a cool thing that I don’t have to wonder if the dlc will get released or not. Or don’t have to wait for unknown periods of time, wondering if the game I want to play will see a release on my box. Simly put, if I want a game and that game is guaranteed to be the earliest and most complete version, I’m going to get that one.

    I think you should try some of the idevices sometime, OM. The way people like you describe them makes me wonder if they used one at all. I’m probably imagining things, like the fact that I can pair my phone with a bluetooth keyboard out of the box, and how you can watch videos on it regardless of the viewing angle. Or perhaps it was all a dream how i din’t have to search for a third party tcpdump or unzip utility. I was probably tripping at all those times i’ve installed apps with a single drag and drop. Point being? Coca wine =/= beer, Mac =/= PC, independent mind =/= ignorance.

    You know what I wanted to break free from for a long time? The shitty sluggish user interfaces of Java phones, which Android greatly reminds me of.

    #13 3 years ago
  14. OrbitMonkey

    Your getting rather defensive. I’m not attacking your preciouse little toys, metely stating that all this marketing hyperbole about the huge differences in consoles/phones whatever is bullshit really.

    The differences are mainly looks & what lifestyle marketing you buy Into.

    #14 3 years ago
  15. DaMan

    Er, I’m just saying you should give credit where credit is due. Since the differences i’ve experienced are practical, I fail to see how they ‘re connected to lifestyle marketing. While you just bring up unrelated examples of your perceived PR.

    I also found your analogy completely poor myself. I’m not sure you read the EG article though.

    ”Titles for Xbox 360 must ship at least simultaneously with other video game platform, and must have at least feature and content parity on-disc with the other video game platform versions in all regions where the title is available.”

    “If these conditions are not met, Microsoft reserves the right to not allow the content to be released on Xbox 360.”

    How that doesn’t enhance their customers’ experience is beyond me.. That’s like saying your 3 year warranty is marketing bs.

    #15 3 years ago
  16. Telepathic.Geometry

    Seems like a fucking ridiculous thing to say: “We don’t want sloppy seconds!”

    The fans playing games on XBL shouldn’t give a shit where a good game came from, if it saves them requiring a PS3 to play it then isn’t that great?

    I am so thankful that a lot of the best titles from XBLA landed on PSN. I do NOT feel sullied by that.

    #16 3 years ago
  17. Kuwabara

    If he feels that way, why did they try steal gta from playstation and make it their baby?? And with metal gear lol.

    #17 3 years ago
  18. Henry

    I totally cannot get his logic…..

    He thinks exclusives are important.
    But he refuses to break his opponent’s exclusives lineup.

    And although he thinks exclusives are important, M$ usually just ask for timed-exclusive.

    #2 says it right. The result is: you get to play Limbo, Castle Crashers on PS3, but not Trine 1 on 360.

    If this ridiculous strategy is really what this Chris and M$ believes in, may be that’s why 360 is losing the console war.

    #18 3 years ago
  19. JimBrown

    Called Final Showdown, it’ll release as a standalone game that will feature a massive overhaul from when the fighter released at retail on PS3 and Xbox 360 in 2007.
    It’ll have two new characters from the 19 that’ll be in the game, including one new character called Jean Kujo and VF3 fan-favorite Taka-Arashi, as well as revised mechanics and balance, simplified controls and more.
    It’ll also have a “new” single-player mode, leader boards and one-on-one online battle system.
    “Virtua Fighter 5 has always been an authentic arcade fighter, even when played from the comfort of a home console. And, like any proper arcade dynasty, we’ve continued to support, expand and tweak the game in the years since its release,” said VP of Sega West’s digital business arm, Haruki Satomi.
    “With Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown, we get to bring the ultimate expression of competitive one-on-one gaming to console players in one perfect package.”
    mobile application developer

    #19 3 years ago
  20. Christopher Jack

    @13, Bluetooth keyboard for a phone? Seems awfully redundant, I mean, the only time you’d want to use it is if you’re at home or an office but you’d normally have access to a real computer there.

    Doesn’t matter how many exclusive features Apple buys, I’ll always prefer Android, a system that doesn’t assume that you’re a dumbarse & gives you some freedom.

    #20 3 years ago
  21. eloix

    It’s pretty ironic hearing MS talking about “exclusive”. Indeed, such comment from MS would please fanboys, but gamers know that Sony got tons exclusives in different genres for them.

    #21 3 years ago
  22. OrbitMonkey

    @DaMan, *I also found your analogy completely poor myself* well yes, it was just a simple reworking of your rather lame Porsche or bus anology.

    Microsoft refusing to sell games that sold 1st on another system enhances customer experience? Well maybe from the viewpoint, that from taking this stance, they hope devs are to scared to sell to anyone else 1st… Not so good if your a 360 owner who fancied Trine

    And the 3 year warranty is bs only offered because of the whole red ring of death fiasco.

    Credit where its due though, you do defend your toys :D

    #22 3 years ago
  23. DaMan

    OM, my Porshe analogy is perfect, since they’re luxury products which ultimately aren’t exactly necessary, just make your life easier. You on the other hand were comparing conference presentations of the devices to this guy defending corporate release policies.

    Game gets released. You want to play it. If it gets released on another device first, surely you’re going to question whether you should’ve gotten that other device instead.

    Now what they’re saying is they don’t want to spend money on niche titles. Like Trine. No sane publisher of a high selling title would go against the policies and lose the customers. Besides, MS aren’t that stubborn as to miss on best selling games e.g. RdR or LA Noire, as this guy says it depends.

    I was talking about the warranty being a practical positive thing anyway.

    Mac and phone aren’t toys, buddy. they’re productive tools.

    #23 3 years ago
  24. OrbitMonkey

    Conference presentations? No, i’m saying the differences between a ps3/360, or a iPhone/Desire are minimal at best, hence the need for marketing aimed towards selling a experience or lifestyle.

    And as for not wanting to spend money on niche titles unless their on 360 first is beneficial to customers, well thats just corporate spin.

    #24 3 years ago
  25. DaMan

    HTC Desire is a decent hardware running a crappy me too clone of iOS with jittering interfaces, it also doesn’t have the same display or not nearly as much in terms of memory. You get what you pay for.. If you just want a smartphone to call people then the differences are almost non existent.

    If I were MS I ‘d put the bluetooth into the thing back then, then again you could hook up it to a monitor with the Vga cable, hence the flexibilty is questionable.

    I don’t see this guy marketing their console here, I see him stating corporate policies.

    They hardly spin anything, they want to maximize their profits. No publisher is going to spend money on promoting something potentially low on sales when they can release CoD every year.

    #25 3 years ago

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