Head of Xbox Phil Spencer has weighed in on the possibility of coronavirus causing delays for games and hardware.
In a lengthy interview with IGN, Xbox boss Phil Spencer discussed a wide range of topics, including how the gaming side is handling the coronavirus pandemic across its departments.
To begin with, Spencer was clear that the safety of his various teams is the most paramount right now. “There’s no decision that I will make – or frankly anybody at Microsoft would even ask me to make – that would compromise the safety and security of the teams for a near-term financial or product gain,” said Spencer.
For Xbox Series X, as far as manufacturing capacity in China, the executive said that the supply chain is starting to come back. “We can see in the factories and stuff we’re starting to get things back from them and that’s working for us,” he revealed.
“We have nothing right now that says we’re not gonna make the dates that we’ve been planning, but I’ll also say that’s kind of real-time stuff and I am gonna put the safety and security of the teams at the top, along with a quality product.”
Although Microsoft has obviously not announced any delays for Xbox Series X or Halo Infinite, Spencer said that developing from home is not an easy process, and feels that teams are “stretched.”
“Building a video game from home – a large, distributed team of hundreds of people is not easy. Video games as we know right now are big and there [are] huge, massive asset bases that each one of these games have,” Spencer explained.
“Things right now aren’t easy. I think things are stretched. I can feel it in the teams, they’re stretched.”
When pressed whether Microsoft has a plan B for Xbox Series X launch, assuming things don’t go back to normal as quickly as you’d hope, Spencer said he didn’t want to ask what if questions at this stage. He did confirm, however, that Microsoft is not interested in staggered launches across the different regions, a lesson learned from the launch of Xbox One.
When it comes to software, considering how much fuss Microsoft made about Halo Infinite being a launch game, Spencer was clear that Xbox Series X launch won’t be held up because of any individual game.
Xbox Series X and Halo Infinite are slated for release this holiday.