As of May 2023, Xbox continues to be a popular gaming platform, with a large and active community of players. Xbox Series X/S, the latest generation of Xbox consoles, was released in November 2020 and is still widely available for purchase. Xbox Game Pass, a subscription service that gives players access to a large library of games, continues to be a major draw for many gamers. Microsoft, the parent company of Xbox, has also been investing heavily in first-party game development and has been acquiring studios to expand its game development capabilities.
Has this strategy been paying off for Microsoft? We’re seeing a major shift towards Xbox Game Pass with heavy investing and resources being used but is it paying off?
It could be just me, but it seems it is not.
In terms of competition, Xbox faces strong competition from Sony’s PlayStation consoles and from gaming on PC. However, Xbox continues to have a strong brand and loyal fanbase, and Microsoft’s recent acquisitions and investments in first-party game development could help to strengthen its position in the gaming market — at least they hope. Xbox’s loyal fan base is being tested however with arguably the last year of releases. It seems incentive from developers isn’t as high to release a quality product when they realize it will be a day-one game on Game Pass. This is speculation on my part but could be a driving factor in the half-baked games we are constantly getting more of.
Xbox is lagging behind its competition with their lack of exclusives, timely delivering of games, and overall performance of games when they do get released. The recent backlash on Redfall, which was quite a catastrophe, read: https://www.ign.com/articles/redfalls-poor-launch-tests-xbox-fans-patience-unlocked-593, illustrates this point pretty well. Game pass is creating quite the opposite effect for Xbox in terms of what they expected. Now one can argue that the release of Starfield later this year now has even more pressure associated with it to perform. And I’m afraid it will have the same issues of promised high-end software that is underdelivered on a lower framerate due to Microsoft not being hands on enough and just pushing things out the door.
Can Microsoft & Xbox come together and figure this out? Will they turn around this streak of bad habits and crappy game releases? Only time will tell, but as a gamer even if you take sides you have to believe that competition is good and having options is also good. We all want Xbox to succeed–or hell, just stop f*cking up so much and that would satisfy most gamers. I myself was once a die-hard Xbox fan in the early 2000’s when the hay-day of Xbox live was in full effect. Nowadays my Series X collects dust and my PS5 and PC get most of the mileage.
What do you think?
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