Phil Spencer Talks Xbox Showcase, Studio Closures, Xbox Handheld, and More! | IGN Live 2024

Evil Within sold a ton, Evil Within 2 did not.

HF:R did well, Ghostwire: Tokyo did not

Dishonored was both Arkane’s and not just Austin

Prey 2 was never made

I’m not sure your point.

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Yep I think people forget however well received HiFi Rush was (it’s still one of my favourite games), Ghostwire: Tokyo did seem to bomb pretty hard and clearly cost a lot of money to make…

I was gutted by Tango closing, but it was very likely they had spent way more money than they’d ever made - and we don’t know the pitch for HiFi Rush 2, the more I think about it the more I think “bigger and better” may really have struggled to capture the magic of the first game (which while meeting targets didn’t set the world alight like I’d thought it would) and it may have just come across as too risky…

That is just the reality of releasing a timed exclusive nowadays. I was quite interested in Ghostwire but then I couldnt play it. It has been in game pass for ages at this point and I have still not gotten around to even trying it out.

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The point was in relation to Andodolf’s comment that games which don’t get played don’t usually get sequels.

I’m this case they did have sequels. Hi-Fi Rush was likely going to get a sequel and I imagine Prey would have eventually got one too!

Even if they both just got to the pitching stage, a experienced talented AAA studio doesn’t pitch games which it expects to fail.

Aaron Greenberg is like the hype man of Xbox. Its his job to hype everything up.

We got clarity, they would not closed studios if the games were commercially successful.

Microsoft will still owned Prey, Hi-Fi Rush, Evil Within and Dishonored IP. If they decide to revisit them IP? They can have another studio/developer work on them.

Example is Lionhead got closed down but Fable IP is now made by Playground. Just cause the studio is gone does not mean the IP can’t be work on by other Devs.

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I mean, you can ask Capcom to make a Egil Within or even Bloober. Could ask Bandai Namco to make a Hi-Fi Rush 2, or maybe even Suda51!

There are ways to get other devs to do the work and minimize risk for sure because if it fails you are not responsible for the studio closure.

I think the biggest issue with the recent closures is mostly towards Tango itself, who was a japanese based studio. Now that their is no presence within Japan, i wonder what are the plans to engage with the audience there as well as the rest of Asia. Cause you can only do so much with what little you got.

My guess is that they will try to invest in studios and reveal new partnerships like with Square Enix and Netease. I believe that has potential but its wait and see.

Netease is huge so it definitely has potential.

But unless they can actually buy a juggernaut like Sega I think they’ll stick to partnerships for the time being.

Woah there, i do not think they buy a publisher anytime soon. Sides, they already have good thing going, the same will be said for Square and Netease.

Still think Xbox should make efforts with publishers like Marvelous, Level-5 and Nihom Falcon. The latter being the primary one i think needs to make efforts with.

In fact i would say Xbox should try and partner with Marvelous and Level-5.

Something bigger is going on in Japan IMO. Sony doesn’t really have much Japanese development presence anymore and even moved their HQ out of Japan. It feels like both Sony and MS are content just doing partnership deals there.

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I don’t think Xbox is all that worried about having a audience in Japan. They want Japanese games because their western customers demand them.

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I’m not going to lie, I wasn’t particularly happy with his response on how all of this (games going multiplatform) benefits Xbox players.

He said Xbox players have the choice of either buying the games outright or getting them via the subscription (Game Pass).

That was literally it. Ultimately I don’t think that’s going to be enough but we’ll just have to wait and see.

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Hey I appreciate Phil for his honesty. He said in March it was 4 games. Now it will be more to grow. I’m not a fan of them putting games on PlayStation and Nintendo but I don’t run a billion dollar business. I do like playing games with the same save file on Xbox and PC. Microsoft should do a better job in Europe and Asia with localization and marketing in those countries and regions like PlayStation and Nintendo. I think it’s is a bad idea to get rid of Tango and Arkane Austin. You will need games in 2029 and 2030. I hope we don’t content gaps like we did in 2022. Xbox is going to have a lot of games coming in 2024, 2025 and 2026. How long will the studios take to give us sequels or new IP? Do we have to wait 6 years for them to reload the chamber?

I can’t say I like the mutiplatform strategy but I understand it. Some of the wanting exclusivity comes from wanting to “win” over Sony, but I recognize that is the fanboy in me talking. Lets be honest, all of the exclusivity stuff is really just these companies manipulating us into their ecosystems. I think we inherently see this when we talk about a potential all digital/subscription future’s negatives. Are we going to have to subscribe monthly to like 10+ different subscription services because publishers are all running their own service? We dread the idea of exclusivity in that case, but what we have now is loved? Why?

I don’t know if what MS is doing is going to work, but I can appreciate that the focus will shift from using games as a means to get you into the hardware, to trying to get people into the games themselves. Well at least a little bit anyway since this is about Game Pass too.

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I made peace of what they are trying to do to be honest once you really think about it. Sony has done a good job instilling( brainwashing is too harsh of a word I guess lol) brand loyalty to its costumers, and even most gaming media personalities who most of them grew up with PS. Basically the millennial gamers who are already deeply rooted to PlayStation that they won’t budge even if Xbox became an attractive platform. MS recognize this and decided to cater them and profit off of them to help fund their games and their services.

I guess the benefit Xbox users will get is better funded games, which can lead to better quality and better services like gamepass. Plus studios have a lesser risk of getting shut down. This doesn’t mean they have given up on “competing”, quite the opposite. They are instead trying to change the game from console wars to platform wars. They are looking ahead and recognize that the foundations of console gaming is weakening and they hope to accelerate it because this will give them a huge advantage against other platform holders like Sony. Gen Z and the next gen after won’t be beholden to the Sony/Nintendo nostalgia and Mobile/PC is the more dominant platforms for them, and Microsoft is better equipped to cater for them than the legacy game companies.

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That’s why you also have Global publishing and not to mention the Game Pass funded deals. They probably have more than 40 games in the pipe not revealed yet. They will be fine as long as the business is healthy.

Well said I also think this expands the industry in the long run.

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I agree Aaron is there to hype, however it’s almost irrelevant owning the IP’s if there’s nobody free to work on those IP’s.

Even if they could find a team, would they have the same talent, passion and interest in the IP’s as the creators? unlikely.

The last Fable game was technically in 2011 if you ignore the poor remake and card game, therefore it’s likely that these IP’s could also be lost for decades or even forever…

I’m really liking what I’m seeing from Playground so far but this is their first RPG game so we can’t say for sure it’s going to be a success (as a Fable fan I really hope it is). In addition they’ve actually hired quite a few Ex-Lionhead to help with Fable which is promising (and shows how important it is to have the original devs involved).

We have seen in the past where IP’s have been shipped out to various devs only to flop badly. I’m not very hopeful for Konami’s Silent Hill 2 Remake by Bloober for example.

There are other things that can be done with IPs like this. An example is exploring other forms of media like movies or streaming series for example. Hi-Fi was a solid game that could have used an anime series. If anything, the developers for it would hopefully land in a place they could do something similar.

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Well we know several Xbox publishing deals are in the works and also several of their studios have more than 1 game in the pipeline. At this point in time though it’s hard to say how all of that pans out.

However, if they are indeed launching in 2026 a brand new system they need to give people a reason to buy in and having an onslaught of incredible titles in 2025 and 2026 will definitely help building trust with the consumers.

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None of the IPs mentioned are big enough to warrant shopping around for a partner to work on them.

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