Why Microsoft Didn't Talk About PC Gaming at E3

Phil Spencer says it's because E3 is a show for console games, and pledges that PC gaming is "critical" to Microsoft.


Microsoft's Phil Spencer, who heads up gaming for the company, has explained why Windows efforts didn't factor into Microsoft's press conference earlier this week at E3.

"E3's a retail show," Spencer told Polygon. "It's a retail show, it's a console show, so it didn't really feel like the right place for us to talk about Windows. But Windows and gaming on Windows is critical to Microsoft's success."

What might be a good venue for Microsoft to talk more about PC gaming? "Well, they do these huge world championship events and they fill up arenas," Spencer. "I do think there could be a space there." It's not immediately clear what Spencer is specifically referring to, but the League of Legends World Championships last year at the Staples Center in Los Angeles drew thousands in person--and millions watching online.

Earlier this month, Spencer said Microsoft needs to do more in the PC gaming space, explaining that part of his job as Head of Xbox is to "bring back [Microsoft's] Windows gaming focus." Though Microsoft may have broader plans for PC gaming, Spencer made it clear that the Windows platform is already a healthy destination for computer gaming.

"I think in a lot of ways, you could argue gaming on Windows has never been more healthy in that the biggest of the big franchises, League of Legends, World of Tanks, those things dwarf a lot of what we're doing in this console space in terms of users and monetization," he said. "They're all on PC."

Earlier this year, Microsoft announced Direct X12, the latest version of the graphics API that promises major improvements for Xbox One and PC developers.

See more coverage of E3 2014 →

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

Discussion

477 comments
kc_mutenda
kc_mutenda

If Windows is important to Microsoft, where's Halo 3 and Forza for Windows???

Gravity_Slave
Gravity_Slave

What is there to talk about with PC gaming?

-it's 2-3 times more expensive than consoles. (Not to mention obtaining parts and build time if you're gonna do it right.)

-they last half as long as consoles.( I'd like to see where a $2,000 gaming rig will be in a decade. Probably in a landfill)

-there isn't much more a PC can do compared to consoles when it comes to gaming. Consoles have come a long way.

-Lack of exclusives

-PC has to petition to get games consoles already have. (If you need help on GTAV, let a console gamer know)

...oh and for the fact that E3 is for consoles, not PC's. For that you have to go to a local convention center and squeeze yourself in past the 30 fat and sweaty master racers.

lefty2108
lefty2108

Because Steam can suck it - Phil Spencer


Seriously, does this dude have Korsakoff's syndrome or something? 

rabih55555
rabih55555

PC is blowing xbox one out of water. Xbox one even lost dead rising 3 as exclusive

I would rather buy wii u than xbox one. At least wii u has many exclusive games. Xbox one barely have any exclusive, and the other games will run better on the other platforms like PC or PS4. There is no reason to buy xbox one.

funkerazmain
funkerazmain

Yeah Microsoft why don't ya release all Xbox 360 exclusive titles for the pc.

Twilighten
Twilighten

A retail show? A console show? No, it's a 'GAME' show, you fuckwit!

death4us2
death4us2

It seems that Microsoft still is suffering from that foot in mouth disease. Microsoft can never admit the reason they didn't talk about PC gaming is cause they didn't have anything at this time and didn't want PC gamers to realize they been ignored while they concentrate on the Xbox One.

Darkhol0w
Darkhol0w

All of the games shown for the past couple of years at E3 have been on PC's ..so saying it's a console show it's utter and total bullshiet.

WingChopMasta
WingChopMasta

Well of course they are going to focus on PC now. You make your money on software sales and if no one is buying their hardware they gotta sell the software somewhere else. PC is the only other option.


I hope they don't think another Games for Windows is going to happen...Its not going to happen.

nyran125tk
nyran125tk

"bring back [Microsoft's] Windows gaming focus."


Please dont, if its GFWL 2.0, ive really enjoyed my games lately like Street fighter 4 without GFWL and Batman is now actually fun without GFWL, i can officially save it without any hassles. 

klunt_bumskrint
klunt_bumskrint moderator moderator

They've been banging that drum for years, still never made a record

lilflipp
lilflipp

Microsoft really cares about PC gaming, and that is why... Now, introducing, for the first time ever in years... Games For Windows Live.

spikepigeo
spikepigeo

Electronic Entertainment Expo.


AH! That's why. My PC doesn't run on electricity... it runs on Steam.

trust2112
trust2112

If they were serious about gaming on Windows, they would make it easier for older games to be played on any Windows platform. They wonder why people are still using XP, that was the last Software package that allows for DOS, Windows 95, 98 and XP games to be played. They do not work on Windows 8.1

Keaze_
Keaze_

I ate Dagwood's today.  It's overrated.  It used to be good and cheap but now the price has gone up.  The tomatoes they served me looked expired.  I said no olives and they put some when I wasn't looking.  I won't be going there anymore.

push88
push88

Direct X12 better be compatible with Windows 7.  I'm gonna be peeved if it's only 8 and above.

Luchingador
Luchingador

and PC dosent need Microsoft anymore.

astonwave
astonwave

I want to know why in the hell the X-Box 360 wasn't mentioned at all.  

dark_rage864
dark_rage864

for the love of god, make Age of Empires 4 Microsoft!

sg_hobbes
sg_hobbes

yes but i wan't big tripple a games on pc Bring the master chief collection to windows 8 and you got an up grad bring some of those big xbox exclusives over and you have a customer for life


Proftally
Proftally

after this E3 I think Phil Spencer knows his stuff, I totally believe that if it is not the right time to talk about pc then it is not. I have pc connected to my tv and play all games there except for console exclusives, PC is my life


however Spencer made so many good things for xbox since last e3, and made a solid gaming conference, this year sony became like last year xbox (tv series, stupid camera, recycled game teasers, and the most obnoxious gameplay of LBP3. I love LBP3 put the people playing were rubbish ) 

vadagar1
vadagar1

exclusive games are the worst idea since the invention of digital watches

blackace
blackace

I think Micrsoft will have a small part in actually making PC games. Their support for PC games will be more with DX12 and Windows 9. If Microsoft developes 2-3 PC games a year it will be a miracle. There are so many developers making PC games that Microsoft isn't really needed on that platform. There's really no direct competition on the PC like it is on game consoles since PC is an open market. The competition is more with developers against developers or AMD vs Intel or AMD/ATI vs nVidia.

blaze_boy30
blaze_boy30

E3 is for console games only? When did this happen? Bunch of hogwash.

smacmacktac
smacmacktac

@Gravity_Slave  For one thing exclusives are not good, I want to be able to play a game on any platform.  There are more PC games then either console, they usually come out on all, just not at the same time.


PC's last just as long or longer then consoles, since you can buy equal or better hardware when you build or buy your PC.  You are correct about one thing, they are more expensive but you can stay under a thousand and buy a faster gaming box then the current consoles.  They last just as long or longer then consoles, if not.... you have bad browsing habits and you are cluttering the machine with bloatware and other crap.


They support controllers in case you would rather use that, but many shooters work better with the precision of a mouse.   Also having a keyboard for typing is very nice when you do not have a mic or choose not to use one.


They are freaking computers, while not always dedicated to gaming they can do just as much as consoles in the realm of gaming, and over all so much more.  PC is truly the all in one machine.  They also allow more graphical flexibility, better key binding, and a better modding community and no fee to pay play games online besides your ISP bill.


E3 and computers yeah I see why they don't do it because there would not be much to show, most people know what a computer looks like and we are aware that all the same services exist online, that the consoles are now getting apps for.


Like many others said, you sound like a complete console fan boy who knows nothing about PC gaming, or PC's in general.  Please don't discourage this very worthy contender.

mauroaugusto
mauroaugusto

@Gravity_Slave ........Oh no, another angry consolitie speaking 8 bits of nonsenses. Your kind need to defend yourself from time to time I understand that. Ppl asked for it, so here we go:

If the PC needs petitions, is because it's the only living breath platform on gaming. The games you play there are made from him, that word means power. PC isn't a common platform to be discussing my friend, it is THE platform, the core understand?

While you're somewhat right about a good rig price, you're wrong about everything else. I did laugh on the ''they last half as long as consoles'' part. PC can play games with the proper emulator nowadays, Snes, N64 and NCube mostly. Really, I'm going to spare you on that. (just a bit, X360 emulator is rumored to be coming)

I'm running everything at max with an old overclocked quad core, upgrading ram and video when needed by selling it on e-bay and making business from time to time with other gamers. I want to see you doing that with your box.

Once your console gets out of the era (I never understood that), the price falls in such a speed as a winter cloth on the summer. By my logic, your box is much more needed on a landfill than the PC is. Well friend, I never worry about ''eras'' here. HD 7850 is good now, but my old GTS 450 wasn't so she's with somebody else now, in just a few -clicks- I'm back on track. The PC belongs to an area that isn't for you, the hardcore gaming. And it doesn't necessarily needs to be old-school.

Don't dare to forget what Microsoft did to you with the Red Ring of Death - it was a true crisis, which made them lose every cent of respect they ever had. Microsoft is turning the back now for something they did themselves not long ago, is nothing more than a commercial effort. Why oh why X360 had an curious 2 years paid guarantee? Yeah man, they changed it for money.

They Rrod your ass to have tons of Benjamin Franklins.

Dont worry! In a blink of an eye, the always on thing and all the other BS features you told on your comment can make a box look just like a mini-version of what the PC really is. Get it? Your day is coming again bro. Just wait.

Anyway, I'm happy with a heavy modded Skyrim and a bloom on Watch Dogs that you will never have. What more I need?

All that matter is gold for those companies, your passion is not relevant for them. PC gamer speaking here, 20 years blasting from the 486 to here. If that means anything nowadays.

BaDMantra
BaDMantra

@Gravity_Slave And you my friend, you are definitively a noob when it comes to PC's! Keep playing on your console and have all the fun in the world, but please let the big boys talk about computers.

death4us2
death4us2

@Gravity_Slave OK PC has way more exclusives than any console. Consoles in terms of power are always many years behind the computer. Cost a good PC will cost a couple of hundreds more than a console plus you don't have to pay for plus or gold in order to play online. Games are cheaper on PC than on consoles too. As for lasting long consoles lives are growing shorter with every new gen system.The cost of replacing the hard drive(running out of space on small hd is a common problem), controls, and batteries brings the cost to as much or more than a PC cost during the same live span. I do like console gaming and PC gaming but trying to say consoles is better is wishful thinking :p

nyran125tk
nyran125tk

@trust2112 yes they do, what games are you talking about?


DOSBOX!!! Runs on Windows 8.1.


I have over 300 games on STEAM from 1993-2014 and not one of them doesnt play on Windows 8.1. Even Star Wars X-Wing/tie fighter (with a patch of course) plays on Windows 8.1. Even the original X-COM runs on Windows 8.1. 


If you after SCUMM adventure games, thers a SCUMMVM you can download and if its 3DFX games you can DL the 3DFX emulator called nGlide.


There sisn t asingle game i cant play so far using Window s8.1. Sometimes you have to use compatability, sometimes you do need a patch from somewhere, but i havent come across any games yet i cant get to work.


ALSO i recommend GoG.COM games. They have made sure all games run on Windows 8.1.

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

@push88 It won't be.  DirectX is the way Microsoft tries to force people to upgrade their version of Windows.

kwijeebou
kwijeebou

@tableofjapan And how many of those were exclusively for PC? I don't remember seeing any. All of the games shown that were going to be on PC were also going to be on a console. Unless I'm forgetting something?

ishsgames
ishsgames

@Defender1978 Its not going to happen. I remember reading an article stating that MS will always keep Halo as a Xbox exclusive. 

Banyek
Banyek

@vadagar1 I thought this for soo long, until I realised its not exactly true. The developer teams behind major companies like Sony could never create the things they make without the financial support of a giant company. Also, exclusives create competition between the two company, pushing them to create more games to the market, to keep their sales going. yes, in PC gamer perspectiv it is sad, that you have to pass so many good titles, and the feeling that those games could come out for the pc is very upsetting. 

Proftally
Proftally

@blackace


I think since the vita is not really working as everyone expected, it will be a good strategy for MS to hit the pc market since it is where sony is most vulnerable perhaps jump in with a MOBA or the like. plus they have their Age of Empires and Age of Mythology to come back to

blackace
blackace

@blaze_boy30 CES is for PC. lol!! You noticed Sony didn't talk about an PC games either.

TheWatcher000
TheWatcher000

@mkeezay22 @Proftally 

Paid t.rolls are really lacking in talent these days.

He needs a better script.

Proftally
Proftally

@mkeezay22 @Proftally


English is my second language so I am not sure


but my guess you blow a flute not ride it, but hey your the expert there 

Sl4cka
Sl4cka

@blackace So, the conferences of EA and Ubisoft were just a dream, and the games they've shown don't actually come to PC?

positiwe
positiwe

@Sl4cka @blackace Infact Sony's conference was the most interesting for me as a PC gamer:No man's Sky was the hit of the show,Grim Fandango was a massive shock and GTA5 will be the game that will stay on my HDD until the next one.All of them coming to PC and announced in the Sony's conference to my surprise,