By G9ija

Microsoft is building a Netflix-style streaming service for video games that promises to bring ‘console-quality gaming to any device’.

The Redmond-based company claims players will be able to stream blockbuster titles to their Xbox, laptop or smartphone.

It’s unclear whether players will have to pay to play individual games, or will be able to access the entire library for a monthly fee, like video on-demand services.

Microsoft does not believe streaming will replace dedicated home consoles entirely, with the company also teasing that new Xbox hardware is already in the works.

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Microsoft is building a Netflix-style streaming service for video games that promises to bring ‘console-quality gaming to any device’. The firm also announced 50 new games to fans during its E3 presentation – a new record for the Redmond-based company 

Microsoft is building a Netflix-style streaming service for video games that promises to bring ‘console-quality gaming to any device’. The firm also announced 50 new games to fans during its E3 presentation – a new record for the Redmond-based company

Xbox boss Phil Spencer also teased the forthcoming video game streaming service, which he claims will be able to ‘unlock console-quality gaming on any device’

Executive President of Gaming Phil Spencer revealed Microsoft’s plans to build a cloud-based service during its press conference at video game expo E3 in Los Angeles.

Spencer said: ‘Our cloud engineers are building a game streaming network to unlock console-quality gaming on any device.

‘We are dedicated to perfecting your experience everywhere you want to play – your Xbox, your PC and your phone.’

This approach, known as Cloud Gaming, allows players to access a vast library of titles without the need to download or install each individual game.

Cloud gaming can enable console-quality video games to run on much less powerful devices, like smartphones, since all the heavy-lifting is handled on a server, not by the device used by the player.

This is very different from traditional video console games, which need to process everything on the disc locally and therefore require powerful chipsets and fan systems.

Xbox boss Spencer didn’t reveal a launch date for the service on-stage, although he has previously teased that Microsoft’s game streaming could arrive before 2020.

The company is not the first to show an interest in a game streaming service, with rival PlayStation already offering players the chance to stream titles to their devices.

Dubbed PlayStation Now, the subscription service costs £12.99 ($20) a month and allows players to stream more than 500 titles to their Sony PS4 or Windows PC.

Sony launched its cloud gaming service after it acquired rival services Gaikai and OnLive.

But despite its focus on video game streaming, Microsoft has not abandoned its hardware plans.

It’s unclear whether players will have to pay to access individual titles, or will be able to play the entire library for a flat monthly fee, like Netflix

It’s unclear whether players will have to pay to access individual titles, or will be able to play the entire library for a flat monthly fee, like Netflix

But despite teasing a streaming service, Microsoft revealed plans to continue building Xbox hardware, with new ‘consoles’ already in the works

Xbox boss Phil Spencer remained tight-lipped on any specifics about the forthcoming console, however, the executive did reveal that backwards-compatibility with older video games would play significant role for the new hardware 

Xbox boss Phil Spencer remained tight-lipped on any specifics about the forthcoming console, however, the executive did reveal that backwards-compatibility with older video games would play significant role for the new hardware

Phil Spencer used the E3 keynote to tease the follow-up to the Xbox One, with hints that Microsoft could have multiple new consoles in the works.

‘The same team that delivered unprecedented performance with Xbox One X is deep into architecting the next Xbox consoles, where we will once again deliver on our commitment to set the benchmark for console gaming,’ he said.

Spencer remained tight-lipped on any specifics about the console, however, the executive did reveal that backwards-compatibility with Xbox One games would play significant role for the new hardware.

He told Eurogamer: ‘As you think about this next wave of hardware that eventually will come, so many of the large, large games people are playing today are still going to exist when the next hardware comes out.

‘You’re not likely to see a “2” after all those, as people are trying to move you to the next version of those games. In the old model of games shipping, getting played and then going away – and that was all of the games – a console transition was an easy step-function.

‘We went through it with Minecraft. We didn’t ship Minecraft 2 on Xbox One to try to compel everybody to move to the next console, because that’s not what Minecraft players want. They just want Minecraft to get better.

‘When you look at games like PUBG and Fortnite and you think about these large games and ecosystems that’ll be out there, when new hardware comes, people are still going to want to play those games, and it’s going to be important for us as platforms to support them.’

Microsoft unveiled a new entry in its popular Halo series, dubbed Halo Infinite, which will be exclusive to Xbox-branded consoles

Microsoft unveiled a new entry in its popular Halo series, dubbed Halo Infinite, which will be exclusive to Xbox-branded consoles

Elsewhere, Microsoft showcased a record 50 new games to fans during its E3 presentation.

The company took the wraps off a range of exclusive titles, including new entries in its Halo and Gears of War series.

Spencer branded the list of new games as the company’s ‘most diverse gaming portfolio ever’.

XBOX E3 2018: WHAT DID MICROSOFT ANNOUNCE FOR ITS VIDEO GAME CONSOLE?

Microsoft showcased a record 50 new video games for its Xbox One console during its 2018 keynote presentation at E3.

The Redmond-based company unveiled new instalments in its popular series, including Halo and Gears Of War, as well as teasing a future streaming service for video games and a new Xbox console.

Here is the definitive list of all the video games which were announced on-stage, or previewed significant updates coming soon to the console.

 Halo Infinite

Ori and the Will of the Wisps

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice

Kingdom Hearts III

Sea of Thieves: Cursed Sails and Forsaken Shore

Forza Horizon 4

We Happy Few

The Division 2

 Session

Black Desert Online

Tales of Vesperia: Definitive Edition

 Tunic

Dying Light 2

Just Cause 4

Cyberpunk 2077

Gears Tactics

 Fallout 76

 Crackdown 3

Nier: Automata

Metro Exodus

The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit

Battlefield V

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds

FastStart

Shadow of the Tomb Raider

Devil May Cry 5

 Cuphead: The Delicious Last Course

 Jump Force

 Battletoads

Gears 5

Gears Pop!

Microsoft executive Phil Spencer teased plans to bring console-quality games to ‘any device’ thanks to a new streaming service from the company

Elsewhere, Xbox head Phil Spencer introduced a new Microsoft studio called The Initiative.

The company also confirmed a slew of acquisitions, including Undead Labs, Playground Games, Ninja Theory and Compulsion Games.

These developers will now publish their titles exclusively through Microsoft, which will help to bolster the console’s exclusives for the future.

Microsoft also revealed plans to build a Netflix-style streaming service for video games that promises to bring ‘console-quality gaming to any device’.

The company claims players will be able to stream blockbuster titles to their Xbox, laptop or smartphone.

Phil Spencer said: ‘Our cloud engineers are building a game streaming network to unlock console-quality gaming on any device.

‘We are dedicated to perfecting your experience everywhere you want to play – your Xbox, your PC and your phone.’

‘There has never been a more exciting time to be part of the gaming industry, with creators large and small showcasing incredible new games for the more than two billion players around the world,’ the Microsoft Executive President of Gaming said.

‘At Microsoft, we are committed to empowering gamers to play the games they want, with the people they want, where they want.’

Xbox’s event featured 18 exclusive games and 15 world premieres, including a first look at the brand new Fallout game, Fallout 76.

Xbox

@Xbox

50 games, 18 titles with exclusivity, and 15 world premieres.

Industry analyst Piers Harding-Rolls, from IHS Markit, said Xbox’s showcase was important in its battle with rival Sony and its PlayStation console.

‘Microsoft ended March 2018 with an Xbox One installed base of 39.1 million compared to 76.6 million for Sony’s PS4,’ he said.

‘While Xbox One X has sold well, Microsoft needed its E3 showcase to deliver on first-party studio output and its platform exclusives to reap the marketing benefits of the technical and power advantages of Xbox One X over the PS4 Pro.

‘The showcase did not disappoint, with a total of 18 exclusives revealed and on show, and the return of many fan favourites including Halo.

‘Based on this showing and other third-party announcements, it looks like early 2019 is going to be very crowded for game releases.’

The gaming announcements from E3 continue today, when Sony will hold its own showcase event to preview upcoming hardware and software for its PlayStation range (6pm PT, 9pm ET, 2am Tuesday 12 BST).

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