Cross-Buy Games Coming To Windows 10 And Xbox One

Written by Jon Sutton on Thu, Mar 5, 2015 3:15 PM
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One of the larger revelations to come out of the Game Developer’s Conference (GDC) last night was Xbox head honcho Phil Spencer taking to the stage to announce full cross-buy between Microsoft platforms. This means games developed for both Xbox One and PC will be available to play on both platforms for a single price.

It won’t be obligatory for devs to include this functionality, but we’ve no doubt it’ll be a popular choice. The first game to support this feature is Pinball FX 2, but it sounds as if Microsoft is planning a whole lot more, hinting at a number of Xbox One exclusives making the jump over to PC.

The service will be called Windows and Xbox Live, and it’s basically bringing all of Microsoft’s platforms together under a single umbrella, including Windows 10 PCs, Xbox One, tablets, and phones. Spencer showed off a version of Shovel Knight which Yacht Club claimed was ported in a single day, demonstrating just how easy it can be for devs to share content across the platforms.

Here at Microsoft, we share a commitment to making sure experiences across all devices are better than ever,” said Spencer. “That starts with making the development process easier by providing the tools and support our developers have asked for to reach billions of devices around the world. As we press forward on the journey toward the launch of Windows 10, we’ll continue working hand-in-hand with our developers to ensure that together we bring the best possible gaming experiences to gamers.

The service extends even to DLC and game saves, so you’ll have access to all of the same content across platforms, and be able to pick up where you left off by downloading a cloud save. Microsoft was coy on which titles will be cross-buy other than Pinball FX2 and Gigantic, but did reveal a number of other titles supporting cross-play between platforms, including #IDARB, Siegecraft Commander, and of course Fable Legends.

The more cynical among us would view this as Games For Windows Live mark 2, and it basically is. This is a walled garden approach similar to Apple’s App Store that ensures compatibility across all platforms, and pushes Windows 10 users to invest in Microsoft’s ecosystem. It’s a scenario such as this for which Valve created SteamOS in the first place, ensuring it isn’t locked out of future operating systems entirely by Microsoft. It’s got a long way to go to compete with the success of Steam, but the Windows and Xbox Live service is now a direct competitor.

Will you be tempted in by Microsoft's new Windows 10 store offerings? Is it on the right track with unifying its products, or would you prefer to see dedicated PC games?

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21:48 Mar-06-2015

And what about prices of games? Console games are quite more expansive then pc games...How they want to solve it?

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15:01 Mar-07-2015

you can guess xD

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17:14 Mar-07-2015

Pc games cost as much as console? :D And if you buy it for example on steam?...no crossbuy for you...:D that is my gues :D

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17:35 Mar-07-2015

no Steam, only Microsoft Store is my guess :P

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11:57 Mar-06-2015

Oh no...Windows Games Live is back O.O. I...I feel physically sick if its the exact same thing we got before.

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06:58 Mar-06-2015

Xbox one games coming to pc really makes the xbox one pointless.

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03:53 Mar-06-2015

Lets start a story chain, I'll start;
"You are out of Cloud Space! Upgrade your subscription now or we will…"

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07:11 Mar-06-2015

Take you out back and beat you with a...

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11:54 Mar-06-2015

Bag full of special offers for only....

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22:18 Mar-05-2015

I think this is a nice move. The only reason i buy games on steam is cus it has become the default drm method for most game. I actually dont really care which platform they use as drm, origin, steam, uplay.... its all the same to me.

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20:10 Mar-05-2015

So does this mean we can play the new Tomb Raider on PC??

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19:48 Mar-05-2015

I hop they make tomb raider rise of the tomb raider cross buy too =/

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17:28 Mar-05-2015

Wow... I can see the possible good & bad of this. Being able to buy a game once to play on all devices is awesome, but paying a sub for that option is not. Getting some console exclusives over on PC is awesome, but again not if a subscription is attached for PC users that currently don't have to pay any subs for Steam, GoG, ect... I am going to stay on the fence for this until we get more details.

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16:27 Mar-05-2015

Will this enable me to play Quantum break? If so then this is great

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17:45 Mar-05-2015

I really hope this will let us play Quantum Break on PC! I was really disappointed when I heard it was a Xbox One exclusive.

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16:19 Mar-05-2015

Question: Will we have to pay for Xbox live to cross platform play on PC? If so, No thank you Mr.Gates. If not, bring on Gears of War for PC:-)

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17:29 Mar-07-2015

good question


but i think it's windows live is free even if you cross buy the game and xbox live you'll still pay for it
OR
they'll drop the subscription on xbox live

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16:12 Mar-05-2015

Wait, so you buy a game for 10 or 20 dollars less on Steam and you install it one your XbOne free of charge? If every XBox owner did this, wouldn't that result in devs losing serious money?

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17:26 Mar-05-2015

Can't use Steam, you have to use the Windows and Xbox store. It's designed to combat Steam rather than work with it.

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18:16 Mar-05-2015

That makes more sense. Well, this doesn't concern me in any way but I'm still glad, I've always hated the idea of paying twice (or more) for the same game.

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16:10 Mar-05-2015

Now let's just hope Win10 is not based on monthly subscription

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19:29 Mar-05-2015

Bwaahahahahaha, I can see it now:


"Your Windows 10 subscription has expired. RENEW TODAY to continue using Windows."

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05:51 Mar-06-2015

If that's the case, I promise I will jump to either SteamOS or Ubuntu

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06:17 Mar-06-2015

or stick to windows 8.1 or 10 tech preview


or start a petition


but microsoft will never do that

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16:04 Mar-05-2015

They should call it Winbox Live

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15:51 Mar-05-2015

I really hope that the PC side of this isn't governed by Games For Windows Live. I for one, cannot use it. It would be a let down if it were.

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15:50 Mar-05-2015

I really like this only because ill be able to play with my friends (none of which have a gaming pc)

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15:31 Mar-05-2015

lol, so if game sucks you pay only once to get pissed off, cool =P

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15:20 Mar-05-2015

Hmmm... Most Interesting..

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16:15 Mar-05-2015

I would say very interesting, I wonder if this would enable us to totally skip buying an Xbox for the exclusives, but knowing how Microsoft is who knows...

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15:20 Mar-05-2015

I don´t think this will be a big succes because the most pc gamers (like me) want their games on steam not another drm from xbox, and also I don´t think allot pc gamers even have a xbox one. but for the xbox one gamers its maybe a nice feature, since they can play some of their games on pc.

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16:09 Mar-05-2015

we'll have to see. first of all there might not be invasive DRM like there was with games for windows live. secondly, the lure of cross-platform play might be enough to draw people to the service even anyway.

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17:43 Mar-05-2015

You do realise Steam is 100% DRM, right? Why do you think you get such good deals on steam?

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18:45 Mar-05-2015

I know steam is drm, but I mean I (and allot others) like steam, but don´t like to have allot different drm systems like uplay, gfwl, origin etc. and now this new one.

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04:10 Mar-07-2015

I fully agree with all of you. I enjoy Steam and try to buy all my games on Steam only because they have a good interface and the chances of them going down and me loosing my games is slim.

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04:14 Mar-07-2015

My biggest concern is that Microsoft will try to push this to the point of not letting Steam games to take advantage of DX12 or Windows 10. Knowing Microsoft, they may even make it so that Steam can't be installed/used on Windows 10. I would use SteamOS, but games like Battlefield and Assassin's Creed wouldn't transfer

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