Should Microsoft Go Third Party?

Alex S. from Link-Cable writes: "When you take a look at the three major hardware manufacturers currently competing in the game’s industry, the one most likely to begin releasing their titles on other platforms has suddenly become, the house that Gates built – Microsoft. They have already committed to releasing all of their titles on PC, they are open to having one of their biggest franchises, Minecraft available for cross-platform on nearly every system that its available for and just last week Phil Spencer, the head of the Xbox Division said that a streaming service of Xbox games could be available within the next three years on a number of platforms, including rivals’ Sony and Nintendo’s systems. All of this begs the question – should Microsoft go third-party?"

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Community66d ago
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Ghost_of_Tsushima67d ago (Edited 67d ago )

After Phil’s ability to start purchasing developers and building 1st party studios? I highly doubt this ever will happen.

maybelovehate67d ago

Why not? To me it is even more reason. Games and services make the real money, not hardware

sammarshall10267d ago

I'd rather have Nintendo go 3rd party then I can finally play Mario again

ULTp0ltergeist66d ago

Yup, service platforms are showing larger profit margins and anyone thinking hardware makes the profit it doesn't. Probably indirectly by having a larger base but Microsoft can singlehandedly increase that by going the third party for most of their future titles.

Sunny_D66d ago


You know you could always buy the system Mario is currently on right?

yomfweeee66d ago

Sony gets a cut of every PS game sold. So they don't profit on hardware, they do profit on everything that happens on the hardware.

Anyone who says hardware doesn't matter doesn't have a brain.

vfl52366d ago

Hardware does make the real money because it allows them to make money on 3rd party games that are published on their console. And they make money on Xbox Live, advertisements, movies sold, and other things.

maybelovehate66d ago

@The People Saying Hardware Makes Money: Not really it is the stores/services for the console that are making the money. Sony gets a cut of the sales through their store. The idea is that they could have stores and services on multiple devices. Same for MS, Steam, Nintendo etc. Of course this would mean major competition though and would drive prices down which would be a major win for consumers.

xHeavYx66d ago

I don't think going 3rd party is a good idea. Let's say MS goes 3rd party and Sony doesn't. Then why would I buy an Xbox when I can play all the games on a Playstation device? This would diminish hardware sales for MS and people would buy more Playstation consoles.

Sitdown66d ago

And one of their services is Xbox live, which is attached to their hardware.

sammarshall10266d ago

@SunnyD Mario games are the only Nintendo games I want to play but I still wouldn't buy a system just to play those

maybelovehate66d ago

@people: Xbox Live is on PC, MAC, Mobile, Xbox and other platforms. The only reason it isn't on PS is because Sony won't allow it.

tehpees366d ago


There is more to this than just Mario though. Nintendo are very consumer friendly and we have benefits by them remaining in hardware. Microsoft have virtually been nothing but bad news since they got here.

Every current anti-consumer practice is because of them. They charged for online so Sony and Nintendo did it. They are pushing games as a service so others are trying it. They started the DLC concept and we know whats happened with that.

People need to stop thinking about playing their game on their system of choice and remember what the company currently does or did to benefit us. Nintendo make fantastic dedicated handhelds and are the only ones stopping us from being forced to play smart phones for handheld games so they can stay. Microsoft has been greedy from the get go therefore I say hand Xbox to somebody else who will make single player games and stop the anti-consumer BS they've brought on through the years

_-EDMIX-_66d ago (Edited 66d ago )

@samm-I think it's possible for either company to go multi-platform but I believe it's actually more likely will happen to Nintendo.

Microsoft still sells a healthy amount of Hardware each generation but I believe it is Nintendo that sells a ridiculous amount of software every generation and would probably make more sense to go multi-platform.

Software makes more money than Hardware.

@sunny-well the point is likely this person doesn't want to buy one system for over $300 to play one game.

I feel Nintendo would probably do the best as a third-party publisher than Microsoft.

I mean considered Nintendo's no longer even making two systems anymore they're just producing one portable with the switch... That is enough to tell you that making Hardware that people are not buying was causing the company Financial strain and they could not afford to keep releasing two pieces of Hardware people were not buying.

Instead they are now releasing one portable...

Keep in mind that is something many of you kept saying wasn't going to happen and I predicted this well over a year close to two years ago.

So don't be surprised if this company goes software-only especially if it means they could gain a over 300 million install base without having to spend even one cent on Hardware.

Trust me if Nintendo is investing money in the mobile market they're already spending money to see how they would perform as a third-party the fact that they're even only making one system instead of 2 is very much entertaining the idea of if they could make money releasing less Hardware.

Nintendo is not a stupid company trust me these guys have a contingency plan for if they're unable to move a specific amount of software and I believe it likely leads to them going multiplatform.

Nintendo makes up the money from selling software not Hardware that is where the real money is in gaming.

Last time I checked no other Mario Kart has been able to successfully sell 30 million...

Not on 3DS not on Wii U and it's very much likely not going to happen on the switch so do you really believe they're going to just ignore that multiple people exist elsewhere that will buy their game? Especially when PlayStation Microsoft and PC are always continuously selling more and have larger install base?

dcbronco66d ago

The old days when hardware sold at a loss the first 6 months to a year are gone. They break even or make a small profit on hardware from day one. X maybe taking a slight loss but probably not. But software and services is and has always been the money. But the fanboys who so badly want to see Xbox go will post Xbox should go third party. But that is a telling statement. See, if you believe Xbox should go third party you are admitting Microsoft has viable exclusives. So if you just jumped out there to take a shot at anything Microsoft you just made a fool of yourself. Because exclusives worth going third party with means you actually have exclusives. Go to the corner. Never speak again.

agent453266d ago

Agreed, hardware = factory burden costs not revenue

66d ago
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Toby_198166d ago (Edited 66d ago )

He said that years ago too if I remember correctly

thatguyhayat66d ago

He did. Various others have said the same even during the 360 days. Its all talk

OffRoadKing66d ago

If he's built these supposed first party studio's than where are the games, beside Halo, Forza, Gears?

jlove4life66d ago

Same phil who at e3 when x1 dropped said 1 billion dollars was going to be used for new studios how did that work out

Xb1ps466d ago

Yea sure.. why not right after they just launched a console, sounds like a brilliant idea.. genius! /s

_-EDMIX-_66d ago

Well technically speaking Microsoft is already third-party, there already releasing games on multiple systems.

Xerneas66d ago (Edited 66d ago )

We've heard this before

"Should Nintendo go third party?"

"Nintendo might go third party"

"Nintendo will go third party"

"The GameCube will be Nintendo's last system"

"The Wii will be Nintendo's last system"

"The Wii U will be Nintendo's last system finally once and for all"

"The Switch will fail on release"

"Sales for the Switch will die off after the first month"

"After Christmas nobody will buy a Switch"

"The Switch sales will drop like flies in 2 years time"

How did that go?

"Nobody can afford a $500 mid gen upgrade. The Xbox One X is dead on arrival."

How did that go?

Click bait. Thank the heavens nobody has to give this site any hits to know it's just the propaganda machine working as advertised, covered by a lifetime warranty.

+ Show (4) more repliesLast reply 66d ago
maybelovehate67d ago

I do think they will head in that direction and honestly I love it. The idea of exclusives is kind of silly to me in today's programming world where architectures are almost identical. The more people who can buy your games the merrier and more profitable. And if they want to keep making hardware that is also fine, just make sure it is compelling enough that users will choose that hardware over others to play the game.

darthv7266d ago

in a perfect world, these gaming systems would be nothing more than universal players (like DVD and Bluray) that come with a controller. The companies makes their games in such a way that one disc fits all so no matter if you put it into a Sony, JVC, MS, Sanyo, Samsung or Nintendo... they all play the same.

3DO tried that back in the day but they wanted way to much $$ for licensing fees which meant that hardware companies had to sell their systems for more than they should because they dont get any $$ from software sales unlike Sony, Nintendo and MS. Which usually sell their hardware at a loss (to some extent) but make the difference up in software and fees.

Now maybe we will evolve to that point on one disc fits all. Especially in the current situation of both PS4 and XBO are more alike than different so why not have Activision make one disc that works on both???? These things are like PC's and in the PC world one disc is designed to work on varying configurations of hardware.

maybelovehate66d ago

That would be ideal. Not just no exclusives, but Play Anywhere on all games. It is a nice dream indeed

mcstorm66d ago

Yep spot on but Microsoft are making windows/Xbox closer and I see them putting the two together soon to which in a way is great for the industry imo

rainslacker66d ago

While in a perfect world that may be the case, the bigger issue is, who decides what the hardware will be? Too many hands in the pot each having their own interest in what the hardware will provide to really come to a consensus on what the hardware will offer.

With movies, you have the content makers who decide this, and they all work through a consortium of hardware makers to come to a conclusion. The hardware itself doesn't offer up much beyond the ability to play such content in the way the content providers agree to.

This isn't going to be so easy on consoles, as there are lots of other services which cause the making of hardware to be profitable. On top of that, each company has it's own ecosystem which they want to push over the other, and it's hard to see any of them giving up that in order to make things more fluid for the consumer.

On top of that, it means that the actual improvements to consoles and the services which they provide could stagnate, as many of the things we see now do come about from competition, or at least get better through said competition.

Last but not least, even if we say the big 3 come to some form of consensus, it doesn't mean that another company comes along to say they have a better way, and potentially threatening the conglomerate....particularly if the big one starts to stagnate. If the bigger market becomes destabilized because of a newcomer, then it could be much worse than just one company having to fight harder for market share, and could lead to a more monopolistic industry.

InTheLab66d ago

I don't think you understand the nature of console gaming....

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Sitdown66d ago

Wait, so we have been hearing that the Xbox has no games, but now they would go third party and release the very thing that we have been told they don't have? Geeez, come on people, stick to one line of reasoning.

trooper_66d ago

How hard is it for Microsoft to deliver true first party exclusives?

rainslacker66d ago (Edited 66d ago )

I think the question is answered by the fact that MS current track seems to profit more off the licensing of other publishers work, than off their own output.

However, at the same time, GaaS does do better when on more platforms. GaaS as a general rule is profitable based on user base, and the higher the user base, the more chance people spend money.

MS gave away Windows 10 for a long time because of this very principal, because they see companies like Apple and Google making money hand over fist. Not because they're making an OS, but because they have an outlet to sell other people's work and make money on it. There is less reason to continuously improve the OS with this model, than their old paradigm which can be easily threatened as people shift their computing habits.

The only reason I could see MS going third party is if they were somehow able to have their services be a major part of how the consumer buys their games, so they can continue to make money off it. Since I don't see that happening on PS or Nintendo consoles, MS is likely to continue to make hardware. At most, I can see MS going to a licensing model, where they don't make the actual hardware, but provide a baseline spec for other hardware makers to follow, on which, their software and services would be the primary way to purchase products. I'm not sure this would be that beneficial to the hardware makers though, and things like 3DO and Steambox have shown that it's not really something that takes off, so MS would have to find a way to make it appealing.

PhoenixUp67d ago

It’d be ridiculous for Microsoft to invest billions into the Xbox brand only to later abandon it to become exclusively a third party publisher again

sarozuc66d ago

I quit working at shoprite and now I make $35h - $ I'm working online! My work didn't exactly make me happy so I decided to take a chance on something new… after 4 years it was so hard to quit my day job but now I couldn't be happier. Heres what I do, •••••••••>>

HyperMouse66d ago

eat shit spamming ass hat...dont take that wrong

Tazzy66d ago

It was ridiculous for them to invest in Zune and the Windows phone to and where did that get them?? Zune is gone and the Windows phone is going to end up the same way soon enough. The Xbox brand will either be only for PC or for all platforms in the future.

The_Sage66d ago

It did happen with Sega, Phoenix.

PhoenixUp66d ago

@ Tazzy

Neither of those devices had anywhere near the success that the Xbox brand has had, so not really comparable.

@ Sage

Sega was going bankrupt when they exited the hardware market. Microsoft is suffering no such thing.

The_Sage65d ago

I don't think Microsoft is going to exit the console space anytime soon, but... If the the console hardware is determined to be non profitable, they could shut it down. The board of directors will not continue to fund projects that are not bringing a positive return.

To be clear, I'm not saying that this is happening, just that it is not an impossibility to no longer fund a product line that is no longer profitable. It's like Harley Davidson no longer building golf carts. The company is fine, but the decision was made to stop the golf cart division. This can happen to any product from any company. No more beanie babys, thank God.

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crazychris412467d ago

Why would they?? They are making a ton of money and that's all they care about.

Xb1ps466d ago

Because apparently you can only be successful if you’re number one, if you’re not number one there is no way you can be making a ton of money.../s

FallenAngel198467d ago

I don’t see Microsoft putting their games on PlayStation when the reason they entered the hardware market in the first place was because they felt PlayStation’s growing influence was a threat to PC.

It’s as ridiculous an idea as Sony putting their first party titles on Nintendo consoles. When these corporations invest billions into cultivating a brand that spreads their company’s influence in consumers lives, they don’t simply turn back into a third party publisher.

Araragifeels 66d ago

Microsoft only entered the console market because Sony refused to work with them, according to a former Microsoft exec.

Xb1ps466d ago

And Sony only entered because Nintendo didn’t want to work with them..

Araragifeels 66d ago

@Xb1ps4 Objection! Sony only enter the console wars because in 1988 where it was originally a joint project between Nintendo and Sony. Sony and Nintendo were prepared to partner on a CD-ROM drive for the SNES. Things went sour. The deal fell apart. Eventually, Sony President Ohga decided to retain the project after being reminded by Kutaragi of the humiliation he suffered from Nintendo. So Sony joined because they were humiliated and backstab.

Xb1ps466d ago (Edited 66d ago )

How’s that an objection? Lmfao!

Did Sony try to partner with Nintendo? Yes...

Did the plan follow through? No...

Why? Because Nintendo didn’t want to..

And now we have the....... PlayStation.. regardless of who’s feelings was hurt..

FallenAngel198466d ago

And you know what Microsoft wanted to work with Sony right? For PlayStation to help spread Windows into the living rooms of consumers

Tazzy66d ago

Minecraft is an Xbox game and its on Playstation and Nintendo consoles already I don't see why they won't put their games on everything and make a ton of money from it.

FallenAngel198466d ago

Minecraft was on PlayStation systems before Microsoft bought Mojang. Of course they’re not going to pull the game from those devices when it already proved to be so lucrative.

So poor example. They have no reason to go third party. Hell Nintendo had more reasons to go third party and they still stuck into the hardware market

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