Last week we saw that Microsoft had confirmed a reduction in the commission that the company obtains from the income generated, through the Microsoft Store, for all games sold for PC, and also for micropayments and other transactions that are associated with this type of products. It was good news for the developers, and it became a movement that, as we told you at the time, brought the Redmond giant closer to the Epic Games Store.
After knowing this change of course, bells sounded that Microsoft could also apply that same reduction to the commission it obtains for the games sold for its Xbox consoles in general (Xbox One, Xbox One X, Xbox Series S and Xbox Series X ), but today we have learned, through Microsoft itself, that they do not plan to change, for the moment, the division of income that they maintain with the game publishers on their consoles. This means that this commission remains at 70% for them and 30% for those from Redmond.
There is no doubt that the Microsoft Store represents a very small part of the total market if we talk about global sales of PC video games. With this in mind, it is easy to understand why the company that Satya Nadella runs did not think twice when announcing this reduction in its commission per sale, which goes from 30% to 12%. If we talk about Xbox, things change, and in what way. This platform represents, in the two generations that it currently encompasses, a volume of games sold that is light years away from the sales of PC games through the Microsoft Store, and it does not take an expert to understand what that represents.
Reduce your commission from 30% to 12% in the Microsoft Store it can even be profitable for the Redmond company, and encourage more publishers and publishers to bring their most important games to that platform. By contrast, in the case of Xbox such a marked reduction would have a significant impact on Microsoft’s revenue, and there would be no such “compensation” effect for the arrival of a greater number of games. In short, not only is it not profitable, it would be detrimental to Microsoft. All in all, I can’t help but what would have happened if the company had taken this step, would Sony and Nintendo have followed? Probably not.
Microsoft bets on temporary exclusives
In another vein, the giant has also confirmed that he intends to maintain a policy of temporary exclusives to give Xbox a favorable treatment, and that the first “affected” will be STALKER 2, a title that will arrive first on Xbox Series S and Xbox Series X, and that three months later it will be available on other platforms. I must say that three months seems to me a much more reasonable time than the policy of waiting several years that Sony has been following.
After those three months, nothing would prevent the release of a version of the game for PS5, at least in theory. The PC version will arrive at the same time as the Xbox Series S and Xbox Series X, as the game developers themselves confirmed at the time. As for Xbox One and PS4, we can completely forget about a version for these consoles, since this would be something “impossible”.
I understand that for a console user, who is used to the fact that “the miracle of optimization” allows such incredible things as moving Cyberpunk 2077 on a mid-range hardware from 2013, to take a close and easy-to-understand example, talk about versions impossible It is a difficult pill to swallow, but in the end it is not difficult to understand.
The developers faced STALKER 2 as a new generation project, and they started with minimal resources that are not available in the previous generation consoles. Developing this game as a multiplatform title would have imposed very important sacrifices in very basic things, such as the breadth of the scenarios and the degree of detail of these, and in the end the project would not have been up to the task.