Old books are easy to read, old music is easy to listen to, and even old movies and TV shows are easy to watch, whenever you can find them. Old video games are a different matter. Leaving aside the challenges of putting them in your hands in the first place, changing technology can make them virtually impossible to run. Think, for example, of the end of Flash, which threatened the existence of thousands of games that were only saved at the last minute.
This possible loss of video game history is something the Xbox boss, Phil Spencer, thinks. “I wish that, as an industry, we come together and help preserve the history of the game, so that we don’t lose the ability to go back,” he said during a new interview with Kinda Funny.
"I think about that Paley Center made for television. Paley, at first, saw that the television industry was preparing to literally throw the tapes that made these old TV shows and said, “Hey, I want to file them because at some point someone will want to go back and watch Ed Sullivan's show or something, and these things shouldn't be thrown away. " As an industry, I would love for us to come together to help preserve the history of our industry, so that we don't lose access to some of the things that have brought us to where we are today. "
Fans of committed retro games have a fondness for old computers, dark consoles, and “real” copies of games in boxes, with manuals, registration cards, and terry cloths. But to have broader considerations about game preservation, Spencer believes that cloud games can play a much bigger role, as it eliminates the need to invest in old hardware or discover emulators.
In a similar vein, Spencer said newer versions benefit from online services like Xbox Live and Game Pass, not just for preservation purposes, but as a way to chart possible futures they might not otherwise get. .
"Seeing more people playing something like Prey, or Dishonored, or going back to Fable, you can talk about these games and, for us, as a creative organization and we see what people are interested in, it gives us more data to think about things we could pick up and move forward with new ideas and new equipment that might want to do it, ”he said.
"Game Pass has certainly been a fantastic source. It was amazing when Bethesda came in and we were able to put so many of the 'old new' or 'new old' games into Game Pass and come back with the legacy that we have of some of the IP addresses. Even thinking about things like Rare Replay was a very interesting thing for us to do and let people go and experience some of the old weird IPs. "
Microsoft will continue to do things like that, Spencer added, because the Xbox Game Pass business model makes it viable. "It doesn't have to be a GAAS [game as a service] version of a game," he said. "It can only be, go, this game is there and people enjoy it in the service."
Below is Kinda Funny's full interview with Phil Spencer.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5VPMMMTOUWw [/ embed]