This year was certainly an odd but welcoming one in gaming. As barriers between platforms lower bit by bit, we saw Xbox and Nintendo collaborate like never before. With Microsoft’s backing, Studio MDHR’s Cuphead saw a surprise port to the Switch, with Xbox Live support to follow. Banjo & Kazooie — a now-Microsoft IP since their acquisition of Rare — make a historical return to Nintendo as Super Smash Bros. Ultimate‘s next DLC fighters. All signs point to this partnership deepening, as Xbox Game Studios is mulling over more multiplatform games going forward.
More Xbox titles for the Switch?
Xbox Game Studios’ corporate vice-president Matt Booty recently joined the GI Show podcast to discuss the future of Xbox. In the interview, Booty hints at Xbox Game Studios widening their scope beyond the boundaries of Xbox and PC. I wouldn’t expect any major Microsoft IPs like Halo or Gears of War, however, as Booty emphasizes that it will be on a case-by-case basis by franchise:
“In other words, is it a kind of game where it would benefit from the network effect of being on a bunch of different platforms, or is it a game where we can best support it by putting resources and making sure that our platforms, things like Xcloud and Game Pass and Xbox Live, are really leaning in to support the game?”
Cuphead is far from the first Microsoft-backed IP to hit Nintendo consoles. The ever-popular Minecraft exists on nearly every platform under the sun, including 3DS and Wii U, even after Microsoft’s acquisition of Mojang. Ninja Theory and Obsidian Entertainment, both joining the Xbox Game Studios family last year, saw ports of Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice and The Outer Worlds on other platforms, including the Nintendo Switch. There is also Super Lucky’s Tale by Playful Corp., which Microsoft had published for Xbox One in 2017; the developer is now publishing an expanded version of the game, New Super Lucky’s Tale, releasing on the Switch this November.
I’m very curious to see which other Microsoft IP could make the switch to Switch in the future. Personally, I’m hoping for some Rare Replay action myself, but what about you? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!