Microsoft seems to be working towards a greater harmony between its gaming console, the Xbox One, and Windows. Yes, you read the title right, in light of some recent development, it appears that the line between Console, in this case, Xbox, and PC gaming is becoming increasingly thin. Playing Xbox Games on PC does not look as far fetched anymore and here is why.
It is no surprise that Microsoft, for the past few years, has been pushing for a more streamlined approach when it comes to gaming on two of its biggest platforms- Windows and Xbox One. This pursuit has finally led the company to bring PC and Xbox gaming to a point where you will be able to play Xbox One games on a Windows PC.
You Will Be Able To Play Xbox Games on PC Soon Thanks To Microsoft’s New Efforts
It all began last year when Microsoft decided that it would offer State of decay as a free-to-play game with Windows build no. 18334. The announcement was made on Windows Insider blog where in addition to the game they also announced the arrival of some mysterious new technology to Windows 10, however, not much detail was shared.
People didn’t think much of it back then but now the pieces have been slowly put together. it turns out that Microsoft is planning on merging Windows and Xbox gaming in such a way whereby Xbox One games would be playable on PC.
You see, the state of decay game, when downloaded on windows, does not download from Microsoft store, serverdl.microsoft.com, which is what one would expect. Instead, the game downloads from a different source- assets1.xboxlive.com.
This gives the impression that instead of relying on a PC port, Microsoft is going to equip windows with all the essential services required by Xbox One to run its games natively on PC. This is the mysterious technology that Microsoft had hinted at last year in the Windows Insider Blog.
This may sound like a far fetched theory but there is more evidence. When you download the state of decay installer on Windows, after extracting it, you would come across .xvc file format. If this does not ring any bells then think back to 2013 when Microsoft had just released Xbox One. The .xvc file format was introduced back then specifically for Xbox One games.
If you are still not convinced, you can actually install this file format now using PowerShell in your Windows 10. Moreover, upon installing state of decay, you are prompted to do a fresh install of DirectX dependencies to your system’s directory. Image attached below.
All of this can be reconciled under Microsoft’s GameCore strategy. Gamecore is aimed towards bringing Xbox and PC gaming as close together as possible. At the core of this strategy lies the clever system whereby Xbox games and PC games would be based around the same assets enabling Xbox games to run on PC without the need of a complete redo. This does make sense considering that the current gen of consoles is more like PCs than the ones before it.
Furthermore, there seems to be a new gaming service app from Microsoft that installs xvdd.sys and gameflt.sys drivers. These drivers, XVD Disk Driver, and Gaming Filter Driver respectively, are found to have in them xsapi.dll (Durango Storage API) and XCrdApi.dll (Durango XCRDAPI) files. Durango was the codename for Xbox One.
Knowing all this, it can be easily deduced that playing Xbox Games on PC in the near future is not out of the question but instead a likelihood. This is indeed a big leap for both Microsoft and game developers who will save immense time and resources by being able to create a single game for both Xbox and PC in the future.
Let me know in the comments below what you make of all this. Are you excited about the merger between PC and Xbox Gaming?