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Microsoft to keep staggering PC and Xbox 360 releases

No plans for simultaneous launches in future.

Microsoft Game Studios has said it will keep staggering PC and Xbox 360 releases so that desktop users have a reason to keep buying console titles.

Which is not to say the PC masterplan is any less important, argued MGS Europe business boss Peter Zetterberg - but given the platform choice in somewhere like Germany, then Xbox 360 sales would fall by the roadside.

"I would say that 90 per cent of the games that are pitched to us are on console. We're strongly perceived as a console publisher because we're the first-party publisher even though the Windows operating system is equally important to us," Zetterberg told GamesIndustry.biz.

"But in Germany for example, we want more gamers to buy our Xbox 360. If we launch a game that is on 360 and PC simultaneously, we basically shoot ourselves in the foot by allowing the German market to choose to play the PC version - because they are more likely to buy that than spend their money on the Xbox 360.

"If we launched a Halo game on PC and 360 in Germany simultaneously, 80 per cent of sales would be on the PC," he added.

Zetterberg also hinted that the future lies not just in projects with huge budgets, but in titles based around a free-to-play or browser-based model.

"We need to not only do the big budget, big production value, global titles like Gears of War, but we also need to go with titles like World of Goo or Crayon Physics. Those are games that are made with an almost anarchistic approach to a business model," said Zetterberg.

Head over to GamesIndustry.biz for the full Microsoft Game Studios Europe interview and plenty more about picking platforms and the genres to fit around them.

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Robert Purchese

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Bertie is a synonym for Eurogamer. Writes, podcasts, looks after the Supporter Programme. Talks a lot.

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