Phil Spencer Doesn’t Approve Of Console Exclusivity

Phil Spencer doesn't like console exclusives because they're too often used as weapons, according to a recent interview.

In a recent interview with Gamereactor, Xbox president Phil Spencer said that he doesn’t approve of console exclusivity, and the games that are often caught up in that situation. Microsoft has very few truly exclusive games themselves, most of them being available at least on PC, if not other consoles.

Spencer’s reasoning for why he doesn’t approve of exclusivity is because, while it might offer short-term benefits, console exclusivity eventually gets turned into a weapon or marketing tool to drive sales of those specific consoles. He’s not wrong, either.

The Playstation 4 drastically outsold the Xbox One not just because of its greater graphical power, but also the very high number of exclusive games developed for it. This bled into DLC as well; both Destiny and Destiny 2 each had to deal with Playstation 4-exclusive content intended to bring more players over to that version of the game.

Phil Spencer has previously said that his intention with his position is to help bring everyone together through gaming, hence the reason why Microsoft has been acquiring so many studios, mostly recently ZeniMax Media and through them, Bethesda.

Microsoft as a whole hasn’t been into the exclusivity market as much as Playstation has. They only have two truly exclusive franchises, being Gears of War and Halo, and even then in recent years both of those franchises have been moving to the PC.

Microsoft is also heavily investing in cross-platform play, especially between its Xbox consoles and PCs, and Phil Spencer says that it’s better in the long run to get as many people to play great games as possible, even if console wars try and get in the way.

Some games like this include Horizon Zero Dawn, which actually caught a significant amount of flak from Playstation 4 purists when it was announced the game would be getting ported to the PC. Hopefully one day console exclusives can disappear, but until then, advantages in the console wars depend both on graphics and who has the better games.

Hunter is senior news writer at He is a long time fan of strategy, RPG, and tabletop games. When he is not playing games, he likes to write about them.