Empowering Creators

Sarah Bond, CVP, Game Creator Experience & Ecosystem, shares how Microsoft is helping creators.

June 14, 2022
Sarah Bond on stage being interviewed

The last few years have brought more people into gaming than ever before. The role that games have continued to play in people's lives as we've been in and out of the pandemic is striking. At the same time, the reality that game development in this environment is more challenging than ever is there too. Our goal on the Gaming Ecosystem team is to drive innovation to help creators keep building great games and reaching players who will love them. We want gaming to be more accessible for players and creators.

Developers are the bedrock of the gaming industry. Every game starts with a vision - a spark of an idea. A team of people pour their heart and soul into crafting and publishing that game that we all get to experience and enjoy. And that's really what motivates us: helping creators bring their stories to life.

Games enable you to experience a perspective or a different point of view in a way that is deeply immersive and unlike any other form of media. That's why we believe it's so important to empower creators from all around the world to share their stories and perspectives through games. Those games, in turn, can broaden our perceptions, help us think differently, and entertain us in new and innovative ways. Games can represent everyone when creators represent everyone. 

To make that vision a reality, we're continuing to expand the set of developers who we're engaging with and bringing them into the Xbox ecosystem. We've more than doubled the number of developers that are making games for Xbox, and we saw lots of those games during Sunday's Xbox & Bethesda Games Showcase and during today's Extended session. It's been so amazing to see, and we're so proud to have been able to help. 

When we think about how we can help to make game creators successful – it's about three things:

  • Communities: Creating the communities excited to play their games. Project Moorcroft, which we announced last week, is a great example of how we're building that community. It will make it possible for a developer to take a piece of their game, release it into Game Pass, generate excitement for what's coming, and get really valuable feedback as they're tuning and preparing their game for launch. We're setting up the program so that the developers get financial compensation for the extra work, so being in the program benefits them financially in addition to providing feedback.
  • Tools: We're investing in tools to make it easier to create games. For instance, the Azure Game Developer Virtual Machine. We understand the challenges of working in today's distributed development world. So, we pulled together all of the standard tools developers need, including Unreal, Parsec, Perforce, Teradici, and Incredibuild, all into one VM that the team can access. This can save a ton of time for teams that are working in a distributed environment, allowing them to focus on the things that make a game delightful and fun to play.
  • Choice: We give creators multiple paths and options to have economic and financial success. By having different options around how they choose to monetize, we believe it enables creative freedom. And the more we drive and enable innovation here, the cooler and more diverse games we'll all be able to experience. 

Our mission in Xbox is to bring the joy and community of gaming to everyone on the planet. As we continue to push gaming into the future, we're investing in Xbox as a platform to bring players together and to connect them with all of the world's creators. And to empower creators to build a shared understanding, a shared community, and shared experiences that otherwise wouldn't exist. 

Watch the Xbox Games Showcase Extended video here.