Phil Spencer insists games will be released on Xbox Series X and S despite Baldur’s Gate 3 not showing up

Xbox President Phil Spencer has acknowledged the fact that releasing Steam megahit Baldur’s Gate 3 on PlayStation 5 before Xbox Series X and S isn’t a great situation for Microsoft, but he remains committed to releasing games on both the X and S.

Larian’s sprawling role-playing game Baldur’s Gate 3 launched on PC in August and will launch on PS5 in early September, but the Xbox Series X and S version have no release date. There is no exclusive deal between Larian and Sony. instead of, Larian struggles to get it Baldur’s Gate 3’s two-player split-screen co-op works well enough on the less powerful but cheaper Xbox Series S, and Microsoft’s policy mandating equal gameplay features across Xbox Series X and S means Larian can’t launch Baldur’s Gate 3 on any Xbox console Chain control until you improve split-S screen co-op play to the point where you reach the quality bar you need to keep players satisfied. As IGN revealed in June, Microsoft has sent engineers to help Larian work around this issue, but the result is that Baldur’s Gate 3 may not launch on Xbox until the end of 2023, or even 2024.

Baldur’s Gate 3 isn’t the only game with split-screen issues on Xbox. microsoft private studio, 343, The split screen from last year’s ill-fated Halo Infinite game has been canceled. Turn 10’s Forza Motorsport won’t have a split screen at launch either.

The situation with Baldur’s Gate 3 on Xbox Series X and S highlights a severe headache for Microsoft. As more and more developers look to get the most out of the power of PS5 and Xbox Series X, will they have to release a cross-platform version of their games on the S? Or, in extreme cases like Larian’s, will Xbox releases be shut down entirely?

So is it time for Microsoft to let studios only release their games on Xbox Series X? Or is it perhaps relaxing the parity requirement? That’s exactly what IGN asked Xbox head Phil Spencer at gamescom 2023. Here’s what he had to say in response:

“The decision to split screen or not is a creative decision, a development decision,” said Spencer. So, if we think about Forza, it has nothing to do with what kind of hardware they have on S and X, just where they wanted to focus their time.

“Obviously we’re seeing data in terms of how many people play local co-op for games. I love local co-op. Salute to Vampire Survivors who just launched it. Awesome. But there’s also just, let’s go where to play, in terms of where we’re going to focus our resources Our development.

“In terms of the two platforms, I want to release games on both platforms (X and S). There are differences in features between the platforms. We have the ability to handle that and how it works. It’s up to the teams to choose to focus their time and effort. We’re here to support them and what they want to do. We want Ensure that games when released on competitive platforms also launch on Xbox.

“So we will learn from this experience as well because we don’t like it. But I don’t think that’s the fatal flaw in the system. It’s the partners that prioritize their time, we listen to them and we’re a good partner to them. And you see some great games doing a great job across S and X. “Diablo looks great, Starfield looks great. Forza looks great in both. I want to make sure that console games are available to more people, and we think the price point of the console is a very important part of that.”

“I will say that I think some of the discussion in the community may not have come from us or the developers. It was about building the community, well, this happened and then that happened, so it should be about this. And I think we can do more to add clarity to Where we are already, and I look forward to doing so.

“We will learn from this experience too because we don’t like it.

Then, specifically, Baldur’s Gate 3 developer Larian, Spencer added: “It’s a great game. … I think they said it would ship by the end of the year. I think that’s their word for it in terms of what they said. But together we have to come up with clarity to set some expectations for Xbox fans, and I look forward to doing that.

It very much seems like Spencer wants the studios to keep releasing their games across the Xbox Series X and S, which means developers will have to make increasingly difficult decisions about whether or not annoying features, like split-screen, should be in their games. For Larian, split-screen co-op play is an essential part of Baldur’s Gate 3’s offering, as it was in her previous games in the Divinity: Original Sin series.

If you need to catch up, here’s everything announced at Gamescom’s Opening Night Live 2023.

Wesley is the UK News Editor for IGN. You can find him on Twitter at @wyp100. You can contact Wesley at or confidentially at

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