Microsoft Unviels Answer to Steam Early Access – Xbox One Only Of Course
Samuel Wan / 2 years ago
Microsoft has announced its answer to Steam’s Early Access Program at E3 today. Called Xbox Game Preview, it will allow developers to release unfinished versions of their game to users before the official launch. It will allow Xbox One users to sample, and more or less beta test for the game before regular folks can.
While the feature will launch for all users later this year, those in the Xbox One dashboard preview program can start accessing the feature today and download Elite: Dangerous and The Long Dark. At the same time the feature launches for the rest of the users, DayZ will also become available through Xbox Game Preview.
In addition to allowing users to purchase and play unfinished games, Microsoft has also added in the ability to try a demo of the game. This goes beyond what Steam currently offers as it does a better job of allowing gamers to know the state of the game before shelling out their hard-earned cash. Hopefully, this demo option will extend to finished games as well as Microsoft has more control over the platform than say PC developers normally do.
It’s great in some ways that early development programs are expanding. It allows players a chance to provide critical feedback and being paid entry, ensures that only those with an interest in the game weigh in, catering more to the fan base. On the other hand, games could also change dramatically, potentially alienating those who bought in earlier. With both Steam and Microsoft having embraced the idea, eyes will now be on Sony to see if they’ll launch a similar feature soon, given their heavy indie focus.