Microsoft Gaming Chief Calls For Industry-Wide Game Preservation

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Axios: Microsoft's vice president of gaming, Phil Spencer, wants the gaming industry to work toward a common goal of keeping older games available to modern audiences through emulation, he tells Axios. Emulation allows modern hardware to simulate the functions of older hardware and run game files, or executables. "My hope (and I think I have to present it that way as of now) is as an industry we'd work on legal emulation that allowed modern hardware to run any (within reason) older executable allowing someone to play any game," he wrote in a direct message. Microsoft's newer consoles -- the Xbox Series and Xbox One -- run huge libraries of older Xbox 360 and original Xbox games using this technique. Emulators are most commonly used worldwide by fans, preservationists and pirates. They run games from the original Nintendo era to more recent PlayStations, but there is no consistent use of them by the industry. [...] An official industry emulation approach would require long-term online support to offer game files and to possibly check if the user has the right to access them. Spencer, whose own platform has some of these issues, still sees a path forward. "I think in the end, if we said, 'Hey, anybody should be able to buy any game, or own any game and continue to play,' that seems like a great North Star for us as an industry."

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