Microsoft's Phil Spencer is getting more involved with what franchises feature in Games with Gold, but the Xbox executive downplayed comparisons with Sony's PlayStation Plus service. Polygon reports that at his SXSW panel, Spencer reiterated there's no restraint over playing games given away by the Xbox service when a Gold subscription ends.
Responding to feedback that Games with Gold offerings are often older than Plus games, Spencer told the SXSW audience, "One of our issues with Games with Gold - not 'issues,' but differences between the other system we get compared to, is the fact that with Games with Gold, you get to keep that game, regardless of whether you continue to subscribe.
"And the business around Games with Gold, for us, is just fundamentally different from some of the other programs that are out there, which does put a different financial picture on a - you're gonna go buy a game that's brand new, the cost of putting that in, just to be kind of blunt about it."
Microsoft launched Games with Gold last summer to provide Gold subscribers with two free Xbox 360 games each month, and the program is due on Xbox One sometime this year. However, users have drawn inevitable comparisons to greater number of games offered on Plus, and how they're often fairly new releases such as Tomb Raider on PS3 this month.
"That said," Spencer continued, "I have been sitting down monthly now with that team - some of the earlier months were already programmed - and playing a more active role in picking franchises that show up in Games with Gold, and I think you'll see at least something that feels, at least, more true to what I think Games with Gold should look like with the constraints that are there."