Microsoft’s long-awaited xCloud game-streaming service officially launches tomorrow with more than 150 games. One of those games is Minecraft Dungeons, and Microsoft has just announced that developers Mojang Studios and Double Eleven are making it easier to play the game on the go by optimizing it for touch controls. This means that you can play the game on your Android phone or tablet without needing to hook up an external controller.
Pretty much all Xbox games that are part of xCloud were developed with the Xbox controller in mind, so Microsoft imagines most people will play them by clipping a controller to a smartphone. But in this case, Microsoft wanted the game to feel native to mobile, so it’ll have not only touch controls but also a redesigned UI better suited to a small screen. This should make it easier to navigate menus or inventories and the tiny text that could come along with it.
As for optimizing the gameplay for touch, Microsoft notes that moves players make the most (move, melee, ranged attack and dodge) are in the most “intuitive” places on the screen; the idea is that the whole experience will feel like the game was designed with mobile in mind rather than touch controls being an afterthought. Of course, we’ll need to play the game ourselves to judge how successful they were, but it’s a good sign to see Microsoft thinking about how to make games work as best they can when being played away from your console and TV.