Mike Ybarra talks about throwing Microsoft’s numerous resources behind the battle royale title.
Bluehole’s PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds has been one of the biggest surprise hits of the year. Not only has it sold millions of copies despite still being in Steam Early Access but its concurrent player numbers have been fantastic. It’s the first non-Valve game in a long while that actually topped the charts in terms of peak concurrent users.
With the game coming to Xbox One, Microsoft VP of Xbox and Windows gaming Mike Ybarra told VG247 believes that the company is capable of making the game even more successful by putting so many resources behind it. It was recently confirmed that Microsoft would be publishing PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds for Xbox One, though it wasn’t confirmed if the game would be exclusive to the console.
“I think that developers come to us for help making their game successful. So games like PUBG and many others…with us announcing we’re publishing the title that opens up marketing, it opens up a large portion of my team, the Advanced Technology Group, that’ll work directly with Bluehole on PUBG to optimize it and bring it to Xbox as fast as possible.”
For Ybarra, Xbox and Windows have been helping various studios reach more players. Minecraft was given as an example of a game that started with unlimited potential and eventually grew into something much bigger thanks to Microsoft’s resources behind it.
“I think for us, we’re just trying to…Xbox has always been a platform to enable developers to be successful. When someone comes to us and asks how we can come together to do that, we’re open to all kinds of ideas there.
“The majority if not all of those scenarios are exactly that – a developer who has a hit on their hands. Sometimes they don’t even know – look at Minecraft. Notch released it, went on vacation, thought he was going to come back and work in a fast food place and then…he’s never working again. We want to work with them and try to make them as successful as we possibly can.”
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds players have a ton of other things to look forward to besides an Xbox One release, which will occur via the Game Preview program by 2017 end. There’s a new desert map being added and the usual monthly updates.