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Microsoft avoids digital downloads on retail release day

The platform holder believes that retail should be the focus on day one

Microsoft is not looking to have simultaneous releases at retail and on Xbox Live, according to Xbox Live UK product manager Pav Bhardwaj. Unlike its rival Sony - who has embraced selling games on the PlayStation Network at the same time as the retail release - Microsoft believes retail is where its primary focus should stay.

"We don't do Games on Demand on day one, we focus on boxed retail for day one," Bhardwaj told MCV. "That's where our focus has always been and will remain that way for the foreseeable future."

"We release a game roughly six months after it arrives at retail at full ERP. That's our model and we'll be sticking to that. It's a successful model, so why change something you don't need to?"

According to Bhardwaj, consumers still have a choice in where they purchase their game.

"The customer has the choice of going to retail on day one if they really want to buy a particular title, or to wait a couple of months and buy it full price from the Xbox Live marketplace. It's a successful part of our business, we're very pleased with the growth and it continues to do really well. Clearly there's an audience out there who are happy to purchase a product at full ERP six or so months after [its retail release]," he said.

Namco Bandai recently announced a switch over to simultaneous releases, with one of its first titles under the new system being the PlayStation 3-exclusive One Piece: Pirate Warriors.

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Mike Williams avatar

Mike Williams

Reviews Editor, USgamer

M.H. Williams is new to the journalism game, but he's been a gamer since the NES first graced American shores. Third-person action-adventure games are his personal poison: Uncharted, Infamous, and Assassin's Creed just to name a few. If you see him around a convention, he's not hard to spot: Black guy, glasses, and a tie.