Having updated Xbox.com for Xbox 360 gamers, Microsoft is readying a relaunch of their Games for Windows Marketplace online portal for PC gamers. The gaming on-demand online distribution site “will offer PC gamers a robust lineup of games they love, easier navigation and purchase, and recurring specials such as Deal of the Week.” The new streamlined experience promises fewer clicks to purchase and download games and better search functionality. The Marketplace will launch with a portfolio of 100 “top-quality titles” including Fable: The Lost Chapters from Microsoft and Grand Theft Auto III from Rockstar. As long as you’ve got a Windows Live ID (that emcompasses Windows Live, Xbox LIVE, Games for Windows – LIVE and Zune accounts) you will have access to the store and all that it offers. Microsoft Points are accepted as currency. Expect the site to undergo core and aesthetic changes November 15. In a recent interview with Kotaku, Microsoft’s Peter Orullian says that the company is “doubling down” on PC gaming”, so you can expect the revamp of the Marketplace the beginning of a chain of events in the PC gaming realm as far as Microsoft is concerned. Better Windows/Xbox 360/Windows Phone 7 integration? Fingers crossed. PR after the break.
New Games for Windows Marketplace makes buying great PC games easier than ever.
REDMOND, Wash. – Oct. 22, 2010 – Microsoft Corp. today announced the Games for Windows Marketplace, a new online PC games store that combines the convenience of the Web with the power of Games on Demand online distribution. Launching Nov. 15, the Games for Windows Marketplace will offer PC gamers a robust lineup of games they love, easier navigation and purchase, and recurring specials such as Deal of the Week.
“With Games for Windows Marketplace, we set out to create a digital store built for PC gamers end-to-end,” said Kevin Unangst, senior global director, PC and Mobile Gaming, at Microsoft. “And by integrating with our existing Xbox LIVE and Windows Live services, we’ve made it easier than ever for millions of gamers to see for themselves how easy buying PC games can be.”
A Streamlined Experience
Built from the ground up for convenience and performance, the Games for Windows Marketplace (http://www.gamesforwindows.com) will remove the barriers between gamers and the games they love by offering the following:
Online access, anywhere. Optimized for speed, the store allows for ultra-fast downloads; this means fewer clicks to purchase and download, delivering faster turnaround for gameplay. And since the service lives on the Web, gamers can download games on a PC, anytime, and can easily redownload games they purchase if needed.
Deals and discounts galore. Gamers can check out screaming deals on select games every time they visit the Marketplace, as well as the Deal of The Week and other recurring and seasonal offers.
Game search functionality. Gamers can search by titles or genres to quickly find the games they want; they can even find new games from their favorite publishers with dedicated publisher pages.
Fresh design. The clean, intuitive look and feel makes browsing for games a simple, enjoyable experience. Gamers can easily navigate between pages as they search for the perfect game.
A Growing Portfolio
Games for Windows Marketplace will launch with a managed portfolio of 100 top-quality titles. The launch roster includes blockbuster games such as “Fable: The Lost Chapters” (Microsoft Game Studios) and “Grand Theft Auto III” (Rockstar Games Inc.) from some of the industry’s biggest developers, such as Capcom Entertainment Inc., 2K Games, Square Enix Co. Ltd. and more. In addition to top retail games, the portfolio will bring new indie titles to the forefront and continue to grow with many of the best games in the industry including titles such as “Lego Universe” (Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment) and “CarneyVale” (Microsoft Game Studios), which will hit the Games for Windows Marketplace and retail stores at the same time and date; recent hits such as “Dead Rising 2″ and “Lost Planet 2″ (both from Capcom); and perennial best-sellers such as “Max Payne” (Rockstar) and “Deus Ex: Game of the Year Edition” (Square Enix).
“We plan to deliver some of our biggest and best PC franchises on Games for Windows Marketplace from day one,” said Christian Svensson, corporate officer and vice president of Strategic Planning and Business Development at Capcom. “Digital distribution continues to drive growth in PC gaming, and we’re excited to partner with Microsoft and bring amazing games to this growing marketplace.”
Games for Windows Marketplace will also be the place to find iconic franchises from Microsoft Game Studios, such as “Flight Simulator,” “Gears of War,” “Halo” and “Zoo Tycoon,” as well as upcoming blockbusters “Fable III,” “Age of Empires Online” and “Microsoft Flight.”
Easy Access to a Massive Gamer Community
Using the new marketplace is a breeze: anyone with a Windows Live ID (Windows Live, Xbox LIVE, Games for Windows – LIVE or Zune account) can login and immediately start shopping in the Games for Windows Marketplace. The new store also supports Microsoft Points (as well as credit card purchasing), allowing the more than 25 million users of Xbox LIVE, Zune Marketplace and Games for Windows – LIVE to use their Microsoft Points balance seamlessly across platforms.
The new Games for Windows Marketplace launches Nov. 15 at http://www.gamesforwindows.com.