Phil Spencer and Xbox are no strangers to controversy, and the latest Microsoft FTC leaks have once again made the CEO and his company the talk across the game industry. The infamous leaked document revealed many secrets about what goes on behind the curtains at Xbox, including emails that show Spencer’s desire to acquire Nintendo and news about upcoming Xbox consoles.
However, among all of the leaked reveals, it was the Xbox CEO’s comments about his console’s 2022 release schedule that stood out.
According to Phil Spencer, Xbox was facing issues with its big releases last year, as he called the huge gap between the launch of Halo Infinite and the next Xbox AAA title a “disaster situation.”
Even Phil Spencer Admitted That 2022 Wasn’t Great for Xbox
2022 was not the best year for Microsoft’s gaming console and its release catalogue due to how long it took for Xbox to release its next AAA title after the highly anticipated Halo Infinite. The Microsoft FTC leaks revealed that Xbox didn’t have any AAA games scheduled for around 16 months after 343 Industries’ first-person shooter came out.
Aside from Phil Spencer, the email also included various other executives from Xbox, such as Matt Booty and Tim Stuart, and although the email was initially sent last year on May 7, 2022, it just became available for the gaming community to see.
According to the email sent by Phil Spencer, at that time, Xbox still did not have “a ton of clarity on the launch date of Redfall and Stalker 2,” which was concerning because the news of Starfield‘s release missing the holiday season had just come out. In the leaked document, the Xbox boss admitted that the company was “in a huge hole with” its “games lineup both for platform marketing/differentiation” and its content on the Xbox subscription service, Game Pass.
Microsoft’s gaming CEO further addressed his concerns to his team by stating that they “keep talking about a bit AAA a quarter in the service” and that there was going to be an unfortunate 16-month period during which the platform would host no “big exclusive launches.”
To put things into perspective, Halo Infinite was released two years ago on December 8, 2021, which makes it obvious that 2022 truly was, as Phil Spencer eloquently put it, a “disaster situation” for Xbox.
Phil Spencer Raised Concern About Xbox in the Leaked Email
Continuing the email directed at his team, Phil Spencer suggested ways in which Xbox could “learn” from its past mistakes by actually building “a plan” moving forward. In fact, he admitted that the company needs “to get much better at overall portfolio planning” on its games “with real honesty on dates,” bringing up the fact that the duration between summer and December 2021 was absolutely “amazing” for Xbox’s video game lineup.
The CEO then made honorable mentions of beloved titles like FlightSim, Psychonauts 2, Age 4, Forza Horizon, Halo, and Back 4 Blood.
According to Phil Spencer, 2021 turned out to be a great year for Xbox because the “quality and pacing of content” were “awesome to see.” Furthermore, he was even prepared to embrace delayed launches if that meant creating “more regular beats,” ending his message by calling the team’s overall planning and execution a complete “failure.”
Do you think any of the Xbox titles from 2022 were memorable? Or do you deem the console’s 2021 era much superior, like Phil Spencer does? Let us know in the comments!