Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Microsoft Demo Cross Platform Gaming With Window’s Phone 7

Well that was fast by Microsoft’s standards; only weeks after getting us all excited, the software giant has demoed the tech which allows users to game across multiple platforms (Xbox 360, PC and mobile phone).

Microsoft's senior vice president of technical strategy, Eric Rudder, gave a demonstration of the technology in action at the company's Tech·Ed Middle East conference in Dubai. He exhibited a simple platforming game that ran on three Microsoft platforms - a prototype Asus Windows Phone 7 Series mobile, an Xbox 360 and a Windows 7 PC. The result? The game performed great and pretty consistently across all platforms and was well adapted to the various control inputs.

The technology of course uses Microsoft's cloud infrastructure which allows gamers to resume saved games from any of the three platforms. The content is contained in your Xbox Live account so providing you have the service running on each of your platforms, you could access your saved games from your Xbox 360 at home and continue playing at work (on your designated lunch break of course).

There are great benefits for developers too as Rudder explained: the game which was demonstrated was developed in Visual Studio where 90% of its code is shared across the three platforms. The final 10% mainly comprises of the unique input and performance for each of the platforms which needs to be developed appropriately. Obviously these games aren’t going to be state of the art but it does mean only one game is essentially being developed.

What wasn’t touched upon however were the exciting prospects of complimentary mobile games such as World of Warcraft iPhone game which would integrate with certain elements of the full game on the more powerful platforms. Rudder expressed Microsoft's excitement for the technology:
“I think that the work that we’re doing and commonality of the platform across all of our offerings... is really going to create a new wave of applications unlike anything we’ve ever seen. We talk all the time in the tech industry that the best is yet to come, but I really think the best is yet to come.”
Check out the presentation vid which we’ve just been discussing unnecessarily and see it all for yourself here.

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