“A legitimate fear.”
Despite the fact that Xbox Live Arcade grew to become an incredibly-successful platform for Microsoft, it wasn’t initially welcomed with open arms. In fact, there was an internal fear at the company during the early days of Xbox that XBLA would bring about the end of the console business.
XBLA creator Greg Canessa recently stopped by the IGN office to discuss the online platform, revealing that many at Microsoft “didn’t understand” that Xbox Live Arcade offered different types of gaming experiences, and as such, wasn’t a threat to the console industry.
“There was a legitimate fear that Xbox Live Arcade was going to cannibalize retail sales and completely destroy the console industry,” Canessa said on the latest episode of IGN Unfiltered. ”That was actually a quote I got from one of the internal folks.”
The company was afraid that “five and ten-dollar price points” would ultimately “destroy the economic model of console retail publishing and destroy the industry.” In light of this concern, Canessa spoke to the importance in communicating both internally at the company and externally to consumers that XBLA offered different types of game experiences that distinguished itself from the traditional retail product.
Xbox Live Arcade didn’t survive the transition from Xbox 360 to Xbox One, but Canessa believes it would behoove Microsoft to bring the brand back.
Alex Osborn is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter.
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