Microsoft is hoping that “Halo 5: Guardians,” the latest video game in the “Halo” series, will help the company gain back some of the “huge lead” Sony, which makes the PlayStation 4, has on the video game console market, The Globe and Mail reports.
Microsoft has lost market share in the console market ground to Sony’s PlayStation 4. That was due in part to restrictions that upset gamers, like the “always-on” controversy that required a 24/7 internet connection to play games.
At the GeekWire 2015 summit, Phil Spencer, who leads the Xbox group at Microsoft, said that Sony “[has] a huge lead” and make “a good product.”
The “Halo” franchise is worth around $4.6 billion (£3 billion), according to Microsoft, with sales across more than 15 titles reaching 65 million. “Halo” has spawned various comics, spin-offs, novels, toys, and even a rumoured feature film.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella is backing the “Halo” project, according to Bonnie Ross, head of 343 Industries, the studio behind the game. “With Xbox, we have a brand that people like,” said Ross, “and we have a brand touch that Satya thinks is very important.”
Sales of consumer hardware, such as smartphones, are decreasing at Microsoft, so the company is hypersensitive to the success of the Xbox, which has long been one of its most successful non-enterprise products. A recent update to the console introduced Windows 10 as the operating system, tying it even more closely to the company’s other offerings.