Microsoft has good news for all the game developers out there. It launched a new initiative, called Microsoft Game Stack yesterday, which includes an amalgamation of different Microsoft tools and services into a single robust ecosystem to ‘empower game developers’. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a rookie indie developer or an AAA studio, this developer-focused platform will make the game development process ten times easier for you.
The main goal of Game Stack is to help developers easily find different tools and services required for game development at one spot. These tools range from Azure, PlayFab, DirectX, Visual Studio, to Xbox Live, App Center, and Havok. Cloud plays a major role in Game Stack and it makes use of Azure to fulfill this requirement.
Azure is globally available in 54 regions will help scale its Project xCloud (a service that streams games to PCs, consoles, and mobile devices) to provide an uninterrupted gaming experience for players worldwide. Not to forget, companies like Rare, Ubisoft and Wizards of the Coast are already hosting multiplayer game servers and storing their player data on Azure. It is also capable of analyzing game telemetry, protecting games from DDOS attacks, and training AI.
Moreover, Microsoft Game Stack is device agnostic which makes it really convenient for the gamers. Another great component of Game Stack is a backend service for operating and building new games, called PlayFab. PlayFab offers game development services, real-time analytics, and LiveOps capabilities to Game Stack. PlayFab is also device agnostic. It supports iOS, Android, PC, Web, Xbox, Sony PlayStation, Nintendo Switch and all the other major game engines such as Unity and Unreal.
Microsoft has also released a preview for five new PlayFab services. Out of these five, one, called, PlayFab Matchmaking is open for public preview, while other four including PlayFab Party, PlayFab Insights, PlayFab PubSub, and PlayFab user-generated Content are in private preview.
Game Stack also comes with Xbox Live, one of the most engaging and interactive gaming communities in the world. Xbox Live will be providing identity and community services in the Game Stack. Microsoft has also expanded the cross-platform capabilities of Xbox Live under Game Stack with a new SDK for iOS and Android devices. Mobile developers will be able to easily connect with some of the most highly engaged and passionate gamers on the planet using Xbox Live.
Other benefits of the Xbox Live SDK includes more focus on building games and leveraging Microsoft‘s trusted identity network to offer support for log-in, privacy, online safety and child accounts. Apart from that, there are features like gamerscore, and “hero” stats, that help keep the gamers engaged. Also, components such as Visual Studio, Mixer, DirectX, Azure App Center, Visual Studio, Visual Studio Code, and Havok are all a part of Game Stack.
For more information, check out the official Microsoft Game Stack blog post.