Home Gaming Phil Spencer explains why he’s so darn nice

Phil Spencer explains why he’s so darn nice

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Phil spencer

Following the departure of Don ‘the Jacket’ Mattrick from Xbox, Phil Spencer took over the role of head honcho and has already turned around perception dramatically in a short period of time. He’s generally seen to be pro-gamer, and incredibly nice to the competition, often congratulating PlayStation boss Shuhei Yoshida on twitter, and opening discussing playing games on a range of platforms. Of course cynical gamers wonder if this is all just a ploy – no one can actually be that nice, right?

Speaking to Gamespot, Spencer was asked what keeps him up at night and if he doesn’t have anything negative to say about his competitors instead of always being so nice, and his answer highlights a key issue in gaming:

I’ve said before, the one thing that I probably find a little distasteful in the discourse around games is the divisiveness that people try to build between platforms. It becomes more about what piece of plastic I own than what games I’m playing. It becomes more about somebody else failing than the things I love succeeding. I don’t think that’s a good place for our industry. I know that’s not everybody, and it’s easy to find the pockets of that vitriol and kind of think that that is gaming, but I’m not going to embrace that. I’m going to actively push against that. People sometimes will make fun of me that I mentioned Sony or I mentioned Nintendo. It’s not to placate anybody or make them think I’m some kind of good guy. My job isn’t really to keep you from buying something else. My job is to make you proud of what we offer, and to give you an enjoyable experience with the product we have. That’s 100% of what I’m focused on.

[…] I don’t know if it’s … nice. One, I know most of these people, and I know they work incredibly hard. I know the studios, I know the people that run those organizations, and I don’t want … It’s not my job to think about how other people can fail. The thing I’ll say about us and Team Xbox and what we’re trying to do is we work for a company in Microsoft that isn’t driven in this space to go dominate anybody or to put somebody else out. The reason Satya’s (Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO) interested in gaming, the reason the Windows 10 focused on the consumer and gaming is so prevalent inside the company right now, is we see opportunity. We see opportunity to delight customers, to give them more reasons to engage with the platform that we have, and it’s really all about the unrealized opportunity that’s in front of us. Then when people bring up, “Well, what about Nintendo? What about Sony? Isn’t it too bad that Sony is selling a lot of PlayStation 4s right now?” I honestly don’t feel that it’s too bad.

I love that we’re selling a lot of Xbox Ones. I love that we’re selling more Xbox Ones than we did 360, and we’re growing year … all the PR stats I can hit you with, and I love that we have more people on Xbox Live than we’ve ever had. That’s probably the thing I’m most focused on is the people that we have on Xbox Live and how happy they are with what they’re doing. I don’t know if that makes me nice. I don’t see any reason to go after and be pithy towards somebody who’s just trying to do a good job with the product that they’re building.

That’s just it – all the companies are working towards making the best possible products that they can. Their visions might vary, and some might get it wrong or right from time to time, but the core idea of delivering awesome gameplay experiences to gamers is still there. It’s only by being cool that they can sell units and make money. Spencer actually sees the value of competition, of recognizing that hard work, and he knows something that I fear far too many people lose sight of: he doesn’t need to make other people look bad to try to make himself look good. That’s just not how perception works, and by consistently being nice, he comes out looking better, too.

Last Updated: September 23, 2015

33 Comments

  1. Raptor Rants

    September 23, 2015 at 12:02

    *starts a slow clap*

    Reply

  2. Kromas untamed

    September 23, 2015 at 12:05

    All we are saaayyyyiiinnngggg …. is give peace a chance.

    Reply

    • Brady miaau

      September 23, 2015 at 12:06

      John Lennon

      Imagine there’s no heaven
      It’s easy if you try
      No hell below us
      Above us only sky
      Imagine all the people
      Living for today…

      Imagine there’s no countries
      It isn’t hard to do
      Nothing to kill or die for
      And no religion too
      Imagine all the people
      Living life in peace…

      You may say I’m a dreamer
      But I’m not the only one
      I hope someday you’ll join us
      And the world will be as one

      Imagine no possessions
      I wonder if you can
      No need for greed or hunger
      A brotherhood of man
      Imagine all the people
      Sharing all the world…

      You may say I’m a dreamer
      But I’m not the only one
      I hope someday you’ll join us
      And the world will live as one

      Reply

      • Kromas untamed

        September 23, 2015 at 12:10

        Too alarming now to talk about
        Take your pictures down and shake it out
        Truth or consequence, say it aloud
        Use that evidence, race it around

        There goes my hero
        Watch him as he goes
        There goes my hero
        He’s ordinary

        Reply

      • Splooshypooh

        September 23, 2015 at 12:28

        tl;dr

        Reply

        • konfab

          September 23, 2015 at 12:30

          tl;dr
          Commie filth.

          Reply

        • Brady miaau

          September 23, 2015 at 12:42

          Just read last paragraph

          jr:lp

          Reply

          • Raptor Rants

            September 23, 2015 at 12:49

            tl;dr

          • Brady miaau

            September 23, 2015 at 13:13

            You.owe.me. a new keyboard. and tea.

          • Raptor Rants

            September 23, 2015 at 13:39

            hehehehehehehehehe

          • Raptor Rants

            September 23, 2015 at 13:43

            wait…. that site exists…

          • Brady miaau

            September 23, 2015 at 14:11

            What? not even looking….

            Whoops

          • Raptor Rants

            September 23, 2015 at 13:43

            wait…. that site exists…

      • RinceThat

        September 23, 2015 at 13:09

        explains why he married Yoko Ohno. He used his Imagination πŸ˜›

        Reply

  3. HairyEwok

    September 23, 2015 at 12:11

    Phil Spencer is the only guy in the corporate gaming industry that can sleep soundly at night knowing nobody will try to shank him in his sleep

    Reply

  4. Alien Emperor Trevor

    September 23, 2015 at 12:16

    Well yes, it’s called professionalism. It’s a choice.

    Half the “war” bullshit comes from people desperate to justify their purchases.

    Reply

    • RinceThis

      September 23, 2015 at 13:21

      I thought half the war bullshit was usually stirred by the PC Masterbater Race?

      Reply

      • Alien Emperor Trevor

        September 23, 2015 at 13:23

        Two halves make a whole. πŸ˜‰

        Reply

        • RinceThis

          September 23, 2015 at 13:24

          Yeah, and we throw you Masterbaters into that hole! πŸ˜›

          Reply

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            September 23, 2015 at 13:26

            Oh come now, you’re not even trying. πŸ™

            Ask what Batman’s like on PC or something about Uplay!

          • RinceThis

            September 23, 2015 at 13:28

            FPS are betta on consolz!

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            September 23, 2015 at 13:30

          • RinceThis

            September 23, 2015 at 13:35

            NEVA!

        • Brady miaau

          September 23, 2015 at 14:10

          Two learners make a license?

          Reply

  5. Jonah Cash

    September 23, 2015 at 12:21

    There is more than enough sun for all of us to go around! If you have more sun than me then good on you, I will work harder to get me more sun without stealing or belittling yours…

    Reply

  6. konfab

    September 23, 2015 at 12:29

    It seems to be a policy at Microsoft, Nadella said:
    “We have to let go of this notion that for Microsoft to win, Google has to lose.”

    Honestly I think the whole fanboi rage thing has it’s roots in Apple’s marketing saying how much better their products are. Remember the Mac vs PC ads back in the day.

    Reply

  7. RinceThis

    September 23, 2015 at 12:49

    What a guy. I bet he kicks puppies when people aren’t looking.

    Reply

    • RinceThat

      September 23, 2015 at 13:03

      while playing Bloodborne.

      Reply

    • Alien Emperor Trevor

      September 23, 2015 at 13:17

      Me too!

      Reply

      • RinceThis

        September 23, 2015 at 13:20

        Are you also married to a drugged out hippy? 0_O

        Reply

        • Alien Emperor Trevor

          September 23, 2015 at 13:24

          That wouldn’t be that really, she wouldn’t interrupt my gaming.

          Reply

  8. HyDrO

    February 1, 2016 at 14:05

    Really great guy. Definitely the most honest guy to work for Microsoft. If anyone could make me forget about that POS 768 shader GPU in the Xbox One it would be him. Can’t wait to see the next gen Xbox.

    Reply

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