Microsoft to relaunch Games for Windows Marketplace

Tom Senior

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Microsoft are set to completely reboot the Games for Windows Marketplace. The service will relaunch next month with a new website, pre-order deals and over a hundred games available to buy at launch. Could this be the service to rival Steam?

The new service will go live on November 15th, and Microsoft have drafted in Peter Orullian, one of the brains behind XBox Live, to manage the launch. Speaking to Joystiq , Orullian said "The store is really going to be a destination for games for PC gamers, Sure, we're going to have Live-enabled titles, and we love those, but that's not all you'll find here."

Unlike Steam's reliance on a downloadable client, Games for Windows Marketplace will have you buying games directly from their website. There will still be a separate client, but it will exist "to manage really really large files that aren't maybe so easily managed through the web, and it'll be your transaction history; so if you need to re-download a game, you can go and do that."

Microsoft hope to incorporate game ratings and many more features into the system over time, but will be offering pre-order deals through the service from the get go. Orullian mentions that "you should show up on day one, because we're going to have a great pre-order on a title you may care about."

There will also be themed weekly deals, an idea that XBox Live users will already have seen in action. The service will also have a degree of cross compatibility. You'll be able to sign into the new service using an existing Xbox Live account and spend MS points on the new service.

Not long ago General Manager of Microsoft game Studios, Dave Luehmann said "it's our job to lead the way on PC", adding that Microsoft needed to "step up." Could this be the start of Microsoft's PC comeback?

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