Developers wary about investing in Windows Phone 8 games

Microsoft promised that awesome games will run on Windows Phone 8 smartphones, and it will be interesting to see more and more titles with eye-popping 3D graphics that you normally see only on PCs or tablets. But while the software giant’s approach of getting the same touchscreen-based releases on smartphones, tablets, and PCs is an attractive idea, game developers are wary.

Developers are embracing Windows 8 as an operating system for the PC. But they are not as excited about Microsoft’s new Windows Phone 8 software because they have already made huge investments in mobile ecosystems that reach hundreds of millions of individuals. They are particularly wary about spreading themselves thin by supporting Microsoft’s new software in addition to Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS. We caught a sampling of reactions to Windows Phone 8, which will be formally unveiled on Monday, from various game-industry executives.

“Microsoft claims it will be easy to port PC games to the Windows 8 mobile platform, but my thought is that PC gaming is an ardent but dwindling culture, so this is not a major incentive to develop for or purchase one of these phones,” said Jeff Gomez, chief executive of Starlight Runner Entertainment. “Far more interesting to me will be whether Microsoft will make an effort to extend the Xbox Live and Xbox gaming experience to Windows 8 mobile in any kind of powerful way. Phones are about connectivity and intimacy, so I think it would be smart for Microsoft to make it super easy to participate in the Xbox community no matter where you are.”