Xbox’s Mike Ybarra has confirmed that Xbox one game gifting is close to completion. It’s a highly requested feature that has amassed thousands of votes on the UserVoice forum.
“When a new game comes out not all my friends are able to buy it right away or pre-order because lets be real here: games are expensive…. Sometimes I just want to get the game for them (you know help a bro out) cuz I wannaplay with them,” said user MsOPG way back in 2014.
It’s Twitter user Stefan K we have to thank for this latest information, however.
He asked Ybarra the following:
— Mike Ybarra (@Qwik) July 6, 2017
It’s an ability highly popular on PC with Valve’s Steam platform. For users, it means the ability to buy games for friends tight on cash. For developers, it means a sale that may not have been possible previously.
However, it’s less clear how exactly Microsoft will handle the process. In 2015, Steam implemented restrictions that only let users redeem gifted games from the same region. Without this restriction, users could take advantage of low prices in different areas, causing licensing issues.
Though users used to be able to purchase games for themselves from different regions, Microsoft has cracked down on that in recent times. They now have to resort to workarounds to take advantage of better prices, so it seems unlikely cross-region gifting will be possible.
Of course, begging threads will also rise, but that’s a small price to pay to get games in the hands of those you care about. It’s not clear when the feature will release, but it would be great to see it before the holiday season.