Microsoft has begun promoting its new Play service, beginning with the migration of 15 Xbox Live Arcade games to Windows 8 and Windows RT. The service allows users to play some XBLA games on their Windows 8 and Windows RT devices, and there’s much more on the way.
When the Windows Store launched, its ability to unify games across computers made it seem like a natural fit for XBLA titles. But the fragmentation between Microsoft’s various stores quickly because apparent through missteps, like the Mature rating flub. This is an encouraging step towards getting all of Microsoft’s stores (Windows, Xbox, Windows Phone) on the same page.
It’s also possibly a heads up about the platform that the Xbox 720/Durango will be built on. It would make perfect sense to start this migration now and then build the next Xbox as either a Windows 8 box, or at least on the Windows 8 kernel.
Here’s the full list of games added in this first wave of Microsoft Play:
Skulls of the Shogun.
The Gunstringer: Dead Man Running.
Toy Soldiers: Cold War.
Rocket Riot 3D.
Reckless Racing Ultimate.
Microsoft Solitaire Collection.
Hydro Thunder Hurricane.
4 Elements II Special Edition.
Most of the games listed above have been available for a while — there are a few new ones in there. This is merely the launch of Microsoft talking about how XBLA titles have been migrated. It seems like more of a statement of intent for more titles going forward, which is good news.