The Xbox Series X launch won't be delayed if individual games are pushed back because of coronavirus concerns, Xbox boss Phil Spencer has confirmed.
Microsoft hasn't said much about the possibility of an Xbox Series X delay so far, sticking to the "Holiday 2020" launch window it's had for years (aside from a brief interlude where it accidentally narrowed the date down to Thanksgiving). A console launch is made of a lot of moving parts, though, and one of the most important is having the right set of launch games ready to go.
In an interview with IGN, Spencer said Microsoft is unlikely to divert its plans even a tentpole like Halo: Infinite isn't ready in time.
"I think for us, hardware and system and service software, those two things have to stay linked," Spencer explained. "I don't want to ship a piece of hardware where the platform's not completely there. I'll just laugh and say maybe we've done that before. We're not gonna do that again. So the system, software, and the platform have gotta be solid for us to do anything.
"I do think that if everything was there, for the software, the services, and the hardware, I don't think I would hold it for any individual game. Obviously the one you think about is Halo, it's iconic with the launch. [343 Industries studio head Bonnie Ross] and the team are doing a really good job on Halo: Infinite right now. They're learning on the job just like we all are. I think we'll go in eyes wide open on what we're trying to get done, but I don't think we would hold the launch of the overall platform on any individual game. I think we just have to be very transparent with people on where we are and how we're trending."
With E3 2020 canceled, Spencer said his team is also thinking on the fly about how it will roll out more information about Xbox Series X. The first step was its Xbox Game Stack presentation, where it debuted the console in person, and more will follow.
"We'll do things between now and the time when E3 was supposed to be, we'll do things throughout the summer," Spencer said. "I think we're just gonna look at how teams can get stuff ready, and how we can best use digital experiences to best deliver experiences to the fans that we have, because that's just the sane way to do this."
Check out what you could be playing on your new console with our guide to upcoming Xbox Series X games