Microsoft's Phil Spencer recently praised Xbox One's competitors, recognizing Sony's fantastic PlayStation 4 launch and Nintendo's incredible stable of first-party software.
Speaking to OXM, Spencer said of Nintendo:
Nintendo, I think - and there's some argument about this - that their first-party is such an amazing asset. Their first party studios and IP can lead what they do as a company and the platforms are almost in service to the IP - not in a bad way.
They have such iconic stories and this will seem somewhat random, but when we go back and do something like Killer Instinct, a little bit of the history of your franchise can actually be important part of people feeling connected. Obviously the history of Killer Instinct isn't a history on Xbox, but it's Rare's history and I think the reaction when we announced it on-stage at E3 showed that playing to the people's heart, I think Nintendo does that as well as anybody in terms of hitting the franchises and having huge success with them.
The Microsoft exec then went on to highlight the fantastic job Sony has done with the launch of PlayStation 4 and its ongoing commitment to supporting innovative game design, saying:
Sony - and I'm focused on first-party because of what I do - I really respect their focus on investing in new things and creative things, what they've done with David Cage and Quantic Dream around Beyond [Two Souls] and Heavy Rain; they stay committed to franchises even if they don't sell 10 million units, they'll stay committed to things.
I think that long-term commitment to franchises is important, where it's easy to pull off the Band-Aid and move onto the next thing [if it doesn't sell]. I respect their 'stick-to-it-iveness'. I'll say, they've done a nice job with PS4 [...] When I think about their announcement, their clear focus on a customer, leading with the value proposition of what they're trying to do, staying true to a vision, I think they've done a nice job in how they defined the PS4.
Despite the bloody battle that has waged between Microsoft and Sony in the quest to dominate gamers' living rooms, Microsoft has been quite classy with its statements regarding the competition. It will be interesting to see how this whole console war pans out as we move deeper into 2014.