Microsoft and Nintendo continue to grow closer as the years roll on. We just saw Steve from Minecraft join Smash Bros. Ultimate, which only goes to show just how strong the bond is between the two companies. Apparently that all stems from the easy nature of the relationship between Microsoft and the Big N..
In an interview with Kotaku, Head of Xbox Phil Spencer opened up about the working relationship between the two companies, and it sounds like things couldn't be better.
“We have a very good relationship with Nintendo, and I think we see our work very synergistically, in terms of trying to grow the market. And it just makes it easy. Every conversation we have with them has really been easy.”
Of course, that has people asking if there are more Microsoft-related properties coming to Switch. This question has been asked before, and Spencer had a somewhat similar answer this time around. Spencer said “it doesn’t feel sustainable” to consider Xbox games on a case by case basis for Switch. He's much rather have a more substantial presence for the Xbox brand on Switch.
“In order to really support it, I would want a full Xbox ecosystem somewhere. And that probably means things like Live and Game Pass and stuff.”
This has been a topic that's come up numerous times in the past, and at one point it did seem like something was close to happening. Imran Khan talked a bit about the Game Pass situation with the Kinda Funny gang, which may provide some further insight into the situation.
The question is, will Nintendo be OK with having Game Pass on [Switch]? It depends greatly on the details. The better question is, will Microsoft be OK with the way in which Nintendo would accept Gamepass on the Switch and that answer, at current, is no.
In other words, it seems like there were some serious discussions about implementation, but Nintendo and Microsoft couldn't come to a full agreement. That doesn't mean things can't change in the future, but right now it seems things are at a stalemate.