It may be easier than ever to connect across vast distances thanks to the advent of high-speed broadband. But that doesn’t always translate into seamless gaming experiences on PC.
We’ve spent the better part of the past decade trying to find ways to game together here at Love is a Fetish, and unfortunately, PC gaming has been the biggest pain point.
Luckily, there are some steps you can take to mitigate the headaches. First, you could be wealthy. If you’re rich, then you can just buy top-notch gaming systems and get two full copies of every game you want on Steam.
If being rich and buying two of everything isn’t really an option, then let’s move on to option 2.
All you need is a PC, the Xbox app, and a subscription to Xbox Game Pass. This isn’t an advertisement (I wish we had the kind of clout required to snag a Microsoft sponsorship or ad package). It’s more like a how-to-guide mixed with a bit of news.
Microsoft is apparently developing a “performance check” indicator for its Xbox app on PC.
If you want to check it out for yourself, you’ll need to click the weird-looking icon (pictured below) at the top right of your screen and sign up to become an Xbox Insider for free (as far as we know they’re taking all comers).
Currently, many games indicate that the performance check isn’t available yet. But hopefully this will apply to all Xbox Game Pass games in the future, because this could be incredibly useful.
And it’s unclear exactly what metrics are used to determine whether it’ll play well on your PC or not. We’re assuming it’s tied into the Windows Game Bar performance monitor (you can hit the windows key + the G key to see it in Windows 10/11).
So far Xbox hasn’t announced anything or released any details we’re aware of. We reached out to Microsoft for more details and will update this article if we hear anything back.
Why it matters
Microsoft’s Xbox app has direct OS access, making it a pretty good bet that the “performance check” will be at least as accurate as similar 3rd party “can I run this game?” software apps.
And that’s a good thing because not everyone is an expert on GPUs, frame rates, and resolutions. If you’re trying to introduce a friend or partner to the joy that is Halo or Stellaris multiplayer, for example, you’re going to want the whole process to be as user-friendly as possible. And nobody wants to spend an hour or longer downloading a game just to find out it runs like crap on their system.
So for those who are just beginning their journey into becoming PC gaming experts, the easiest way to get going is to download the Xbox app and get a Game Pass account. You can almost always get a free or $1 trial. After that, you’ll be free to download hundreds of titles.
But that’s just half the battle. The other half is ensuring a given game will run properly on your machine. And having an at-a-glance indicator of that straight from the horse’s mouth (or, in this case, Microsoft’s) is a fantastic update. Here’s hoping the feature ends up in the regular version of the Xbox app sooner rather than later.
H/t: The Verge
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Tristan is a science and technology journalist who values life, humanity, and taco soup. He/him