Microsoft has been lagging behind Sony this console cycle, drastically falling behind in sales compared to the monolith that is the PlayStation 4. They are poised to fall behind again. Microsoft announced not too long ago that the Xbox Series X won’t have any exclusives for two years. This is a monumental mistake. Yes, this is good for Xbox One owners, as the two will share titles, but it’s not good for the industry or gamers alike. It doesn’t push the technology forward; if anything, it’s a backward mentality. Having Halo Infinite as a launch title and available on Xbox One is a joke. Microsoft has no idea what they are doing. Not much has been revealed about the PlayStation 5, but if you know anything about Sony, they are all about propelling the industry forward. The same goes for Nintendo. Microsoft has been lagging behind, and to be quite frank, it’s sad to observe. No exclusives for two years means two years of ports for the Xbox One from the Xbox Series X. That leaves little incentive to purchase an Xbox Series X, especially at launch. This will, once again, cause Microsoft to lag behind their competitors. Not only that, developers will have to make sure that their games can run on both platforms. They won’t be able to take full advantage of the Xbox Series X’s capabilities, which sets the industry backward. Third-parties will flock to Sony or even Nintendo. This is a huge deal. Microsoft is making a monumental mistake. Console life cycles don’t last that long; maybe five to six years. If they plan on not having exclusives for two years on the Xbox Series X, that means they only have three or four years of exclusives for the platform. That will severely hinder publishers, developers, and Microsoft itself. It’s becoming more and more apparent that Microsoft doesn’t have a full grasp of the console business. Exclusives are why gamers buy specific consoles; Nintendo has proven that with the Nintendo Switch, despite its lack of graphical prowess. Microsoft made a number of first-party acquisitions under the Xbox Game Studios, but what do they have to show for it? They are playing the long game, but it’s taking them too long. The Xbox Series X needs first-party exclusives from these new developers that Microsoft has acquired, but instead, they are also porting them to the Xbox One. This is a huge mistake, as it creates no incentive to purchase the Series X until the two-year mark when the system starts to have exclusives of its own. Halo Infinite on both consoles is a monumental mistake. That would be the reason to buy an Xbox Series X, as Halo is a system seller, but Microsoft is putting it on both consoles. While this is great news for dedicated Xbox One owners, who don’t need to shell out the money for a new console and reap the benefits of the Xbox Series X without spending the money on a new console, it’s a mistake on Microsoft’s part. With all the new studios they acquired, they are poised to have some excellent first-party titles on the horizon. They should be exclusive to the Xbox Series X. Instead, Microsoft has decided to leave no incentive to invest in their newest console, which is a travesty. Sony, and Nintendo for that matter (the Switch has already surpassed the Xbox One in sales in such a short time), will once again dominate the next console generation while Microsoft will lag behind. Even if they say they aren’t competing with either company and want to do something different, perception is everything. Hopefully, Microsoft changes their mind and at least limits this to one year, or else they could be in a lot of trouble and continue to dwindle in the console race. Sony decimated them this console cycle and are poised to do so again, and Nintendo, with the Nintendo Switch, are also poised to dominate Microsoft. This is all on Microsoft. They can choose to change their plans, or be pushed out on the fringe of the console business (they won’t be leaving anytime soon, they’ll just be pummeled.) The decision is up to them.