Hi, I’m Kevin Lambert, Design Director for the Microsoft Casual Games team. I’ve been working on this team for over 4 years and I created the original design vision for Solitaire and the other classic Microsoft casual games for Windows 8 and Windows 10. I’ve always been passionate about bringing awesome experiences to players and today I’m excited to share how we’re letting the community choose the next casual game we make.
And I’m Derek Dutilly, Lead Producer for the Microsoft Casual Games team. I’ve been on this team for a year and a half now, managing the team, overseeing the schedules of all our products, and ensuring that we ship quality products to our fans in a timely manner. I’m completely excited to see what directions the community will take us and the influence they’ll have on our products.
Microsoft has been building casual games for over 25 years, starting with Solitaire for Windows 3.0. The Microsoft Casual Games team has continued this legacy and currently creates many of the top game apps available in the Windows Store for PC’s & Phones.
Now, for the first time in history, Microsoft Casual Games is collaborating with our fans on product and development choices. We’re not just allowing the community to read about what’s going on, but we are actually involving the community to vote on which games we should make next and provide feedback on how to improve the overall game features.
In support of this new community-focused approach, the Microsoft Casual Games team has created a website where players can:
- Vote on the next game to be created by the Microsoft Casual Games team
- Read about the development of the existing Microsoft Casual games
- Share opinions about current and upcoming features
- Join the Microsoft Casual Games Inner Circle program to
- Get early access to exclusive builds
- Help choose the next features we work on
- Get behind the scenes information on our games
- Collaborate with us on the development process and help shape the future of our games
Our first, big initiative is to allow everyone to vote on which casual game we should make next. We started with a list of games that people had requested we make over the years and we whittled it down to the top 5. We opened voting recently and we’ve seen an incredible response so far.
We are committed to following the lead of our voters, and we will create the game they want us to make.
Even though we love playing our games just as much as we love working on them, ultimately, we aren’t making these games for ourselves. We make them to entertain and delight our players, and therefore, what our players want (and don’t want) is paramount for us to understand and embrace. The earlier in the development process we can pinpoint what our players want and don’t want, the higher chance we have to exceed their expectations.
We’re really excited about this process and we hope our players enjoy the collaboration as much as we do. If you haven’t already voted on which game we should make next, you still have until December 17th, so be sure to check out our website and vote! We will announce the game that got the most votes in a blog post later this month so stay tuned.
We look forward to working with you!
Kevin and Derek