Microsoft Bulks Up Xbox Live's Social Gaming Features
The company is making it easier for Xbox One owners to finding squad mates or adversaries with the new Looking for Group and Clubs features.Games are fun with friends, but sometimes life gets in the way, making it tough to gather one's buddies for an evening's worth of epic adventures. For those times, Microsoft this week rolled out two new features, Looking for Group (LFG) and Clubs, for participants in the Xbox One preview program. Available now on Xbox One, and soon for the Windows 10, iOS and Android companion apps, LFG and Clubs are an expansion of the platform's social features, enabling users to organize play sessions and further engage with the community. LFG, for example, allows gamers to post a "want ad" of sorts, said Scott Henson, Xbox Partner Group program manager at Microsoft. "You'll be able to add certain requirements to make sure that you're finding the right gamers," said Henson in a Sept. 6 announcement. "You can specify the game, the game mode, how many people you need, rules like no trash talking or casual friendly, and any other in-game requirements like level, gear or character type." Clubs, on the other hand, is a community-building feature. Created and managed by gamers, clubs enable their members to set up groups for multiplayer games and share content. Club members can keep in touch using Xbox Live's voice communications capabilities or text chat.
Club admins have access to management tools that help ensure "everyone is having a great time and help create a lively and inclusive environment," Henson said. He also recommended that users interested in setting up a club reserve their desired club name as soon as possible; once claimed, a club's name is unique.