According to a former Xbox execuitive, the console wars were encouraged by Microsoft to foster competition between Xbox and PlayStation.
The era of the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 was one with its own challenges, like the Red Ring of Death or launch PS3s having technical issues (one of the most prominent being its obscene price). If you were on the internet, you would more often than not hear of the “console wars” and countless debates about which console was better than the other. Some of which rage on to this day if our comments section is anything to go by.
There's an interesting note about this, though, and it comes from Peter Moore, a former Xbox executive. In a report from Gamespot, Moore spoke to the Front Office Sports Podcast, saying that Microsoft essentially encouraged the console wars of the mid-2000s to 2010s.
Moore said, “We encouraged the console wars, not to create division, but to challenge each other, and when I say each other, I mean Microsoft and Sony. If Microsoft hadn't stuck the course after the Xbox, after the red rings of death, gaming would be a poorer place for it, you wouldn't have the competition you have today.”
The Red Ring of Death, when the Xbox 360 was first released, was such a widespread issue that itwound up costing Microsoft $1.15 billion to resolve on future prints of the 360. This, in turn, was used as one of the reasons that PS3 was superior in the console wars at the time. It’s interesting to look back on this era, all things considered.
Moore left Microsoft in 2007 and went on to be EA Sports’ president, then became CEO of Liverpool Football Club, and now resides as an executive at Unity.
Fast-forward to these days, the console wars topic isn’t as prevalent as before. There are still people that fixate on what exclusives are on what platforms. But in reality, PC winds up winning out here, as Xbox and now PlayStation games end up landing on either Steam or the Epic Games Store in some capacity. Was encouraging the console wars to rage on fruitful? Only time will tell.
Perhaps they didn't intend to create division, but the result was encouraging rabid fanboys, attacking each other in the internet.