Xbox discs are the same size as PC discs, and doesn’t Microsoft make PC games and Xbox games? Isn’t the XBox just a PC basically? If you have both of these devices, you may wonder sometimes what would happen if you put an XBox game disc into your PC. Is it possible that could work?
You can’t play an Xbox game on a PC using the Xbox game disc. Games you purchase from Microsoft are downloadable on both the Xbox console and a PC at the same time. You can also stream a game form your Xbox to a PC running Windows 10 or later.
So, you can’t just expect it all to work magically. When you put the Xbox disc into your PC, it’s not going to work, but Microsoft does have some clever workarounds built into their operating system, and handy DRM controls allowing you to own and play your games in multiple places from the cloud. Let’s look at how these options work after we consider why we’re in this predicament in the first place.
Why Don’t Xbox Discs Work on a PC?
There are two ways to play Xbox games on your computer, as long as you have both an Xbox One and Windows 10. You can either stream your game to Windows 10 or access it on your computer using Xbox Play Anywhere service.
In both cases, you do not need to physically insert the Xbox One game disc into your computer disc drive, which is great because the PC will not be able to ready your Xbox discs! They’re not that different in the end – the discs just launch software after all – but because of how Microsoft manages their files and because of the different fundamental natures of the operating systems on these devices, they can’t just read each other’s discs automagically.
So, what are your other options? And how do they work? Let’s start with the easiest one – putting the disc in the Xbox and simply streaming it to your PC.
Stream to Windows 10
You can play Xbox One games on your computer by streaming them to your Windows 10 PC. This option has a slight advantage over Xbox Play Anywhere because not all games are available through that service.
To stream your Xbox One game to your Windows 10 PC, connect both your computer and your Xbox One to the same internet connection. You will need a stable network connection to play the game smoothly, as you cannot stream games offline. You should also get the latest updates for both of your devices to prevent any hiccups.
Once you are connected to the internet and your devices are fully updated, follow these steps to play Xbox One games on your PC by streaming to Windows 10:
- Press the Xbox button on your controller when on your Xbox One’s Home screen.
- Select the “Settings” option from the “Profile & System” Tab.
- Go to the “Devices & Connections” tab and select “Remote features.”
- Select “Xbox app preferences.”
- Under the “Xbox app” list, choose either of the “Allow connections from any device” or “Only from profiles signed in on this Xbox.”
- Under the “This Xbox” list, choose “Allow game streaming to other devices.”
- Connect your Xbox One controller to your PC.
- Open “Xbox Console Companion” on your PC.
- Select the Xbox console icon in the Xbox Console Companion app and choose “Connection.”
- Choose the Xbox console you want to connect to and click “Stream” to play.
Play Via Xbox Play Anywhere
If you have Xbox One games that are compatible with the Xbox Play Anywhere service, you can play them on your PC for free. If you want to play a game that you don’t already own, you can simply purchase it on the app, and your game data will be synced between the two devices.
You can play your Xbox games on your PC by following the steps below.
- Log into your Microsoft account at the Xbox Play Anywhere website.
- Choose the one you want to play from the list of games you own.
- When prompted, select “Get” or “Install.” Use the Microsoft Store app if redirected.
- Select “Play” when the installation is completed.
- You can now play the game on your PC.
If you have games that are not available on the Xbox Play Anywhere service, you cannot play them on your PC through Xbox Play Anywhere and will have to stream them to Windows 10.
Can You Use Xbox 360 or Xbox One Games on a PC?
You can access all your Xbox One games on your PC by either streaming to Windows 10 or using Xbox Play Anywhere. For Xbox 360, the process is a little more complicated. If you have Xbox game discs for consoles that are no longer in commission, you can play those games on your computer by downloading emulation software.
Emulation software is a program that will replicate Xbox hardware within your Windows, enabling you to play Xbox 360 and Xbox One games on a PC. “Cxbx” and “Xeon” are two such emulator programs that you can use to play Xbox games on your computer.
If you want to play a greater variety of games on your computer, download the Cxbx emulator software. But if you only want to play the popular game “Halo,” then Xeon is the most appropriate emulator software for you.
After downloading and installing the relevant emulator software on your computer, insert your Xbox game disc into the DVD drive of your computer and run it through the software. You can set up your keyboard or simply use a USB joypad to play the Xbox 360 or Xbox One game on your computer.
Can You Play Xbox Games on a Mac?
No, you cannot play Xbox games on a Mac. Since Xbox and Windows are both Microsoft products, playing Xbox games on your Windows computer is fairly simple. Unfortunately, it’s not the same for any computer operating on macOS, as that’s an entirely different operating system.
You can try using OneCast, a third-party solution that will allow you to play Xbox One X and S games on your computer, but it’s not available for free. Also, it comes with a host of limitations, and the entire process is not guaranteed to be smooth.
Therefore, it might be more accessible and beneficial for you to upgrade your Xbox or to get a Windows computer.
Do Cross-Platform Games Work on PC?
Fortunately for players who previously felt restricted by their chosen software, cross-platform games are a reality now. There are many cross-platform games that work on PC with a wide array of Xbox One titles available.
Some of the efficient cross-platform Xbox One games are Fortnite: Epic Royale, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, Paladins: Arena Battles, and Minecraft: Better Together. All of these can be easily played on your computer with more cross-platform titles anticipated to come in the future.