How To Play Xbox One Games on Your PC
Microsoft has recently made it possible to play Xbox games on your Windows PC. To play your favorite Xbox One game on the computer, you’ll need the help of the trusty Xbox app. You can play every game if you connect the two devices into a network.
If you have an Xbox Live account, you can also play select titles on the PC without the console. There’s also a way to play Xbox One games on the PC even without the Xbox app.
Microsoft also allows you to sync your Xbox One console and Windows PC to play your favorite games on the computer. The setup process takes a few minutes and is easy to repeat after you’ve gone through it once. Let’s dig in.
There’s a set of requirements you need to fulfill in order to be able to play Xbox One Games on your PC. They include the following:
- Enable streaming in the console’s settings.
- Sign in to the Xbox app on your PC. Make sure the Gamertag is the same as on the console.
- The two devices must be logged onto the same network. Wired Ethernet networks work the best. A 5GHz Wi-Fi network is the next best solution.
- Your PC will need a minimum of 2GB RAM and a processor running at 1.5GHz or faster.
- The console needs to be on throughout the process.
Prepare the Console
First, we’ll enable the connection on the console. With your Xbox turned on, follow these steps:
- Press the central button on your controller, the Xbox button.
- When the Guide opens, go to Settings.
- Next, go to Preferences.
- After that, open Xbox app connections.
- Go to This Xbox and find the Allow game streaming to other devices options. Enable it.
- Go to Other devices. There, enable the Allow connections from any device option. Activating the option labeled Only from profiles signed in on this Xbox will work, as well.
Connect the Controller
- Plug a micro USB cable into the computer. Make sure it’s a data transfer cable.
- Plug the other end of the cable into your controller.
- Click on the Windows icon in the bottom-left corner of the screen.
- Click on the Settings icon.
- Click Devices.
- Select the Bluetooth & other devices tab on the left.
- If everything’s OK, you should see the Controller icon in the Other devices section.
Connect the PC and Console
Open the Xbox Connect app on your PC.
When the app launches, click on the Connect tab in the panel on the left side of the window.
The app will then scan the network for available consoles. Pick the one you’d like to connect to. If you have multiple consoles, it might be a good idea to give them different names, as all Xbox One consoles are named My Xbox by default.
When the connection process is done, you’ll see options for media remotes, power, and streaming. You’ll also see your console on the list, as well as the controller. You can now control your Xbox One console remotely through the PC app.
Next, click on the Stream button to start streaming.
After that, browse the list of games and select the one you’d like to play.
Click on the Play from the console button in the upper-right corner of the game’s page within the app. This will launch the game on the console and start streaming it to your PC.
Alter Streaming Quality
The Xbox app on your PC also allows you to change the video settings of your streams. This way, you can lower them if you’re on a 2.4GHz Wi-Fi network or ramp them up if you’ve got an Ethernet network set up. Of course, you should take your computer’s abilities into consideration. Here’s how to do it:
- Connect your PC and Xbox One console as described in previous sections.
- Launch the Xbox app.
- Click on the Settings tab in the menu on the left side.
- Go into the Game Streaming sub-menu.
- Open the Video encoding level section. There are three options – Low, Medium, and High. The Low setting is there for 2.4GHz Wi-Fi networks, the Medium is for setups with 5GHz networks, while the High setting is reserved for Ethernet cable networks.
Xbox Play Anywhere
Microsoft allows PC and Xbox (not just Xbox One) owners to play select games on both platforms without connecting them to a network. To be able to do this, you have to have the Windows 10 Anniversary edition installed on your computer. Also, you will have to have an active Xbox Live account.
Here’s how to play with Xbox Play Anywhere:
- Buy a game (it has to be a digital title) on Windows Store or Xbox Store.
- Launch your PC.
- Connect your controller as it was described previously.
- Launch the Xbox app.
- Find your recently purchased game in the app.
- Launch the game.
Unfortunately, the games’ list is rather limited so you’ll only have the option to play approved titles.
Read Raw Data
Microsoft has already made it possible to connect your Xbox One console and controller to your PC and enjoy your favorite games on a computer. The progress is synced and the app is very smooth. But what to do if you’ve sold or given your Xbox One console away and you’ve got some game DVDs lying around? You can still play your favorite childhood games on a PC. Here’s how to get them running on a PC:
- Launch your PC.
- When it boots up, insert the game disk into the DVD drive.
- Double click on the This PC shortcut on the desktop.
- Right-click on the drive your game disk is in.
- Select the Properties option from the drop-down menu.
- Next, click on the Hardware tab.
- Scroll down the list and click on the disk drive.
- Click on the Properties button.
- Once the disk drive’s Properties window opens, click on the Details tab.
- Select Capabilities from the drop-down menu.
- Click on CM_DEVCAP_RAWDEVICEOK option.
- Click OK.
- Click OK once more.
- Go to This PC and double-click on the game.
This method allows the PC to read raw data it finds on the disk. It will sidestep the security features on the game disk without damaging it or rendering it unusable on the console.
Why can’t I connect my devices?
Both your PC and your Xbox One need to be updated. Seriously, even if you updated it yesterday, check again. Also, both devices need to be on the same Wifi network (for example, you may have multiple bands make sure they’re on the same one).
Can I stream it to my phone?
Theoretically yes. There are several factors that come into play here but if you want to play your Xbox One games on your phone you should be able to download the Xbox Connect app. Assuming the update and wifi criteria are met, you can play on Android devices.
Playing Xbox One games on a powerful gaming computer can seriously enhance your gaming experience, so give your old favorites a chance on your PC.
Do you use the Xbox app to stream your Xbox One games? Does it improve the experience? What are your thoughts on the Xbox Play Anywhere platform? Make sure to share your thoughts with us in the comments below.