Phil Spencer says video games have helped people to stay connected amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Phil Spencer

Phil Spencer

The executive vice-president of Gaming at Microsoft has hailed the influence of games during the health crisis, observing that they've played an important role over recent months.

He said: "We're just seeing record levels of engagement, meaning people playing every day, playing online, connecting with friends and family."

Spencer explained that video games have become an integral part of popular culture during the time he's been in the industry.

He told GameSpot: "There's seven billion people on the planet, and there's three billion people who play video games. It's almost half of the world plays video games on some device.

"When I started in this business, 20-plus years ago, it wasn't that way."

Meanwhile, Spencer recently hailed the success of the launch of the Xbox Series X.

The executive took to Twitter earlier this month to thank gamers for their support.

He wrote on the micro-blogging platform: "Thank you for supporting the largest launch in Xbox history. In 24 hrs more new consoles sold, in more countries, than ever before. We’re working with retail to resupply as quickly as possible. You continue to show us the connective power of play is more important than ever. (sic)"