Game Bar for Windows 10: All the Things You Need to Know

Bianca Willis Bianca Willis Updated on Oct 20 , 2020 Tag:

This post will give a brief introduction on Windows 10’s new toolbar on (game) screen capture. Also some hot related topics are included, like how to use Game bar, what’s the limitations, how to fix Game bar not opening or working issues.

Content Overview:What is Game Bar -> Pros & Cons of Game Bar -> How to Use Game Bar -> How to Fix Game Bar Not Working Error

What is Game Bar?

For Xbox users, it’s not a new stuff because when they play video games with Xbox One S or X, they can use the controller to take advantage of the same feature on Xbox app for game capture, image or video. Yes, the feature is called Game DVR. Then Game bar is somewhat a copy and paste of Game DVR. Microsoft picked it out from Xbox app and built it in Windows 10 system to be a standalone capture tool for all Windows 10 users.

Game Bar of Windows 10

So Game bar is a Windows 10 included screen capture tool, with which you can record (Xbox) game clips, take screenshots, and broadcast game battles. Besides, you can also utilize it to capture any other non-game application running on the desktop.

What’s the Limitation of Game Bar, or Say the Pros and Cons?

As a native function, Game bar does bring about much convenience to both Xbox gamers and common desktop users. And flexible options on Record that duration, video quality, fps (30/60), and audio bit rate, to some degree, can meet most of capture needs.

However, Game bar has its own rule, too. On one hand, it embraces most games and the real performance is different, which means your new game or certain piece may refuse Game bar to record. On the other hand, Game bar, when acting as a common desktop screen recorder, only works within a single app and doesn’t accept the whole desktop or file explorer. Also, the maximum video capture length is four hours. If you’d like to shoot on-screen activity with no region or time limit, you have to rely on third-party full-fledged screen recorder for Windows 10 like RecMaster.

free download RecMaster for Windows

More details on RecMaster vs Game Bar

How to Use Game Bar to Capture Screen on Windows 10

Game bar starts its life on Windows system since Windows 10 version 17763.0 and can be turned on & off by users since version 1809. Therefore, to ensure a smooth start with Game bar, your computer must meet the minimum system requirement.

Then it comes another question many customers concern: How do I download/install Game bar on my Windows 10?

The answer is: Since Game bar is a system-bundled tool, you don’t have to manually download or install it on your machine once your system is Windows 10 v17763 or higher. If your PC still holds Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8(.1) or Windows 10 below v17763, well, you lose the right to enjoy this benefit.

Back to the point then, how to use Game bar to do screen capture? Just check the easy steps below:

Step 1 – Open an Xbox game on PC or any program you’d like to capture.

Step 2 – Use the controller or press “Win icon + G” keyboard combination to pop up the Game bar control. If it doesn’t open, solve the problems via these troubleshooting tips.

Game bar floating bar for Windows 10 Capture

Step 3 – Configure for the screen video capture on the control panel or from Settings. And there you are allowed to define what audio to record, custom shortcuts and decide whether to record in background. For more video settings like quality, fps mouse cursor and “Record that” duration, you should navigate to Windows 10 settings -> Gaming -> Capture. Another Game Mode is designed for optimizing your gameplay performance if you turn it on.

Game Bar for Windows 10

Step 4 – Start and end the record with buttons or shortcuts. Below are the default keyboard shortcuts for Windows 10 Game bar:

Open Game bar: Win + G
Record that/Record last 3 min (adjustable from 15 seconds to 10 minutes): Win + Alt + G
Start/Stop recording: Win + Alt + R
Microphone one/off: Win + Alt + M
Show camera in broadcast: Win + Alt + W

When the capture is over, you can click the Windows notification to check this MP4-formatted game clip and do what you want with it.

How to Fix Game Bar Not Opening/Working on Windows 10

We usually see people complain that they can’t open Game bar with Windows plus G shortcut or Game bar not working problem, hence we’ve gathered some fixing methods for its abnormal behavior.

Game Bar Not Working Error [Fixed]

Fix 1Ensure the feature is enabled under system Settings -> Gaming. Also you can turn off and on the Game bar toggle again or reboot the computer to see whether it’s back to normal.

Fix 2 – Make sure you have entered the right shortcut. Alternatively, you can reset the shortcut and note that don’t use the one that’s already in use because it will create conflicts.

Fix 3 – User profile is also a potential cause of Game bar not working. So you can try to switch to another new account under Settings -> Accounts.

Fix 4 – When you encounter the not open or work error with full screen gameplay, work it around by altering full-mode to windowed mode.

Fix 5 Reinstall the Windows 10 Game bar. If nothing changes after trying the solutions above and you still insist on working the problem out, then it’s time to uninstall and reinstall the game bar in this way: right click start menu and click “Windows PowerShell (Admin)” -> enter “Get-AppxPackage *xbox* | Remove-AppxPackage” command and press Enter to remove the existing game bar -> go to Microsoft Store to get free Xbox Game Bar and finish the installation -> restart PC to capture again. [>> Best Microsoft Screen Recorders]

Fix 6 – If you are tired of solving Game bar unavailable error, you are suggested to turn to some Game bar alternative software program. Generally, third-party recorders are easier to use and have more advanced settings and tools regarding capture region, output format, video effect and auto-recording. Among those best game recording software, RecMaster and Bandicam are more recommended for their better compatibility with video games and more stable performance. Besides, you can give a chance to the quality hardware if your computer has such graphic card and install related service like Geforce Experience.

Final Words
Windows 10 game bar is a great tool for PC gamers or the general public to take basic screenshot or video capture. If you don’t have much requirement on recording settings/effects, and are unwilling to invest for a screen recorder or prefer a software program with no download, Xbox Game bar is the top choice. Otherwise, you’d better go for a feature-rich screen recorder.

RecMaster – Record Every Moment on Your Computer Screen

RecMaster – Record Every Moment on Your Computer Screen

Multiple recording modes make it easy to capture anything on screen.

Record 1080p or even 4K clips at 60fps to maintain the high quality still.

Flexible settings for mouse cursor effects, watermark and annotations.

Preloaded with recording scheduler, video editor. Allow one-click sharing.

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Bianca Willis

Bianca Willis

Bianca Willis started her copywriting career since 2014. As a tech editor with over 6 years writing experience, she has worked out hundreds of posts on multi-media solutions (video recording included), hot gadgets and troubleshooting tips.

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