In a report on Game Informer, which has now been confirmed by Microsoft, the restrictive policies that do nothing but hinder indie developers looking to bring their games to the Xbox One will be removed. After reversing their unpopular policies surrounding the console’s previously required Internet connection and restrictions on trading and loaning the games we buy, Microsoft has pulled another 180 — another Xbox One-80, if you will — that should make indie developers very happy.
Sony currently allows developers to self-publish their games on the PlayStation 4, but until now, the same wasn’t true for the Xbox One. Details after the jump.
This change in policy means developers will be able to seek digital distribution without the aid of a third party publishing partner, or by pairing up with Microsoft.
“Our vision is that every person can be a creator. That every Xbox One can be used for development. That every game and experience can take advantage of all of the features of Xbox One and Xbox LIVE,” said Xbox chief product officer Marc Whitten. “This means self-publishing. This means Kinect, the cloud, achievements. This means great discoverability on Xbox LIVE. We’ll have more details on the program and the timeline at gamescom in August.” Microsoft confirmed in a statement on these pending changes to their game policies.
It sounds like indie developers might matter to them after all.
Under these new guidelines, devs will be able to set the price and release date of their games, rather than having both chosen for them by Microsoft or a publishing partner.
Their certification process has also been tweaked, allowing for a 14-day turnaround on approvals to submitted games, to make sure they’re free of game-breaking bugs or terms of service violations.
Getting an Xbox One dev kit will be easier, too. Every retail console will be capable of acting as such. This feature won’t be available when the Xbox One launches this November, but Microsoft plans on implementing it at a later date.
I hope we get a ‘making of’ documentary that follows the development of the Xbox One, because I think it’d be a fascinating watch.
Since Microsoft is essentially re-writing the Xbox One platform, how many petitions is it going to take to ship this baby with a headset?