Rumor Solved: Xbox One Indie Can Self-Publish!
Microsoft pulls one more one-eighty, and then some, when it comes to Xbox One indie games. No longer will Indie-developers need their hands held by a third-party to publish their games.
Xbox corporate VP Marc Whitten told Game Informer:
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. 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.
What does this means as of now? *Facts*
1. Indies can self-publish
2. More/full access to features and tools, such as Kinect, game size, and the cloud
3. The publishing process will be simple as visiting a website to sign up as a developer to set up your console as a devkit
4. Retail Xbox ONE units can be used as devkits/debug-units, eventually… after launch of the Xbox ONE
5. Indie games will be featured alongside every title on Xbox Live, be it Indie or from a major studio/developer, climbing the ranks iTunes style.
What we’ve heard over the vine *Reported/Speculation/Rumored*
1. Certification is going to change. Microsoft is working, with Wargaming.net and others, on streamlining the process where it only takes about two weeks for approval
2 Developers can choose their own release dates and prices, even free to play.
3. Revenue may be split like that of Steam or iTunes, where the developer gets 70% and Microsoft gets 30%.
This may all sound like great news for Xbox One indie developers, but over at Joystiq they tell another story. They report that Indie devs are “cautiously optimistic” on what other variables that may arise.
Minicore Studios founder and CEO John Warren stated, “We can prepare for life with a Microsoft console, which is something I wouldn’t have said yesterday… My secondary (maybe flailing and futile) hope is that the fees for publishing won’t be insane. It’s one thing to only have to shell out $600 for a dev kit, but quite another if we have to spend another $10k on publishing fees.”
For now it seems like Microsoft has leveled the playing field for gamers and developers, even while we wait till Gamescon with blinders on.
One last thing… when this all goes into effect, thought it may sound crazy, I hope self-publishing carries over to the Xbox 360 as well. I especially feel this way as its install base is much larger than anything the Xbox ONE or Playstation 4 will have for quite some time.