Indies may not be able to self-publish on Xbox One

One of the greatest challenges for independent developers is just getting their game out there. Sony and Nintendo have lowered the barrier to entry on their consoles through self-publishing solutions for their digital marketplaces. Microsoft has revealed no plans to follow suit with Xbox One.

Developers still must partner with a publisher to get content onto Xbox Live, Shacknews heard from Matt Booty, general manager of Redmond Game Studios and Platforms.

"We intend to continue to court developers in the ways that we have," Booty said.

That means indies will have to partner up with either Microsoft Game Studios or an external publisher to get their games online--with all the contracts and other business arrangements that necessitates.

This could change, of course; Microsoft's already retracted two separate comments from VP Phil Harrison about Xbox One, so some kinks are left to work out.

Microsoft didn't directly address self-publishing in a response to Game Front, but said it would share more details later.

"Xbox One is a platform that allows all creators, including those who work on games and apps, regardless of team size, funding, business model, etc. to take advantage of unique capabilities to build amazing experiences that push the limits of technology," Microsoft's statement said.

Duke Nukem co-creator and outspoken developer advocate George Broussard tweeted his displeasure with the apparent lack of self-publishing options, saying it would dissuade indies from supporting the system.


  • SnakeinmyBoot - May 22, 2013 2:39 p.m.

    I can't believe indie devs still care about xbox. Valve, Sony, Android, and even Apple treat them better. Is it even worth it for a team of less than 10 to release a game to the xbox audience while jumping through MS's expensive flaming hoops. Although, they probably have some fans who can only get their game through xbox and care enough about the fans to put up with this malpractice.
  • TheDudeFromNowhere - May 22, 2013 2:08 p.m.

    Oi, what are they thinking. Another bad move. Looks like Sony might win this chess game.
  • shawksta - May 22, 2013 11:48 a.m.

    Ouch, that's the most ironic thing I have ever seen, considering Microsoft welcomed Indies with open arms out of the big 3 and gave them their own section to give birth to popular Indie games. Funny how the tables have turned, with Sony and Nintendo getting Indie support.
  • Unoriginal - May 22, 2013 4:16 p.m.

    Microsofts own Summer of Arcade was one of the chief factors that brought indies up to the level of attention and spread they enjoy today. It really is crazy to see the turnabout.
  • shawksta - May 22, 2013 5:26 p.m.

  • BladedFalcon - May 22, 2013 11:30 a.m.

    ...It just occurred to me, did Bobby Kottick secretly took over Microsoft? If so, then all of this suddenly makes sense :P
  • FoxdenRacing - May 22, 2013 3:34 p.m.

    I admit it, I LOL'd. CoD and WoW have made Bobby rich, but not that rich. I hope. Please don't let him be that rich. But he [and whoever's running EA these days] probably did ink a sweetheart deal, blockbuster exclusives [timed or complete] in exchange for implementing some of these awful ideas. This does makes me think back to our speculation yesterday. By this set of news... - MS is going for the big fish. - Sony is going for the little fish [but won't turn the big fish away] - Nintendo looks like they're giving up on AAA and changed course to go for the guppies; portable/mobile devs that want to "go pro" and lose the 'casual' stigma [the next 'generation' of A-list to C-list guys, along with the current generation of A-list to C-list guys, but at the expense of AA-list to AAA-list guys]. Blacklist looks cool, and I'm curious what they'll do for Bayonetta 2 and the Deus Ex: Extremely Yellow Edition rehash, but I get the feeling cross-platform [which is where the AAAs reside] is going to be minimal. It's N64/Saturn/Playstation all over again, but with the players in different spots. Absent an about face and a miracle [the internet forgive someone], my predictions for who 'wins' next gen might be more accurate than we thought... >_< This winter, it'll be Round 1: Fight!
  • BladedFalcon - May 22, 2013 4:11 p.m.

    Okay, and now with that “If you’re backwards compatible, you’re really backwards,” Quote, i am now POSITIVE that either Don Mattrick is really Bobby Kotick in disguise, or he's being mind controlled by him :P Also, I'm not sure I understood your last words, specially because I don't think I've heard you say who you predict will "win"? Anyway, for what you said about MS going for the big fish, Jim Sterling explains it better than I ever could have, as in why that approach is simply stupid:
  • FoxdenRacing - May 23, 2013 7:52 a.m.

    The last paragraph was drawing comparisons to the 5th gen. Nintendo, hot off the success of SNES, decided they 'were' gaming and could make all the rules, decided if you weren't on Nintendo, you weren't making games. Sega was just kinda there, not really making waves, but not crashing into icebergs either. Sony, meanwhile, was the hungry upstart...bent over backwards for devs, bent over backwards for gamers, and generally took an attitude of 'We have to make friends, and we have to do it ASAP'. In the end? Sony ran away with it, selling 3 times as much as their nearest competitor [N64], and a touch over twice as much as the other two combined [Saturn at <9 million, N64 at <33 million, PS1 at >100 million]. Nintendo's arrogance cost them their dominant spot. Take out the existing names, put in the names of the players for the 8th...the similarities are eerie. And somehow, I doubt the outcome will be much different. It might not have been you, but somewhere in all this XBone news here on GR, I'd mentioned that this generation is now Sony's to lose; if they knock their own reveal out of the park, avoid [or remove, if they had planned on them] the minefields MS was so happy to dance in for them, and not go full retard elsewhere, it's a no-brainer: Sony, Nintendo/MS scrapping over who gets stuck in 3rd. Granted; we know very little about PS4; it's entirely possible they'll screw the pooch too.
  • BladedFalcon - May 23, 2013 11:37 a.m.

    Ahhh, so basically, your analogy could be summed up entirely in this GIF: Note that the Dog representing PS4 does stare back and sway as if it could very well deviate from it's course and run back to where the Xbone dog was thrown. Which to me it's even more fitting because as it stands, what Sony does could either elevate them over the rest, or they could end up scrambling to be just as bad as what the Xbone promises to be XD And yeah, I think you did tell me that about This Gen being Sony's to lose. Which is pretty much spot on because at this point, Sony doesn't need to do ANYTHING extra beyond what we already know, or assume we know about the console. Actually, any new info is what could potentially end up sinking it, funnily enough XD
  • shawksta - May 22, 2013 8:03 p.m.

    Frankly Nintendo's fine with Japanese devs, but apparently the media and 3rd Party focus people care about are on Western Devs. With Nintendo pushing relationships here and there who knows what'll happen. Also, despite basically being as you called it "Deus Ex: Extremely Yellow Edition rehash", its more interesting that Square Enix did it in the first place because of what their enthusiasm with the Wii U. With their blabbings of "This is what Deus Ex shouldve been" and all we should expect a good relationship with Square Enix in the future, maybe even with their bigger series..
  • FoxdenRacing - May 23, 2013 8:05 a.m.

    Thanks for the update. I don't follow Easter dev as closely as I probably should...and yeah, Western media is interested in western tastes. I love Deus Ex in general [Invisible War kinda sucked, though], but couldn't resist that one. I'm interested to see what they come up with for well as how Ubisoft's going to use it for Blacklist. How ugly would it be if Nintendo ignored the West, Microsoft ignored the East [and from the way they're talking, everyone but GameBros], and Sony was caught in the middle? Gaming could easily stratify even worse than it is now...

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