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Indies mixed on Xbox One self-publishing

In a surprise turn around from its historical policies, Microsoft has announced it will allow self-publishing on the Xbox One. Unsurprisingly, the news has raised both excitement and skepticism among indie developers.



Shack News collated a couple of responses to today’s news.

Monaco: What’s Yours is Mine creator Andy Schatz of Pocketwatch Games said that an open platform is much better, because it gets rid of arbiters of taste, reduces energy expended on pitching games, and negates the need for publishers.

“While I enjoyed working with [publisher Majesco], had self-publishing been an option on the Xbox 360 it would have saved me a lot of trouble in the long run, since my destination platform was in limbo until a year before launch,” Schatz noted.

“If Microsoft doesn’t promote your game, it will still be a gigantic uphill battle to see any sort of meaningful sales,” he added.

TowerFall creator Matt Thorson said self-publishing would make “a huge difference” to him.

“For me, lack of self-publishing makes it very difficult to consider launching on a platform. I’ve never worked with Microsoft, but I’ve heard horror stories from other indies,” he said.

“Fingers crossed they’re aware of the problems and are ready to put in the work to catch up to Sony. They seem to be on the right track with this and the recent removal of the XBLA patch fee.”

But Jennifer Schneidereit of Tengami developer Nyamyam Games was not so ethusiastic.

“Up until now Microsoft have displayed a mentality that excludes independent developers,” she said.

“This makes it difficult for me to trust their motives for reversing their stance now. From my time at Microsoft, I know that company goals and direction change frequently. These new plans might just be a last minute band-aid and we’ll end up with a similar situation to Xbox Live Indie Games, where Microsoft provides a system, but doesn’t give it the support it needs to be successful.”

“Microsoft will have to do a lot more to gain my trust than just changing their self-publishing policy.”

Source: VG24/7
 
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