It turns out yesterday’s announcement of the Xbox One allowing indie developers isn’t quite as good as it seems according to Retro City Rampage developer Brian Provinciano.
According to Provinciano, Microsoft’s self-publishing announcement is “another example of them changing policy, but it sounding better than it is when the whole story is revealed.”
“Make no mistake,” the developer tells Engadget, “while this is a great thing, it’s again not the equivalent to what other platforms are offering.”
“On PS4, for example, developers can tap right into the system; use every bit of RAM and all of its power. Indies have access to everything that the AAA studios do, from platform support to development and release,” Provinciano explains. “The indication on Xbox One is that it’s essentially XBLIG 2.0. Instead of XNA, it’s Windows 8. Windows 8, which is already struggling to gain developer interest, will gain a boost from developers wishing to target the console. However, it won’t be as full-fledged as published games on the system.”
Provinciano also took to Twitter to voice his concern but saying how Microsoft isn’t “giving you the whole story.”
Comment on the Xbox One "self-publishing" — they're not giving you the whole story. It's a good thing, but not as good as it sounds.—
Brian Provinciano (@BriProv) July 24, 2013
However, despite these changes, the Retro City Rampage developer stated he won’t be buying an Xbox One let alone developing for the console.
“The policy changes are great,” he says, “but they don’t undo the experience I had. Working with Microsoft was the unhappiest point of my career.”
Of course, this is the point of view from one developer but it’s not just Provinciano who has had poor experiences with Microsoft in recent years. Fez developer Phil Fish is almost more famous than his game for his differences with Microsoft.
Details about self-publishing are scarce for now but we don’t have long to wait until they’re revealed at Gamescom in August.
George Sinclair is an editor for Analog Addiction, the home of the latest news, reviews and previews. You can find George on Twitter and his blog on IGN. Be sure to follow the OFFICIAL Analog Addiction Twitter as well!