Microsoft Didn't Mean to Hate on Indie Developers

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Microsoft Didn't Mean to Hate on Indie Developers

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After violent complaints about Xbox Live's dashboard update, Microsoft has reassured Xbox Live Indie Games developers that it only wants what's best for them.

Independent developers were summarily pissed off when Microsoft altered the the Xbox Live Indie Games storefront and moved it to a new location in the Xbox Live dashboard update of 2010. Despite complaints, Microsoft says that the changes were meant to help, not harm.

The Indie Games section was once given its own bar in the Games Marketplace tab, but is now found in a new section called Specialty Shops that includes the Avatar Marketplace, Game Room, and the Rock Band and Guitar Hero music stores. Xbox Live Indie Games also don't appear in the Games Marketplace's A-Z listings, which is one of the primary complaints.

Microsoft told Digital Spy that the move was intended to give Xbox Live Indie Games a bigger role in the overall Xbox Live experience. "Microsoft continues to support the efforts of independent game developers," a statement reads. "The intent of the Specialty Shops section was to provide access to marketplaces that focus on a specific type of content, with unique ways of sorting through that content."

"We wanted to give Xbox Live Indie Games that full marketplace experience and felt this was the best place to do it, alongside other popular channels like the Avatar Marketplace," the statement continues. "In fact, since the launch of Avatars, Xbox Live members have made more than 290 million customizations to their Avatar's clothing, so we expect many people to regularly visit the Specialty Shops section."

The statement also points out that Microsoft added new browsing features for Xbox Live Indie Games, including the ability to search through the top-rated games by genre. Additionally, the Top Rated and Top Downloaded lists, which are said to be pretty important to developers, have expanded from 20 to 50 titles shown.

Whether the move pays off for Indie Games developers, or serves to kill them off instead, remains to be seen. The millions of new users projected to join Xbox Live thanks to Kinect could make a huge difference, if Microsoft is correct about the Specialty Shop's prominence.

The situation is hard to judge from the outside, because while some Xbox Live Indie Games are more than worth the small price of entry, others are not. However, not being featured in the A-Z listings, or even Genres, is understandably a bit hard to swallow for those developers trying to make a living out of this. The Indie Games storefront should probably have its own unique section, but it does initially seem like its status has been diminished by hiding it behind another menu choice.

Source: Digital Spy

Permalink

Oh hey, Indie devs.

Microsoft being lying cunts again?

Join the club, all the PC gamers are in it.

Microsoft's treatment of indie devs is one of the reasons why games like Joe Danger are PSN exclusive. No one wants to put up with it.

What's that smell?

Oh, it's just anther load of bullshit.

If you really wanted to help them out, you'd dedicate an entire section to Indie Games. The people that walk into the avatar shops and such, yeah... you think they might just want the Avatar Items? Maybe? Just possibly? I think so.

Sebenko:
Oh hey, Indie devs.

Microsoft being lying cunts again?

Join the club, all the PC gamers are in it.

Nothing I can say would beat this. Well done sir.

If you were really focussing on boosting the Indie gamess profile, perhaps you could have left a link on where they used to be - as a sort of forwarding address.

wow microsoft really? It's obvious you removed them to leave room for other stuff.

And considering how popular indie games are, that wasn't really a smart move was it?

Sebenko:
Oh hey, Indie devs.

Microsoft being lying cunts again?

Join the club, all the PC gamers are in it.

Mr. Grey:
What's that smell?

Oh, it's just anther load of bullshit.

If you really wanted to help them out, you'd dedicate an entire section to Indie Games. The people that walk into the avatar shops and such, yeah... you think they might just want the Avatar Items? Maybe? Just possibly? I think so.

There's really nothing more that needs to be added.

"hrm wonder whats new on the indie game scene, lets have a look on my 360... erm... where are they? hrm lets check the A-Z... nothing? Hrm looks like there not on 360 no more. Oh well"

That will be they typical 360 user thats a bit into indie games xD

Dear Lord....

After entering the Games Marketplace....

IT"S ONE FUCKING STICK MOVEMENT DOWN!!!!!!!!!

Sorry for caps, but this is ridiculous.

A lot of people are acting foolish about this.

EDIT: Seriously guys, what's your problem? Never mind, it's just mindless hate.
To mix indie games with the arcade games would be ridiculous, you are your own genre, you cost a dollar. It's like saying why doesn't a five star restaurant sell Taco Bell quality tacos!

Inside Indie Marketplace (One motion down from Games Marketplace!!!!!)you will find them in these categories:

Newest
Genres
Titles A-Z
Top IGN Picks
Contest Finalists
Top Rated
Top Downloaded

And if anyone tells you otherwise, they are a filthy liar. That or I just have a special Xbox that comes from the future.

Sober Thal:
Dear Lord....

After entering the Games Marketplace....

IT"S ONE FUCKING STICK MOVEMENT DOWN!!!!!!!!!

Sorry for caps, but this is ridiculous.

A lot of people are acting foolish about this.

Yeah, it involves MS, which everybody loves to hate on.

Sober Thal:
Dear Lord....

After entering the Games Marketplace....

IT"S ONE FUCKING STICK MOVEMENT DOWN!!!!!!!!!

Sorry for caps, but this is ridiculous.

A lot of people are acting foolish about this.

EDIT: Seriously guys, what's your problem? Never mind, it's just mindless hate.
To mix indie games with the arcade games would be ridiculous, you are your own genre, you cost a dollar. It's like saying why doesn't a five star restaurant sell Taco Bell quality tacos!

Those 5 stars are in the eye of the beholder my friend... lets say VVVVVV or Silent Hill Homecoming :P

My comment isn't mindless hate personally but I can see why there pissed and from what I can see the indie games are too far buried now, wouldn't mind so much about being a sub category but more not being included in the A-Z

Best and easiest fix? Stick a link in the Games marketplace that takes you to the Indie Games specialty shop. Now everyone's happy.

Kouen:

Sober Thal:
Dear Lord....

After entering the Games Marketplace....

IT"S ONE FUCKING STICK MOVEMENT DOWN!!!!!!!!!

Those 5 stars are in the eye of the beholder my friend... lets say VVVVVV or Silent Hill Homecoming :P

My comment isn't mindless hate personally but I can see why there pissed and from what I can see the indie games are too far buried now, wouldn't mind so much about being a sub category but more not being included in the A-Z

Far too buried?!?

one
stick
movement
down

They have an a-z listing all to themselves, they ARE a sub category.
Those two games you mentioned have absolutely nothing to do with XBL.

Do you even have XBL to know what this about??

Sober Thal:

Kouen:

Sober Thal:
Dear Lord....

After entering the Games Marketplace....

IT"S ONE FUCKING STICK MOVEMENT DOWN!!!!!!!!!

Those 5 stars are in the eye of the beholder my friend... lets say VVVVVV or Silent Hill Homecoming :P

My comment isn't mindless hate personally but I can see why there pissed and from what I can see the indie games are too far buried now, wouldn't mind so much about being a sub category but more not being included in the A-Z

Far too buried?!?

one
stick
movement
down

They have an a-z listing all to themselves, they ARE a sub category.
Those two games you mentioned have absolutely nothing to do with XBL.

Do you even have XBL to know what this about??

From what you say it's a big overreaction. I don't know I kinda believe them and besides the catorgory thing always felt a little confusing I think it's better to do research for something you might like and then do a search bar search rather than comb any bit of the marketplace for what you want.

Sober Thal:

Kouen:

Sober Thal:
Dear Lord....

After entering the Games Marketplace....

IT"S ONE FUCKING STICK MOVEMENT DOWN!!!!!!!!!

Those 5 stars are in the eye of the beholder my friend... lets say VVVVVV or Silent Hill Homecoming :P

My comment isn't mindless hate personally but I can see why there pissed and from what I can see the indie games are too far buried now, wouldn't mind so much about being a sub category but more not being included in the A-Z

Far too buried?!?

one
stick
movement
down

They have an a-z listing all to themselves, they ARE a sub category.
Those two games you mentioned have absolutely nothing to do with XBL.

Do you even have XBL to know what this about??

Breath! Relax, cleared out your frustration?

and ill have you know if I could have XBL I would, I Got Screwed on a 2nd hand 360 that was Pre-banned for being modified.

Remember no need to get worked up over a possible mistake by someone on a forum ^_^

image

Tom Goldman:

After violent complaints about Xbox Live's dashboard update, Microsoft has reassured Xbox Live Indie Games developers that it only wants what's best for them.

...if they benefit Microsoft in a huge way.

Kouen:

Sober Thal:

Kouen:

Sober Thal:
Dear Lord....

After entering the Games Marketplace....

IT"S ONE FUCKING STICK MOVEMENT DOWN!!!!!!!!!

Those 5 stars are in the eye of the beholder my friend... lets say VVVVVV or Silent Hill Homecoming :P

My comment isn't mindless hate personally but I can see why there pissed and from what I can see the indie games are too far buried now, wouldn't mind so much about being a sub category but more not being included in the A-Z

Far too buried?!?

one
stick
movement
down

They have an a-z listing all to themselves, they ARE a sub category.
Those two games you mentioned have absolutely nothing to do with XBL.

Do you even have XBL to know what this about??

Breath! Relax, cleared out your frustration?

and ill have you know if I could have XBL I would, I Got Screwed on a 2nd hand 360 that was Pre-banned for being modified.

Remember no need to get worked up over a possible mistake by someone on a forum ^_^

So sorry to correct you. It won't happen again, unless you quote me... that kinda is the only reason I quoted you back in the first place.

Now instead of going to bed, I'm going to fix this whole Bobby Kotick is evil thing....

Hmmm, well to be honest I've spent a few bucks in the Indie martketplace and while I liked the idea of it, I think that it's turned out to be far less in practice than it was in theory. Basically what it did was turn into a giant shovelware ghetto where instead of a place where up and coming indie developers could distribute there work, it turned into a situation where developers seem to hope that by dropping a few key words, or creating something silly they can make a few quick bucks for minimal work.

While on some levels I like the idea of an area where games are unregulated, mostly for potential content reasons, I feel it's been destroyed by the complete lack of quality control.

I personally do not blame Microsoft for pushing the indie games out of the way, or feeling like it was a giant mistake at this point. I think everyone would benefit from them relaunching the entire concept from scratch.

Such are my opinions.

I see that Susan is doing your XBL screencaps this time around. ;)

And, you know, this just reminds of the time I got dressed down by a Microsoft executive about outside user testing before a major release being the most important part of a project. I guess they laid that guy off.

Whether the devs have a point or not, this all could have been avoided by, you know, communicating with them, like MS is supposedly famous for. I thought that better vendor relations and MS connections were the reason for indie devs to be on XBL in the first place?

Microsoft is filled with a bunch of friggin liars. They dont support indie gamer creators, they just want to make more money

"The intent of the Specialty Shops section was to provide access to marketplaces that focus on a specific type of content, with unique ways of sorting through that content."
What a load of shit. Why are indie games different than any other game? They need their own section for the simple reason that they're low budget? And there's some reason that they're not listed in the games library?

Again, I say MS made the right choice. When I go to search in the main A-Z lists for games and DLC, I do not want crap like "How 2 talk 2 gurls lol" and "we turned teh controller into a sex toy" clogging up my search, just like I don't want it clogged with Rock Band songs or Avatar clothes either. Indie games belong in their own specialty shop like all the other niche offerings on the Marketplace.

The only thing MS should do for the indie games thing now is put up some kind of quality control so crap like the two games I mentioned above don't get into the listings in the first place. The indie games section looks like the Wii game library, honestly. A few good games here or there completely surrounded by shovelware.

Sebenko:
Oh hey, Indie devs.

Microsoft being lying cunts again?

Join the club, all the PC gamers are in it.

lol. wade through the pool of Microsoft lies lol.

OT: Thats bullshit. They should at least appear in the A-Z listing. If anything this seems like it will hurt their sales.

It seems patently stupid to provide a hosting and distribution service for those indie games (for the explicit purpose of selling them) and then try to hide them away so nobody can find them.

Why pay to host these things if you don't want to sell them?

Atmos Duality:
It seems patently stupid to provide a hosting and distribution service for those indie games (for the explicit purpose of selling them) and then try to hide them away so nobody can find them.

Why pay to host these things if you don't want to sell them?

Good question to ask. The answer is, they didn't. The games are not buried; they're broken out from the umpty-zillion Arcade and DLC titles in the Marketplace so that they don't get buried by the Big Boys' offerings.

I think the indie guys have a legitimate beef that their cover art and blurbs weren't showing (which I dearly hope is just an artifact of the server load from the Dashboard update downloads, the way Zune wasn't working properly from the same load) but this is some folks badly misunderstanding what's going on, IMO.

-- Steve

Kouen:
"hrm wonder whats new on the indie game scene, lets have a look on my 360... erm... where are they? hrm lets check the A-Z... nothing? Hrm looks like there not on 360 no more. Oh well"

Or you are a european player then you are like "indie games what is that". Found it funny some dutch news site published this as well as we do not get indie games on our game marketplace

Honestly, every XBL user should be aware of the dashboard and take a peek into every nook and corner if you ask me.

But that's just me.

D Moness:

Kouen:
"hrm wonder whats new on the indie game scene, lets have a look on my 360... erm... where are they? hrm lets check the A-Z... nothing? Hrm looks like there not on 360 no more. Oh well"

Or you are a european player then you are like "indie games what is that". Found it funny some dutch news site published this as well as we do not get indie games on our game marketplace

Im very much a European and am somewhat into the indie scene :P

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/9.186385-Indie-Games-Your-Thoughts-Recommendations

Kouen:

Im very much a European and am somewhat into the indie scene :P

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/9.186385-Indie-Games-Your-Thoughts-Recommendations

LOL Interesting link. My complaint was more that we do not get it on xbl. I do play them and found a few really fun/interesting ones. Just wish it was easier for us to buy them over xbl.

Yeah; after all, if MS scares away the indies, who would they have to steal from?

Tom Goldman:
The Indie Games section was once given its own bar in the Games Marketplace tab, but is now found in a new section called Specialty Shops

I don't really understand.. I was looking at my mate's xbox yesterday after he updated, searched for stuff like Braid, N+, they came up in the main A-Z list... so what exactly are we talking about when we say 'indie' games? Cos those are indie for me...

D Moness:

Kouen:

Im very much a European and am somewhat into the indie scene :P

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/9.186385-Indie-Games-Your-Thoughts-Recommendations

LOL Interesting link. My complaint was more that we do not get it on xbl. I do play them and found a few really fun/interesting ones. Just wish it was easier for us to buy them over xbl.

Could try looking on steam, most indie titles are not that demanding, infact most run on my craptop (Isnt my gaming rig though lol)

It's fine giving indie guys their own place on the menu, but removing them from the general games browsing is a bit counter-productive. If they were featured on both places the guys might be a bit less pissed.

How does a person know if a game is indie or not when they start looking for it? People might just search in the games section, not see it and give up. Shouldn't have to look in both places for one friggin game.

We tried to warn you guys. Come, join us. Join the PSN. We love you here and wont stab you in the back to make room for a new expensive webcam.

I find it more disturbing that the Avatar-Barbie store is actually used. I have not checked the whole "Indie" section, let alone the Live marketplace in ages, but I would imagine that it is for the best to separate randomness from the regular marketplace releases. I refused the most recent update so I cannot comment on how it meshes exactly, but the other solution I can guess at would be to have a final marketplace option when sorting through games in the arcade at the bottom specifically labeled "Indie titles" that would branch out into its own separate section once selected.

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