Microsoft has confirmed that indie game developers will in fact be able to self-publish on the Xbox One.
One of the biggest complains about the Xbox One was that indie game developers could not self-publish on the platform. In contrast with both Sony and Nintendo, Microsoft required that anyone wanting to get stuff on Xbox Live have a deal with either Microsoft Game Studios or a third-party publisher. It was a problematic situation for game developers, obviously, but also for gamers, who faced a potentially restricted selection of indie fare as a result.
But Microsoft's latest Xbox One about-race changes all that, as it confirmed today that "every person can be a creator." The statement followed a Game Informer report this morning claiming that Microsoft would announce changes to its programs that would allow independent studios access to the platform without a publisher, and that it is streamlining its certification process with the intent of establishing a 14-day turnaround time.
"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," Microsoft Corporate Vice President Marc Whitten said in a statement. "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."
It's not exactly a step-by-step roadmap to indie freedom, but it is a step in the right direction. We'll find out exactly how big a step it is in a month: Gamescom takes place from August 21 to 25 in Cologne, Germany.