Spurred by the outcry of angry developers, Microsoft has “quietly” returned the Xbox Live Indie Games store to its original position in the Xbox Live Games Marketplace.
The Xbox Live dashboard update that went live on November 1 brought with it a jarring surprise for independent game devs: The Indie Games store was removed from the Games Marketplace and added to the “relative obscurity” of the Specialty Shops area instead, alongside such things as the Avatar Marketplace and the Rock Band and Guitar Hero Music stores. Microsoft defended the move, saying its intent was to give indie games “that full marketplace experience,” but developers remained unconvinced and unhappy.
Apparently realizing that it wasn’t going to win any hearts and minds on this one, Microsoft did the next best thing and backtracked, returning the Indie Games store to its old spot in the Games Marketplace. The change was made with no fanfare and seems to have caught many indie devs by surprise. “I voted on the connect issue and tweeted about it like everyone else,” one member of the App Hub community forums wrote. “I just never thought Microsoft was actually going to respond to us, much less put us with the games.” He also noted that it was a bit strange that the change would be made without any official notification, adding, “They have bizarre PR.”
I guess it’s like the man said: “If you want to make enemies, try to change something.”