Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Microsoft XBox (Games) Games

Microsoft Will Allow Indie Self-publishing, Debugging On Retail Xbox One 99

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the interesting-development dept.
tlhIngan writes "Microsoft was the last platform manufacturer to require that all games go through publishers, a much hated policy. Indeed, their approval process was one of the harshest around. But now Microsoft will allow indie developers to self publish, and allow retail Xbox One units to serve as developer consoles. Previously, self-publishing developers were relegated to the 'Xbox Live Indie Arcade' section, as well as developer consoles often costing upwards of $10,000 with special requirements and NDAs. This puts Microsoft's Xbox One more in line with Apple's App Store, including Microsoft's new promise of a 14-day turnaround for approvals. Microsoft's retail debug console system is to work similarly to Apple's — that is, to run pre-release code, the individual consoles used have to be registered with Microsoft."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Microsoft Will Allow Indie Self-publishing, Debugging On Retail Xbox One

Comments Filter:
  • Very tempting (Score:4, Insightful)

    by SuperKendall (25149) on Wednesday July 24, 2013 @05:12PM (#44374895)

    If it gives me programatic access to the video stream as they were showing in some of the demos... it would be very interesting indeed.

    If it's just games, that's nice for a lot of people but not as exciting in terms of something really new.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Vanderhoth (1582661)
      Have you already forgotten about all the DRM crap they were going to, and probably still will, stick in. This is a shallow attempt to regain some public face, they're still planning on screwing their customers, and any developers, that buy into this over.
      • Have you already forgotten about all the DRM crap they were going to, and probably still will, stick in.

        Using it as a development system potentially allows you to bypass much of the DRM to do your own thing... just as an iOS developer can do whatever they like with apps they write for personal use.

        But realistically, the DRM aspect never really bothered me since it's pervasive now, especially with media. As long as I feel fine with every purchase in reality being a rental (even though they claim you are "b

        • by EdZ (755139)

          Using it as a development system potentially allows you to bypass much of the DRM to do your own thing

          Taking bets now on whether 'registering with Microsoft' to turn your console into a devkit entails regular (or continuous) sign-ins when running unsigned code. Couldn't let people run what they wanted on consumer devices without some way to limit it, because piracy might somehow spontaneously occur!

          • Yep! (Score:3, Informative)

            by Knuckx (1127339)

            On the Xbox 360, you can use a retail console as a (limited) devkit for developing Xbox Live Indie Games with XNA. This requires two things: XBLIG Membership attached to your Xbox Live account, and the development/debug tool installed on the Xbox 360 (XNA Game Studio Connect). XNA Game Studio Connect requires you to be signed in to Xbox Live with an account with XBLIG membership before it will launch unsigned code. If at any time during execution of unsigned code your network connection drops, or you sign o

            • Urk (Score:5, Insightful)

              by SuperKendall (25149) on Wednesday July 24, 2013 @09:48PM (#44377317)

              If at any time during execution of unsigned code your network connection drops, or you sign out of Xbox Live, the hypervisor/debugger forcefully resets the console.

              Well that sounds really un-appealing, I have to say... I develop a lot of times in places where I have spotty connectivity. I'll for sure wait and see what reports are like in developing for the system before I spring for one...

              • by tepples (727027)

                I develop a lot of times in places where I have spotty connectivity.

                When in such areas, develop your XNA game as if it were an XNA game for Windows PCs, and work on the port to the Xbox family platform only when you have a quality Internet connection. I get the same problem: I do some development work on a laptop on the bus, where I can't test on the ultimate target platform.

              • I'd never get any code written if my PC rebooted every time the internet dropped for a moment. I see no reason we should accept that from an XBox.
              • by tlhIngan (30335)

                If at any time during execution of unsigned code your network connection drops, or you sign out of Xbox Live, the hypervisor/debugger forcefully resets the console.

                Well that sounds really un-appealing, I have to say... I develop a lot of times in places where I have spotty connectivity. I'll for sure wait and see what reports are like in developing for the system before I spring for one...

                It's no different than if you sign into Xbox Live and play a game you bought there - if your network connection drops, b

      • This is MS final policy on DRM and everything else, until the NEXT time they change their mind...

        It is one of MS biggest failings, they change their mind at the drop of a hat/stock price and have turned burning bridges into an art.

        You only got to follow PC gaming and MS attitude towards it to see that MS has the attention pan of a long tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs being thrown around by Ballmer.

        Policy update to follow in: 3... 2... 1...

    • Re:Very tempting (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Sir_Sri (199544) on Wednesday July 24, 2013 @05:35PM (#44375093)

      If it's just games, that's nice for a lot of people but not as exciting in terms of something really new.

      I don't think it's supposed to be new. It's aimed at indie devs and people like me who teach game development where we cannot justify real development kits to be handed to students (what could possibly go wrong? Oh.. right... students).

      The thing is, the Xbox3 is basically a PC, so for anything really 'new' you have PC development to demo it, and then pitch that to someone who has money to let you buy a development kit if you want it. If you just want to make a game, this works well.

      • I don't think it's supposed to be new.

        Probably not, but the thing is there is *potential* for something new here beyond just writing games for some other system. That's what interests me most.

      • by N0Man74 (1620447)

        ...The thing is, the Xbox3 is basically a PC

        Which is different from the XBox and XBox2, how?

        And it's not "XBox3", it's "XBox One", sometimes abbreviated "XBOne" (but I prefer "XBone").

        • by Sir_Sri (199544)

          The Xbox2 was Power PC. But yes, for our purposes basically a PC.

          It's the 3rd Xbox, so Xbox3. Whatever MS marketing wants to call it is irrelevant to what it is. I am very much aware what they are calling it, and very deliberately not going along with it.

          In the context of the discussion though, my point was that an xbox dev kit isn't going to let you do something you can't do on a PC, given that there is a kinect SDK already. Anything interesting you can do on an Xbox you can prototype on PC first, and

    • by TWiTfan (2887093)

      If you're thinking you're going to get access to the unencrypted blu-ray disc stream, you can forget it sparky.

  • I've been looking for an opportunity where I can be assured of a level playing field with other developers. Now that we'll all be on camera together, I finally have one. Do I have to contribute directly to the hidden offline blackbox cache logging of user presence information in order to participate in the developer program?
  • by deanklear (2529024) on Wednesday July 24, 2013 @05:23PM (#44374987)

    Oh, thank you, sir! For the privilege of accessing the hardware I have paid you money for, I am forever grateful! Next I should like to beg to turn off the camera feeding directly to the American authorities. Is such a dream possible?

    Your faithful servants,
    Those Who Haven't Heard About the PS4

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anaerin (905998)

      Oh, thank you, sir! For the privilege of accessing the hardware I have paid you money for, I am forever grateful! Next I should like to beg to turn off the camera feeding directly to the American authorities. Is such a dream possible?

      Yes, yes it is. As they have said, countless times, you can disable the Kinect entirely if you so desire. If you have any proof whatsoever that data from XBoxes/Kinects are being sent to any US authorities (without a fully authorised warrant being issued), do please point to it, post it, or something similar. Otherwise it's just rampant, and damaging, speculation on your part.

      Except, of course, that you're just a troll, and all you can do is innuendo and speculation to try and shill for your particular corp

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by AmiMoJo (196126) *

        Yes, yes it is

        No, no it isn't. You can disable the standby mode in software but the console needs it plugged in to work. Unless you physically unplug it ever single time you turn the console off there is nothing to stop MS inserting a backdoor for the FBI/CIA/NSA/GCHQ that lets them silently turn it back on whenever they like.

        If you have any proof whatsoever that data from XBoxes/Kinects are being sent to any US authorities

        I think it's safe to assume everything accessible to Microsoft is accessible to them now.

  • by Myria (562655) on Wednesday July 24, 2013 @05:45PM (#44375179)

    I'm going to guess that they'll only allow independent developers to use verifiable .NET code in their games. Allowing native code is exceptionally dangerous, because it multiplies the attack surface by several times. It's almost guaranteed that sandboxes running native code will have escape bugs on release day.

    • by EdZ (755139)
      The ever-reliable (and highly cryptic) CBOAT hints that [neogaf.com] the 'self published' code will be limited to the 'Windows 8 app store' mode, along with the 3gb of memory set aside for the Win8 mode.
    • by Nemyst (1383049)
      They've killed XNA and haven't announced any .NET-based replacement, so I'd be very surprised if that were the case.
    • Within 10 years, I'd be a bit shocked if the consoles are not majorly impacted by some sort of phone that plugs into your HDTV device that supports a controller --- likely on Android, but possibly Apple too. One example: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/872297630/gamestick-the-most-portable-tv-games-console-ever [kickstarter.com]

      Or this pressure could come from Valve/SteamBox or an unforeseen marketplace entry.

      The PSP and the Nintendo DS are on their last legs due to iPads/Android/iPods/maybe Kindles too, it is only a

  • Car Analogy (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Ford Will Allow Indie Driving, Sightseeing On Retail Focus

    "Ford was the last automobile manufacturer to require that all routes go through manufacturers, a much hated policy. Indeed, their approval process was one of the harshest around. But now Ford will allow indie drivers to self guide, and allow retail Focus units to serve as tourism vehicles. Previously, self-guiding drivers were relegated to the 'Ford Indie Car Track' section, as well as route design vehicles often costing upwards of $100,000 with spe

    • by Sockatume (732728)

      Ford doesn't take responsibility for the quality of the highways and what happens on them, although that would let them sell more trucks. (The Turnpike, now with 99% less accidents and Smoothdrive(TM)!) Microsoft does take responsiblity for the quality of Xbox games and what happens on the Live service, using that as a selling point.

    • by Sockatume (732728)

      AOL is a good comparison. They had their own little corner with its own content, which AOL built and maintained, and when you paid for AOL you paid for that safe - but restricted - little selection. You might think that's a dumb idea and prefer to go elsewhere, but that's the basic idea.

      Of course this makes a games console rather like a PC that could only access AOL, which is a nightmare vision that never came to pass in this universe.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    The Xbox One is riddled with two forms of evil. The one that matters is the NSA spying platform features. The one that matters less is the plethora of spiteful Microsoft restrictions.

    Bill Gates and the NSA partnered to create the Xbox One. It is the Microsoft crap, not the NSA spy features, that seem to be killing enthusiasm amongst potential buyers. So, surprise surprise, bit by bit the Microsoft crap is being rolled back.

    The Xbox One had possibly the worst launch ever seen. The Xbox360 is really popular,

    • If you signed your post, your friends might recognize that it's you, and get you some help. As it is, I can only urge you to get some professional help regarding your extreme paranoia.
  • by Spy Handler (822350) on Wednesday July 24, 2013 @07:14PM (#44375991) Homepage Journal

    developers, developers, developers, developers, developers, developers, developers, developers, developers, developers.

    Developers, developers, developers, developers, developers, developers *cough* developers, developers, developers.... DEVELOPERS!

    Signed,
    Ballmer

    • by preflex (1840068)
      Not anymore, baby! Now it's advertisers, advertisers, advertisers, advertisers, advertisers!
  • by goruka (1721094) on Wednesday July 24, 2013 @07:45PM (#44376307)
    If this means:
    1) Running native code (C/C++)
    2) Running a regular Windows 8 Modern binary
    3) Running DirectX 11

    I'm in. They got me as a customer from day 1.
  • Oh, shit. We screwed up sooo bad. Somebody, anybody - throw us a bone here!
    • by Sockatume (732728)

      More like "Sony did it, so should we."

      Has MS made a decision regarding the Xbox where they haven't backtracked to "whatever Sony is doing"? It seems like Mark Cerny has more control over the Xbox One's capabilites than Ballmer does.

  • That's a smart move, now I only hope Sony will do the same, they already have something like that for the retail PS-vita with its Playstation Mobile SDK.. This is also the only reason why I'm running a custom firmware on my PS3, so I can do some homebrew..
    Maybe I'll just buy myself a xboxnone when I have actually already a nice app/game running, just to be able to test it and maybe even publish it..

  • Well, there is no XNA any more but this is still good news for Indies and makes it an attractive platform whether there is additional developer support or not. And I'm sure there will be more announcements coming. When you compare the MS developer relationship to any of the other console producers they still have developer goodwill in the bank.

Optimization hinders evolution.

Working...