Self-publishing for Xbox One confirmed; retail units to double up as dev kits

Microsoft has announced that it will allow developers to self-publish their games on Xbox One, and that all retail Xbox One units will also serve as dev units, removing the need for indie devs to purchase separate dev kits.

The company’s policy reversal comes after a backlash from indie developers against the Xbox One and in the face of a strong push towards indie games from Sony on the PlayStation 4.

"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," Xbox corporate vice president Marc Whitten told Game Informer, adding, "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."

Whitten also said that Microsoft won’t put any restrictions on the types of games it will allow on Xbox One, or the scope of those games. The company will reveal details about revenue sharing at Gamescom next month.

The dev kit functionality for retail Xbox One units will not be available at launch, suggesting that Microsoft will release a software update to enable it.

This is Microsoft’s second policy reversal on the Xbox One. It earlier removed the console’s always-online DRM and used games policies amid a backlash from gamers.

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