Xbox One to allow indie self-publishing
Microsoft confirms news, but avoids comment on letting devs set release dates, pricing on Xbox Live games
[UPDATE]: Engadget has a statement from Microsoft's Xbox corporate VP Marc Whitten confirming the news.
"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. 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."
The original story follows below.
Microsoft already reversed one unpopular Xbox One policy when it backed off the system's online requirements. Now it might be backing down off another, as Game Informer reports the company will allow independent developers to self-publish their games on Xbox Live.
The outlet's sources say that developers will be able to make the call on their games' release dates and pricing. Additionally, Microsoft is looking to make its certification process more like iTunes, with a targeted 14-day window from submission to approval. That will mean the company's examination of game code will be more cursory, covering primarily terms of service breaches and major bugs.
Finally, Game Informer reports that the standard Xbox One retail unit will be convertible to a debug console that can play pre-release code. Instead of having two different hardware setups, Microsoft will just authorize specific consoles to play unfinished code. The same process is expected to work for large-scale beta testing of games as well.