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Zeboyd: Microsoft should merge Xbox Live Arcade and Indie Games

Robert Boyd believes Microsoft should look to Valve's Steam for inspiration

Robert Boyd, one half of Penny Arcade's On The Rain-Slick Precipice Of Darkness 3 developer Zeboyd Games, has told Edge that Microsoft should merge Xbox Live's Arcade and Indie Games categories.

"I'd like to see [XBLIG] kind of merge into XBLA," Boyd commented. "Keep Indie Games free to everyone but if you have a really good game, you could submit it to Microsoft for it to be upgraded to an XBLA title. Right now, becoming an XBLA developer is fairly difficult for a small team, so reducing the barrier of entry to XBLA could only help Microsoft, I think."

Boyd finds that Xbox Live Indie Games has serious discoverability issues because of the low barrier to entry. Some developers could use a route to Xbox Live Arcade, a route previously provided by Microsoft's Dream Build Play indie development contest.

"Early on, several winnders and nominees got on, but after Dust won, I can't think of anything else. Most of the winners ended up just being released on XBLIG," Boyd said.

"Far more indie games are released on Steam than XBLA, and yet Steam is tremendously successful. I think opening up XBLA a bit - but not completely - would only help."

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Mike Williams avatar
Mike Williams: M.H. Williams is new to the journalism game, but he's been a gamer since the NES first graced American shores. Third-person action-adventure games are his personal poison: Uncharted, Infamous, and Assassin's Creed just to name a few. If you see him around a convention, he's not hard to spot: Black guy, glasses, and a tie.
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