Independent game developers will still need to go through Microsoft or a third-party publisher if they want their games on Xbox One’s online market, according to IGN.
Indie devs like Polytron Corporation (Fez) are currently required to strike a deal with Microsoft Game Studios or another large publisher to get their titles on XBLA, and it appears this will not change for games played on Xbox One. Developers have the option to release games through Xbox Live’s existing “Indie” section, but according to Microsoft Vice President Phil Harrison, the Xbox One will do away with the Arcade and Indie categories, effectively putting all downloadable titles under the same umbrella. Harrison said this new approach for the Xbox One marketplace should help indie developers connect with wider audiences.
Microsoft has come under fire in the past for being “unfriendly” toward independent developers, due to high patching costs. However, at least one studio has come to Microsoft’s defense in this regard. Sony and Nintendo both allow small developers to self-publish their games through the PlayStation Network and eShop.