Microsoft Defends Xbox One Parity Clause: "Xbox Owners Should Feel First-Class"

hermes

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Mar 2, 2009
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Well... du'h.

The "ID@XBox" program is basically a subsidization program. They give development kits, support and equipment, basically for free. It is obvious they will expect some preferential treatment as a condition.

Sure, the wording is a little sketchy, but what did people actually expect? for Microsoft to pay people to create their next hit in something other than XBox?
 

raankh

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Nov 28, 2007
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Wait, what?! So MS are essentially banning devs from releasing on their platform? Well I guess Xbone owners will be spared from all the mobile ports by default then, but really?

This has to be a mistake, they can't seriously be barring devs over this? All it will mean is less games on Xbone and one less market for small studios. "Either we invest extra now on this risky proposition with questionable gains or we forgo this possible future platform"-- well that's a no-brainer unless the game is already targeted towards a controller and consoles.

EDIT:

hermes200 said:
Well... du'h.

The "ID@XBox" program is basically a subsidization program. They give development kits, support and equipment, basically for free. It is obvious they will expect some preferential treatment as a condition.

Sure, the wording is a little sketchy, but what did people actually expect? for Microsoft to pay people to create their next hit in something other than XBox?
Aha. So that's how it is. I was under the impression it would affect all releases, not only those who got the kit free!
 

AgedGrunt

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Dec 7, 2011
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As a third-class PC gamer that's waited more than a year for GTA V, there's a first-class ticket on the table for this greedy egotist to fly off a hard kick down a flight of stairs.

Say what you want about the cost of PC or PS4, I don't see those platforms using muscle and trying to buy their reputation. They don't need to. After owning a 360 I don't think I need to ever go back to their terrible ecosystem and greedy culture.
 

alj

Master of Unlocking
Nov 20, 2009
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I know it sounds strange for one who has seen my other xbox/microsoft pots and if i ever say this again i will jam forks into my eyes but i agree with them! if they are paying for the development then fine it should come out of the xbox at the same time as another platform. Now if this was an exclusivity clause i would say that is shitty but they are not stopping them putting it on anything else hell you could ship it for a bloody PDP-11 at the same time if they wanted to as long as its on the xbox as well, i consider that quite reasonable.
 

Callate

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Dec 5, 2008
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If I can... Make it there, I could probably have... made it everywhere else first... So get a clue... M-soft, M--sofffffft....

This is quite strange. It's like Microsoft genuinely can't grasp that getting on their console isn't something most developers are clamoring to do, that Microsoft actually needs attractive titles more than the developers need to spend a bunch of time and money they may not have to port to one of the smaller markets.

I can understand why Microsoft would dread the prospect of hot titles coming to their system last, but as a primarily PC gamer, I'm resigned to it, myself. Slamming down a gate and saying, "Ha! We don't want you anyway!" seems like swimming upstream against reality. And I think a lot of devs are going to refuse to play that game.
 

RanceJustice

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Feb 25, 2011
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The irony here is bloody staggering. For years, PC gamers have been getting sub-par ports released months later than consoles, if they get the same titles at all. Now they have the gall to tell indie developers of all people "if you ever want your title to come out on Xbox One, you have to release with us first"? Unbelievable.

Developing for consoles these days means spending a TON of additional funds to do so. You have to sell your soul in preferential contracts for the console manufacturer (like the one being discussed right here) share a huge amount of your profits (remember that the advent of the X360/PS3 $60 USD AAA game price was because these platforms charged extra for the benefit of being on their system! PC versions and those on the Wii at the time sold for $50 instead and rightly so...it wasn't until later that Activision's famed Bobby Kotick prompted Activision, Ubisoft and the other big publishers to simply charge $60 across the board because "Gamers will think that's just how much it costs") and much more.

These sorts of agreements are horridly pathogenic - I can remember how the developers of "Defiance", Trion Worlds had many plans that would have made a much better game, but came out and said "Sorry, we can't put in the chat system we wanted on PC, amongst many other features because the consoles can't handle/won't use/don't like it. Oh, and we had that patch for gamebreaking issue X available weeks ago on the PC, but thanks to console agreements we can't release it until the console versions have been vetted by their manufacturers. Sorry. Oh, and by the way...releasing a patch for the console version literally costs us thousands of dollars in fees. So that's great.) I can also remember that Zeboyd Games, makers of "Breath of Death VII" and "Cthulhu Saves the World" said their little $2.99 game package made more money launch day(weekend?) on Steam as it did all year on Xbox Live Indie where it had resided previously. First class, indeed.

Personally, this is yet more evidence that we need to do away with "consoles" all together. They're simply locked down, proprietary, overpriced PCs these days that funnel both player and developer money into the hands of unctuous middlemen. I hope that developers who see this XboxOne policy will turn the other way and tell Microsoft to go to hell, that it isn't worth the hassle to bring their games to a platform that is more interested in control than having a great stable of gaming content. While it seems that Playstation 4 is the lesser of two evils and the WiiU is a different animal all together, they're all basically keeping a status quo that is no longer needed. We don't need "exclusives" where in order to play a game you really like, you have to buy the proprietary pseudo-PC that's favored by a given publisher

We have open platforms and much more powerful, customizable, and inexpensive hardware today. Play on a tricked out desktop, a laptop,a "living room/console/entertainment" PC etc... or even our various smartphones and tablets. Buy your games from a variety of vendors and play them on a multitude of servers! There's still a role for previous console manufacturers and first party publishers - like Sega, they can now design for PC! I'd love to be able to buy the next Smash Bros and Hyrule Warriors from Steam, and play it on Linux while using the excellent, controller peripheral that Nintendo is now selling with PC compatibility in mind!

Its time to put an end to "console wars" and the pathogenic practices of the console middle-man cartel, as evidenced by these policies, and move towards an environment more friendly to developers and gamers alike.
 

Strazdas

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May 28, 2011
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Dornedas said:
Does that mean, as a German, I should be insulted because many games release in the U.S. a few days prior to Europe?
And should I be doubly insulted because of timed exclusives like Tomb Raider? (BTW: Did Sony do something like this as well?)
And should I feel triple insulted because a game releases even later in Germany, because someone whispered the word Nazi in the story and the USK (The German version of the ESRB) threw a hissy fit?
(I'm waiting for the day when all three of these happen to the same game.)
I dont know about you, but as a fellow european i do feel insulted that in this age of instantaneous communication something as simple as launching a game/tvshow/movie at the same date is still something publishers seems to be incapable of doing. same problem exists with regionlocking as if regions were ever a good idea.

I do think the whole censorship of history delay is germanys own fault and they should throw a hissy fit to appropriate organizations that do this.
 

CaitSeith

Formely Gone Gonzo
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Keep it up, Microsoft! You made one step more towards making the Xbox One the next Wii U: an underpowered machine that scares away third party support.
 

Rozalia1

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Hard to cut through the crap on the web as its a story about Microsoft and so its everywhere. I've read it said this thing only applies to those indie devs who get help from Microsoft through their program where they give you the two free dev kits.
If so than there is no real wrongdoing there, admittedly from what I know Sony and Nintendo don't put conditions like that when they help indies...but that doesn't make Microsoft "evil" for doing what is normally expected.

Let us not forget this was the guy on a podcast, he isn't going to be able to go through all the specifics. He likely made a comment that he didn't foresee being taken negatively.

Strazdas said:
I dont know about you, but as a fellow european i do feel insulted that in this age of instantaneous communication something as simple as launching a game/tvshow/movie at the same date is still something publishers seems to be incapable of doing. same problem exists with regionlocking as if regions were ever a good idea.

I do think the whole censorship of history delay is germanys own fault and they should throw a hissy fit to appropriate organizations that do this.
Isn't that related to retail when it comes to games? Here is a link I just googled http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2012-11-23-why-are-we-stuck-with-games-being-released-on-a-friday

Its annoying yes, but lets not treat it as insidious.
 

Atmos Duality

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Oh that's fucking RICH coming from the company whose prior console was responsible for gobs of half-assed PC ports.

I can't count how many times I've had to tolerate Xbox 360 standards and controls because it was the priority platform and, being M$, the easiest to port from.

But now that the shoe is on the other foot, and good shit is starting on PC and porting to console, shit is suddenly different. Why could that be? Oh, probably because if they don't stay "at parity" on launch, the Xbone's limitations will become far more evident.

Indie devs, take note: This isn't so much your opportunity as it is Microsoft trying to maintain the status-quo by confining YOUR business practices. This is the vinegar that comes with their honey. It's not quality control, but an act of desperation. You can do far better on PC (and PS4, barring similar bullshit) and Microsoft knows this.

Remind them who gives their console value: game creators, and let them pay for their arrogance.
 

Zipa

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Dec 19, 2010
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Yeah and the only way they will first class is if they don't play games on your underpowered pile of shit Microsoft, it speaks volumes that you are hamstringing games and developers in every way possible to try and keep relevant less than a year into a new generation.
 

Vivi22

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LarsInCharge said:
Sometime in the past, someone redefined First Class...
Indeed. Apparently first class now means that if their customers don't get something immediately, they'll never get it.
 

FalloutJack

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Nov 20, 2008
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Vivi22 said:
LarsInCharge said:
Sometime in the past, someone redefined First Class...
Indeed. Apparently first class now means that if their customers don't get something immediately, they'll never get it.
Really, if you want to put it in proper terms, Microsoft has no class at all.
 

Lightknight

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Nov 26, 2008
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First class looks a lot like missing out on content that the other consoles are getting.

I understand why a lot of these things sounded attractive to execs discussing the topic... but why wasn't there anyone around to say, "Wait, what about the good indie games that don't want to sign the parity clause that we lose out on? Or games that we didn't approach the indie devs but are now wildly popular?"

Seriously, it would do wonders for the company to hire a couple consumer advocates that look at policies and tell the companies what they think the response will be. People who are somewhat third party and paid to not be biased. The fact that this amazing company (that's right, I actually love microsoft) failed to anticipate the market response to their product and admitted being surprised by it indicates that they don't really have something like that in place.

Charcharo said:
Want parity?
Kill Exclusivity.
What exclusivity? They haven't released a single major game that hasn't eventually come out on PC.