Update: Not at launch. The ‘every Xbox One is a dev kit feature will be added later, Microsoft clarified.
Original Story: Say what you will, but Microsoft has been listening to the gaming community, and after reversing course on used games, always online, region-lock and headsets, Microsoft has just confirmed another reversal: a major self-publishing push where any Xbox One console can be debugged to be used as a developer kit.
Here’s Xbox’s corporate vice president Marc Whitten responding to a Kotaku inquiry about a self-publishing rumor that popped up on GameInformer earlier today:
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.
Clearly, Microsoft has been paying attention, and we’ll just thank Sony again, as they were and still are the ones trumpeting the independent development scene, even going as far as featuring about 8 indie devs on their E3 stage.
Sony was also to thank for Microsoft’s DRM reversal when it became apparent to Microsoft that Sony had clearly adopted an approach that allows gamers to do whatever they will with their used games, and steered clear from forcing gamers to always require an internet connection when playing games on PS4. Microsoft had the opposing policies in place, and quickly banished them after it looked like Sony was getting all the good press and preorders.
Again, when it was revealed that your PS3 headets would work just fine on PS4, Microsoft had to change its policy there, too, and announced that they were working on an adapter that would allow Xbox 360 owners to use their old headsets on Xbox One, although you’d have to pay for the adapter.
But still, this is another good move by Microsoft, and I’m looking forward to hearing more about the program come GamesCom.