Thank you so much for your partnership and interest in creating and releasing Independent Games onto the Xbox 360 platform.Making sure independent developers have a great way to get their content onto Microsoft platforms, and providing an easy way for new developers to get started was the core goal of the XNA Creators Club, the XNA Game Studio framework and Xbox Live Indie Games.Today, we are announcing that we are beginning to sunset the XNA Creators Club and Xbox Live Indie Games program on Xbox 360.
Microsoft has announced via a post on their official Xbox Forum website that their very popular Xbox Live Indie Games program will be completely shut down by November of 2017.
However, instead of shutting it down in one immediate step Microsoft is aiming to shut down the program through 4 increments:
- September 9, 2015 (today): Annual subscriptions will no longer be available for developer purchase.
- If developers want to continue with the service, they will have to contact Xbox directly (email@example.com).
- September 9, 2016: XBLIG will no longer accept any games submitted for publishing.
- September 2017: XBLIG Marketplace will close up shop.
- November 2017: Final payouts will go out to the indie developers who contributed to the XBLIG Marketplace
There isn’t much in-depth information about the specifics of Microsoft’s intent to “sunset” XBLIG as they think that it is much more appropriate for the developers to approach Microsoft/Xbox about what they find unclear so Microsoft/Xbox can answer them directly.
However, not all hope is lost. Microsoft’s recent merger of Windows 10 and Xbox One has enabled indie developers to create and publish their games onto the multiple gaming platforms Microsoft has to offer (PC, tablet, mobile, and Xbox One).
Along with that, devs will also have the ability to access third-party tools like the Unreal Engine, GameMaker, and Unity.
It’s sad to see that Microsoft is shutting down the XBLIG Marketplace as it means that we are nearing the very end of the 7th Generation of consoles, but technology must progress and we cannot let emotional connections to old consoles hold the industry back.