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Microsoft To Enable User-Created Xbox 360 Games 303

Posted by samzenpus
from the play-nice dept.
simoniker writes "Talking on the eve of its Gamefest event in Seattle, Microsoft has revealed XNA Game Studio Express, a new product which will allow indie developers and students to develop simultaneously on Xbox 360 and PC, and share their games to others in a new Xbox 360 'Creators Club'. XNA Game Studio Express will be available for free to anyone with a Windows XP-based PC, and will provide them with what's described as "Microsoft's next-generation platform for game development." In addition, by joining a "creators club" for an annual subscription fee of $99, users will be able to build, test and share their games on Xbox 360, as well as access a wealth of materials to help speed the game development progress."
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Microsoft To Enable User-Created Xbox 360 Games

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  • Great! (Score:4, Funny)

    by Spunkemeyer (805072) on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:07AM (#15901728)
    Now I can finally work on that "ringworld" game I've been kicking around in my head...
  • by MichaelSmith (789609) on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:08AM (#15901730) Homepage Journal

    .... "Linux kernel"

    • by LiquidCoooled (634315) on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:25AM (#15901789) Homepage Journal
      Game registration error

      Microsoft has detected an error in the naming of your game.
      The term 'Linux' is a trademarked entity and as such cannot be used as the title of your game.

      Sincerely

      Billy boy

      ps, even if it weren't trademarked, we still wouldn't let you have it you commie pig :P
    • They're probably going to make your game run under .net as managed code. Good luck doing anything worthwhile from a low level or systems point of view under that framework.

      • They're probably going to make your game run under .net as managed code.

        This is where the idea of DRM will either work or fail. If I put my executable in as an array of bytes, will the runtime environment allow an i386 emulator to run?

      • by quitcherbitchen (587409) on Monday August 14, 2006 @09:35AM (#15902132)

        Who cares?

        This is designed for the hobbyist/amateur game developer. A managed environment built on top of a decent framework from Microsoft will allow a much broader audience of enthusiasts out there to create games. Instead of fumbling with buggy or complicated code, they will actually get to express their creativity and fresh designs.

        • a decent framework from Microsoft

          Therein lies the problem...

        • Obviously the poster I was responding to who wanted to port linux cares. People who want to explore how the system really works care. And people who want to make games that compete with native running games will care too.

          But me? I don't care -- I'm not likely to be using it.
    • by jkrise (535370) on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:34AM (#15901820) Journal
      and mine will be titled: CHAIR-MAN's Flying CHAIRS ... fasten your CHAIR-Belts, 'coz this is gonna' CRASH!! It'll be like Tetris, only instead of bricks, there'll be chairs of different shapes and sizes.
    • Microsoft would think that is great! It would be even better if it became the dominent OS. Remember it will cost $99 EVERY year to run this game called 'Linux Kernel' on your Xbox. They have never been able to charge that much for their own OS.

      Of course this may just be the beginning of the great PC lockdown. I suspected that the point of the XBOX was to move people away from the open PC architecture that we all know, to a closed architecture that they can control. It seemed obviouse. Make a closed
      • I suspected that the point of the XBOX was to move people away from the open PC architecture that we all know, to a closed architecture that they can control.
        I heard the PS3 was going the other way. I heard PS3 was going to open up and allow hombrew in some shape or form, i guess this article is M$'s way of doing the same thing, but closed....

        My bet is that the most open system will win.
        • They are both open. If you compare them to the console market. If you compare them to the PC market, they will both be very closed. The thing is that consoles are now powerful enough to handle most home computing tasks. This means that if people move over to the consoles for home computing, they will be ripe for vendor lock in, given that the entire console industry is predicated on making money with vendor lock in. Just pay attention to the number of times you hear the statement "It's their system, so
  • Killer Feature (Score:5, Insightful)

    by hyfe (641811) on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:11AM (#15901739)
    This could be a killer feature.

    There's so many extremely simple games that are insanely fun multiplayer, and will probably never, ever be released as stand-alone games.

    I'm still praying the Nintendo Wii will be opened up like this, but if it isn't, this might be what tips me over to XBOX 360. Programming for the Wii-controllers would be fun though, and I really, really want to play Pong with them :).
    • Considering Sony always tries its hardest to kill the homebrew segment, I more and more cannot see why anyone would buy a PlayStation 3.

      to be honest, I never really understood why the PSP homebrew scene is so much bigger than the DS
      • to be honest, I never really understood why the PSP homebrew scene is so much bigger than the DS
        It's probably because you can run (signed) code right off the memory stick on a PSP and since game saves are stored on a memory stick, almost every user has one. With the DS you normally have to buy extra equipment.
      • Re:Killer Feature (Score:3, Insightful)

        by apoc06 (853263)
        It's interesting that you considered this to be a fault of the playstation line.

        The Playstation line has always had it's own "developer's club" in the form of the netyaroze and linux kits that they provided for the PS1/PS2. It wasn't perfect, but it was there and one of the first for a /major console/ of its kind. The PSP is the only Playstation console that has not had some form of officially sanctioned homebrew enabling feature. Perhaps it's because they lose more on the hardware that they decided not to
      • Re:Killer Feature (Score:3, Informative)

        by squiggleslash (241428)

        Sony's actions WRT the PSP notwithstanding, I don't think they've ever been heavily anti-homebrew. They have dabbled a little with the system, selling an official consumer user-accessable GNU/Linux kit for the PS2, and announcing user-accessable GNU/Linux as a standard feature of the PS3.

        I think the major problem with the PSP is that they don't know what to do with it, and that, more than anything else, is causing problems with them creating an officially supported home-brew environment. It's not really

    • Re:Killer Feature (Score:5, Interesting)

      by CastrTroy (595695) on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:51AM (#15901886) Homepage
      Well, the good news, is that the Nintendo Wii Dev Kit [digitalbattle.com] will cost somewhere around $1700. That's not too bad a price, considering the PS3 kit is rumoured to cost between $30,000 and $50,000. I'm not sure how much the full dev kit on the XBox 360 goes for. I think this could open up a lot of possiblities for the Wii. You get the full dev kit for under $2000. Not some rinky dink homebrew version, the whole thing. At this price, there could be WiiNux before we know it. And it would probably sell if it offered good multimedia functionality to the Wii, such as playing downloaded movies, and Linux games. Although I don't think Nintendo would let that fly, as people would just install an emulator, and play the Old NES games for free instead of paying for them.
      • Re:Killer Feature (Score:2, Interesting)

        by stsp (979375)
        I don't think we'll need an official toolchain for the wii. There is an actively maintained multi-platform open source homebrew toolchain for GameBoy Advance, GP32, Playstation Portable, GameCube and Nintendo DS here [devkitpro.org]. Adding support for the wii will just be a matter of time. Actually the guys already opened up an IRC channel for the wii, even though there's probably not much coding going on yet :)
      • Re:Killer Feature (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Blakey Rat (99501) on Monday August 14, 2006 @10:41AM (#15902576)
        1) Nintendo's not just going to give a dev kit to every random Joe who asks for one. You're either going to have to be an established game company, or have an agreement with a decently big publisher before you're added to the list.

        2) Even if Nintendo does give you a dev kit, that doesn't mean you'll be able to release games for their system. All consoles have a logo program, and games that aren't vetted and approved can't be run. That's not to say it'll be trivial for you to get Microsoft to approve your game, but at least Microsoft is out there assuring people that it'll happen.

        3) $1700 vs. $99/year. If you're paying $1700 for something, you're basically already a full-time game developer. $99/year is cheap enough so that Microsoft is going to have tons and tons of people on their kit, and they'll be able to pick and choose the best from the lot. Plus, you can start development of your game for free... the $99 is just for access to more documentation and Xbox portability. You can develop and release you PC version for free, THEN decide to pay $99 to port to Xbox and try to get it on Live.

        4) Isn't it telling that every time Microsoft announces something truly innovative and, frankly, pretty damn refreshing, there has to be a counter-post saying that Nintendo has the same thing... even if they don't? I love Slashdot. Give credit where credit is due... this is a great move on Microsoft's part, and a win-win for every gamer out there.
      • Well, the good news, is that the Nintendo Wii Dev Kit will cost somewhere around $1700.

        The bad news however is that at this point you simply can't buy it, no matter how much it would cost. Nintendo only gives away devkits to larger publishers, not indies and if that will ever change, we will see. Beside that $1700 is still quite a bit of money and even if you colud get your hands at a devkit, you still don't have a way to actually publish your game, which really is the important part in the end. XBox360 d

    • Re:Killer Feature (Score:3, Interesting)

      by DrXym (126579)
      I'm hoping that the PS3 (as has been suggested) ships with a decent and usable version of Linux. That opens the possibility of using the PS3 for almost any functionality, not just games. Of course Sony have screwed things up in the past, so I don't hold a great deal of confidence in what they might offer. Still, the Microsoft thing looks like some cheezy game development kit which only produces games that you can share with other developers. Doesn't sound very compelling to me.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:11AM (#15901741)
    If this is anything like the UT2004 'Make Something Unreal' its quite possible that this is going to fragment the playing community into small non-viable sub-communities.

    E.g. Alien Swarm has about 4 decent servers, and a community of 100 players.
  • by Stachybotris (936861) on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:11AM (#15901742)
    But this seems like a good idea in many ways. I'm a bit taken aback that MicroSoft is doing something to let hobbists flex their creative muscle, especially in such a (relatively) open way. I mean, development for X-Box and PC? That's a pretty sweet deal.

    Now don't get me wrong, I'm sure a lot of the games will probably suck eggs, but it might just turn out that we'd see some real innovation in design and concept with an infusion of fresh development blood. Because you never know, one of those hobbists/indie designers might crank out something good enough to either a) get picked up by an existing studio or b) generate enough interest from others to start up their own studio. Then it just becomes a matter of being a good enough businessman to keep things working.
    • It does, really. More interestingly this came after Bill Gates being reportedly intrigued by Xbox Mod Community [gizmodo.com] after an employee brought his own modded Xbox to show The Man, just a few weeks ago.

      From the link:

      A little over a year ago, one of the people in my group modded an Xbox, installed Avalaunch, and put all sorts of Xbox mod scene apps on the box, like XBMC, RSS readers, etc, along with some "backup" games. :rolleyes: He brought this box along to a meeting with Bill Gates. Bill saw a demo of this,

    • by IamTheRealMike (537420) <mike@plan99.net> on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:37AM (#15901831) Homepage

      I think this is fantastic news, if only because it offers a cool and enticing way into programming for the younger generation (shit that makes me sound old ...)

      If you interview a random sample of programmers in the world today I bet a lot of the 25-30 aged ones will have got started by writing cheesy games as kids for their {Commodore 64/Sinclair Spectrum/BBC Micro}, even if they then went into corporate software, operating systems, embedded work or whatever. Learning to write software by doing databases in Visual Basic is boring. Learning to write software by doing cool games you can add multiplayer to and beat your friends at is a much better proposition.

      Wasn't the head of Nintendo saying that it's a shame games are no longer feasable for hobbyists and entry level studios? It's surprising Microsoft beat them to it, but then Visual Studio Express was designed for the home/hobbyist developer as well if I remember correctly so maybe not too surprising. Here's hoping it becomes a trend and the next generation of coders are learning threading by actually doing it, instead of memorizing lecture slides.

      • I got my first crack at programming by editing gorilla.bas and nibbles.bas. This was great fun, giving yourself 30 lives in nibbles, or giving yourself only 1 in order to make it harder. You could also make the explosions really big in gorillas. After that I picked up some programming books from the library, which had code listings you could type in. I distinctly remember oregon trail. I'm not sure if I ever got it working correctly, but it was great fun trying to get it work. I also learned a lot abo
    • The games created with XNA Game Studio Express will not initially be available to regular Xbox 360 users

      That's the quote in the article that really disappoints me. MS's desire for control and fear of truly "opening" up the game market is a real hindrance here. It's an area where they could REALLY get the advantage over Sony. Since Sony's online offerings have always sucked and they're MUCH bigger control freaks than anyone else, they could NEVER compete with this program if MS opened it up and let the indi

    • I can't remember where I read or saw this, and it might been a myth, but I remember reading somewhere where Bill Gates and his crew were given a demonstration of a chipped Xbox, complete with the crazy looks, loaders, homebrew and I think even pirated games. After the demonstration, instead of saying "How can we put a stop to this?", Bill was impressed and supposedly said "What can we do to embrace this community?".

      Of course, I can't remember where I saw this story, and it might be just that - a story - bu
    • by edremy (36408)
      "Developers! Developers! ...."

      It's easy to make fun of Ballmer, but remember that he's *exactly* right here. MS has always made the development tools cheap and available.

      Many years ago, I worked in a university department that mostly ran OS/2. This was back in the days of the OS/2 Workplace Shell and NT 3.5- OS/2 was in many ways vastly more sophisticated than NT. Queue up NT4- I went by the campus bookstore one day to look at software.

      Sitting on one shelf was the OS/2 dev kit. ~$500, academic pr

  • next step (Score:2, Funny)

    by Sardonis (596687)
    Now, someone please extract the binary signing key from this "XNA Game Studio Express".
    • Now, someone please extract the binary signing key from this "XNA Game Studio Express".

      Maybe the games will run in a VM, so in a sense they will never leave XNA Game Studio Express.

      • More likely, to sign the binaries you have to upload them to a protected Microsoft server and they take care of building/signing/distributing the actual binaries for you. Hence the $99/yr cost (which isn't much really, for a hobby).
        • Re:next step (Score:3, Interesting)

          by kafka47 (801886)

          I just wanted to add that, ironically, if you want to do development using a very popular "indie-level" game engine you would choose the Torque engine [garagegames.com]. And to use it, you pay them $100. If you want their studio tools on top of that, it's another 100$.

          The new MS-XNA Game Studio is based on this Torque engine. When you pay your $100, you also get additional content downloads, the studio package, listing on Xbox Live Arcade (XBLA), etc. etc. These are pretty decent extras, and it's cheaper than just using T

    • The programs you write with this product will not need to be signed (at least not with the same key everything else for the XBox 360 is). This product is going to be a .NET based development environment. So the .NET runtime will be signed, and will run on the console, and will run your game, which you wrote in C#.

      The current announcements don't seem to spell out that this is based on .NET, but I'm sure it is. Microsoft has mentioned before that getting .NET on the XBox 360 was part of XNA. Also, see t [firingsquad.com]

  • by hey (83763) on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:16AM (#15901755) Journal
    Developers, Developers, Developers.
  • XNA & Your Rights (Score:5, Interesting)

    by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohn&gmail,com> on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:17AM (#15901760) Journal
    The XNA [microsoft.com] site they have a FAQ [microsoft.com] that doesn't really address my big question: If you create a game using XNA and distribute it to the community, who owns it? Are you forced into a licensing agreement? If so, is it one closer to the GPL or Microsoft's? This is very interesting because Microsoft may be claiming publishing rights to these games in the TOS for XNA.

    So it could be a standard American Idol style:
    1) trick contestants into signing away all rights they have to their work
    2) let the community decide who is the best
    3) publish their work and profit!

    If you have preliminary questions about the XBox 360, you can find it on their forums [microsoft.com].
    • Re:XNA & Your Rights (Score:5, Informative)

      by andrew_j_w (630799) on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:32AM (#15901815) Homepage
      The BBC article about this quotes Microsoft executive Peter Moore as saying:
      Microsoft would regulate the content for appropriateness and intellectual property issues, but users would own their work, Mr Moore said.
      It definitely looks like 1 is not the case, and given that he also says "I'd love to send a royalty cheque to a kid" 3 could well be it.

      Andrew
    • So it could be a standard American Idol style:
      1) trick contestants into signing away all rights they have to their work

      There's no tricks involved. Any person competent enough to develop a video game will be more than competent enough to quickly Google the rights they'll be allowed to keep.

      Similarly, all the karaoke champions on American Idol know that the network keeps the rights to what they sing on American Idol, give me a break. The Clay Aikens of the world know that they'd never have the slightest

    • All the other "Express" products have absolutely no restrictions on the distribution of programs created with them. I'm guessing XNA is going to be the exact same way... I'm sure there's a contact email there you can ask.
    • XNA isn't the program, it's the suite of tools/technologies to allow programs to build for PC and XBox 360. It's what they've been using to make Prey, Quake 4 and Oblivion debut on PC and XB360 simultaneously.
  • I have a few gimmick games that I'd like to release for a console, like MMOPONG, or a MMO Castle Builder.
  • $99 a year? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Rik Sweeney (471717)
    indie developers and students

    They're kidding, right? $99 to develop a game that only a handful of people might play, and as a student having no income. You could get a job though to pay the fee, but when would you have time to code? And what happens if you develop the next Geometry Wars? Do you own the rights to have it published or will Microsoft just pay you royalties (that probably wouldn't make you back your $99 either).

    Here's a suggestion, set up a page on My Space with a link to, say, a File Planet fo
    • Re:$99 a year? (Score:3, Insightful)

      by the_crowing (992960)
      $100 a year does seem a little steep for this service at first glance, and correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't it cost big bucks (like hundreds of thousands of dollars) for professional studios to get a liscence to develop games for consoles? The advantage for them is that their games are guaranteed to get published, but if this service allows students and independant developers to get their games out there in the Xbox 360 commmunity and if these developers are allowed to keep the rights to their products
    • Re:$99 a year? (Score:2, Flamebait)

      by intrico (100334)
      $99 a year is a HUGE privilege compared to the ridiculous barrier to entry that has been in place for console game development for so long.
      I mean, look how much it costs for a PlayStation 2 development kit! (Of course, Sony stays mum about it, not mentioning it on their websites, but according to unofficial sources [playright.dk] on the web, it costs approx. $19,000.00(US)!!!). I'm guessing PS3 development has a similar barrier to entry.
      But seriously, it is about time that they "democratize" game development - especiall
    • $99 is an incredibly small barrier to entry compared to past offerings from Sony. How about the Net Yaroze [wikipedia.org] at $750? Sure you got some hardware with it, but does that really matter when $99 still lets you create games that could be played on Xbox 360s worldwide? I hear you about being a college student. $99 can be a lot when your income stream is virtually non-existent. You could always do what my roomie and I did in college : sell blood and plasma. We got around $50 every few weeks for doing that, only we
    • $99 isn't that much for most college students. Seeing what most of them spend on beer, I think that most students who were really interested in actually designing a game would be able to afford it. It's the same cost as a single text book. When I was in college, there were many people who probably couldn't afford that, but there was also a lot of people who could have. I don't know which college you attended, but students of plenty of free time, and $99 a year doesn't break the bank for most of them. M
    • The development kit alone is worth more than $99. Try buying a development kit from Sony or Nintendo sometime, if you think $99 is expensive. Development kits from them don't even have price tags, you call them up and NEGOTIATE one. If you even have to ASK what the "price" is from them, you can't afford it.

      -Eric

    • As a college student and part-time indie developer, $99 is _nothing_ to pay for this service. We've been locked out of the console arena this whole time and now it's open to us. Not mention MS has also promised the sub-$1K professional licensing which I presume will allow you to shed the XNA Game Studio shackles and allow non-XNAGS-subscribing users to play the game (i.e., full-time XBLA status).

      Hell, I paid more for my 3D/physics engine ($150, TrueVision3D, ridiculously awesome piece of software).

    • They're kidding, right? $99 to develop a game that only a handful of people might play, and as a student having no income.

      Are you retarded? If the student can't afford $99 how the Hell do they have an Xbox360? Let alone a PC? Practically NO student is that poor.

      You could get a job though to pay the fee, but when would you have time to code?

      What are you smoking? Get a job and not have time to code? At $5/hour you have $100 in 20 hours. That's a week of part-time work. Then quit. Seriously - have you
    • They're kidding, right? $99 to develop a game that only a handful of people might play, and as a student having no income.
      Around here a new console game costs (the equivalent of) $83. Please find some actual problem with this offer, and complain about that.
  • How fun! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by nukeade (583009) <{serpent11} {at} {hotmail.com}> on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:36AM (#15901827) Homepage
    What a great educational tool! What got me into programming was a kid was the fact that I could make games very similar in quality to my Atari games on our old 386. I wonder if they'll offer an API simple enough for beginners to pick up.

    ~Ben
  • Reminds me of things like HURG: http://www.nonowt.com/magfold/revsfol/hurg.html [nonowt.com]
    That was good fun in the day, would get a simple game going without much programming. Although I mostly found programming more fun than playing....

  • Am really impressed by this cool move from the Redmond's boys, but got a lot of questions over it. How will it bypass the anti-copy game protection? Will it be a true SDK with full access to all the key components or a crippled down OS with no ability to get the juice from the optical disk nor 3D CPUs like the SONY's attempt with the ps2 [wikipedia.org]?

    --
    Superb hosting [tinyurl.com] 20GB Storage, 1_TB_ bandwidth, php, mysql, ssh, $7.95
    • I very much doubt it would be a full SDK or otherwise it would be difficult to convince bigger companies to part with their hard earned money for the full SDK
    • Basically they just have to give you dev tools that support DirectX 10 - for Microsoft there is really no effort involved as they just tweak Visual Studio to support the 360 (which it probably already does).

      The real question for me is the first, how will you actually be able to load games on your system and share them as well? I am assuming you'll have to share them through Live, but I wonder if you'll hvae to use the paid Live. It could well be that you would "share" it through Live even for testing it o
  • by mrjb (547783) on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:45AM (#15901861)
    Instead of paying additional XBOX game developers a salary, MS is going to ask XBOX developers to pay *them*?
    Brilliant. I'm going to start a company right away, and I'll make sure to hire lots of developers to pay me.
    • Brilliant. I'm going to start a company right away, and I'll make sure to hire lots of developers to pay me.

      Make sure to give them "dumbed down" tools [gizmodo.com] and only let people who pay you use the results. Call it the "Ricky Rat" Club or something. Prediction: another big xbox flop.

  • by John Nowak (872479) on Monday August 14, 2006 @08:55AM (#15901903)
    The comments in this thread show that, when MS does something good, Slashdot (with the exception of a few idiots) heaps on the praise.
    • True, but we also have the obligatory "chair throwing" joke that hasn't been funny for over 6 months now, even though somehow it still gets modded up. And of course we have the expected "but... but... but... Nintendo!!!" that's in every gaming thread even when it's grossly off-topic (as it is here.)

      So it's a little nice that Slashdot is giving some credit to MS, but now let's work on getting the moderation system to actually get rid of off-topic and non-funny crap.
  • by Winterblink (575267) on Monday August 14, 2006 @09:17AM (#15902025) Homepage
    ... on how long it will take someone to make a program that wrecks 360s.
  • I don't keep up with XBox360 game development but is this a subtle hint by Microsoft to get more developerment on the Xbox360? Seriously, I don't know. I can see this as a tactic.
    "If you don't develop more games, someone else will . . . maybe the gamers. And we'll get their games and their money. And your little dog, too!"

  • Finally, my dream of designing a mediocre videogame is about to come true!

    -Eric

  • by james_bray (188143) * on Monday August 14, 2006 @09:55AM (#15902259) Homepage
    From the XNA FAQ:

    Q: How exactly can I share my 360 game to other 360 users? Will my game only be available to people with the XNA "Creators Club" subscription? Will it be available to all 360 users that have an Xbox Live account?
    A: There is currently no supported way to share binaries on the Xbox 360. Currently, there are four requirements that must be met in order to share a game targeting Xbox 360 which is developed with XNA Game Studio Express.

          1. The individual you are planning to share the game with must be logged in to Xbox Live and have an active subscription to the XNA Creators Club
          2. The receiving user must have downloaded the XNA Framework runtime environment for the Xbox 360
          3. The receiving user must have XNA Game Studio Express installed on their own development PC
          4. The game project, including all source and content assets, must be shared with the receiving user. The receiving user then compiles and deploys the game to their Xbox 360.

    Doesnt exactly sound like a barrel of laughs to distribute to friends etc...
    • The game project, including all source and content assets, must be shared with the receiving user. The receiving user then compiles and deploys the game to their Xbox 360.

      Amusing to see Microsoft not just pushing but requiring open-source development!

    • Although I agree with the other responses that this is open source tactics and good in that respect, I can't see how requiring all those steps will be good if your someone developing and actually wants lots of people to play your game... When I read this I initially thought cool I could get my game out there and if it's good enough could have it downloaded by millions of people (in theory) now it's if my game is good other developers can compile it and play it for a bit. Not bad per say, but not what I had
  • Isn't it feasible that they have released this feature to try and kill the "I modded my XBox to make and play homebrew games" argument? I remember reading a while back that somebody once showed Bill Gates a modded XBox, with a couple homebrew games, a few emulators, and XBox Media Center on it, and his response was something along the lines of "how can we leverage this idea into future products?" Apparently, now they have.
  • Bold Move (Score:3, Interesting)

    by blueZhift (652272) on Monday August 14, 2006 @10:35AM (#15902520) Homepage Journal
    With apologies to Ford, Microsoft is making a pretty bold move by essentially embracing the homebrew community. Some may not want to pay the $99 bucks to be able to share their games, but this sure beats the heck out of the constant arms race that is usually waged between console makers and people want to run homebrew or pirated software. One could also argue though, that this is a desperate move by Microsoft to spur more Xbox 360 development. But given that Microsoft on the whole has always been developer friendly and makes some of the best development tools in the business (at least for Microsoft platforms), I suspect that this was always a part of their plan. For me personally, this is a dream come true! I've always wanted the chance to write something for a console, but the price in money, for professional kits, or effort, for the homebrew console scene, has been too great. I've twiddled a bit on the PC, but consoles are where the real action is right now.
  • by PeeweeJD (623974) on Monday August 14, 2006 @01:15PM (#15903893) Homepage
    why all the hate?

    did you guys say "oh great now we can have shitty mods" when the iD guys gave access to the WAD files?

    How about when Valve let people have access to the half-life engine? Isn't counterstrike still the most played online game? I'm willing to bet that a serious portion of the half life cds have been sold just to play counterstrick.

    What happened to the guys who made the Desert Combat mod for BF1942? Oh yeah, they got hired by the company and improved the game.

    Look at the success of Xbox Live Arcade. You have a plethora of PC game developers making games and selling them on the Xbox system. These are all guys who could never make console games in the past.

    MS made a bunch of tools to help developers make their PC games work on 360 and vice versa.

    So now MS wants to let even more people in, and you guys bitch about it? Why because you have to pay $99? or because some kid will make a donkey kong clone with steve jobs and bill gates? or because you have to have a 360?

    I'm willing to bet that some kick ass games come out as a result of this. Maybe some kid gets hired by a company and makes a truly kick ass game like Geometry Wars. Maybe some game comes out and gets noticed and picked up for Arcade. Who knows.

    If you dont want to do it, keep the $99 in your pocket. But only good stuff can come out of this.

E = MC ** 2 +- 3db

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