Microsoft: Every Xbox One Can Be Used To Make Games

Every single Xbox One can be used to make games, Microsoft says — in other words, you can use the next-gen console as your very own development kit. The Xbox 360 was a closed system, but it appears that its successor will be far more open.

UPDATE: But not at launch. Microsoft's Marc Whitten just told us that devkit functionality will be added at a later date.

In a statement to Kotaku today confirming news that leaked earlier on Game Informer, Xbox's corporate vice president Marc Whitten said that all Xbox Ones will function as development kits, which are usually only available to licensed developers.

Here's Microsoft's official comment:

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.

UPDATE: Don't worry — Microsoft assures us that self-published indie games won't be relegated to the wasteland of the Xbox Live Indie Marketplace. There will be one big area to access all kinds of games, Whitten says.

"My goal is for it to just show up in the marketplace," he told us. "Of course there will be different pivots inside of that. There will be everything from what are we curating, kind of like spotlight content, to the normal discoverability stuff like recommendations, what's trending, what's got a lot of engagement on the platform. And you'd be able to find that content in any of those. There wouldn't be any difference based on what type of game it was. Then of course there will be other type of pivots where you can go and look at whether its a genre of game or any other. But you shouldn't think of it as there's an indie area and a non-indie area."

Whitten elaborated on ways you can sift through these games:

"Just as today, where we will highlight things that are coming in on the service, we want to make that more discoverable. We'll make it things that we curate as well as the other ways that you find content whether that's what your friends are doing or what we recommend based on your play behaviour. Or top listings. We want to make sure we have all of those types of discoverability mechanisms."

As for what the process will be like for gamers and indie developers to publish on the Xbox One, Whitten only shared the basics with us today. He says that it will be a simple process of visiting a website to sign up as a developer to set up your console as a devkit. You'll be able to download the devkit and edit source code on your PC to transfer over to the Xbox One.

No word on any cost to developers, but if you want to charge for your games, Whitten says that pricing will resemble what it does on today's Xbox 360 Marketplace.

Whitten hopes that their certification system required before publishing games on the console will take care of both the technical and policy requirements necessary to ensure that there's no funny business happening with either IP infringement or any policies they might reveal on mature content.

We'll hear the rest of the details from Gamescom, he says.


    yes, But..... Will it blend?

      I feel you've asked the most important question.

    uh huh.
    Still not getting one. I don't think there is anything at all they could do to change my mind, even giving away 50 new free AAA games with a new system

      Then you have issues, or are clearly just a mindless fanboy/hater.

        My guess mindless fanboy

          Not at all. I just don't want to be spied on, and like to share games amongst my friends. Those two reasons are more than enough for me.
          The other main reason is the 'always having be online' thing. I live on a remote island with sketchy internet at times, I do not want to be tied to only being able to play the console if the net is working. When the net is not working is the main time that I would WANT to be playing the console.
          "Oh look, someone doesn't want something that I might want, he must be a mindless fanboy of the OTHER camp" wtf...

          Last edited 25/07/13 11:30 am

            Actually I see one of those reasons are no longer valid
            "So, long story short: you’ll need to connect to the Internet at least once before you can play games on the Xbox One, but after that one-time patch, it’ll work just like the 360 did. You’ll be able to play offline. You’ll be able to buy and sell games just like you can today."
            Whats the latest on sharing games? OK or still no go?

            Last edited 25/07/13 11:42 am

              You can share games and also turn off the Kinect.

                That's good news on both accounts. Perhaps I should have first checked on the latest XBone news first lol, but after all that stuff was first announced, I kinda stopped paying attention.

                  You can turn off kinect, but it MUST remain connected

            " I live on a remote island with sketchy internet".... Well, yeah, we all do... This is the Australian version of Kotaku...

            Rumour has it that next year they will announce a kinect-free sku

              Confirmed as bullshit. Won't happen. That is the one thing they simply won't change.

              IF a Kinectless SKU were to happen it would only happen at least 2 years after launch, when Microsoft can confirm the console is selling like dog's balls. Which very well might happen.

              But if the console is coming "second" or even "third" behind PS4 and WiiU, if it's still making tonnes of money (ie. Pulling a Gamecube), then I doubt even then MS will do it.

            Hows that tinfoil hat working out for you? Scared that your sacred lifestyle of eating cheetos on the couch is going to be compromised?

            Did you miss the part were the kinect can be turned off?

        Or perhaps he realises that you have no reason to trust a company that would even attempt all the shit Microsoft has tried to pull. Yes, most of the restrictions and hated features are gone, but you have no reason to believe that they won't reappear, or be replaced by something just as bad.

    Pretty sure Aussies wont get to see this.

      This is my worry too. I was really excited about XBLIG, but we never got to participate (well, not fully, I understand you could publish from here if you wanted to).

      I'll be keeping an eye on this, though, as it sounds excellent.

        You weren't missing anything. I made an American account to check it out and after a few months of not buying a single thing I stopped checking. It was full of screen savers, fireplace simulators, shocking Minecraft imitations at every turn, terrible hand drawn box art. It was an absolute Mecca of unoriginality and bad quality. It wasn't some kind of haven of unchecked creativity, it was was a smelly ghetto.

          So, basically the Google Play store but with even less discoverability? That's disappointing.

            There were a few good games, one where the screen was black and you had to navigate by sound comes to mind. But yeah, just endless streams of schlock. If you listen to any gaming podcasts you'll notice that nobody talked about the indie channel, because there was nothing to talk about.

            I really think self publishing is like what backwards compatability was to the start of this generation. Everyone was convinced they wanted it, convinced it was gonna be this amazing thing, but yeah, it turned out to he a waste of time to all but a few

    But will you be able to develop and play games on the same hardware (like you can on PC, Android, iPhone, etc)?

    What the...

    Is it just me, or is Microsoft now racing to add features to the XBone that are already present on the Ouya?

      If it adds value to the platform, then it's good news

      And WiiU. And PS3. And phones.

      They're just doing all they can to add the features that everyone has been yelling about in an attempt to save face. To be honest, it's kind of working on me. Originally I wasn't interested at all, but if they keep going out of their way to make users happy they'll probably win me over in short order.

        They're just doing all they can to add the features that everyone has been yelling about in an attempt to save face.

        What face is there left to save? Microsoft took so many hits due to its Orwellian DRM I doubt they even have a head anymore, :-P.

        But in all seriousness, it's funny you mention the PS3. That option is no longer possible as you can't install Linux easily on it anymore. I am sure it is possible somehow but I no longer have the time to research new methods and try them anymore.

        Furthermore support for the Cell B.E. architecture is near non-existent now outside IBM's blade server products.

        I sometimes wonder if the Cell B.E. chip would have gained more traction if Sony left Linux support there instead of removing it first as a cost saving measure and then in response to GeoHotz (?) gaining access to hardware that was previously walled off (such as the graphics chip).

          Sorry, PS3 was a mistype. I meant PS4, though I forgot that they'd re-focused Playstation Suite to be only for mobile platforms. So Sony really isn't offering much for tiny indie developers, you still need to be able to afford a PS3 dev kit as far as I can tell.

          Like I said, MS is rapidly winning points with me.

    Will Aus get to see these indie games? In order to go on sale, they need to be rated by the Ratings Board.
    In order to get rated by the Board, they need to pay the fee associated with that. No fee, no game...

    I was under the understanding that that's why we never saw the indie marketplace over here.

    Wow, things sure are getting heated in this console war. This was a damn good move by Microsoft.

    Edit: My bet is that we Australians won't see this at all. The Xbox One sure does seem like its purely designed for Americans, given its heavy focus on services like Netflix and the way that Microsoft deals with the Japanese market.

    Oh well, already bought a Wii U. I'm not too interested in triple A these days other than Nintendo, so I'm pretty set. I'll buy a PS4 though, because I don't mind the odd (by odd I mean rarely good) SquareEnix game and I'm looking forward to Team Ico finally releasing The Last Guardian.

    Oh, Team Ico. Sony is so so lucky to have Team Ico.
    Team Ico was how I knew that All-Stars Battle Royale was not worth my time, because if they were actually serious about making a good smash bros. game for Sony IPs and not just using it as a medium to push their new or revived upcoming IPs onto us, then we would have seen some motherfucking Wander.

    I digress. My money is going to the Wii U, PS4, 3DS and Steam this generation - as of now.

    Last edited 25/07/13 12:51 pm

    Why does everyone keep going on about Indie games like on 360?

    There is no more sectioning. It's just GAMES now. No more arcade, no more indie, no more "Full games". They're just games.

    You will now be able to self publish. Plain and simple. Aussies will have access to all of it. The real question is how much curation will take place. Because there needs to be SOME.

      Pretty confident with with that statement! Yippee, no more classifications board - Microsoft sorted them out!

      Australia didnt get indie games for XBLA because no one wanted to pay the cost of submitting to our censors. I don't think that has changed, so it's still an issue.

        But that won't be restricted to an entire channel of games because that channel no longer exists.

        We'll still get at least SOME of the games.

    As I posted in an earlier article similar to this one:
    "Reading this article reminds me of another promise Microsoft made a long time ago...
    Tell me, how many of you remember "Velocity Girl"?
    If you don't remember it, just google that plus "Microsoft" or "360".

    Enjoy reading about the Live Marketplace that could have been!"

    I think self publishing is like what backwards compatability was to the start of this generation. Everyone was convinced they wanted it, convinced it was gonna be this amazing thing, but yeah, it turned out to he a waste of time to all but a few

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