Microsoft has clarified its stance around its parity clause: any game can come to Xbox One, developers just need to approach the company.
Microsoft’s infamous parity clause initially dictated that for an indie game to make it on to Xbox One, it could not have been released on another platform. Later this was amended so that a game that was significantly different on Xbox One could be released.
However, some exceptions have popped up over the past year, leading some to speculate that a weaker market position has seen Xbox ditch the clause.
Speaking with Eurogamer, European boss of the ID@Xbox program Agostino Simonetta said that the clause was still in effect, but that exceptions could be made.
“Unless a title can never come to Xbox, because a developer has signed a publishing deal with someone else, any title can come to ID@Xbox,” he said.
“We do understand that developers sometimes need to decide which platform to tackle first. Sometimes this is just because they don't have the resources, sometimes because they have a specific agreement with a particular platform or publisher.
“What we say to developers is – come and talk to us. Then we can figure out the best approach for making that title the biggest success it can be on our platform. The message is - talk to us, we can work together. There are no specific limitations on titles that have launched on other platforms coming to Xbox.”
Although this appears to be a softening of policy, Simonetta said he doesn’t regret missing out on PlayStation 4 exclusive No Man's Sky, even though developer Hello Games’ last title Joe Danger 2: The Movie was out first on Xbox 360.
“Personally, no. We have some exclusives that other platforms don't,” he said.
“Over 1000 developers have Xbox kit in their office today with over 100 games in development. My personal answer is that we have a very strong line-up.”
Simonetta said he was happy with the visibility that ID@Xbox titles get on the Store.
“We have a nice approach, content is content is content – ID@Xbox titles get promoted alongside AAA,” he said.
“There are recommendations for content when you go to the store. But can you do better? I think in any job you can always do better, but the feedback at the moment from developers is that they feel we are really behind them.”
At GDC this year, Microsoft unveiled a huge list of indie games coming to Xbox One.