Microsoft has been criticised for using a Day One Parity clause in its dealings with independent game developers who want to use Xbox One as their publishing platform via @Xbox (the indie developer program). This clause means that anything published on PS4 and Xbox One must happen same day, same time. What's Microsoft's reason for this restrictive practice in the free market it extols?
Phil Spencer is the lead at Microsoft Studios and he's open and upfront at the fact that there is no hidden reason at all. The free market for games is what you can make of it. Phil has shareholders to think of. He says:
"As the platform holder we want to make sure that the best games come to our platform and make sure we’re supporting the developers creating the best games for the platform," sure, you can't be more straight-up than that.
“Platform parity is obviously about making sure that when people buy an Xbox they know that the best independent games are on there, and they’re state of the art and new," he continues.
"We’ve taken feedback and changed course before and today I’d say this is an ongoing discussion with the independent developers...
"So, really I want to hear from them on what policy they want. They’re going to have to understand that as a platform holder we have certain things that hold true to what we want to be as a platform, and they have some business needs and bandwidth needs that they need to deal with in order to survive. We want to meet them.”
Woah now! See, that's not the sort of honesty we meant. We thought that developers had expressed their thoughts. Those thoughts are: Stop the Day One Parity Clause Phil.
Maybe not. Are you a developer? Let us know what you think of the clause firstname.lastname@example.org
will do it.