At the Game Developers Conference this week, Microsoft launched the Xbox Live Creators Program, which lets anyone publish Xbox Live-enabled games for Xbox One and Windows 10.
“With the Creators Program, anyone can integrate Xbox Live sign-in, presence, and social features into their UWP games, then publish their game to Xbox One and Windows 10,” Microsoft’s Chris Charla writes. “This means their title can see exposure to every Xbox One owner across the Xbox One family of devices, including Project Scorpio this holiday, as well as hundreds of millions of Windows 10 PCs, and millions of folks using the Xbox app on mobile platforms.”
The Xbox Live Creators Program removes the boundaries that used to dog Xbox developers—expensive development systems and the need for Microsoft to pre-approve any game ideas—and democratizes the process. Put another way, the bar for creating and publishing your own Xbox Live game has been lowered dramatically, and this process now more closely resembles creating and publishing any Windows Store app.
Those who join the program can utilize Xbox Live features like sign-in, presence, and leaderboards, plus whatever other Xbox features they care to use, like multiplayer, Game DVR, Kinect, in-game transactions, updates, DLC, SmartGlass, and more. Developers can likewise choose between various game engines, including Construct 2, MonoGame, Unity, and Xenko, with more coming soon.
And to support games created by individuals, Microsoft says it will added a curated Store experience, called Creator games, in the Xbox Store. In the Windows 10 Store, these games will sit alongside other games.
You can learn more about the Xbox Live Creators Program on the Xbox website.