Ron Carmel, co-founder of World Of Goo developer 2D Boy, says that many top level XBLA developers are packing up and heading to PSN or other platforms which offer more open development.
Edge has the story today about the informal poll conducted by Carmel. It’s an interesting read and here’s a few pull quotes:
The picture becomes even bleaker when Carmel looks at other platforms. Overall, development is projected to increase next year on every single platform except for XBLA, Facebook, and ageing systems including DS, PSP, Wii, and non-Android or iOS cellphones.
So why is XBLA on the wane when there is almost universal growth elsewhere? Sixty-nine percent of respondents said that the most important factor in their selection of which platform to develop for was the ease of working with the platform holder itself. Almost half of those – 48 per cent – described their experience of working with Microsoft as “excruciating.”
“XBLA played a pivotal role in the popularisation of independent games,” Carmel writes. “Microsoft proved that indie games can be million-sellers on consoles, and then sat on its laurels for half a decade as more nimble and innovative companies like Valve and Apple took the lead.”
“If things keep going the way they are, and XBLA keeps losing talented developers, I believe the diversity of games available on XBLA will diminish, quality will suffer, and revenue numbers will drop as players start to move away from an unremarkable portfolio of games.”
I’m gonna speculate that Team Meat took part in said poll.
I found this story interesting as I haven’t noticed any sort of XBLA slowdown at all, but perhaps that’s more of a corporate slant to XBLA and not an indie slant?