news\ Jun 27, 2013 at 10:32 am

Microsoft removes fee to patch Xbox 360 games

Xbox 360

Microsoft has removed the fee associated with Xbox 360 title updates, according to a report from Eurogamer. Instead of granting a one-time free-of-charge update, developers may now submit subsequent updates for free. However, Microsoft reserves the right to issue a charge if a developer is deemed to "be making an excessive number of re-submissions due to an update failing certification."

The change in policy apparently applies to both digital XBLA games as well as full retail games. No doubt this is a major win for smaller developers like Phil Fish, an independent developer who contended that he couldn't afford to pay a second time for certification to fix an issue with corrupting some save files (a result of the first patch). 

While free patches are a step in the right direction for Microsoft, it's not the main issue indies like Fish have with the company; it's Microsoft's requirement that a developer have a publisher that Fish has a problem with.

"Thing is the patch is irrelevant to the situation. I would develop for xbone if they'd let me. but they won't. THAT's the fuc*ing story," Fish explained on Twitter. "I'm independent and I don't have a publisher. I can't release games on xbone."

Who knows, with the removal of DRM and support for used games on the Xbox One, maybe Microsoft would think about a more open platform for indies -- similar to what Sony is doing with the PS4.


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