Monday, 17 June 2013

Microsoft Now Significantly Less Odd

And that's not a good thing.

If you remember way back when the original Xbox was first coming out, the game Munch's Oddysee of the Oddworld series was actually an exclusive launch title for the system. Although the Oddworld series hasn't been a blockbuster game moving one compared to other franchises, it does have a strong fanbase that was happy to see it on a system and who might have been helped to choose Microsoft's system because of that exclusivity.

Now, fast-forward to present, and there's a new Oddworld game, New 'n' Tasty coming out, and it's going to be out for pretty much every system ... except the Xbox 360 and the Xbox One.

So, why the change of heart, considering that a couple of Oddworld games have enjoyed early exclusivity on Microsoft's consoles? Well, take a wild guess.

"For Xbox One they've granted us a license for New 'n' Tasty! but they still say you need a publisher. We don't have a publisher so we're not officially on the platform, even though we're compatible, even though we'll be ready to do it. Period.

"Why do we need a publisher when we self-finance our games, we build our own IP, we manage our own IP and we've turned nearly two million units online as indie publishers sold - not free downloads? Why? What's wrong with us?"

That would be a quote from Lorne Lanning, the head of Oddworld Inhabitants. Basically, the stance that Microsoft has taken in regards to indies and publishing on Xbox One was the straw that broke the camel's back in terms of any goodwill that Oddworld Industries might have had for Microsoft.

Considering that partnering with a publisher would mean that a cut of the game would go to that publisher, and that Oddworld Inhabitants has had no issues pushing units without one, Microsoft is asking them to give up a piece of their pie that they don't need to, all without really being able to justify exactly why they have to. It's not a combination of factors that exactly endears a person to the potential business that they want to bring you, now is it?

You know, I really actually don't want to keep harping on Microsoft. I really don't. It's already gotten old, incredibly so. And yet with more and more of these kinds of stories popping up, I can't not say anything, because that wouldn't be right in all honesty.

Sadly, because of that, I don't even think this will be the last story of this kind of nature that I even do this week. Oh well. I suppose at least it makes writing somewhat easier.

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