Why it matters to you
The Creators Program allows even the smallest developers to directly publish their games up to the Xbox Live store.
First announced back in March, the Xbox Live Creators Program is now live, allowing any developer to directly publish its games to Xbox One and Windows 10. Coinciding with the launch of the service, the first wave of games from the program is live for download.
With the Creators Program, Xbox is giving game developers large and small an outlet to create different types of games for every kind of player. Unlike the standard Xbox Live store, developers can directly publish any of their games to Xbox One and Windows 10 PCs with little more than a simple certification process. Absolutely no concept approval is required.
Such a great level of freedom allows for some truly unique games. While some can be quirky and feature varying degrees of polish, they are always interesting. Checking out a game from the Creators Program is as easy as finding the right section. For Windows 10, these games are in the Games category of the Store. On Xbox One, they can be found in the Creators Collection.
For developers looking to publish their game, the process has been made simple. Developers can take advantage of tools like the free Dev Mode Activation app for their Xbox One consoles, as well as game engines such as Unity, Construct 2, MonoGame, and Xenko. Once a game is made, the barrier to entry is minimal. Microsoft Developer accounts cost as little as $20, after which the game can ship through a short and simplified certification process.
Games published through the Creators Program won’t have any Achievements, Gamerscore, or online multiplayer, but they will still have access to the full set of social features from Xbox Live. This includes broadcasting on Mixer, Game DVR, Party Chat, and more. To access the achievements and the like, professional developers can publish their games through the ID@Xbox program.
Current offerings already span multiple genres including rhythm games, dungeon crawlers, abstract puzzle games, and sci-fi shooters.