Microsoft's seeming lack of indie support and self-publishing on the Xbox One has seen Sony scoring major points over the last few months. However, apparently the Redmond heavyweight is just biding its time for a major indie-centric press event.
Quizzed on the subject by OXM, Lionhead creative director Gary Carr was convinced that Microsoft's Phil Harrison has some major announcements up his sleeves. “Oh, I think you’ll find he’s coming,” Carr foretold.. “His platform is very soon, don’t you worry about that.”
“I certainly know that Microsoft want to talk at future press events about their relationships with indies. I can’t really talk about that, but they’re very passionate about building a strong relationship with indie development – indie development is the future.
“I’ve been an indie developer for 23 of my 28 year career, so I completely – there is no future to the games business without independent developers, they always will shape the industry, and the big corporations will follow,” Carr continued. “So that relationship is important."
“I don’t mind having the big players like the Sonys, the Microsofts, the Amazons. I think you need these big giants out there, they kind of hold it all together in some way, but the real driving force of the industry has always been independent development. That’s what shapes and changes and creates innovation. I think they can coexist.”
Microsoft often comes under fire from independent studios, but it's worth noting that Xbox Live Arcade (and Xbox Indie games to a lesser extent) was absolutely crucial in the meteoric rise of indie gaming into the mainstream - demonstrating huge innovation and imagination on their part seven years ago. We hope that Microsoft will reveal something - anything - soon on the next generation indie front.