The criticisms of the Metro dashboard update that went live across Xbox LIVE at the end of last year have been well documented. Indie developers in particular decried the "burying" of the XBLIG service behind a swathe of navigation options. However, an Xbox 360 dashboard update went live over the weekend that looked to increase the visibility of Xbox LIVE Indie Games, amongst other things.
"As you’ve now noticed, the Xbox Live Marketplace was updated to change the way games are surfaced to customers. Microsoft is continually working to better organise our digital game content on the platform and your feedback played a part in that,” Microsoft stated to Eurogamer.
"Part of this new organisation means that Xbox Live Indie Games now has a tile on the top level of the marketplace right next to Xbox Live Arcade and Xbox Games on Demand. Inside of the new Xbox Live Indie Games section, you’ll notice that there are New Release, Top Download, A-Z, and Genre options, as well as a rotating carousel that shows off Kotaku’s Picks, Contest Finalists, and can be used to house other content as desired.
“This update is something we are extremely excited about as it really brings Xbox Live Indie Games to a higher level of visibility in the dashboard. We believe these changes will help even more gamers find and experience the great offerings you’ve all developed for Xbox Live Indie Games.”
Sounds great, right? This is what we've all been striving for: Microsoft taking things on board, responding to community needs, changing the service for the better. It's a small step, but a good one.
Except for one small thing. It's currently only available in North America, and "a Microsoft spokesperson was unable to confirm if or when the changes will roll-out in Europe". Oh, and inexplicably, you can still only actually get the Xbox LIVE Indie Games service in a smattering of countries.