Microsoft Gets More Serious About Gaming, To Bring Killer AR & VR Tech To Xbox One ConsoleBy Emily Schultz, UniversityHerald Reporter
Microsoft is getting more serious about game development. The software giant has just announced a new gaming initiative that let any game developer create and publish games on its Xbox One game console. Microsoft made the huge announcement this week.
Microsoft Introduces Xbox Live Creator Program
According to GameSpot, Microsoft Wednesday launched its Xbox Live Creators Program, thus giving any game developer a chance to create and publish Xbox Live-enabled games on Windows 10 PCs and Xbox One consoles. The announcement was made at the Game Developers Conference (GDC).
Microsoft's Xbox Live Creator Program will allow game developers to easily integrate Xbox Live sign-in and social experiences into their games. Publishing for the gaming platform would no longer be a big problem for the game developers, Microsoft has also introduced a short and simplified certification process that will allow developers to rapidly publish their games to Xbox One or Windows 10.
Currently, the program is still on preview stage, but Microsoft has promised to open it up to the general public very soon. Then, there's another one, the game must be a Universal Windows App so that it can run on any Windows 10 device and not just on Xbox One.
Additionally, the software company also reserves the right to remove the game that contains harmful or inappropriate content. Microsoft won't be binding any developers with nondisclosure agreements or concept approvals for this program.
As for the price and availability, the Xbox Live Creator Program won't coming free. Microsoft is charging a one-time fee to that ranges from $20 to $100, however, it's still unclear now how much it plans to charge on some developers more or less than others.
For game developers who want more Xbox Live capabilities and to gain additional development and marketing support for their game, Microsoft has also provided a great option for them. They need to enroll in ID@Xbox, which can be done after the game has been published. But spaces for the Xbox Live Creator Program will initially limited.
For now, the Xbox Live Creators Program will be launching on limited preview and only available to some developers. The Software Development Kit (SDK) are available through Microsoft's official website, with applications for publishing games opening to any developers soon.
As mentioned earlier by GameSpot, Microsoft is also releasing another major big change for Xbox One game console. The company is bringing the Creators Update, which said to introduce a new Guide and Home screen on Xbox One.
Microsoft Getting Into The AR And VR World
In other Xbox One-related news, Microsoft this week announced plans to bring mixed-reality content - a combination of virtual and augmented reality to the Xbox One by next year, according to USA Today.
Microsoft is said to be keen on using the phrase mixed reality, rather than describing the gaming headset as VR or virtual reality. The goal is to differentiate its VR gaming effort from the rest of the competitions, which include the likes of Sony PSVR, HTC Vive, and Oculus Rift.
Microsoft has also announced plans to incorporate some elements from its HoloLens project, making it a more rounded virtual experience. The Redmond-based software company first announced plans to launch VR headsets capable of mixed reality in 2016.
And today, at GDC 2017, Microsoft is making a strong comeback but this time with a vengeance. The company's VR effort has been renamed Windows Mixed Reality, along with the planned first SDK release this month.