Over a 10-year period, ID@Xbox has been a boon to indie game developers, providing them with publishing, marketing, and development services to help bring ideas to market. First established in 2013, after consultancy with the games industry, it has aided numerous fan-favourite games – including Australian releases like The Artful Escape and Untitled Goose Game.
Hades, Spiritfarer, Tunic, Dead Cells, Inside, Cuphead, and Celeste were also aided by ID@Xbox in their individual development journeys. According to program director Chris Charla, around 3,000 games total have now been helped along their path, with US $4 billion paid directly to developers in the program.
‘I don’t ever like to declare success, especially when I see how much more we have to do, but ten years on, I think we’ve done a pretty good job so far with ID@Xbox,’ Charla said in a new Xbox Wire blog.
‘We’ve enabled more than 3,000 games to ship on Xbox from independent developers (more than the total number of games that released on the original Xbox and Xbox 360 combined), onboarded more than 5,000 developers into the program, and paid developers more than four billion dollars.’
‘Four billion dollars is really a lot of money! It’s such a testament not only to the power of video games as an entertainment medium, but the power of independent development, our fans and players, and proof that when you listen and work to empower developers, good things happen.’
According to Charla, Xbox has now worked with developers in 100 countries around the world, with more than 5,000 developers currently part of the ID@Xbox program.
Of the games produced using ID@Xbox services, 39% have been action-adventure games, 13% platformers, 11% strategy or simulation, 9% puzzle, trivia and board gamer, 7% shooter, and 21% other – an eclectic mix demonstrating the variety and creativity support by the program.
According to Charla, its success has relied solely on the talent and ingenuity of game developers worldwide, who have helped forge the ‘foundations’ of Xbox’s overall success.
‘Ten years on from the dawn of ID@Xbox, one thing is crystal clear – games from independent developers are foundational to the Xbox offering,’ Charla said. ‘There’s so much more for us to do and we can’t wait to get started!’
As part of a renewed push to support independent game developers, and in celebration of ID@Xbox’s tenth anniversary, Charla also introduced Microsoft’s new ID@Xbox Developer Acceleration Program, which is designed to ’empower underrepresented creators with the resources and information needed to bring their creativity, innovation, and originality to Xbox.’
This program will expand the scope of ID@Xbox, by helping emerging companies port and prototype their burgeoning creative ideas. Microsoft has encouraged developers from underrepresented backgrounds to get in touch, with a view to help them tell their stories on a global platform.