Indie developer lashes out at XBLIG

Thursday, 7th July 2011 01:06 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Shield the Beat developer Mathieu Briau has criticised Xbox Live Indie Games for failing to follow through on its potential to promote independent games.

“It is one of the worst markets you can use to publish your game. It is very, very bad,” the former Behaviour Interactive staffer said of XBLIG, speaking to GamesIndustry.

“The problem is when you put it on the market, where there are two other games going out every day.

“The only way of getting noticed is to be on the ‘most recent games’ or the ‘top-sellers’. After two weeks you’re out of the Most Recent, so if you’re not among the top-sellers after that, you’re just out.

Briau argued that word-of-mouth is vital to the success of indie games, and by dropping titles out of the featured lists so quickly, XBLIG does them a disservice.

“That’s why it’s such a bad marketplace, because you aren’t given that time. The word of mouth has to be faster than two weeks,” he said.

Briau’s comments have remarkable resonance with those of Team Meat, who claim to have suffered similar treatment over Super Meat Boy.

The angry developer did take the time to praise Microsoft’s XNA toolset.

“Creating the game isn’t bad. Actually, [Microsoft] has created a very good engine,” he said.

Shield the Beat is available now via Xbox Live Indie Games in those territories where the service is available, and features a mash up of shoot-’em-up and rhythm gameplay. It’s not on Steam, which Briau also criticised for failing to provide reasons for rejection.



  1. Phoenixblight

    Be thankful Microsoft made a way for you as an indie developer to be able to put your game on the console. They are already doing what they are supposed to if you want ot be known make a facebook page or go on Youtube or go deep in your pockets and get some marketing. Stop bitching and do something to get your game noticed.

    #1 4 years ago
  2. Aimless

    Complaining about Indie Games is one way to get the name of your game out there, I suppose.

    I’m on to you, Briau!

    #2 4 years ago
  3. DSB

    It doesn’t exactly help that the guy picked the most anonymous sounding name he possibly could for an indie game.

    #3 4 years ago
  4. minxamo

    This doesn’t sound like Microsoft’s fault, it’s not their job to advertise your game.

    #4 4 years ago
  5. Old MacDonald

    He isn’t really complaining, though. He’s just stating that XBLIG is a bad place to launch your game. Which is something that gets repeated over and over again by the people launching games on the channel, so he’s hardly the only one who holds this opinion.

    Given that XBLIG is not even available in my country I’m not surprised. Seems Microsoft don’t care much about it.

    #5 4 years ago
  6. marijnlems

    Yeah, it’s an excruciatingly stupid fact that the Indie Games service isn’t even available in most European countries. Defending Microsoft in providing such a half-assed “opportunity” is completely laughable.

    #6 4 years ago
  7. fuchikoma

    The indies section is notoriously horribly hidden on the dashboard. Otherwise, welcome to indie game development – just like PC or iOS, there is a lot of noise out there, and you have to be outstanding to be noticed.

    #7 4 years ago

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