Xbox Live Indie Games will gracefully bow out to its replacement, ID@Xbox.
After years of rumour and speculation, Microsoft has finally made an official pronouncement on Xbox Live Indie Games
In a couple of letters to member developers published on the service’s forums, Microsoft said that both the XNA Creators Club and Xbox Live Indie Games program will be sunsetted.
As of September 9 2016, creators will no longer be able to publish games through the XBLIG marketplace, and sometime in September 2017 the marketplace itself will be closed to consumers.
The XNA Creators website will close at the end of 2017, and as of today, Microsoft is no longer allowing developers to purchase membership in the programs, although support is in place for development to continue through September 2016.
Current XBLIG partners have been offered free membership in Microsoft’s Windows 10 Developer program. The alternative for indie devs now is to use the Xbox One’s ID@Xbox program, which allows self-publishing for registered developers.
As for the enormous library of XBLIG games, players will still be able to download and play games they’ve already purchased.
“Over the next two years we’ll be working with game conservationists and creators to preserve the legacy of XBLIG content. We look forward to sharing more details in the future,” Microsoft said.
Microsoft said way back in May 2015 that it would eventually close down XBLIG. ID@Xbox is strictly curated and does not allow self-publishing, so we’ll probably never again see the wild west nonsense of the old XBLIG marketplace in Xbox’s future.