Indie game developers are worried about the Xbox Activision deal that could hurt them.
Some indie developers have said they’re concerned that Xbox’s proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard could make it harder for them to get noticed. In a new BBC report that investigates whether the continued growth of Xbox Game Pass means any smaller indie titles not included in the service could fall into disrepair.
And with all of Activision Blizzard’s studios joining the Xbox Game Studios family, indie developers worry that Xbox could eventually release a steady stream of new titles that will dominate the Game library. your pass. One indie developer who shared her concerns in the article is Tanya Short, who created the critically acclaimed Boyfriend Dungeon (currently available on Game Pass).
Short says that most indie studios currently avoid launching games in the run-up to Christmas because they don’t want to compete with ‘triple A’ titles, but this may no longer be a useful strategy. . “This Activision acquisition strikes fear in us because it’s possible they could dominate the rest of the year and then what do we do?” she speaks.
The BBC reports that Short is “one of a number of indie game developers” who have told them they are worried about what the deal with Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard could mean for the gaming industry. It also cites Sad Cat Studios founder and game director Yura Zhadanovich, who is working on a cyberpunk setting that will also debut on Game Pass.
Zhadanovich praises Microsoft’s handling of his studio, but remains concerned about whether there will continue to be enough support for indie developers as more and more new titles add to Game Pass. . Ampere Analysis’s Piers Harding-Rolls shares this concern, who also told the BBC that as more people sign up for Game Pass, any indie games that aren’t available on the service struggle even more to get sold many copies.
Conceivably, indie games outside of these services could lose engagement as subscribers focus most of their attention on games they can access for free in service. Game Pass is one of the reasons the perceived value of indie titles is at risk, says veteran developer Jake Simpson of TNB Studios.
He told the BBC: “People are willing to spend $1,000 (£740) on a phone and then get very upset if you ask them to pay $4.99 for a game. ” When asked for comment, Sarah Bond, corporate vice president of Microsoft, said: “We are continuing to invest with indie developers and we will continue to do so as the service evolves. .”
She argues that Game Pass could actually be beneficial for indie developers as it could encourage players to try new genres of games they’ve never been interested in before, then be able to peruse new games. similar games if they find they like them. For example, she claims that 60% of players who have tried Human Fall Flat on Game Pass have never played a puzzle game before, and 40% have gone on to purchase another puzzle game. included in Game Pass immediately after trying.
Last month Xbox confirmed that Game Pass had reached 25 million subscribers. They have also stated that once the proposed acquisition is complete, the company plans to bring as many Activision Blizzard titles to Game Pass as possible. “As it closes, we will be offering as many Activision Blizzard games as possible in Xbox Game Pass and PC Game Pass, both new titles and games from the Activision Blizzard game list,” said Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil. Spencer said.