Microsoft Charges Developers USD 40000 Per Xbox 360 Game Patch

We already know that Xbox 360 game patches must go through a lengthy certification process, but we never imagined that this process would cost $40,000 per patch.

The number was revealed by Tim Schafer the founder of Double Fine Studios who cited it as one of the main reasons indie developers should ditch closed systems such as Xbox LIVE and PSN in favor of more open ones such as Steam.

"Those systems as great as they are, they're still closed. You have to jump through a lot of hoops, even for important stuff like patching and supporting your game. Those are things we really want to do, but we can't do it on these systems," he said.

"I mean, it costs $40,000 to put up a patch - we can't afford that! Open systems like Steam, that allow us to set our own prices, that's where it's at, and doing it completely alone like Minecraft. That's where people are going."

Add new comment

CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Comments

Something to think about.

There seems to be a few key notions that are being missed. The first, and perhaps most important, is that Schafer is expressly speaking about small developers--people who don't have deep pockets. When a company--any company, really--develops something, they typically build a business model. In it, they detail out how much they can afford to spend, and on a specific time frame. This gives them an idea of how much they can spend before they need to begin making profit. Yes, ideally, it would be great for developers to take a year or two testing a game for any and every single bug or glitch they can find. Sadly, most of them will have deadlines, that single point where they really can't afford to put off a game release. This gap is much shorter for smaller companies that don't have an abundance of cash to dish out and extend production time. Hell, some of these companies don't actually HAVE people to do lots of testing. Look at Minecraft. Look at Dungeon Defenders. DD started as a group of three. Only three. How much testing can be done by only three? Could three find every possibly glitch or bug? Maybe, but unlikely. The thing is, the coding for games is exponentially more complex today than ever before (yes, this seems obvious). Because of this, catching glitches becomes more difficult and time consuming. Sometimes you have to do something specific, in a specific order and specific way before the glitch happens. Only through TONS of trial and error, involving hundreds upon hundreds of hours of testing could you POSSIBLY find it. Big developers have those kinds of resources. Small developers probably do not. $40,000 is probably a bit much to charge small developers releasing Live Arcade and Indie games. These aren't big titles, and companies won't expect to make millions off of them. No, the Xbox isn't a PC, but that really doesn't mean that releasing patches should be so difficult. If Microsoft truly wants to promote the development of these types of games, then they really do need to begin working WITH the companies instead of against them.

Maybe if these companies

Maybe if these companies actually reviewed and properly tested their products then the amount of games that needed patching would be reduced, thus reducing their costs.

The problem is now that broadband is readily available to most people then these companies will issue these patches, even if they know the program isn't 100% fully bug free.

i agree, i don't think buddy

i agree, i don't think buddy has a fucking clue just how many hours get put into making a 3d game and just how much of a fucking risk it is. you cut a few corners and you fix post-release because you simply can't afford the delay.

Download it

dont buy xbox games. download it off torrent. this is how u show support for games company. MS is playing with small game company. making them pay for small patch. we download it! show protest! help small games company.

It doesnt cost 40k to put up

It doesnt cost 40k to put up a patch this guy doesnt know what he is talking about. As long as the company has a contract to create game on Xbox uploading content is free for them. Microsoft just profits off the sales a little. I know this, Im a game devoloper thats worked with this and upcoming skyrim release.

Meh

Consoles, Netbooks, Slates, Phones they all need to die sorry to burst peoples bubble but its all garbage. Delve the depths of corporate minds and you will realize how restrictive this technology is. Both in idea and physical hardware. Best part of it all they already have us because we embraced a closed solution or on the go concepts far too easily. Now we are paying and people seem to complain...why exactly?

Wow!

Thats about how much money it costs to port a game to a PC. The smaller developers can't afford that. Thats crazy. Microsoft is simply encouraging the transition to "PC" based entertainment, which is what they want. Soon, TV, Internet, and gaming will be run through one device, and it will be a 1/4 inch thick slab against the wall, with photo realistic graphics. 7 years away, guaranteed. 98% of Microsoft's income is from the Windows OS, and office software. Making the Xbox, is just for name recognition, basically just advertising, and a write off. If they stopped making it, Microsoft would not even notice financially. Microsofts goal is to take over home entertainment, through a user friendly PC.

That is true...

and they would call that PC, an "Xbox". You're a turd. Microsoft wants complete control, and they can't have that on a PC. Sony claimed their little hunk of junk only does "everything". What they don't tell you is "everything it doesn't do", which is almost everything. Everything a PC CAN do. Get it? Doubt it. MS wants control, just like any other corporation. That control is impossible with a PC. You can build with whatever hardware you want, you can run any software you want. They released Kinect only for the 360 & look what hackers were doing with it on PC. The PC will always be where it's at, but there has been much resistance to freedom, and there will be more. Freedom will always win in the end though, because that's what's best.

Get your info right.

I will refrain from insulting you as you did me, but you have no idea what you are talking about. Your right is that Microsoft wants complete control, that is exactly what I was saying. 7 years from now, there will be an integrated home entertainment system thats will be based on a Microsoft OS. Go to Fed Ex Kinkos, Windows XP runs the copy machines. Look at all the phones that run Windows software, do you see Microsoft making cell phones? No, they have no interest in producing the hardware. The software is the key. Microsoft is currently developing software that produces photo-realistic graphics, and the need for a seperate graphics chip and cpu will be gone, as will compatibility issues. Microsoft is not interested in producing the hardware, just the software, and the software is the gatekeeper. Your ignorance is assuming that i am referring to current PCs. Notice my quote, "in 7 years". Again, In seven years, there will be no gaming console, It will be a home entertainment system facilitated by a PC. In one purchase, you will buy a PC, television, and Gaming system, all in one, and running Microsoft software. Look at Windows 7 Media Center used with a tv turner card. Have you used it? Have you seen its features? It's only the beginning. Look at todays televisions, they have a VGA adapter in addition to HDMI, Why do you think this is ???

"MS wants control, just like any other corporation. That control is impossible with a PC."

Your wrong, Most PCs run Windows software, Microsoft does have control. Microsoft makes more money when someone buys a PC, than when they buy a XBox. How many hundreds of millions of PCs are out there. It costs Microsoft nothing to sell a PC, and Xbox? 60 million sold, and mostly at cost. Its the kinect that is driving the XBox 360 sales numbers. Where do you think the money is?? Try some logic.

Q3 of 2011, microsoft had a revenue of 17.37 Billion. Sales related to the XBox was 700 million, and was led primarialy by Kinect sales, of which, it is estimated that 40% were PC Kinect purchases. Microsoft is investing heavily into the Kinect for the PC, not only for gaming, but CAD software.

Xbox / Kinect / subsription / and Xbox accessories sales account for 2-4% of Microsoft's sales. What do you think they are more concerned about? A device that accounts for 2-4% of sales, or a device that accounts for 96% of sales. When you buy a PC, you are paying for the OS, Word Processing software, ect.

Wait, I think I will insult you...... retard.

Educate yourself......

Oh, also ....

And to point more to that your a retard, Microsoft was developing drivers for the PC 1-1/2 years before the XBox. The Kinect is an gaming accessory for the XBox, For the PC, it is a tool for engineers, Hence the enhanced capabilities on the PC......retard.

Again, educate yourself before talking out your butthole.

I'm not going to lie like many people and say I'm some kind of Microsoft employee.

I work for Intel. Gaming system sales account for .02% of our sales dollars. In terms of hardware gaming sales, the dollar amount is insignificant. Its all in the software. Microsoft could care less where that comes from, a pc, an xbox, a smart phone,... its all about people buying thier software.

.....retard

The Positive

If it encourages developers to create a finished product at release rather than 'buggy' and 'broken' games that are patched later then I'm all for it. It may be a lot of money for a patch but maybe we should consider it a pro rather than a con.

show your support for what?

show your support for what? Your own selfish attitude, by stealing the product nobody other than you benefits, Microsoft couldn't care less as they get paid whether the game sells well or not.

This is a just a poor justification for someone who feels they should be able to get anything they want without having to earn it.

Add new comment