Microsoft's [email protected] program is an interesting move that makes it much easier to small and independent games developers to produce games for the Xbox One. Now the deal just got even sweeter as the company announces that the Unity game engine will be made available free of charge.
The middleware is due for release in 2014, and Microsoft is going to give it away to free to all [email protected] developer. Director of [email protected], Chris Charla, said"Middleware isn’t cheap. One of the cool things about working at Microsoft is that we have access to pretty amazing resources. For independent developers though, tools like Unity on console can cost quite a bit."
But this cost is not something that devs will have to worry about from next year. Microsoft is clearly keen to make it as cheap and easy as possible for developers to help expand the Xbox One's range of titles.
"To us, [email protected] is about providing a level playing field for all developers. So, we worked with Unity and we’re pleased to announce that, when released in 2014, the Xbox One add-on for Unity will be available at no cost to all developers in the [email protected] program, as will special Xbox One-only Unity Pro seat licenses for Xbox One developers in the [email protected] program."
Microsoft has just removed one obstacle that can stand in the way of great games hitting consoles. Is it a move that will pay off, or will it lead to a raft of lower quality titles?