Thu. Mar 23rd, 2023
Sony and Microsoft are considering

While Steam’s years of experimentation with selling unfinished games through its “Early Access” program has had its fair share of problems, it’s hard to underestimate the impact it’s had on the way PC games are developed, marketed brought and sold, with games like Day Z And Rust become bestsellers before they are even finished. This has not gone unnoticed by console developers or by Sony and Microsoft, both of whom have suggested that they will soon introduce their own “Early Access” style programs for their consoles.

In a recent interview with Gamasutra, Adam Boyes, vice president of Sony Publisher and Developer Relations, said that finding a smart way to give players access to unfinished games is “one of the huge conversations we’re having internally.” feed”. One of the biggest hurdles, he said, is making the game’s development status clear to potential buyers. “We don’t want anyone to come across that title and expect a full product and have a negative experience.”

Boyes went on to say that Sony is working out guidelines for how early a game can be before it is offered to PlayStation customers. “We clearly have our checklist of technical requirements for people to adhere to,” said Boyes. “So we’re discussing internally, what does that list look like? What are the caveats? Things like this. So it’s still a project that a lot of minds are considering. No details yet, but it’s something I think about every day .”

On the Microsoft side, ID@Xbox executive Chris Charla told Develop that a similar “early access” schedule on Xbox consoles is “something developers have been asking for, and we’re listening very closely to developers.” While closing in on an announcement of a new program, he noted that developers can already release private betas on Microsoft systems as a way to get unfinished titles there.

Still, Charla says Microsoft also wants to avoid confusing consumers and placing totally broken, unfinished games in front of players. “There are many deep thinkers, experts and PhDs working on these issues every day at Xbox – not just for the Xbox Store, but Windows Store and Windows Phone as well,” said Charla. “Our goal is to have a rational marketplace, where good games are visible and sell well.”

This is going to be a big deal if and when console makers decide to fully jump into the “early access” game. While PC players are now accustomed to games that require new drivers or downloaded patches after release to get into their best playable form, console players are more accustomed to games that “just work” from the start (although there have been some console setbacks). has been on this score in recent years). Both Sony and Microsoft will have to make it very clear to the living room audience that the game they are buying may not be up to the usual level of a console game.

By akfire1

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