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Vlambeer: Parity clause with Microsoft Xbox One indie initiative punishes Sony

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Vlambeer co-founder Raim Ismail said that the Microsoft parity clause attached to its indie developing initiative for the Xbox One unfairly punishes Sony, according to a report today from VG 24/7.

In the lengthy interview about the Microsoft ID@Xbox program, Ismail said the clause forces indie developers to punish Sony when publishing their games.

The clause basically states that all indie developers creating games through the ID@Xbox program must publish games for the Xbox One at the same time as other platforms.

The clause isn’t so much a problem for Vlambeer, Ismail said, as the indie developer has clout in the industry. But rather, it’s other indie developers who want to see games published on both the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 or can’t chose to ignore one or the other.

“We have a good relationship with Sony and we do not like punishing Sony for having the better deal,” Ismail said. “So if next time we have to take the parity clause, if there’s no way around it, it might better to just not bring our next game to Xbox One.”

Ismail said that the playing field should be level for all involve –– Microsoft, Sony and indie studios –– and indies “should be fighting to get everybody the best deal.”

“It’s problematic for the indie scene at large, and having this tilted contract where Sony allows you to launch wherever, and Microsoft only allows you to launch at the same time is problematic for indies who say, ‘Well Sony has the better deal but I want to launch on both platforms. So we’re going to go with the Microsoft deal,’” Ismail said.

“That’s problematic because it will essentially force Sony to do the same in return.”

Ismail said he’d be 100 percent behind ID@Xbox if they got rid of the parity clause. You can read more of that Examiner report by clicking here.


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