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In the console wars... how do you stomp out the competition? How do you make them kneel before your might? How do you get them to bow down to your greatness? Well, one way is by getting third-party to either release titles in a fair way, or by forcing those who would have thought about giving the edge to the competition a parity clause to prevent them from showing you up. In theory it's perfect. In practice it's an epic fail.
It should come as no surprise that after Microsoft started the [email protected] program for the Xbox One last year – as a way to compensate for the backlash over their old indie-curating policies – they also put into place a parity launch clause to keep the Xbox One from being last to the party, or from companies making good on the PS4 and back-porting the game to the Xbox One as a form of sloppy seconds.
Well, Microsoft's parity clause has come back to bite them on the butt and bite them hard it did, as they'll be missing out on a few of the biggest indie titles on the market.
Digital Spy confirmed with Curve Digital that The Swapper, MouseCraft and Titan Attacks won't be coming to the Xbox One, but they will be arriving for the PS4.
Curve's managing director Jason Perkins confirmed that...
"Unfortunately, all these titles here get ruled out by the parity clause,"
This was further explained by design director Jonathan Biddle, who made it known that they aren't Sony fanboys, they're just developers trying to do their job... and Microsoft is making that job hard to do...
"We feel like it's unnecessary handcuffs really," … "but that's the way they've decided to run that."
Unfortunately, Microsoft doesn't want to be an American kid sitting at a table for a test in education competency while surrounded by South Korea and Japan. They would rather be the American sitting next to Denmark and Czech Republic. There's no better way to look good than to sit next to people that are worse off than you.
But Microsoft's power-play using clause-control just isn't a tune that many indie developers like dancing to. Instead, they're opting to waltz to a beat set to their own tempo, and if that means skipping out on the Xbox One's dance floor, well that's just how the dice are going to fall.
On the upside, Microsoft still has 250 developers signed on with them, and Curve Digital could still release future indie titles on the Xbox One... just don't expect to see them on the console's digital store any time soon.