Indie developers have had their say on the new Xbox 360 dashboard, with some complaining that it buries Xbox Live Indie Games.
With the games industry facing the jaws of recession, it takes an admirable level of commitment and self belief to walk away from a job at a major studio to set up shop as an independent games maker, yet that's just what Nathan Fouts did when he left Resistance developer Insomniac to form one-man code shop Mommy's Best Games.
Independent Xbox 360 developers polled by Eurogamer about Microsoft's decision to reorganise the Indie Games channel pricing structure have said they had no idea it was going to happen until it did.
Weapon of Choice developer Mommy's Best Games says Microsoft can claim as much as 60 per cent from Xbox Live Community game sales.
If you got my fifteen-year-old self to design a game, and assuming you hadn't got me in one of my 20-sided-dice-with-everything moods, you'd end up with something which - at first glance - would look a lot like this all-action Xbox 360 Community Game.
I stress: at first glance. It wouldn't have been anywhere near as good. Not that Weapon of Choice's take on run-and-gun-isms is a modern classic, but the product of my fevered adolescent imagining would have been a big old pile of bobbins whose mechanics would barely hang together due to me spending a bit too much time thinking longingly of girls and/or the price of lead figurines and less time about the business at hand. But the obsessions and the approach... Well, it's deeply teenage.
Even it's hyperactive amateurish-yet-charming graphic style seems to have been torn-out doodles in the back of textbooks, where the only thing which could be better than giving your character an M60 machine gun would be to give him a M60 machine gun at the end of a bungie-cord. Oh, and a backpack with mechanical limbs. And something which explodes when you jump. And friends. And things which look like gonads to fight.
When the much-trumpeted New Xbox Experience finally arrived, it didn't just bring us those oh-so-adorable Avatars and the welcome option to install games to the hard drive. No, tucked way rather unceremoniously in the Games Marketplace was the long-promised Community Games section, bearing the fruits of Microsoft's lengthy flirtation with the world of amateur, indie and homebrew coding.