Now that Nintendo’s WiiWare program has launched in Japan, the US and Europe and Sony’s PSN is increasing in popularity, Microsoft has said that Xbox Live Arcade will “leapfrog” its competitors by using user created games.
First announced in February the “Community Games” initiative will allow professional and amateur developers to to create games for XBL.
“I certainly think from an innovation perspective it’s going to help us leapfrog the competition, effectively until they find a way to duplicate it, assuming they ever do,” stated David Edery, Xbox Live Arcade’s worldwide portfolio planner.
“To some extent it will certainly help us have more innovative content than either of them, just by definition. With all this random stuff coming from the community, every once in a while there’s going to be a real gem in there that you just couldn’t have found otherwise, it wouldn’t have found its way on to a console,” he added.
Edery says the initiative should go live by the end of 2008.
“The example I always like to give is will someone finally make that scuba diving game, where there’s really only 15,000 people interested in a hardcore scuba diving simulation, but they really, really want one? And maybe through XNA someone can profitably get one out there,” he said.
“Today, there’s not really a venue for that. I’m not going to green light a hardcore scuba diving game for Xbox Live Arcade today because there are not enough people who are interested in that. But with XNA it’s perfectly possible.