Time to get crackin' on that Tumbleweed Frogger game (Xbox Live Creators Program Announced)

We all have those moments, those moment when we get that inspiration to create something. Come on, you know you do. I have. So here's your chance. Want to tap into over 55 million active games and be able to utilizing features to organically grow your audience and reach? Microsoft announced today a new initiative, the Xbox Live Creators Program (currently in Preview), that will allow any app or game developer to create or incorporate Xbox Live into their game and publish it to either Xbox Live or Windows 10 without having to go through the extremely cumbersome and extraneous channels previously required. Incorporate social experiences, leaderboards and more into your games with minimal development time.

I have to say that I'm pretty excited about this. When the Xbox first came out, a friend and I were joking around on Facebook about creating a new game similar to the old 70s game Frogger, but using tumbleweeds. See she and her husband were making a cross-country trek from Michigan to Washington and while crossing the plain states seemed to be hitting, literally, an inordinate amount of tumbleweed that would blow into their path on the freeway. I joked that that would make a good game and thus the faint glimmer of a game idea ignited into being. At that time though, in order to publish a game to the Xbox platform you had to either be Microsoft or a big gaming studio. I was pretty discouraged.

Now with the Creators Program, us little guys have a chance to build our own games and publish then to the platform. Pretty cool! There are just four steps to be on your way. Go over to the Creators site and:

  1. Create a Microsoft Account if you don’t have one. If you already have one, you are set!
  2. Enroll in the Dev Center developer program.
  3. Apply to join the Preview for Xbox Live Creators Program. Sign-ups are initially limited. As the program ramps up, more spaces will periodically be made available.
  4. Read the documentation to learn how to integrate Xbox Live into your game.

That's it. I can't wait to see all those great games you'll come up with. As for me... well, I better get hoppin'.