Microsoft is no longer requiring developers to pay a fee to patch Xbox 360 and Xbox Live Arcade games, after dropping their earlier policy that placed a hefty sum on game updates, Eurogamer reports.
According the report, which was corroborated by an OXM report, this also extends to XBLA titles that have failed to pass certification. Prior to this change in policy, Microsoft required XBLA developers to pay a fee to resubmit titles that failed certification; now, developers are required only to pay a single submission fee with no charges for re-submissions. Developers may be charged for "excessive" re-submissions, however.
Rumors about this policy shift began circulating earlier this year. In April, a Microsoft spokesperson told Polygon, "We're always working to make processes and policies better for developers to ensure they and our customers have the best experience. However, we do not comment on terms of our agreements with developers."
We've reached out to Microsoft to confirm that the policy has changed and for further details into how this new system might work.
Update: Marc Whitten, corporate vice president of Xbox Live, has confirmed to Polygon in a tweet that fees for title updates to Xbox Live Arcade games were removed in April.
@Polygon: FYI Microsoft eliminated fees for Title Updates on Xbox 360 Arcade games in April 2013— Marc Whitten (@notwen) June 27, 2013
Update 2: Another Microsoft spokesperson responded to our queries, providing a slightly longer answer.
"Microsoft eliminated fees for Title Updates on Xbox 360 Arcade games in April 2013," the spokesperson wrote. "We're constantly evaluating our policies and implementing feedback. While our development policies are confidential, and will remain so, we're pleased to say that this is just one of many ongoing changes and improvements we've made to ensure Xbox is the best place possible for developers and gamers."