"Publishers are getting the living crap kicked out of them by Microsoft," Rob Dyer, Sony's SVP of public relations, told Industry Gamers
in a recent interview concerning Microsoft's publishing policies. But we're getting ahead of ourselves here -- Dyer was provoked by the following information from Microsoft's Content Submission and Release Policy, which forbids its games from being released first or with exclusive content on other platforms:
"Titles for Xbox 360 must ship at least simultaneously with other video game platform, and must have at least feature and content parity on-disc with the other video game platform versions in all regions where the title is available. If these conditions are not met, Microsoft reserves the right to not allow the content to be released on Xbox 360."
Xbox Europe's Chris Lewis defended this policy to Eurogamer
, saying, "We're a little biased, so obviously we're going to look to protect our own space as best we can and get exclusivity." And that's where Dyer steps in.
"I think what Chris and the other representatives at Microsoft are doing is protecting an inferior technology," Dyer said. "I think they want to dumb it down and keep it as pedestrian as possible so that if you want to do anything for Blu-ray or you have extra content above 9 gigs or you want to do anything of that nature, you'd better sure as heck remember that Microsoft can't handle that."
While Microsoft tries to force path-dependence on its publishers, Sony's more open policy has earned it a relationship with Valve, which Dyer says is a stark advantage for the company and gamers alike. Microsoft has a relationship
with Valve too, but it seems like more of a long-distance, second-cousin-once-removed sort of deal.