Matt Booty, the general manager of Redmond Game Studios and Platforms, has told Shack News that independent developers will not be able to publish their own games on the Xbox Live Arcade. They will need a publishing deal with Microsoft Game Studios or with a third-party publisher. Only games published on the Xbox Live Indie Games will be exempt.
"As of right now, yes," said Booty when asked if developers will need a publisher to release content onto Xbox Live. "We intend to continue to court developers in the ways that we have."
"I would also expect that for this new generation, that we're going to continue to explore new business models and new ways of surfacing content," he added. "But Microsoft Studios is a publisher that works with a wide range of partners, as do a lot of other people, to bring digital content to the box."
Microsoft is the only console maker that doesn't allow self publishing. Sony and Nintendo allow developers to publish their own games onto their networks.