Tuesday, November 3, 2009

A gripe about XNA: Trail Modes

Since I got berated by a forum moderator for talking about this on the XNA forums, I'm going to a place where I'm allowed to speak my mind. Those of you that have released a game on XNA are well aware that we are forced to have a trial mode in our game. In other words, we can't give away our full game for free. I think this is totally okay, and understand why this is necessary. But on top that, our trial mode games automatically are forced to quit out and go to a purchase screen after 8 minutes of playing game. I feel that this time limit is restrictive for developers.

Why do XBLA games not have to deal with this restriction? Personally, I never decided that I wanted to purchase a game after only playing it for a few minutes. I need more time. I think Microsoft are shooting themselves in the foot, because there are gamers out that like me, absolutely despise timed demos. Nothing annoys me more than a pop up screen asking me to buy the game. If I want to buy a product, I go to you and buy it. If you try to force it on me, I see that as an act of desperation and that you possibly have doubt in your own product.

At least provide us with some options. Like if we have multiplayer and we limit that, or we limit some game modes, that should be more than enough for a good trial restriction. We need to have our trial modes approved by a real person anyways. Do we also need this automatic limitation too?

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