It’s begun. That closed garden feel that the Windows 10 app store had early on that worried people so much, is starting to bear fruit. Fable Legends, one of the more anticipated RPG releases of the year, is set to debut only on the Windows 10 app store, and no where else. That means no GOG Galaxy, no Steam, no nothing — but Windows 10.
@sertificationNu I think you may have answered your own question there ;) It will be on Windows 10 but not Steam, sorry!
— Lauran (@LHAlbionGirl) August 24, 2015
While not exactly confirmed by Microsoft, this news does come straight from the horse’s mouth, or at least the lion’s head, as it was the social media coordinator for Lionhead who confirmed it stating: “It will be on Windows 10, but not on Steam, sorry!” (as per MCV).
It could be worth taking this news with a pinch of salt as it may be a mix up, with @LHAlbionGirl confusing OS exclusivity – and therefore no support for Windows 7 or 8.1 – with platform exclusivity. However, the fact that three days later the tweet is still out there suggests otherwise.
If true, this is a bold move by Microsoft and Lionhead, as Steam is unarguably the largest digital distribution platform for games. It’s understandable that Microsoft wants to grow its own app store, but it’s making that choice at a time where GoG is expanding its DRM free platform, which has received a lot of praise. The high sales numbers of the Witcher III also suggest that closed gardens are not a one shot fix-all for piracy woes; something that the Windows 10 app store is designed to prevent.
Indeed, does this mean that future Microsoft releases may show up only on the Windows 10 app store? What about Halo Wars 2? Or Rare’s Sea of Thieves? Will they be restricted to Windows 10’s store only?
If so, this would go back on Microsoft’s previous statements that it wants to help grow Steam and similar platforms, not curtail them. What do you think will happen?