I've ragged onMicrosoft more than once about its apparent inability to add new content to the Arcade section of the Marketplace. There are some great games on there now, and lot we're looking forward to, but why are we waiting so long between new releases? There's a demand for these games that's obviously not being met. While I'm not quite sure if I believe the story, Peter Moore has a reason for the lack of new content. Here's what he told Edge magazine:
Here's what happened – people didn't believe that Arcade was going to fly. So we went round a year and a half ago as we were doing the final plans for launching 360, and told our publishing friends that here's what we think is really cool idea, where you could make games for hundreds of thousands of dollars instead of tens of millions, and at very low risk, but people didn't believe it. And we released it and it blew the doors down. Now all of a sudden we're in this phase where Sega, Namco, Konami, Midway… they want some of that. But we do have an important quality bar in place – we could probably throw 300 games up there quickly, and we are trying to get the independent guys going as well. It's almost going to be like Pop Idol, where someone will pop out suddenly – Geometry Wars is a great example.
Plausible? Maybe. It's always easy to convince developers to support something once they have some hard numbers to go by, and the Arcade service has been making Microsoft and the developers involved some pretty good loot. Gamers are buying the service, and the clamor for more games seems to prove that there is an appetite out there for simpler, cheaper games.
Microsoft has a good basis for convincing developers and publishers to bring their games over, and to entice independent developers to put their games on the service. Now they just have to get aggressive with delivering new content on a timely and consistent basis. No one wants the service flooded with games, but I really don't see how adding a game or two a week would be that hard to achieve. Throw us a bone, here.