Sony has made publisher licenses free for the PlayStation Vita for a limited time. So independent developers could conceivably see their games or utilities running on the Vita with minimal investment. How cool is that!

I am not a PlayStation expert, but the publisher license seems to be analogous to an app store membership from other manufacturers. In the United States it is normally $99 per year. See this PlayStation blog entry for the announcement.

I haven’t investigated the economics overall. There might be a cost to get content ratings for games. There aren’t a lot of games in this channel at the moment (double digits).

But I thought to myself, “What the heck.” Developer registration took me only 10 minutes. After registering I was able to download the developer tools, which seem to be based on Miguel de Icaza’s Mono project, which in turn are open source implementations of the Microsoft VB and C# languages and libraries. The developer tools and documentation download was just under 1GB, and installation was very easy.

Evidently applying for a publisher license normally happens as part of the app submission process. I haven’t gotten that far yet.

I will plan to report here in the future on my progress as I see what it takes to compete, in an extremely small way, with the big boys in game development.

Conflict between Romans and barbarians

Image credit: fromoldbooks.org

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