Back in November, Sony rather shockingly announced the closed beta of a C# based developer kit for PlayStation™Certified devices, which include their Xperia Play and more importantly, the Playstation Vita and their as of yet unreleased Playstation tablet. Then nothing… complete silence. Rumour suggested a 1000$ price tag, which was reasonable in regards to a console development kit ( and downright cheap if you played Game Dev Story! ), but a rather steep price for your average indie developer.
Well, good news! Today Sony announced an open beta in April, and more importantly, a 99$ annual price tag. Here is the official press release:
Tokyo, March 7, 2012 – Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (SCE) today announced that it will release the open beta version of PlayStation®Suite SDK*1 to content developers in April 2012 and the official version later this year. Through the introduction of these SDKs, SCE will offer a more streamlined content development environment for content developers — from large game development companies to small, independent shops — and further expand the world of PlayStation® to open operating system based portable devices.
In November 2011, SCE released the closed beta version of PlayStation®Suite SDK to limited content developers in Japan, United States and the United Kingdom. The upcoming open beta version incorporates their feedback and will dramatically enhance convenience and efficiency of the content development environment. The phased rollout of the open beta version will start in April 2012 free of charge and expand target countries beyond Japan, United States and the United Kingdom. Developers will also be able to conduct performance verification of their content developed with the open beta version on PlayStation®Vita.
SCE will also release the official version of PlayStation®Suite SDK at $99 US annually later this year, allowing content developers to have their content distributed through PlayStation®Store*2 on a commercial basis. Through the official version, content developers will also be able to seamlessly continue to develop content which was created with the open beta or the closed beta versions.
Furthermore, SCE will be adding content for PlayStation®Suite in Japan, United States, Canada, United Kingdom, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, and Australia. The phased rollout of the update will start later this year. The phased rollout will include improving the PlayStation®Suite presence on PlayStation®Store for users who want to enjoy a variety of content with ease and convenience on their PlayStation™Certified devices. SCE will also deliver content created through the official version of PlayStation®Suite SDK after the necessary procedure is completed.
As of March 7, 2012, the line-up of PlayStation™Certified devices include Xperia™ arc, Xperia™ acro, Xperia™ PLAY, Xperia™ acro HD, Xperia™ S, Xperia™ ion*3 from Sony Mobile Communications AB, and "Sony Tablet" S and "Sony Tablet" P from Sony Corporation. SCE will continue to further accelerate the expansion of PlayStation™Certified devices.
Through PlayStation®Suite, SCE will deploy various measures to support content developers in their business, and expand the PlayStation® entertainment experience on an open operating system.
※1 Software Development Kit is a set of development tools and software libraries. Developers are able to obtain this SDK by signing a license agreement with SCE.
※2 Users can download vast digital content including games through PlayStation Store for PS3, PSP, PS Vita and PS Certified devices.
※3 Model name may vary by region. Sales area may vary by model.
This news isn’t just confined to Sony devices. Back in February HTC announced that they would be releasing Playstation certified mobile phones. This may in fact be the movement that finally brings gaming to Android.
Truly a great time to be a small budget developer!