Yes, this was all covered in the Polygon article...if you read it....
Developers will still rely on the existing ID@Xbox system in place for getting their games onto the console.
That means that a developer will have to go through Microsoft's concept approval, which usually takes about two weeks, before the game is eligible to be published on Xbox One.
"Concept approval is a process that every game that releases on Xbox One goes through to ensure that the games hit technical quality standards and are appropriate for Xbox One," Charla said. "We're not looking to be censors and we're excited to enable a broad range of experiences so that when players turn on their Xbox One, they have access to the most diverse portfolio of games possible."
If a game isn't approved for release on Xbox One, the developer is still able to release their creation on the Windows Store, he added. "If they want to use Xbox Live on Windows, or release a game on Xbox One, they can work with ID@Xbox to enable Xbox Live for their title or bring it to Xbox One."
If a game is approved for the console, developers will have to sign a contract with Microsoft, which includes a "standard platform royalty that everyone charges," Charla said.
"If a developer has a game that they want to publish, they apply to ID@Xbox, tell us about the game, and once the concept is approved we sign a contract," he said. "Then as they get closer, we help them out getting through certification. We also do promotion of the game at events like what we had at GDC, where we invite a lot of press."
The big change here is that traditionally, Microsoft had to give a hopeful developer a dev kit. Now a developer can just switch over their own retail console.
In allowing any Xbox One to become a dev kit, Microsoft is unlocking the floodgates to game development, but at the same time, the company is still using a restrictive system, in which Microsoft is the gatekeeper, to allow those games on the console.
The result feels almost like this new mode for the console creates an inherent conflict in Microsoft's approach to indie games, but Charla says that's not the case.
"We're excited to enable anyone to start experimenting with development using UWP and to test those experiences in the living room on their Xbox One," he said. "At the same time, for any game that ships on Xbox One, we have a promise to our players that games will hit certain standards. For all games on Xbox One, we require things such as appropriate age and content ratings and concept approval. This ensures that games hit technical quality and content standards that Xbox audiences expect. This is part of our promise to Xbox One consumers. We're not looking to be censors, and if you look at the Xbox One and Xbox 360 libraries, you can see examples of the broad range of content we're excited to see on Xbox One."
It's all messaging and I know you all think that Polygon is very Microsoft biased, so those red flags will instantly be raised, but either way, this can't be viewed as a bad thing. You definitely have to temper your expectations, but just the fact that it's moving in this direction is promising, even if it is limiting.