Although it focuses on the decision by Hi5 to make its network closed (which may be out of date now), it also looks at the difference between XBLA and the AppStore, and makes some very good points which will be useful for any developer considering self-publishing.
His main conclusion:
"Hi5’s mistake is all too common: They’ve forgotten the three advantages of digital distribution and instead become bewitched by the illusion that there is a need to control content as users do not like too much choice. This is retail thinking that assumes that users are bored and stupid and forgets that great swathes of choice are not an issue when users have search and recommendations engines at their fingertips. It is why XBLA has not lived up to its potential yet, but iPhone is selling enormous amounts of software."
Nicholas is the founder of Gamesbrief, a blog dedicated to the business of games. It aims to be informative, authoritative and above all helpful to developers grappling with business strategy. He is the author of a growing list of books about making money in the games industry and other digital media, including How to Publish a Game and Design Rules for Free-to-Play Games, and Penguin-published title The Curve: thecurveonline.com
Gamesbrief is a blog about the business of games. We look behind the headlines to tell you not just what is happening to games, but why it matters to your business. From Activision to Zynga, we analyse the companies who are making waves in the games industry and the new platforms, like Facebook, iPhone and Unity, that are changing the market.
“I rely on GamesBrief to provide the intelligent insight into the business of making games I require.” Paul Farley, CEO, Tag Games