Microsoft Works To Prevent Indie Game Ratings Manipulation

Seeking to prevent further abuse of its indie games rating system, Microsoft announced it will restrict the ability to rate games to paying Xbox Live Gold members. Previously, anyone could sign up for a Live account and assign ratings to games on the service, and some developers accused users of making up fake accounts to falsely prop up the visibility of certain games while damaging others.

Microsoft’s XNA Games Studio discusses the policy change on its blog:

By implementing this change, we believe our customers will experience more consistent ratings and a significantly reduced potential for abuse across the entire Xbox catalog. We have also investigated rolling back suspect votes, however, we determined it will not be possible to do this.

In addition, we are investigating users who may have violated their user agreement during this series of events. Violating user agreements may result in actions up to and including banning from Xbox LIVE, removal of currently posted games, and loss of ability to post games in the future.

If you own an Xbox 360, what indie games have caught your eye?

Update on Indie Games Ratings [XNA Games Studio Team Blog via Joystiq]