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Console support in Godot¶
Console porting process¶
In order to develop for consoles in Godot, you need access to the console SDK and export templates for it. These export templates need to be developed either by yourself or someone hired to do it, or provided by a third party company.
Currently, the only console Godot officially supports is Steam Deck (through the official Linux export templates).
The reason other consoles are not officially supported are:
To develop for consoles, one must be licensed as a company. As an open source project, Godot has no legal structure to provide console ports.
Console SDKs are secret and covered by non-disclosure agreements. Even if we could get access to them, we could not publish the platform-specific code under an open source license.
As explained, however, it is possible to port your games to consoles thanks to services provided by third-party companies.
In practice, the process is quite similar to Unity and Unreal Engine. In other words, there is no engine that is legally allowed to distribute console export templates without requiring the user to prove that they are a licensed console developer.
Console publishing process¶
Regardless of the engine used to create the game, the process to publish a game to a console platform is as follows:
Register a developer account on the console manufacturer's website, then sign NDAs and publishing contracts. This requires you to have a registered legal entity.
Gain access to the publishing platform by passing the acceptance process. This can take up to several months. Note that this step is significantly easier if an established publisher is backing your game. Nintendo is generally known to be more accepting of smaller developers, but this is not guaranteed.
Get access to developer tools and order a console specially made for developers (devkit). The cost of those devkits is confidential.
Port the engine to the console platform or pay a company to do it.
To be published, your game needs to be rated in the regions you'd like to sell it in. For example, game ratings are handled by ESRB in North America, and PEGI in Europe. Indie developers can generally get a rating for cheaper compared to more established developers.
Due to the complexity of the process, many studios and developers prefer to outsource console porting.
You can read more about the console publishing process in this article: Godot and consoles, all you need to know
Console ports of Godot are offered by third-party companies (which have ported Godot on their own). These companies also offer publishing of your games to various consoles.
Following is the list of providers:
Lone Wolf Technology offers Switch and PS4 porting and publishing of Godot games.
Pineapple Works offers Switch, Xbox One & Xbox Series X/S (GDK) porting and publishing of Godot games (GDScript/C#).
RAWRLAB games offers Switch porting of Godot games.
mazette! games offers Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S porting and publishing of Godot games.
Tuanisapps offers Switch porting and publishing of Godot games.
If your company offers porting, or porting and publishing services for Godot games, feel free to open an issue or pull request to add your company to the list above.