Playstation always helped third party companies. During NES days Nintendo was very strict about how many copies can third party companies make (they had valid reasons). But later Nintendo became too bossy. This is why all companies helped Sega. Then came Playstation which was savior of the market. PS4 is like PS1. Making path for big companies and indie developers (Playstation 1 gave birth indie developers) for their usul and innovative titles.
Im not sure about that. Theres been small studios before the ps1.
Not a game, the Net Yaroze was a development suite designed around the original PlayStation game console for indie game designers to create and play their own games. The limitations of the system kept the unit from becoming much more than a hobbyist's machine (users could not run or burn discs, and had to fit the game code inside the machine's RAM), but the unit's power and access to the PlayStation chipset as well as the helpful instructions and development community built around Yaroze allowed game designers to make impressive demos on the machine. Designers would make their games on a PC, then transfer them to PS1 and play them on the Net Yaroze. Competitions and conferences were held for the Yaroze community, and several of the games made on the system led to bigger things for the developers -- the creator of Ape Escape got his job through his work with Yaroze, the game Devil Dice (aka XI) was originally a Yaroze experiment, and some of the games made with Yaroze were distributed on CD-ROM as bonuses on special issues of the US and UK PlayStation Underground demo disc series.
Included in the Net Yaroze package was a special PlayStation game system (built to network with a PC for game code, in a custom black casing), a set of matching black controllers, standard AV and power cables, a PlayStation boot disc, a PC development kit software package CD-ROM, a PS1 key to unlock the machine (plugged into the Memory Card slot), a serial cable to connect the PS1 and PC, and various instruction sets.
The Net Yaroze was available through mail-order in Japan, and was also available through universities in Europe and the US.
I like the playstation as much as the next guy, but there has been independent developpers on pc and other computer platform before and after the limited yarose experiment Sony allowed to happen there, I would go further and say that despite all their flaws MS did wonderful things by making the xbl arcade so open on the 360... They allowed nobodies to make their own titles (published by some big house, but still, it gave access to the big screen on an actual console, where you could generate an income).
Add the pressure the platform holders are feeling from the phones/tab'ets with their 100% open stores and you end up with exactly whay Sony did in preparation for the ps4 launch. I am not saying this to denigrate the net yarose and what it did, just that the current situation is not a simple follow up on this, nor a simple reaction to the xbox live arcade.