161: Going Rogue

Going Rogue

"Harris is one of an increasing number of mainstream video game veterans who have abandoned big-budget, big-business game development and 'gone rogue' as small, self-funded, often self-published independent game developers, or 'indies.' Some see indie development as an entry point into a career in the majors. But for some jaded professionals who love gaming but are dissatisfied with the mainstream industry, indie development offers an escape - and a unique opportunity."

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Great Article. Absolutely great. I think that indies are awesome and lead to some of the most interesting titles and premises. I like the point that was made with Pirates. You give them everything they could ever want, but if it isn't free, they take it. It's travesty in the highest order. There isn't much you can do as an indie, though. Well, I will tell you that I learned quite a bit from this article about my upcoming profession.

I tried to freelance back in the days. Being my own boss was great but being my own accounts receivable, or worse, accounts payable, was horrific. I guess I'm just cut out to be a wage-slave.

(Just supplementing the "did I mention taxes?" bit, because it really is true.)

-- Steve

Gaming industry needs something like the digital camera. You need to make it so that "anyone" can make a game, easy and effectively. Only then can a truly great game be made by an "indie".

We don't need burned out vets making SNES ports with some twists, we need new blood. Oldies had their chance and look what they did, they turned the gaming industry into Gamingwood, something interesting every few years and then back to tried and true, many times even less than that.

Awesome article! I totally agree with all the stuff said.

In before some dumbass pirate comes in attempting to justify how stealing actually helps indie developers out.

SonofSeth:
Gaming industry needs something like the digital camera. You need to make it so that "anyone" can make a game, easy and effectively. Only then can a truly great game be made by an "indie".

We don't need burned out vets making SNES ports with some twists, we need new blood. Oldies had their chance and look what they did, they turned the gaming industry into Gamingwood, something interesting every few years and then back to tried and true, many times even less than that.

Such tools exist to some degree, but they'll always be complex. You cannot make a game by pressing a button.

Very good article.

Big publishers dont take much risks, since its all about the money. And from what i heard, all big names use their employees as Cogs. Not much creativity going on.

Indeed, pirates are hypocrites.. they only care about free stuff, since its on the net, its anonymous and without consequence for them.

There are some really awesome Indy Developers in this article because I can recommend their games. Please spend a few bucks on them, I had fun with:

Positech Games - Gratuitous Space Battles Steam: $20 Demo Available
Moonpod Games - Starscape Steam: $10 Demo Available

Also having a bit of fun with other Indy developer games:
Fort Zombie - Kerberos Productions
Audiosurf - Dylan Fitterer

And would it be possible to consider Valve and Stardock as somewhat Indy since they self publish online through their services?

I am eagerly awaiting purchasing a number of other games from Indy Developers as well, as far as I am concerned, they are the future of gaming. "Indy" constantly tackles gameplay in ways that actually interest and excite me as a gamer, like:

Unknown Worlds Entertainment's Natural Selection 2

DoubleBear Productions 'ZRPG'

Dejobaan Games' AaaaaAAaaaAAAaaAAAAaAAAAA!!! -- A Reckless Disregard for Gravity

TaleWorlds Entertainment's Mount&Blade

Tilted Mill Entertainment's Hinterland

Anyone else got any other bad ass Indy Games they can recommend?

In conclusion, I wish all game developers going rogue the best of luck and please know you have a loyal customer in me because you put out bad ass gameplay.

For anyone interested in the subjects touched upon in this article, take a long, hard look at www.wolfire.com.

Not only are they very, very ambitious indie game makers. They also maintain a blog that details just about EVERY major, and many minor, steps in the development process of their latest game, Overgrowth.

And this blog tells not only of coding, but of how to market an indie game, what separates indie studios from mainstream gaming studios, problems encountered of all kinds, from technical to social and communicative, long, hard looks at level and game design principles, reviews of different digital distribution platforms, opportunities for the readers to influence the design of the game, the making of graphics and music, and many, many tales of the personal experiences of the guys at Wolfire.

I'm surprised an article such as this was written without at least a passing mention of Wolfire.

ModDB's new Desura might also be of great interest to fans of indie game development:

http://www.moddb.com/groups/desura/news/introducing-desura

Thank you for that informative post Ayjona :D

CanadianWolverine:
Thank you for that informative post Ayjona :D

Well, thanks back right at ya ;-) You brought my attention to a couple of indie games I had completely missed out on. For someone who (the few times I've the time for games) play almost exclusively indie games, every new jewel is a diamond ;-)

 

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