My partner and I (SUPER 91 Studios) have recently been discussing the need for publishers within the indie game market and alternatives that are out there. There are traditional pubs, investors, Kickstarter, services like Indie-Fund, and many others.
We both enjoy the concept behind Steam Greenlight and have considered bringing that type of model into the publishing/investing space. There are currently publishers that seek out games that need funding. There is currently Kickstarter (hardly, this seems to be losing speed) that allows fans to help fund a product that they are interested in. However, there isn’t really an easy way to suggest that something popular become published.
Perhaps this is due to “publisher-knows-best”. Perhaps this is due to fear of consumers not knowing what they want. Perhaps it is something else entirely. Whatever the case, we have toyed with the idea of creating such a community.
The idea is basically to create a publisher with as many ears and eyes as possible. A webpage would be created where developers could upload their projects. These project profiles would contain screenshots, a trailer, a pitch document, and other important information. “Users” would be able to vote (daily?) on games that they would like to see get fully funded/published/marketed/distributed. At the end of ‘x’ time frame, the publisher (my team) would look at the votes in a fair manner* and decide which project(s) to supply our services.
Is this something that the industry needs? Or are the methods that are in place sufficient? I want to get as much feedback as possible. We only want to pursue this if people are genuinely interested. Would you submit your project? Would you vote for other projects? If not, what would help to change your mind?
*For example, we could look at the top ‘x’ games of each genre/platform to keep things as fair as possible. It is a valid concern that small mobile apps would have less of an audience than the typical action game and would get less votes. We could take other things into consideration like ratio of page views to page clicks and/or the cost of funding each project (two small projects during one term rather than one large project).
Feel free to reply here OR email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
2 thoughts on “Crowd-Publishing?”
So… basically a publisher that actually listens to people rather than “what they think is best”?
It -sounds- great but I see how easily it could slip off and either listen too much to people, or not enough. It’d be very, very difficult to balance…
And you’d need a lot of media coverage to get a community big enough for this to actually work. But the idea in itself isn’t bad.
And to answer one of your questions: The methods in place in the industry are totally not sufficient.
The publisher would certainly have the final word. Like I said, we would look at the top products from each genre and/or platform and choose one or two depending on funds needed, feasibility, etc.
But yeah, we have taken that into consideration! I appreciate the feedback! 🙂