Indie game makers open up about the money they actually make - The Verge

- The Verge (2019)

With new subscription services like Apple Arcade and Xbox Game Pass, alongside the changing dynamics of stores like Steam, it has become an increasingly challenging time for the developers of smaller games.

"many indie developers — from the makers of weird alternative games to more traditional entertainment products — sit somewhere in the middle. The lucky ones are able to make a living from their work but often carry deep funding worries. Others supplement game making with side hustles or entirely avoid the pressure of financial success by making games in their spare time while building other, potentially more stable careers.

Some of the people I spoke to were anxious about a video game industry they perceive to be in flux. Apple Arcade and Xbox Game Pass are ushering in a new subscription model, similar to Netflix and Spotify, which could profoundly alter how we value games, despite offering a short-term cash injection for those it supports. Elsewhere, changes to Steam’s discoverability algorithms have significantly impacted some game makers’ incomes. The burden arguably falls greatest on indie’s new wave, which has emerged as a result of the increasing accessibility of video game tools. More people are making stranger, cooler games than ever before, but it’s seemingly never been harder to make a living...


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