This post is the first in a week-long series focused on expanding your indie studio:
Everyone wants to expand their business – everyone! No matter if you install vinyl siding for a living or you own and operate your own car wash, expansion is the goal (or should be the goal) for every small business owner.
Including indie developers that want to expand their indie studio.
We’re going to start a new series devoted to the best practices for expanding your indie studio and ensuring that more people than ever before purchase your indie games. Especially if you have felt as if your indie studio is stuck in a rut and needs to try things differently in order to expand further, we want you to read this week’s series. It’s going to be useful information for everyone, so check it out all this week.
Today, we are going to focus on expanding to different platforms. No matter if you develop primarily mobile games, PC games, or a little bit of both, it pays to know the best places to sell your indie games so you can expand your studio even further. If you are not selling your indie games at the following places below, it’s time that you consider doing so.
Futureproof your studio
We’re seeing the rise of new platforms by way of future tech – and it’s the perfect time to get in on the ground floor. From developing games for the Apple Watch (and other popular smartwatches) to virtual reality headsets, the future of gaming is arriving sooner rather than later. Valve’s VR headset (Vive) was all the rage at GDC this year, and they announced recently that developers can sign up for a free Vive dev kit next week. It’s a great time to be an indie developer, so get accustomed with this new tech as soon as possible so you can be one of the first to make a quick splash on these new types of platforms!
The other mobile
We’re not talking about smartphones and tablets: rather, we’re talking about the ‘other mobile:’ primarily handheld consoles such as the 3DS and PS Vita. It’s no secret Nintendo and Sony wants indie developers to develop for their handhelds – and it’s actually quite simple to release your games for these lucrative handhelds. We’ve written about how to apply to develop games for Nintendo and how to develop for the PS4; it turns out, the steps are essentially the same if you want to develop for the PS Vita as well.
Speaking of the PS4…
Indie games have proven to be lucrative on consoles. Take a look at the PS4, for example: the bulk of the games on the PlayStation Store are indie games. While one can make a case that a lot of AAA games have yet to be released for the PS4, it doesn’t really matter: indie games are a huge part of the experience on Sony’s console, and they will continue to be so for years to come.
The same can be said for the Xbox One and Nintendo’s Wii U (the same will be said for Nintendo’s new mystery console as well). Indie gaming and consoles go hand-in-hand like peanut butter and jelly, peanut butter and chocolate, peanut butter and…bread (it turns out peanut butter goes well with a lot of things). Consider releasing your indie games on consoles and even microconsoles such as the Amazon Fire TV.
If you want to sell your PC game, Steam isn’t the only route you can take. You can sell your PC games without Steam on various platforms that most indie developers never actually think about. We urge you to view the link above, as it’s full of various platforms just waiting for your next big release.
The great thing about releasing your indie game to different platforms is it gives you a chance to think about different ways to sell your indie game. Not all platforms are created equally, and not every indie game is going to be ideal for every single platform – but you need to experiment to see which platforms could be lucrative and which ones do not fit into your plans at the moment. Consider releasing your indie game onto as many of the platforms mentioned above as possible (and those we didn’t even list), and begin the process of expanding your indie studio!
Do you have any questions or comments about releasing your indie game on multiple platforms? Are there other platforms that we didn’t mention? Let us know in the comments below!