We all love a bargain, but it’s easy to forget that the 50% saving you got from a relatively new indie game is going to mean someone is making less money for something they worked hard on. A ‘sales culture’ around games has sprung up, leading many of us to wait for a game to be heavily discounted before we pick it.  This attitude among consumers is leading some indie developers into  financial difficulty and so a group of developers have banded together to make this 4th of July “Indiependence Day”.

Indiependence day is a special ‘sale’ where nothing is discounted. Some of the titles include Axiom Verge, World of Goo and The Path, all of which are at full price, ranging from between $5 to $25 dollars.

In a statement given on the Indiependence Day site the organizers of the event say:

There are more games coming out than ever before, and games only seem to sell when they’re on sale. Players have been conditioned, through bundles and mega-sales, not to pay full price…. although money isn’t the primary motivating factor for a lot of us, if the dynamics of the industry don’t change, indie games will become an unsustainable model.

This isn’t the first time we’ve heard of independent developers being in financial difficulties: last month saw Sunset and The Path developer Tale of Tales announcing their closure after Sunset sold poorly. Last year Gamasutra published it’s annual Indie salary report saying that developers in 2013 on average earned $11,812 and given how competitive the market place has become over the last twelve months that number is likely to have shrunk again.

Many sites have already written about the Indiependence event and judging by the comments it’s not proving to be too popular among consumers. Whether the event proves to be a success or not is really besides the point – if developers are being driven out of business by unsustainable sales practices that is an issue that clearly needs be addressed in the long term.

 

 

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  • I think they would be better off trying to overthrow capitalism then trying to change sales in video games right now.

    • I second this. They should be giving their games away anyway. Ask for a donation. It’ll probably make more money and will definitely make the game more popular. Games should be an open tap like television anyway…

      Thought experiment. If you have to download, install, watch, and then delete, every video on the Internet, then how many videos will you watch? Conclusion, watching videos of games makes more sense than buying games.