21 May 2022

Indie Games

An indie game, short for the independent video games, is a video game typically created by individuals or smaller development teams without the financial and technical support of a large game publisher, in contrast to most “AAA” (triple-A) games. However, the “indie” term may apply to other scenarios where the development of the game has some measure of independence from a publisher even if a publisher helps fund and distribute a game, such as creative freedom. Because of their independence and freedom to develop, indie games often focus on innovation, experimental gameplay, and taking risks not usually afforded in AAA games, and may explore the medium to produce unique experiences in art games. Indie games tend to be sold through digital distribution channels rather than at retail due a lack of publisher support. The term is synonymous with that of independent music or independent film in those respective mediums.

Indie game development bore out from the same concepts of amateur and hobbyist programming that grew with the introduction of the personal computer and the simple BASIC computer language in the 1970s and 1980s. So-called bedroom coders, particularly in the United Kingdom and other parts of Europe, made their own games and used mail order to distribute their products, later shifting to other software distribution methods with the onset of the Internet in the 1990s such as shareware and other file sharing distribution methods, though, by this time, interest in hobbyist programming had waned due to rising costs of development and competition from video game publishers and home consoles.