"Without Doing So,The Whole Industry Will Stall"
Nintendo Of America recently angered the Indie scene (and us gamers, more to the point) by overtly suggesting that "garage developers" would be persona non grata on the 3DS eShop and WiiWare marketplace... but with inexpensive mobile gaming fast becoming a real threat to portable consoles, Sony plans to take the entirely opposite tack. SCE boss Shuhei Yoshida has stated that small indie studios are the major source of innovation in gaming today, and that the PS Vita will encourage these outfits to flourish and thrive. We couldn't agree more, and we have the full story below.
Speaking to Develop, Yoshida outlined plans to make the PS Vita accessible and attractive to indie studios by offering inexpensive dev kits and reasonable licensing fees. He feels that the independent market is a powerhouse for innovation and new ideas, and that the Vita is the perfect platform thanks to its touch screen, AR capabilities and integrated Playstation Network store.
As an industry, we have to support those smaller teams, and let them try out their ideas. Without doing so, the whole industry will stall, in terms of innovation.
[The Vita] is small and light and easy for developers to handle. We made it so the development kit wouldn’t be too expensive. Because Vita has capability to do wholly touched-based or AR-based games, lots of things can be done using just a small portion of the technology.
Yoshida also suggests that PSP Minis and the Playstation Network will continue to encourage indies to develop inexpensive games for multiple platforms.
Having the capability to sell their games on the network is key to giving those smaller teams an opportunity to come up with ideas, and sometimes invest their own money to come up with something special and have their projects meet with millions of users.
With the recent woes about Microsoft's continual mishandling of the Xbox Live Indie marketplace, this move could well cause a fair few developers to jump ship. If Sony make it worth their while, frankly, they'd be mad not to.