Dan Adelman, who is known for his work with independent developers at Nintendo of America, has announced that he is leaving the company. Adelman says he became frustrated because he couldn’t voice his own opinions and was continuously flagged down by Nintendo. Adelman says that he has decided to go indie.
“I think people were kind of on pins and needles about anything untoward I might say. And every once in a while, I’d give an answer that people didn’t like, and some people would freak out, so they tried to scale things back. First they had me do interviews with someone from PR or marketing. Later they just decided that I shouldn’t be in the press at all anymore.”
“I guess the short answer is that I’m going indie! As the indie games business matures, a real need for business expertise has started to develop. I’ve been working with the indie community for almost 9 years now, and one consistent theme I’ve noticed is this tension between developers following their passion to make the game they want to make and needing to be able to make a living doing it. Unfortunately, though, there are a lot of business types who at best just don’t get what indies are trying to do, or at worst are pretty much unethical.”
“So even though a lot of indie development studios may really want to have someone helping them out with marketing, business development, strategy and all that, there’s really no one to turn to. I’ve given a lot of business advice to different developers over the years which I think has been helpful, but I think to do it right and really help the indie scene grow to its real potential, it needs to be a full time thing. So what I’m planning on doing is working directly with several indie game studios as their business guy – whatever that really means. In the same way that a core dev studio needs a programmer, designer, artist, and sound person, I think there’s also a need for a business person. It’s definitely a different kind of role than the other ones, but it can be really critical, since one smart business decision can cut your costs in half or double your sales – and vice versa.”
“Nintendo has been really supportive of this move. I think everyone there has known for a while that my passion has always really been about helping the indie community develop and thrive, so even though everyone was really surprised when I gave my 2-week notice, they all understood and wished me the best. I couldn’t have asked for a better sendoff.”