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Nintendo: Indie Developers Benefit More From Simultaneous Releases Than Exclusivity

Nintendo’s Senior Marketing Manager for publisher and developer relations, Damon Baker, recently had the opportunity to sit down and talk with Game Informer about the rise of indie titles on Nintendo platforms. Baker explained that the Kyoto based company doesn’t get many exclusivity deals as they’re less reluctant to throw cash around than Sony or Microsoft. However, Baker says that independent developers benefit more from simultaneous releases rather than exclusivity deals.

“We’re not known for exclusive [indie games] in particular, and that’s because we’re not throwing around a lot of cash. We also don’t see a huge benefit to developers in driving exclusive deals with platforms and consoles. They need to do what’s right for them from a business perspective, and we want to help complement that and make sure that they’re making the most from the experience on our platforms. We very much encourage all of our development partners to release simultaneously across all platforms.”

“We’ve seen the data that proves that the developers are the ones that are going to benefit from that versus going with an exclusive arrangement. We’re certainly not going to frown upon those people that are bringing exclusive content over to us, because we will make the most of it and make sure they are doing a great job with it. I think that we have a strong focus on multiplatform content, and that’s because we do have a point of differentiation with our control schemes and what these developers can create in a unique environment.”

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11 thoughts on “Nintendo: Indie Developers Benefit More From Simultaneous Releases Than Exclusivity”

  1. Exclusivity can make sense, particularly when making a game that complements the demographic of a particular games console well. However I agree that in many/most cases it is not beneficial to the developer when in the long-term. I also agree that simultaneous releases are best, as it’s no good if games are “old news” by the time they come to a person’s console of choice.

  2. Maybe Nintendo just doesn’t pay enough for exclusivity, so they assume things like that.
    Of course I don’t have any insight into the amount of money companies pay for exclusivity deals, but considering those deals seem to happen pretty often, especially lately, I’d think it actually might be profitable for the developers if done right, more than going multiplat. I mean, there must be a reason why so many developers choose to go exclusively for one platform, no?

    1. Developers can be fanboys too, which is why some games are exclusive, some is because it takes advantage of hardware not available on other platforms, and some because it’s cheaper, but you usually see those games get ports later on, and when companies pay for exclusives it benefits the console maker a lot more than the developer

      1. What you’re saying is true, I agree, but I still believe that the difference in profit can’t be too big when choosing to go exclusive for one platform rather than going multiplat; I don’t think many people would give up a significant amount of money just because they personally prefer one console maker better than the others, or anything of the sorts.

      2. Not only that, but the demographic in the PS4 might not be the same one on the Wii U. If a game is made Multiplatform then it has to at least break even in sales, and at times they don’t. Developing cost money, so they have to make sure its in the best interest of the company financially.

        For the record I do agree with you.

    2. nintendo has to have indies or there would only be six to eight games a year. why would they make it exclusive to a ten million install base, when on steam there are a few more i think. it’s bussiness you go where there is some.

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