Game news The Game Pass is a gift for developers, according to FoamPunch (Shredders)
While Microsoft revealed earlier this year that its Game Pass had 25 million subscribers, many gamers wondered if the small studios would really have won if they had released their works to the American service giant. It should be recognized that the subscription model that provides access to a catalog of products reflects its limitations on the fair pay of artists, if we turn to other industries. Is Game Pass against the small hands that give it its edge? This is not the opinion of Dirk Van Welden, co-founder of studio FoamPunch (Shredders). He came back with us on the problems encountered by independent studios, the solutions that exist, and the Game Pass.
Dirk Van Welden’s interview took place on May 23, 2022. It took place via a Teams videoconference.
Free as air
The topic of freedom of creation by independent developers is constantly discussed in the world of video games. Tim Schafer of Double Fine has always been point tired for a small studio to run after funding so as not to lose. “We’ve worked without an editor, but it’s always been a big risk for us”Explained Dirk Van Welden, co-founder of FoamPunch who we owe to the snowboard game Shredders. “Most indie developers just want their game to be successful. This is the most important part, you don’t want to lose money, so you need to balance”.
Serious sports enthusiasts understand what inspires small studios to join multiple groups, like Ninja Theory who married Microsoft or Bungie who recently partnered with Sony. “They may be more adventurous because their budget is bigger. They also have access to more resources and more knowledge”He acknowledged. He added: “usually the top coders and the core team stay, the team has more money. You can see that often the first titles from acquired studios indicate that they are seeking higher”. Did these independents sell their souls to the devil to benefit from more peace and money? That’s not what the CEO of FoamPunch thought. “I know people whose studios have been purchased, and everyone is continuing their freedom. The most important thing is to try to remain as independent as possible while getting the budget and support.”. There are other solutions for independents who want to self -publish their creations, and one of these is called Game Pass.
“Game Pass is a gift, a great gift”
Many studios like No More Robots, Avalanche Studios, Dotemu or Night School Studio have already announced the benefits of Game Pass for developers. FoamPunch joined in and provided more details on how the Microsoft service helped bring Shredders to life. “You also know that there are a lot of people who will try your game, so you need to improve it.“said Dirk Van Welden. He continued: “with a new IP, and for these types of games, something like Game Pass is a gift, a good gift, because without it there is very little risk in terms of production .”. Microsoft’s rapprochement is natural according to co-founder FoamPunch, the Redmond firm that developed Amped: “On the Xbox, our contacts don’t have any snowboarding games, so they’re inclined. There’s also marketing support, which is something indies need when making a game.”He explained.
I chose Game Pass because Shredders is a new IP, because there are a lot of subscribed players, and because there is a legacy of Amped. This gives us some strength in terms of sales. We were also allowed to go further than we could without the Game Pass. We took bigger risks, we recruited more people, we spent more time on it, we added a story, because we knew Shredders was in the service of Microsoft. This is a good thing, especially with new licenses, because it is always harder to sell a new license. Dirk Van Welden, co-founder and CEO of FoamPunch
Shredders are available on Xbox Series X | S consoles and PCs. This is included in the Game Pass. FoamPunch is now working on additional content that should be released later this year. “I think it will give a new impetus like, okay, new season, the snow is falling, what are we going to do with Shredders? Hope you get some really nice stuff”Concludes Dirk Van Welden.