This last week, gamers and developers alike have celebrated #LoveIndies, an event dedicated to recognizing indie games. On the Twitterverse, gamers and devs have been sharing new projects and favorites lists.
Indies that I've loved in the last year, just quickly off the top of my head, that I would recommend to everyone
Bury Me My Love
Ghost of a Tale
— Gregorios Kythreotis (@ShedworksGreg) July 16, 2018
There's so many beautiful, amazing indie games!#Kynseed#Ooblets#RimWorld#StardewValley#Undertale#ThisWarofMine#IntotheBreach#FTL#DontStarve#Bastion#CryptoftheNecrodancer#HerStory#Fez#HollowNight#DarkestDungeon#BulbBoy
To name just a few. Happy #loveIndies week!
— Karolina Arkuszewska (@Arkusik) July 20, 2018
Beyond this, #LoveIndies also includes events and offers. Some game companies, such as Brightrock Games, created sales for their games in honor of the week.
It's #loveindies week & time to rate, review and share indie games that you play!
— Brightrock Games (@BrightrockGames) July 16, 2018
Other video game companies like Polygon Treehouse are hosting giveaways for their games. Some developers are even hosting contests in which the prizes include artwork, t-shirts, and other special merchandise.
We can't give you Disco Elysium or ask for #loveindies reviews yet, though we'd be very grateful if you added it to your wishlist!https://t.co/TI4yothjf1https://t.co/xaDtexgzJW
Reply to this tweet with #loveindies & tell us your favourite. Postcards for the lucky few next week! pic.twitter.com/vAIOPFlwEx
— Disco Elysium (@studioZAUM) July 19, 2018
To celebrate #loveindies week and our recent announcement of Mercenaries Wings: The False Phoenix, we have 4 #NintendoSwitch Mercenaries Saga Chronicles codes to giveaway, 2 NA / 2 EU! RT, follow and reply with your region. Be sure to check out the @FlyhighWorks_en giveaway too! pic.twitter.com/pnGUkg8hsY
— CIRCLE Ent. (@CIRCLE_Ent) July 20, 2018
Some special items announced this week focused on ways to improve visibility for great indie games. Itch.io founder Leif Corcoran announced a new feature for users’ libraries which allows individuals to rate and recommend indie games that they recently played. This makes it easier to revisit downloaded games and leave feedback for developers, without actually having to go back to the landing pages for the games themselves. After submitting ratings, users can also click to follow the developers on itch.io so that they can receive updates.
Normally, indie games don’t get a lot of coverage in the world of gaming news, aside from a select, enormously successful few like Night In The Woods. One Twitter user pointed out that the most popular indie games usually have less than 200 reviews, while AAA titles will have thousands, even tens of thousands of reviews. This disparity highlights the importance of #LoveIndies week.
Been looking through games to recommend for #loveindies next week & the disparity of Steam review volumes is bizarre.
There’s critically acclaimed & ‘well-known’ indies with ~200 reviews, to games with tens of thousands more reviews than AAA titles.
— Dan Dudley (@mono_db) July 15, 2018
But how can players continue to support indie games throughout the year? One way is by following game developers on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. If you’re looking to break into indie games and want ideas on how to get started, visiting sites like itch.io and GameJolt are excellent options, as they focus almost entirely on indie games. Itch.io is also a great place to get involved in game jams and support devs that may be just breaking into the industry.
One of the more obvious tips is to actually buy indie games, and avoid downloading illegal copies. The Philippines-based company Yangyang Mobile, which is most famous for their horror visual novel The Letter, has tweeted a few times this year about the importance of purchasing their game from legal, safe sources.
Please avoid pirating games. Your support will help keep the lights in our studio on and help us create more games of this quality in the future.
— Yangyang Mobile (@yangyangmobile) June 21, 2018
Again, don't pirate games if you can't afford to purchase them. If you don't want to spend money on a game that you're not sure you'll like, many indie games are already free. If you do want to support indie devs financially (aside from buying a copy of their game), there are a lot of options: Ko-fi, Patreon, or crowdfunding sites such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo are just a few.
But most importantly, if you like an indie game, reviewing it and sharing your love for it are super helpful. By following these steps, players can continue to support indie games throughout the year, even after #LoveIndies has ended. To get more ideas for games and learn about special offers, check it out here on Twitter.