Hey, Indie Game Industry

Featured Quote: "We wanted a piece."

Our company wasn’t born of a brilliant game idea, but rather the idea that our small group of friends could conceivably turn our love of games into something worth sharing.

But before we got the band together, a thing happened…

Jake and Elwood Blues from the 1980 movie "The Blues Brothers"

Pieces Of Our Indie Game Puzzle

The idea to start our company came when a nearby indie game developer caught our eye. Someone we knew had just been hired and their excitement piqued our own interest in the company. We wanted a piece. 

The Catalyst

A classic case of one door closes another opens, there was an opportunity waiting to be explored. A few of us met the team of that nearby indie game developer, discussed goals, and even started contract negotiations. It became clear though that there was a discrepancy between their strategy and what we were offering.  

The opportunity fell flat, but then someone said: “Why waste?” All the research, strategies and creative ideas drummed up in those few exciting weeks of potential collaboration are instead free to be pursued.

With that, Swequity Gaming was thrown together quickly and with ease. It took little convincing to get everybody on board. Of course, already knowing good people made things simpler. Now, we’re a bunch of creative, focused, weird and super fun people making our first indie game.

Our motley team

We all come from very different educational and work backgrounds. We all have very different personalities, yet, we’ve managed not to kill one another, in fact, quite the opposite. We’ve got a great project manager at the helm who, incidentally, is the one person who knows everyone the best. He’s like the hub of our little organization.

There are five of us who share ownership and are each putting in work for our share of the company: management, finance, marketing, creative and development. Bob (aka BMFS) is the bossman. Lane (aka Darmock) helps guide game development. Michelle (aka Michgal) heads up sales and marketing. Mike (aka Nitz) writes our game story and so much more. Last but not least, Ryan (aka Ryan Hammond) is our lead developer. Of course, there’s a bit of overlap and collaboration in some cases.

But wait, we missed something…

Up indie creek without an artist?

Sure we had the makings of a great team, but it was incomplete. Unless we were planning to make a text-based game we needed to hire for game art and animation.

Since there were no brilliant artists among us, we turned to Upwork. 

We’re now an international team; most of us in Canada but spread across the nation. We keep in touch over Discord, Slack and Trello.

We’re learning so much from one another while we watch our first game take shape.

Our Goal

Make an awesome game. Pretty simple, right? No, but we’ve got a great group, we work really well together, and we are all learning a lot. The more we learn, the more excited we get. The more challenges we face – and overcome – the happier we are with where we’re going. Indie game development is a cutthroat industry though. We’re painfully aware (because we’re constantly doing research) that we’ll likely fail a few times before we succeed…if at all. But the Internet is full of tales to inspire (and warn), so we’re going in with open eyes.

Hey, indie game industry! Swequity Gaming is here to play. 

 

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Worth Checking Out

As Rami Ismail says, there are “so many amazing stories out there that don’t end in success.” Here’s hoping indie game developers like us will heed the mistakes of our fellows.

We may one day find ourselves taking a page out of Dan Fedor’s (@dcfedor) playbook and create some Fake Graphs About Real Things. In the meantime, read a little about the bravery of striking out on your own in this industry. 

The tale of two brothers against the world…well, against the competitive indie game industry. 

 

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Fast Forward

Read our next devblog: Ready, Player 6

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