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When platform exclusivity is good for indies
When platform exclusivity is good for indies
April 22, 2013 | By Kris Ligman

April 22, 2013 | By Kris Ligman
More: Console/PC, Indie

"If you are an independent you have zero marketing money. [And] if someone asks you for exclusivity and it's going to help you to bring out your product into the market, I think that can be good. Sometimes, I think it's the only way to get something out."
- Minority Media co-founder Vander Caballero

Minority Media's debut title Papo & Yo, telling the idiosyncratic story of a boy escaping into his imagination in a Brazilian favela, arrived on Steam last week after months spent as a PlayStation Network exclusive. Speaking with Kotaku, creative lead and studio co-founder Caballero remarked on exclusivity being good for one's game.

"The PS3 release was one of the top sellers on PSN," said Caballero. "[Papo & Yo] cost $1.5 million to make and we've already made part of our investment back. Hopefully, we are going to get the other part on Steam and make some profit."

Caballero remains gracious toward Sony, with whom Minority Media established an exclusive deal in exchange for funding. "Sony really helped us to push the game out and make people know about it," Caballero explained. "They really helped us in the development, too. It was an amazing relationship."

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Vinicius Couto
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I guess it really helps that the exclusivity is only temporal. If it never got out of the PSN, I it'd be pretty hard to make some money out of the game, just like it was/is with Journey.
Also, it's always good to see this kind of game available to as many people as possible.

James Coote
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With the rise of cross-platform tools, it becomes a lot less expensive from a technical point of view to port stuff. In that context, an exclusive game is great at the start to get exposure and marketing boost, but if it gets too successful, it crosses over to the point where that exclusivity is holding it back

Joe McGinn
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It's a challenging decision. thatgamecompany arguably could not have made Journey without Sony's support. On the downside, they have made an amazing game that is available to only a tiny subset of gamers, which severely undercuts the value they could have received from making such a great product. Of course they didn't know it was going to be a masterpiece when they signed the deal, so it's an understandable situation. But in the long term they absolutely lose value over this.