Developed without financial backing from large companies or non-private investors. Shares similar design philosophies as art games, but on gameplay rather than artistic value. Often self-published as well.
Alternate name: Independent game development
The first video game about Indie was released in 1983.
* `Indie games´ are games published outside of mainstream outlets (e.g. only via digital distributors, post order, or other limited availability channels) – digital only distribution is no longer valid since that is actually one of mainstream outlets nowadays (it used to not be).
* `Indie game development´ is games developed without aid from external financial backers (producers/publishers) that demand their cut on the game's sales and, sometimes, demand changes to the game.
This is NOT for amateur games (most free games), nor does indie mean the game isn't commercially released (indie ≠ freeware).
... if you look around on indie game sites, you’ll see people (developers and consumers alike) complaining that (for example) "all indie games are crap" or "all indie games are unrefined" or "all indie games are arty nonsense". All this proves, apart from that people are stupid (and we knew that already), is that indie games are diverse, which makes sense because the only creative barriers around an independent game are that there are none. They don’t fit into any one market by definition. They’re just games, and some are good and some are bad and some of them will appeal to you and some won’t.
All that said, there will be a small minority who are interested and any indie game just because it is indie – idealistic consumers and pursuers of creative freedom or pretentious art hipsters? It’s your choice.
Parent groupGame production & development
Art house game, IGF finalist nominee