Independent developers have never had an easier time marketing their products. Thanks to video game retailing services like Steam, it’s less difficult than it used to be to make money from small-scale games. Plus, entertainers who make a living playing new and exciting games on YouTube or Twitch.tv provide free advertising on a massive scale – if the game is worth it, of course.
That said, many of the challenges facing indie studios are nigh insurmountable, which is where the new Jump service hopes to come in. According to an article from IGN, Jump will act as a subscription-based service similar to Netflix in that it provides access to countless products for only a small monthly fee.
Well, “countless” – Jump is currently offering an initial library of 60-100 games, all from indie developers. The service will run in a closed beta until July 24, when the library will become available to everyone for $9.99 a month. It also boasts an unlimited “ad-free” experience which, as Netflix has well-proven, carries with it quite the appeal to those trying to escape the often-obnoxious nature of similar systems.
A screenshot from the original article shows the interface for Jump which, true to the company’s word, does indeed resemble the entertainment giant that is Netflix. It also looks as though it took some inspiration from Steam, too.
In an interview between IGN and Jump CEO Anthony Palma, the latter states that he intends for the service to “be the logical next step” in a game’s life cycle. It’s not uncommon, after all, for a video game to quickly fall from popularity after the initial appeal has worn off, and it’s incredibly difficult for further updates and content releases to revive it.
Of course, such a service might not appeal to developers already shy of signing up with large publishing companies. According to another interview with Gamasutra, Jump set aside “almost a third” of the company’s money as an advance payment for indie studios wary of joining. “…they just have like a minimum of one year to stay on Jump. After that, they can take it off,” Palma stated. “As long as that advance has been recouped or repaid fully, then at the end of the year they can pull it off if they like. It’s very open-ended.”
Jump will launch with games available for Windows, Mac, and Linux, as well as for VR devices like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. For more information, check out Jump’s official website, where you can sign up for future news and updates.