Culture

Bit Slap: Humble Indie Bundle 8 is here

humble 2

Every Thursday, Bit Slap brings you the latest in gaming news and bon mots.

Humble Indie Bundle 8 debuted this week. You can go to the website, pay what you want, and 30 seconds later own DRM-free copies of Little Inferno, Awesomenauts, Capsized, Thomas Was Alone, and Dear Esther. Pay above the average and you also get Hotline Miami and Proteus. You’re free to allocate whatever you pay between the game developers, Child’s Play charity, The Electronic Frontier Foundation or the Humble Bundle itself.  This is something you could do. We have the technology. No one can stop you.

I’m regularly amazed at the financial success of the pay-what-you-want model. As of this writing, the bundle has only been up for two days and has already generated $1.3 million in sales.  Part of me believes that if you offer something of considerable value, consumers will gladly pay more if given the choice. I’ve also seen people dig into tip jars so they can pay with exact change. I’ve stopped trying to reconcile these two things and accepted that man is a complicated creature. And the most dangerous game.

The success of the Humble Bundle has spawned many similar services. So many, in fact, I lose track of them all. Personally, I regularly check Indie Royale and IndieGameStand, but those are only two of many. If you’re interested in keeping abreast of game bundles and use Twitter—and you do, because Shaq is on Twitter—check out @BundleTracker.

These are exciting times for independent game developers. Along with Kickstarter, the pay-what-you-want model is rapidly changing the way games are developed and delivered. This push to bypass publishers and sell directly to gamers is great, especially given the anti-consumer undertones of the new Xbox.

Related but not really: Did you know there’s a Kickstarter dedicated specifically to porn projects? It’s called Offbeatr. I’m not going to link it here, but you’re free to drunkenly stumble upon it one late Friday night like I did. I don’t recommend looking at it sober. It’ll make you feel terrible because STRANGERS ON THE INTERNET are willing to give a man THOUSANDS OF REAL DOLLARS to draw anthropomorphic bears having sex with anthropomorphic horses, and you’re still trying to figure out how to get more people to watch your crappy web series.