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Sony seems to be patching indie relationships after summer dustup

After a minor revolt in July, Sony's PlayStation team seems to be trying to improve conditions for indies on the platform.

Bryant Francis, Senior Editor

December 14, 2021

2 Min Read
The logo for PlayStation

There's a report over in IGN today that seems to suggest the folks managing the PlayStation platform are working hard to patch things up with indie developers after a number of them went public in July with complaints about the platforms. 

Reporter Rebekah Valentine has been checking in with several of the developers who spoke up (or spoke confidentially) in the summer, who complained about long wait times talking to Sony reps, outdated tools for publishing on the PlayStation store, and discoverability difficulties that seemed specific to the platform. 

Publicly, Sony kept mum during that period. But according to IGN, their indie team (including former Double Fine business lad Greg Rice) has been working hard with indie devs for the last six months to mend bridges.

Multiple sources told the outlet that their wait times for contact with PlayStation reps have been cut from as long as several months to a mere five days. Sony's apparently also implemented a fund to help low-income indies fund ports of their games for PlayStation, and invited some indies to participate in more game sales.

These changes were confirmed after IGN reviewed a document called "2021 Global Partner Survey results," which did not address the summer woes but did follow a survey sent out to publishers and developers working with the company. 

The survey takeaways led to Sony apparently stating that it would be aiming to "reduce complexity" for working with the platform, giving more developers chances to participate in more sales, and modernizing its toolset and ticketing system to make them less painful to use.

It's not a guarantee that these fixes will make life better for indie devs on PlayStation, but it does appear that these have been accompanied by some active outreach from Sony representatives. Given how several developers expressed worry about burning bridges or breaking NDAs with the initial complaints, it's welcoming to hear that the company chose to be proactive in the face of frustration, rather than defensive. 

About the Author(s)

Bryant Francis

Senior Editor, GameDeveloper.com

Bryant Francis is a writer, journalist, and narrative designer based in Boston, MA. He currently writes for Game Developer, a leading B2B publication for the video game industry. His credits include Proxy Studios' upcoming 4X strategy game Zephon and Amplitude Studio's 2017 game Endless Space 2.

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