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Nintendo Aims For Smaller Developers With New DSiWare Royalty Scheme

Nintendo will offer support for developers creating smaller, less expensive titles through a new DSiWare initiative designed to adjust royalty rates for games based on their size, according to media reports.
Like Sony with its just-announced PSP Minis, Nintendo is aiming to offer small developers support on its newest handheld's DSiWare download service. And like Sony's PSP initiatives, Nintendo's aiming to support developers in self-publishing small games on DSiWare. The pricing schemes remain the same, but the company will charge developers smaller royalty rates for smaller titles. For example, according to a report from UK site Pocket Gamer, developers will pay much lower royalty rates for a game set at 500 points if it stays below the 20MB threshold. DSiWare's current price structure offers games at 200 ($2), 500 ($5) and 900 ($9) points. This naturally creates a scale whereby larger games get premium pricing and simpler, smaller titles cost less. Pocket Gamer notes, however, that the system may have the unfortunate side-effect of encouraging developers to heavily compress assets like audio to fit under the size limit. Ultimately, though, the initiative represents Nintendo joining other hardware makers like Sony and Apple in aiming to lower the barrier to entry for small, inexpensive game options on its platform.

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