Nintendo held their 78th annual general shareholder’s meeting at the end of June where executives fielded questions about the future of the Nintendo Switch, and more specifically, about the future of indie games.
During the meeting, a shareholder asked: “Indie games have become a hot topic recently. As games made by small-scale developers around the world with relatively low development costs, how will Nintendo integrate these kinds of games into its future business strategy?”
In response to this, Nintendo Senior Executive Officer Susumu Tanaka offered some interesting insight on how many titles the company believes will come to the platform.
“We are also actively engaging with indie developers at video game-focused shows and other events in different regions… Some of the indie games already released have gone on to become million sellers worldwide.” Tanaka stated. “In the future, we are looking to release around 20 to 30 indie games on Nintendo Switch per week, and we definitely expect to see some great games among them.”
To prove that the eShop is already slowly crawling its way to reach that figure, the July 5 weekly releases show that 18 new titles were added to the store. Within a couple of months, the weekly releases are sure to surpass 30 games and that may cause some major issues.
“we are looking to release around 20 to 30 indie games on Nintendo Switch per week”
If you are an active member on Twitter, you are bound to stumble across somebody “port begging” for developers to bring their titles to the Nintendo Switch. And why shouldn’t they? Most independent developers have stated that their games sell best on the Nintendo Switch, more than all other consoles combined. The high demand for indie games on Switch seems like a no-brainer for any indie developer in the current state of things but once the eShop becomes flooded with titles, the developers might discover that their games may flounder.
While no one is arguing that more games for your console is a bad thing, an over saturated marketplace can cause indie games to be overlooked. If Nintendo is planning on going the way of Steam, they are going to have to make some changes to the eShop to help with organization. Discoverability on the eShop is already an ongoing concern and if current players have a difficult time finding certain games already, adding more to the eShop will only make matters worse.
If a developer releases their game with a handful of other titles, chances are that a few will flourish and stand out from the crowd. This will allow games to have some breathing room in order to make an impact in the gaming community. But if 50 titles are released on the same day, some of these amazing titles may get buried by the overwhelming amount of games. The idea of having most games available on the Switch sounds like a dream, but there are some realities that could cause nightmares for some indie developers.