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Good Old Games goes big on indies, offering advances on sales
August 19, 2013 | By Kris Ligman

August 19, 2013 | By Kris Ligman
More: Indie, Business/Marketing, Video

Good Old Games, long a stalwart distribution platform for older PC cames and DRM-free editions of several recent games, has started to roll out its new indies-focused campaign with a direct appeal to developers -- including an offer of advances on royalties for accepted games.

"We want to start our relationship by giving you something no one else will give you. If we decide to work together, we can offer you the option to get an advance on your game's future sales," explains GOG on the new subsite. "This way you get some extra budget to put the final polish on your game and feel more confident about us as your business partner."

Developers can opt for either a standard 70/30 split on sales with no advance on royalties, or take a slightly less favorable 60/40 split in exchange for an advance. The ratio will revert to 70/30 after the advance has been recouped.

In a further effort to address common concerns shared by indies, GOG also promises transparency and a high degree of discoverability on its storefront. The subsite promises feedback on all submissions and a "dedicated cross-media marketing campaign" with front page exposure for all accepted games.

GOG's indie subsite is currently taking submissions, and the submission form couldn't be more straight-forward. You can also check out the video above, featuring endorsements from To the Moon's Kan Gao and Defender's Quest's Lars Doucet, among others.

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E Zachary Knight
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That actually sounds like a pretty solid deal to me. I would even consider it with an even more "less favorable" split. The fact that you still earn royalties on each unit sold despite the advance makes it pretty good. Considering most music and book publishing deals don't pay you any royalties until the entire advance is paid off puts this above the competition.

Mike Kasprzak
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I think it means you get 60% towards the advance (vs 70% of profit). That means its like a loan with one time 10% interest.

E Zachary Knight
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Not sure how exactly you are reading it but this is from their site:

"We want to start our relationship by giving you something no one else will give you. If we decide to work together, we can offer you the option to get an advance on your game's future sales. There are two ways we can handle royalties:
1. A standard 70/30 (Developer/GOG) split with no advance on royalties.
2. You get an advance on the royalties from your game. In this case, 60/40 royalties split will be in effect until the advance is recouped. Afterwards, we'll switch the split to the standard 70/30."

Based on that, I would say that you still get 60% of the sale while repaying the advance. That extra 10% to them is the payment on the advance.

Perhaps some clarification is in order.

Lars Doucet
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Obviously (since I'm in the video), I'm a big fan of GOG. Would love to get confirmation from GOG on whether the advance is recoupable* or not, as I'm sure that will affect some people's decisions.

*If you don't end up earning enough to repay your advance:
Recoupable = you owe them the difference.
Non-recoupable = you don't.

E Zachary Knight
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I didn't think to ask that question. That would make a big difference. With only a 10% difference between an advanced game and a normal submission, that would make a big difference. What is the time period that the advance would need to be recouped if it needs to be? That is also affected by the size of the advance too.

Jane Castle
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I don't know how much the advance will be but to put things into perspective. I was once offered a $200K advance and a 90/10 royalty split by a publisher. ie. They get 90% of the profits and I get 10% AFTER the advance\costs are recouped of course..... Back then this was considered a GOOD deal.

So 60\40 is a great deal even if the advance is lower than what I was offered. Needless to say I turned the publisher down.