Crunching the numbers behind an indie game studio
"In three years, I personally went from having $20,000 in savings to $35,000 in debt."
- Guillaume Boucher-Vidal, founder of independent studio Nine Dots
What does it cost to get an independent studio off the ground? In a candid new post over at Polygon, the founder of small, independent studio Nine Dots -- which is currently developing GoD Factory: Wingmen
with publisher Bandai Namco -- breaks down his costs and relates his experiences
of working from home, working without pay, and giving up a stable job to chase his dream of developing games.
Though the publisher deal has let Boucher-Vidal pay his team of seven developers a salary, his worries aren't over: "Every month scares me as I watch our funds melt at an alarming rate," Boucher-Vidal writes.
He estimates his costs honestly, taking into account the fact that he didn't pay the team salaries at first: "I had to spend roughly $80,000 over three years to get the business going until its first significant source of income. Had I been able to pay for salaries during the first three years, it would have cost me about $700,000 more."
"I've been told that any entrepreneur should expect to spend anywhere between two and five years before knowing if your business will really take off and I do believe it's true," Boucher-Vidal writes.
The full post gives a complete breakdown
of what Boucher-Vidal has invested into starting up Nine Dots so far, and it's well worth reading.