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Strength in Numbers: How Smaller Devs Can Band Together as In-Person Collectives

Gerben Grave (Narrative Designer, Multiverse Narratives)

Thomas Jager (Producer, Independent)

Pass Type: All Access Pass, Core+Summits Pass, Core Pass, Summits Pass, Expo Plus Pass, Expo Pass, Audio Pass, Independent Games Summit Pass - Get your pass now!

Topic: Advocacy

Format: Session

Vault Recording: TBD

Audience Level: All

What should you do as a solo game developer or small studio in a relatively quiet part of the world? The Game Bakery is a Dutch collective of 25 small studios who banded together under one roof to help each other grow. In this talk, two of the founders offer a candid view of the deliberations, problems, and solutions involved in the process of launching and maintaining a physical game developer 'collective' or collaborative co-working space.

They'll talk about how individual companies benefit from a combined reputation with press and institutions, how to lower monthly costs by sharing facilities, and how to scale up or down by recruiting from the collective's member pool. Also discussed: how the organization amplifies less-represented voices, how to balance the greater good of the collective versus the responsibilities of running your own business, and how to navigate minefields of politics and social intricacies that arise in a flat, single-location organisation.


Attendees will walk away with helpful tips on the benefits of starting a single-location developer conglomerate or 'collective', as well as an overview of practical solutions, pitfalls, and risks. They should understand how grouping up with other developers increases your shared chance of survival and success in a complex game market.

Intended Audience

This lecture is intended for solo developers and small studios, and anyone else looking to create strong ties in a local network of peers, especially those living in an area that isn't bustling with game development activity.