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Developer/Publisher Split

10-08-2012, 11:37 PM
#1
Joined: Oct 2012
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Posts: 4
Developer/Publisher Split

Hey All,

I'm part of a little group of guys from Aus almost ready for our first real release on the store and were hunting around for a publisher. We found one that was wanting a 60-40 split which we thought sounded steep to say the least. Is this the norm?
10-09-2012, 12:06 AM
#2
It really depends on the publisher. There are factors that allow a publisher to do a 60:40 split, 60 for the developer, 40 for the developer and factors that force the publisher to do 50:50 split. Yes, it costs money to develop games but it also costs money to market games on a consistent basis and do customer service and community management. If a publisher has a lot of games and is big, sure 60:40 will sound good but it also depends on how well their games are going. Games that will be successful on a long-term basis will generate a lot of revenue but there's no guarantee.

10-09-2012, 12:08 AM
#3
Joined: Nov 2009
Location: Wellington
Posts: 769
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Ward View Post
Hey All,

I'm part of a little group of guys from Aus almost ready for our first real release on the store and were hunting around for a publisher. We found one that was wanting a 60-40 split which we thought sounded steep to say the least. Is this the norm?
Depends entirely on what the publisher is bringing to the table.

PikPok publishing deals are in the 60/40 to 80/20 range in favour of the developer, but it depends on a number of factors including cash advances, scale of production support, risk etc.
10-09-2012, 12:13 AM
#4
Joined: Oct 2012
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Posts: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by windrider07 View Post
It really depends on the publisher. There are factors that allow a publisher to do a 60:40 split, 60 for the developer, 40 for the developer and factors that force the publisher to do 50:50 split. Yes, it costs money to develop games but it also costs money to market games on a consistent basis and do customer service and community management. If a publisher has a lot of games and is big, sure 60:40 will sound good but it also depends on how well their games are going. Games that will be successful on a long-term basis will generate a lot of revenue but there's no guarantee.
The publisher we have interested seems very small from looking at the number of games published. We will send them some follow up questions to see what their plans with publishing were. Thanks for the help!
10-09-2012, 12:21 AM
#5
Joined: Oct 2012
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Posts: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by PikPok View Post
Depends entirely on what the publisher is bringing to the table.

PikPok publishing deals are in the 60/40 to 80/20 range in favour of the developer, but it depends on a number of factors including cash advances, scale of production support, risk etc.
That's really interesting to hear from an actual publisher. What they offered within the 60/40 split seemed pretty bare bones and we feel we could tackle most of the stuff offered ourselves. In saying that, it's only because they also seem very new.
10-09-2012, 12:41 AM
#6
The question isn't about how many games has the publisher published. The real question is: how knowledgeable is the publisher in marketing a game and providing customer services to the game. Company A can have 20 great games while company B can only have 3 games. Company B might have a better reputation because it has years of marketing experience and better games than Company A. So it depends on the quality of games and experience. Publishers specialize in marketing and promotion, however developers can also hire people that specialize in marketing and promotion but this only applies to developers who are looking into being both a developer and publisher in the near future. PiPlay.com offers 50/50 revenue share and offers marketing, customer service, and can negotiate on anything else (PM me for more info).
10-09-2012, 01:06 AM
#7
Joined: Oct 2012
Location: Brisbane, Australia
Posts: 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by windrider07 View Post
The question isn't about how many games has the publisher published. The real question is: how knowledgeable is the publisher in marketing a game and providing customer services to the game. Company A can have 20 great games while company B can only have 3 games. Company B might have a better reputation because it has years of marketing experience and better games than Company A. So it depends on the quality of games and experience. Publishers specialize in marketing and promotion, however developers can also hire people that specialize in marketing and promotion but this only applies to developers who are looking into being both a developer and publisher in the near future. PiPlay.com offers 50/50 revenue share and offers marketing, customer service, and can negotiate on anything else (PM me for more info).
True; thanks heaps! Very insightful.
10-09-2012, 01:20 AM
#8
Joined: Nov 2009
Location: Wellington
Posts: 769
Quote:
Originally Posted by windrider07 View Post
The question isn't about how many games has the publisher published.
It is very much to do with how many games a publisher has published. If a publisher has only published a couple of titles, then in all likelihood they don't have some or indeed any of these things which are important to the publishing function

- data, experience, and understanding of the nuances of the App Store and how to influence it
- a sizable install base to leverage cross promotions
- established relationships with Apple and journalists
- mature infrastructure to support production and post release activity
10-09-2012, 01:33 AM
#9
Joined: Oct 2010
Location: Singapore
Posts: 7
60/40 sounds high if you have a completed game but as others have said, it all really depends on what the publisher brings to the table.

In any case, try to be as specific as possible with what the publisher will do in terms of marketing and the timeline for these activities: which review sites/press contacts they will push your game to; where will they be buying ads, how many, for how long, how much will they spend; the breakdown for all of these activities for each region of the world (most are not able to cover global markets effectively despite what they say); who handles community management, press inquiries, etc. Make sure that proof of these are part of your contract.
10-09-2012, 01:52 AM
#10
Quote:
Originally Posted by PikPok View Post
It is very much to do with how many games a publisher has published. If a publisher has only published a couple of titles, then in all likelihood they don't have some or indeed any of these things which are important to the publishing function

- data, experience, and understanding of the nuances of the App Store and how to influence it
- a sizable install base to leverage cross promotions
- established relationships with Apple and journalists
- mature infrastructure to support production and post release activity
A publisher can be very small but they can still hire someone who does have everything you mentioned. If you hire someone with "data, experience, and understanding of the nuances of the App Store and how to influence it", someone who has partnerships with companies who have "a sizable install base to leverage cross promotions", someone who has "established relationships with Apple and journalists", and someone who has the experience and the ability to grow a "mature infrastructure to support production and post release activity", then a small company should never be overlooked or underestimated. There are people who are immensely connected and talented and will work for a decent salary just to help a small company out. Sure, it helps to have a lot of games and have a big platform but it takes only one game and a great team to make something go big.