New independent publisher Retrovibe seeks to harness the power of pixels
Supported by CD Projekt co-founder Michal Kicinski, the publisher will focus on games with a “new retro touch”.
Earlier this month, CD Projekt and GOG.com co-founder Michal Kiciński announced the formation of Retrovibe, a new independent publisher that will focus on retro-style games. Michał Affelski and Krzysztof Papliński, both founders of the independent publisher, join Kiciński as co-founders. Game company.
As part of its launch, Retrovibe has already announced its first five games: Project Warlock 2, Janosik 2, Biota, The looter, and Shardpunk: Verminfall. These titles span the gamut of genres and styles of play, but they all feature a decidedly retro aesthetic, a tenet that is at the heart of Retrovibe’s corporate philosophy. The publisher chooses to specialize in games with pixel art, large polygons, and retro-style music – qualities reminiscent of the golden age of 16 and 64 bits.
“When we started out as players, what is now retro was not,” Papliński told GameDaily. “As you grow up, a part of you still feels the games that have super tight controls, characters meticulously constructed from pixels, and gameplay that begins as soon as you pick up the gamepad or put your hand on the mouse. Since we know a lot of talented and passionate developers who want to make games that do just that, we thought it made sense to help them out.
Papliński said that he and Affelski approached Kiciński with the idea of an editor with this specific angle. The concept was enough to influence Kiciński, it seems, as he is Retrovibe’s mainstay. During this time, Papliński and Affelski will take care of the day-to-day operations.
However, an aesthetic is rarely enough to make indie games stand out these days. The ongoing democratization of game development means the market is more crowded than ever, resulting in discoverability issues for small developers. There are a number of issues that come into play, of course, and Retrovibe is hoping to get the lion’s share.
We are for the long term, ”said Papliński. “We try to amplify the activities of developers by supporting them with funding, professional assistance with regard to production – both technical and content related – and by providing expertise in business development, marketing, social media, public relations. , and more.”
The key to independent success, he explained, is planning. Retrovibe’s marketing strategy goes through a meticulously crafted roadmap, the guidelines of which are interwoven across the publisher’s range. Papliński said the goal is for the exposure of one match to benefit others as well. To do this, Retrovibe hopes to build a strong community around its games.
To this end, part of Retrovibe’s operations is “Retrovibe Live Dev”, a series of daily videos that track the progress developers are making on their games. Here, the developers provide updates on their projects, giving a bit of transparency to the process. You can watch these videos on the Retrovibe YouTube Channel.
Retrovibe also announced a partnership with GOG.com, an unsurprising development given Kiciński’s position as founder of the platform. Details of the partnership are still scarce, but all of Retrovibe’s titles will at least appear on the storefront. Beyond the Kiciński connection, GOG as a Marketplace was originally designed as a way to relive retro PC gaming, making it an ideal choice for the Retrovibe line.
“The retro style games plus the store that started out with retro games seemed like a good solution,” Papliński explained. “Before becoming Retrovibe, we worked with GOG to launch Project Warlock exclusively timed in 2018, and we have learned a lot from this experience. GOG’s audience is extremely diverse, but we see a shared love for retro games as well as new games that look retro out there.
The retro aesthetic is certainly a popular art style among the independent community, and Retrovibe seeks to tap into its sizable audience. It will be interesting to follow the publisher’s progress as it attempts to navigate the crowded indie market. The management team have an impressive pedigree, however, so on paper they appear to be up to the challenge.
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