My perspective on games changed a lot when I subscribed to the TIGSource and Indiegames blog rss feeds alongside regular game news feeds. The stuff coming from the indie sites just looks so interesting and there is normally a link so I can try it right away.
Personally, I much prefer the indie scene to the majority of other games. I find them to be more creative, and despite being less advanced due to a smaller budget, they're usually much more fun to play in my opinion. The reason being that they have no one to work for, and have no standards to fill as a result, in short, they can do whatever they want, and not worry about the consequences. So they can be as cretive and experimental as they want to be, and sometimes it's just the sheer insanity of a game that makes it fun to play, as I find with some indie games.
Indie games, and in particular the free ones, consistently amaze me with their high levels of content, presentation and playability.
It reminds me of some of my favourite games of the past which were made on small budgets by small teams or single person developers.
Whole series were born out of such endeavour (I'm thinking Ultima, Elite, King's Quest etc.), and I hope that the indie developers of today can be as influential as those developers of the past.
Good point, and I hope both sides remember that there's room for both, and I hope the big guys who offer good distribution opportunities to the little guys, XBox Live Arcade, Wiiware, Steam etc, don't place too many limitations upon how games have to fit in, as this can only restrain new ideas.
I did read an interview with the Darwinia/Uplink guys, and they said tho XB Live is a good thing and increases sales, it can be a lot of work to meet all the rules and guidelines currently.
Of course I'm sure many of them are simply there to make sure they run smoothly, but its something that might need looking at.
To me tho, it'll be a tragedy for gaming if Peggle or GTA IV style games stop being made. I think we as gamers need the big epic games to keep coming just as we need the small indie stuff.
I love indie games, both as a subject matter and, well, literally. Excellent issue!
I think indie games, as we know them today, are the way of the future. The technology creep in mainstream games is becoming too steep to catch up to. If you have a console that can render each hair follicle individually, then it means developers have to create those hair follicles individually, which means you now need a team of twelve hair graphical specialists to make that game... developers that could be doing other cool stuff, which just inflates the budget necessary to make a blockbuster game. And the comparison to the movie industry breaks down here, because the movie industry doesn't release a new, better projection screen every ten years or so and you don't need to create every part of your main actor from the ground up, which is more and more difficult as projection screens show more detail.
Either mainstream games learn to adapt World of Goo style of beauty, or it dies. I'll keep playing both kinds until it does, though.