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Indie Fund invites applications from budding game developers

An investment company controlled by seven of the most successful independent developers in recent years has opened its doors to applications from small teams of developers that are looking for a bit of financial help to get their games on the market.

The Indie Fund is run by Jonathan Blow ( Braid), Ron Carmel & Kyle Gabler ( World of Goo), Aaron Isaksen ( Armadillo Gold Rush), Kellee Santiago ( fl0w, flOwer), Nathan Vella ( Critter Crunch), and Matthew Wenger ( Off-Road Raptor Safari, Burst).

Their games have been made available on PCs, mobile phones, and both home and handheld consoles, and each founder knows well the difficulty of producing a polished game on limited funds - Braid cost $180,000 despite being made by just two people, while World of Goo hit $120,000.

In an effort to give new teams a leg up and influence the way that games development is funded, the seven are offering a flexible model of financial support that encourages creativity and experiment in return for a cut of each game's revenues.

Crucially, applicants are required to submit a video of a playable prototype which, just like the founders' own output, show a significant measure of originality that will "contribute to the medium of games".

It's not free money, though, and the half dozen winners will need to dedicate themselves to the task, supplying monthly builds of their project to the Indie Fund, and living cheaply in order to maximize the return on investment.

Expect to see five or six new games over the next couple of years as a result of the Indie Fund initiative.