Announcing the Indie Developer Spotlight! Every Thursday, we'll be showcasing the story and game(s) of a small, independently-run game development company. Our aim is to give Amazon customers insight into not only the game development process, but the people behind the Indie games so many of us enjoy. We're very excited to feature Subset Games from June 27 - July 3. Check out our Q&A with Justin Ma, co-founder of Subset Games, below, and scroll further down for links to Faster Than Light, the featured game from Subset Games. Be sure to check back July 4 for our next Indie Spotlight.
Tell us about you and your game studio, Subset Games.
Subset Games is comprised of two individuals: Justin Ma (me) and Matthew Davis. We formed the studio midway through the development of our first game, FTL: Faster Than Light. FTL was meant to be a small hobby project but after receiving considerable positive feedback, we pursued releasing it as a commercial product. We enlisted the help of Ben Prunty and Tom Jubert to help polish the game.
the first time I saw one of our beta players stream FTL was a very powerful moment for me."
Justin Ma -- co-founder, Subset Games
How did you get started making games?
I've always been very interested in video games and their production. I created many small games while at school but my first formal experience in the industry was in 2009 when I was hired by larger studio. Matthew had a pretty similar experience and it was at this studio that we met and found out we worked well together. We both left in 2011 to work on FTL.
Deserted island. One system. Three games. Go.
PC with Minecraft, Spelunky and emulators. But maybe that's cheating.
Tell us about a memorable moment in the process of creating Faster Than Light.
Since all of the contact we had with our Kickstarter backers was through anonymous emails and forum posts, the first time I saw one of our beta players stream FTL was a very powerful moment for me. Joining in with the discussion and seeing viewers reactions as he played the game reminded me how amazing it is for our creation to make an impact on people, even if only a tiny bit.
Make 1 prediction about the video games industry for the next 3 years.
I believe the digital distribution of games will become more and more common, making it even easier for indie game developers to reach a large audience. I think the consoles creators, having seen the success of indie games, will make it easier for small developers to get access to distribute through their systems.
Just for fun…What’s the last thing you bought on Amazon?
I bought a pitcher that filters water.
What's next for you or your studio?
Right now we're finishing up the Kickstarter rewards and trying to get FTL onto tablets. After that, we'll hopefully get to move onto an entirely new project.