A new company called Easy Tiger has launched today to act as a publisher for games aimed at digital platforms.
The business, founded by Joel Benton, is aiming to "reverse the traditional publishing model" and allow developers to keep hold of intellectual property rights.
Specifically it will provide marketing support for titles and assist in bringing them to the platforms themselves, while the studio will fund the production process - and in turn benefit from the largest proportion of royalty revenues as well.
"Easy Tiger is a new style of publisher, reversing the traditional publishing model to allow the new breed of developers that want to connect directly with consumers to get all the support they need to be able to do that - in other words get on platforms and market their wares effectively," Benton explained to GamesIndustry.biz
"It's a bit like a record label for recording artists - this is doing all the ancillary stuff around making games, other than actually making them. We take completed games and put them on platforms, do everything else."
The move comes at a time when traditional developers are investing less in new IP, unless it's content created by an internal studio, but while funding the production of a title upfront means developers taking the risk, he says the rewards include a much bigger cut of sales revenues and the prospect of owning the IP themselves.
"Nobody knows more than I do about the struggles in getting deals signed - I've spent my career doing advance/royalty deals and business development at not only Kuju but companies all over the world, and it's very difficult to argue that you want to keep the IP when the publisher is putting millions of pounds into not only making, but marketing that game... They want to keep the IP.
"But once you've given away your baby - your magnum opus of an idea - there's not a great deal of motivation on the part of developers to make it exceptionally good, other than professional pride. Now, developers do have a lot of that, and want to make as good a game as possible, but it behoves them to make the best game possible if they end up owning that IP - they can build value in that IP, which builds value in their own organisation."
The full interview with Joel Benton, in which he explains in more detail the potential new business model for independent developers, is available now.