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Celebrating PSN’s Top-Selling Indie Games of 2011

Susan Panico's Avatar + Posted by Susan Panico on Dec 13, 2011 // Sr. Director, PlayStation Network

How do you define what makes an “indie” game? Does “indie” have to mean two game developers building the future of the games industry out of a garage? Does it refer to creating original intellectual property? The debate is ongoing, but one thing is clear: indie game development provides experiences that no one else can. Whether that experience is an interactive psychology test (TestYourself Psychology), guiding a flower petal on the winds of change (Flower) or razing the countryside as a gold-hoarding dragon (Hoard), PlayStation Network is dedicated to delivering games that push the envelope of our young interactive medium.

SCEA seeks out the best development talent from colleges and universities through our academic program as well as at industry shows like IndieCade (where our PlayStation Home partnership with Codename was born), the IGF pavilion at GDC and E3. We also host developer mixers, where we’ve discovered some of the most talented developers on PSN. Once developers are discovered, we can determine which development model will give them the best support to help them thrive. PSN has been the only platform to fully embrace indie developers, and in 2012, more indie-developed PSN exclusives are on the way, including Papo & Yo, Retrograde, Closure, Dyad, and many more.

With the 2011 coming to a close, we also wanted to highlight some of the most successful indie game development efforts on the year. If you haven’t already, give these games a shot during your holiday vacation.

SCEA empowers some indie developers to self-publish on PSN, and the results are often very successful. Here are 2011′s top-selling PSN self-published indie games:

Limbo for PSN

Top 10 Best-Selling Indie PSN Games of 2011 – Third-Party Self-Published

  1. Limbo (Playdead)
  2. Castle Crashers (The Behemoth)
  3. TestYourself Psychology (Creat Studios)
  4. Marvel Pinball (Zen Studios)
  5. Worms 2 Armageddon (Team 17)
  6. Dungeon Defenders (Trendy Entertainment)
  7. Armageddon Riders (Targem Games)
  8. Braid (Number None Inc.)
  9. UnderSiege (Seed Studios)
  10. Hamsterball (TikGames)

To help keep the indie spirit vibrant, we also incubate some indie developers to give them access to our resources, enabling them to realize their full artistic vision while being able to tap into the expertise and experience of SCEA’s World Wide Studios development ecosystem. Here are 2011′s top-selling PSN indie titles published by SCEA:

PixelJunk Shooter 2

Top 10 Best-Selling PSN Games of 2011- SCEA-Published Indies

  1. PixelJunk Shooter 2 (Q-Games)
  2. Fat Princess (Titan Studios)
  3. Flower (thatgamecompany)
  4. Aquatopia (Playlogic Entertainment)
  5. Hustle Kings (VooFoo Sudios)
  6. Eat Them! (FluffyLogic)
  7. Top Darts (Devil’s Details)
  8. Super Stardust HD (Housemarque)
  9. Linger in Shadows (Plastic)
  10. Rag Doll Kung Fu (Qi Studios)

For some newer, smaller teams who have creative and innovative ideas, SCEA also has the Pub Fund, which provides additional development budget for those teams that might not otherwise have the footing to make their game a reality. We’ve committed $20 million over the next three years to the Pub Fund because we believe this visionary and unique development mindset will ultimately advance and evolve PSN games as an art form.

HOARD for PS3 and PSP

Top 5 Best-Selling Pub Fund Titles of 2011

  1. Hoard (Big Sandwich Games)
  2. Tales From Space: About a Blob (DrinkBox)
  3. Joe Danger (Hello Games)
  4. Eufloria (Omni Systems Limited)
  5. Explodemon! (Curve Studios)

In the coming weeks, we’ll be providing a forum for PSN developers to share their stories in indie game development and why they chose PSN as their lead development platform. Stay tuned!

//Add Your Own

34 Comments   4 Replies

1

+ GT-420 on December 13th, 2011 at 10:44 am said:

There are a lot of little known devs out there with great games that aren’t getting played because they aren’t marketed well enough. Crash Commando from EPOS game studios of Sweden got some PS+ love but is still a amazing gem of a game that few know about.


    Susan Panico's Avatar

     

    + Sid Shuman on December 13th, 2011 at 11:00 am said:

    Great, great game! I loved this at launch, and I actually loaded it up a month or so ago to see if people were still playing — and they are.


2

+ deiaei on December 13th, 2011 at 11:02 am said:

Where’s the Pixel Junk Sidescroller love? It got challenging, but a really good co-op game.


3

+ Nikorow on December 13th, 2011 at 11:07 am said:

I’m curious, why only choose to post the top 5 Pub Funded games, as opposed to the others that include the top 10.


4

+ shogun00 on December 13th, 2011 at 11:11 am said:

It’s nice to see Marvel Pinball on the list. Zen did a really good job on that game. The replay value is insane. I’ve put over 150 hours into the game.


    Susan Panico's Avatar

     

    + Morgan Haro on December 13th, 2011 at 11:35 am said:

    nice! there’s some new DLC coming with today’s Store Update as well if you’re interested.


5

+ sackperson_cool on December 13th, 2011 at 11:12 am said:

@3 I imagine since the funds available are spread over three years few games get it, therefore a smaller selection of titles for the Pub Fund.

As for the rest of the games here, I have about a fourth of them. My favorite has to be Dungeon Defenders (I actually have it on PC though) followed by Under Siege though Castle Crashers is mighty fine as well.


6

+ JonJonXD on December 13th, 2011 at 11:14 am said:

I really enjoyed Hoard. That game is so underrated.


    Susan Panico's Avatar

     

    + Sid Shuman on December 13th, 2011 at 11:42 am said:

    Me too! It goes to show that simpler is sometimes better.


7

+ PainOfSarrow on December 13th, 2011 at 11:16 am said:

i aggree with GT-420. Crash Commando is a GREAT game. i honestly think its under rated. yes the characters are tiny but it is an addicting game. yes its not Call Of Duty but for 10 bucks it is a nice game to have on your system.


8

+ zzamaro on December 13th, 2011 at 11:17 am said:

I hope Limbo becomes free for + soon.


9

+ Kyle_325 on December 13th, 2011 at 11:41 am said:

A lot of great choices on there.
@4 Marvel pinball is a personal favorite as well. All the Zen Pinballs tables have been great, if u havent played the original title. Good th hear more marvel tables coming at least.


10

+ Arcadian_Rebel on December 13th, 2011 at 11:44 am said:

Limbo is like the only good game here… just saying. :)

Oh, and maybe Dungeon Defenders. :)


    Susan Panico's Avatar

     

    + Morgan Haro on December 13th, 2011 at 11:59 am said:

    Flower would like to have a word with you ; )


11

+ shogun00 on December 13th, 2011 at 11:45 am said:

@ Morgan: I know! The money is already in the wallet. I’m just waiting for Sony to update the store.


12

+ dragonmagician on December 13th, 2011 at 11:46 am said:

Great list, I have over 10 of those games.

But seriously, please work with Trendy to fix the trophy sync issue on Dungeon Defenders; from their forums, they sound like they have no idea what the problem is. And even though the issue is quite serious (I mean, it is still affecting me even after I stopped playing the game); and it has been over a month, and no fix has been announced yet. It’s quite frustrating.

Maybe this is a pitfall with Self-Publishing, that they don’t get enough support/testing? Just speculating, since I have no idea how syncing trophies to the server works (but all other games seem to do it properly).


13

+ theXsilentXchild on December 13th, 2011 at 12:12 pm said:

okay so where’s the discount?


14

+ JumpMan33 on December 13th, 2011 at 12:22 pm said:

I thought Pub fund games were exclusive to Sony platforms? I was scratching my head when I saw Joe Danger going to other platforms. Are they time exclusives or is it a case by case thing depending on the game? Its not really a big deal, just hoping someone can clear things up for us.


15

+ zzamaro on December 13th, 2011 at 1:00 pm said:

btw, is it true Sony is giving 1 month for + for free? Till now, I only have heard people with no + is getting it. If so, I suppose is because of the holidays, right?


16

+ Rytteren on December 13th, 2011 at 1:00 pm said:

realy think sony should bundle som indie games. and it should be some of the “not so much” hyped media games. psn gets bad pr, but my god there are great games out there on psn. and im happy that the podcast have teh “gem of the week”. ohh and sony, get a deal done with Psyonix on Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars – an amazing “you and 3 frinds on the couch” splitscreen agianst otheres online or themselfs.

im still mad at myself for “boycotting” rochard and sidway newyork cuz i did not get my payday from the playdeal in the eu


17

+ Hooligantuan on December 13th, 2011 at 1:10 pm said:

Please get rid of the sidebar pop-ins, Sony.


18

+ xaos on December 13th, 2011 at 1:37 pm said:

Not to expand things out to Minis, but Young Thor really amazed me. Action platformer well worth checking out, IMO


19

+ nastich88 on December 13th, 2011 at 2:09 pm said:

Dungeon Defenders is definitely one of the best Indie games that came out in 2011, just enormous amount of fun, and it saddens me to see that, even after a full month of its release the trophy syncing issues are still yet to be resolved. Please Sony&Trendy sort this annoyance asap.


20

+ PuppetShoJustice on December 13th, 2011 at 2:47 pm said:

Dungeon Defenders is a really solid product but that trophy sync issue is absolutely maddening. As is the fact that Sony makes it so difficult to patch an indie product. They’ll probably be doing a Christmas event soon and the console versions never managed to get the Thanksgiving or (more shamefully) Halloween DLC.

And the blame for this lays squarely on Sony’s lack of support when it comes to greenlighting the updates. You’ll happily put Day One DLC up for triple A titles but this whole post reeks of a “We love and support our indie devs as best we can!” when that clearly isn’t the case.


21

+ lobotomies4free on December 13th, 2011 at 3:35 pm said:

Can we expect an update for Castle Crashers at some point to fix the online? Please


22

+ supvic on December 13th, 2011 at 3:45 pm said:

Dungeon Defenders should be FIRST on that list, it’s the best PSN game ever! so underrated. Regardless of the trophy problem, it’s still worth getting. 4 player online AND split screen, awesome.


23

+ Mattsta001 on December 13th, 2011 at 4:50 pm said:

Some nice games there but kind of pales in comparison to Microsoft’s efforts. There are a ton of indie games out there that should be on PSN but aren’t and I think Sony just has not been aggressive enough in pursuing such games. There really should be an indie game co-ordinator where indie devs can send submissions and PSN users can send suggestions. Is there one?

The Minis section in particular should be a showcase for small innovative, creative games (not shovelware) and promoted much better than it currently is. A Mini of the week post or Top 5 Minis of the month post on the blog would be a good start.


24

+ fathead170 on December 13th, 2011 at 5:05 pm said:

come on throw some money at super sonic acrobatic battle cars 2! psyonix could use the help!


25

+ that-acmilan-guy on December 13th, 2011 at 5:23 pm said:

I love indie devs, I tend to support them whenever I can.


26

+ DwightSchrute12 on December 13th, 2011 at 5:32 pm said:

You guys should do a “best of 2011″ sale. I’d love to pickup PJ Shooter, Joe Danger, etc on sale.


27

+ albertoargento on December 13th, 2011 at 7:04 pm said:

i cant download anything

error 80029519

what???


28

+ Elvick_ on December 14th, 2011 at 2:20 am said:

Most pub-fund games are on PC as well. I usually end up just getting them on Steam instead, since Steam’s sales are so godly for consumers (probably not as good for publishers and developers given how cheap some games get, but it’s hard to resist saving so much).

Anyhoo~ glad to see some good games up there.


29

+ F-Pina on December 14th, 2011 at 4:01 am said:

Congratulations to everyone envolved.
It was truly a very good year of videogames for PSN.


30

+ SergioDaly on December 14th, 2011 at 4:13 am said:

glad to see UnderSiege in the list. that game is very good.


31

+ Andrefpvs on December 14th, 2011 at 9:01 am said:

Congratulations, F-Pina from Seed Studios!


32

+ Bilouze on December 14th, 2011 at 9:20 am said:

Congrats to Under Siege, making it to the top 10 with a RTS on console : unbelievable.


33

+ camiwaits_us on December 14th, 2011 at 11:01 am said:

Way to go PixelJunk! Shooter 2 is one of my favorite three games of the year. Too bad Sidescroller didn’t make it to the top ten, great game.


34

+ barnaclejoe on December 16th, 2011 at 12:42 pm said:

The games that sell so well should be put on sale for the holidays… they can afford it! Where are the PSN sales?

Frustrating how expensive these games are sooooo long after their release! We’d never see that with retail-sold games and it makes me worried about the online-distributed future that Sony seems to be planning.

ugh.


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