Let’s face it, Indonesia is not known as a country that produces games. It is mostly known for “Bali” and the country’s world heritage site. Truth to be told, the country has a lot of talent. But many Indonesian gaming companies suffer.
Before we get into the article, it’s safe to know that the writer is an Indonesian native and has followed the Indonesian game industry for quite some time. Getting to know the actors of the industry and their stories made me sympathize with them.
One of the companies that are affected the most is Toge Productions. It is a game developer and recently started publishing and investing from other local developers. It started creating Flash and mobile games in 2009.
Now, Toge focuses on creating PC and console games. It also just recently released its newest game for Nintendo Switch, Ultra Space Battle Brawl. And yes, it is one of a few gaming companies in Indonesia that have a chance to release their games on Nintendo Switch.
And here’s where the fun begins. What I meant by only a few gaming companies have a chance to release their games on Nintendo Switch is real. However, this also applies to other big name consoles such as the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
I talked to Mohammad Fahmi who is the Marketing and Public Relations Manager for Toge Productions regarding this matter. Many developers who want to release their games on consoles now look up to Toge. Let’s just say it is because it went through hell itself.
How a Developer Kit is Obtained by Gaming Company
Before we go on to what Toge went, I will share with you what Fahmi told me about how a game is published for consoles. “If you are in a game company and want to create games for consoles, you need what’s called a developer kit, or dev kit,” Fahmi said.
Fahmi also went on to say that “Unfortunately, if you are an Indonesian-based company, you cannot request a dev kit to big companies such as Nintendo, Sony, or Microsoft.” “But what you can do is go to Singapore and grab your dev kit there,” he added.
He went on to say that once you get to Singapore, there are still things you need to do. One thing you can do is try to find a partner that can help or create a company in Singapore. Then, each company has it’s own ways.
Another good news comes from Indonesia's game industry. One of Indonesian top developers and publishers Toge Productions announced that it gave an early stage investment to Tangerang-based GameChanger Studio for an undisclosed amount.
Microsoft will only lend you their devkit without any fee. Then they will send it to a company’s partner office in Singapore. Nintendo requires you to buy with a confidential price. The dev kit will then be sent from the US.
“Sony is the most unique,” said Fahmi. “We need to order and buy first, and then they will make the dev kit once we ordered. And we need to wait 3 months for their production and another month for the delivery.”
How Toge Production Got Access for Each Dev Kit
“For the Xbox One dev kit, we were lucky enough to be visited by a Microsoft representative during Casual Connect 2017 in Singapore. And we were even luckier because he loved our games, especially our game, Infectonator.” Fahmi said.
“For Sony, it is far easier because they have an office in Singapore and has a Developer Relations division there. So, it’s pretty much self-explanatory for Sony’s PlayStation 4 dev kit.” Fahmi finished.
“What’s interesting though is Nintendo. Basically, anyone can apply for the Wii-U and 3DS dev kit, but it’s different for Switch. For Switch, you need to have a link to a Nintendo representative and ask them to give you access to buying the dev kit.”
“It was a challenge for us since, unlike Microsoft where a representative came by, we do not have any links to Nintendo.” However,” Fahmi continued, “We were lucky enough to ask for help from a freelance indie game PR and Marketer.”