Your Guide to Indie Game Bundles
Ryan Somma via flickr.com
If you are a videogame player on a budget, a casual game player who likes to sample, or a supporter of independent game developers, then you should look into the wonderful world of indie bundles. They're a recent Internet phenomenon; as the name implies, an indie bundle is a set of games from independent developers that are sold as a set, usually for extremely low prices and available for a limited time. In many cases, part of the money for each bundle is donated to charity. You get a bunch of new games, your money goes to support good causes and independent developers, so it's a win all-around.
There are a few caveats about these bundles. The games are available only for home computers, although they are usually available in PC, Mac, and Linux varieties. There have been some specific Android bundles, but these are not the norm. Many of the games are only available through Steam, a streaming game service. The service does not cost anything and provides some additional features, but ultimately, your game lives on someone else's server instead of your own PC. Like any other purchase on the Internet, always read the entire page to make sure you know exactly what you are buying.
Humble Bundle - Humble works on a "pay what you want" system. You can pay whatever amount you want for the games listed, above a certain minimum. If you pledge more than the average of all of the previous buyers, you get a few extra bonuses. This is a good incentive to buy early, as the average price will only rise. Humble also allows you to determine how your purchase is split between the selected charities, the game developers, and the site itself.
In addition to their normal game bundles, Humble also has a smaller weekly bundle available, and will occasionally do bundles of Android games, music, or eBooks.
Groupees - Groupees tends to work on a "Build a Bundle" system. They present you with a list of available games. You may select two or more of these games and set your own price above a minimum per game. In addition, they have unlockable bonus content. As certain numbers of bundles are sold, more content is unlocked. These bonus items are available to anyone who makes a purchase and usually include new games, game soundtracks, and art resources.
Groupee normally has two or three bundles running concurrently: one game bundle, and one or two music bundles. If you are a fan of electronic music, especially chiptunes, the music bundles are a great way to explore new artists at a great price.
Indiegala - Indiegala works on a tiered system. You may set any price you like for the first set of games, with additional games being made available at a higher minimum price. They also have bonus games in each tier, which are revealed during the second half of the sale period. For every purchase that you make, you receive Gala Points, which are redeemable elsewhere on the site for discounts on additional items.
Indie Game Bundles - This site does not provide bundles, but rather is a news site that covers all of the other bundle sites. This is a good destination to see what is currently available, and enter contests to win free games. They also have sections for news about indie games, reviews, and free games that are available for download.
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