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YouTuber videogamedunkey launches own indie publishing company Bigmode

Vows to highlight indies amongst "mindless cash grabs" but has many devs sceptical.

videogamedunkey, one of the most popular YouTubers within the gaming sphere, has announced his own publishing company for indie games.

The company, called Bigmode, was set up by Jason Gastrow (better known as dunkey) and his partner Leah.

Gastrow is known for his running gags, deadpan delivery and bizarre humour, whilst also being capable of producing excellent videos discussing games and the industry.

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Gastrow has been outspoken in his love for indie games in particular, and in his announcement video for Bigmode cites it as the main reason behind the company's creation.

Watch videogamedunkey announce his indie game publishing company Bigmode.

"I have always sought out the very best indie games out there and have tried to do them justice," Gastrow said, adding the team at Bigmode has "put a lot of effort into making the most developer-friendly contracts possible". Gastrow concluded his video by encouraging developers to apply through Bigmode's website, regardless of whether their project is a pitch or a finished product.

Some have said they look forward to seeing the games that will be published by Bigmode, trusting in Gastrow's curation. For some devs, this fact brings some scepticism around the company's intentions and potential actions in future.

Gastrow described Bigmode as "a harmonious continuation of my channel", making some wary of what exactly that means.

Others have questioned whether Gastrow has the skills necessary to work in game development. The credentials Gastrow used to promote Bigmode consisted of his time as a critic on YouTube:

"These days I feel like I play nearly every game that comes out... I play so many games that my first name is 'video game', okay? I understand what kind of ideas always work, what ideas never work, what kind of ideas are fresh or need to come back and what is extremely played out."

The statement has caused frustration among those with experience shipping a game, as it entails more than simply game curation.

Other devs are wishing Gastrow and his team well, acknowledging that the process of shipping a game can only be truly learnt by actually shipping a game.

Mike Rose, previous critic at various sites including Kotaku and Gamasutra and now company director of publisher No More Robots, revealed he has been contacted by three different "huge" YouTubers looking for advice on starting their own publishing companies, which means we may see more internet personalities launching publishers soon.

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Liv Ngan


Liv grew up on Crash Bandicoot and Japanese arcade games. They like to play with their neighbours' cats and have a soft spot for raccoons.