GarageGames, the company behind the Torque games engine, has opened a new social networking site for indie games developers and players at GreatGamesExperiment.com.Currently in open beta, the site is deigned as a free resource for developers to network and promote their own games and give players a chance to see indie games and online casual titles that are not found on other sites. GreatGamesExperiment.come already hosts a variety of of games ranging from free Flash titles to old classics.
And like many social networking sites, much of the activity relies on serfeedback, with ratings, recommendations, and popularity statistics for each game, plus tags, friendships, and comments.
Crucially, because developers can upload pretty much whatever they want, the site seizes on the embedding ability that YouTube for instance has popularised for video.
"Getting games made is only half of the problem. Finding an audience once you have sweat out two or three years of development is extremely difficult," explained the service's creator Jeff Tunnell.
"Getting a lot of 'eyeballs' to look at your game is important, and social networking sites are a method of allowing a community to create its own content and momentum. Having indie games presented side by side with commercial games should get more recognition for the indies."
Added Eric Fritz, GarageGames' marketing director: "GreatGamesExperiment isn't just a Flash games site, an indie site, or a site promoting console games: it's a one-stop resource for the entire gaming world. The social aspects of the community allow me to narrow the huge amount of gaming choices by seeing what my friends and other like-minded community members are playing."