To Kongregate or not to Kongregate

fish.jpgKongregate.com is one of the several companies taking a swing at the "YouTube for Games" idea that makes Silicon Valley VC's grin as they stare into their iPhones.

In a new interview with Kongregate games director Chris Pasley, who moved over to Kongregate from Turner's game group, says their goal is to "make Flash games a legitimate business, by letting developers make a living off of [them] ".

Sounds good, but I'm just not sure that what games — or anything else — needs is another upload-your-content-plus-community-features ghetto. Especially the community features.It makes sense for Kongregate of course — community is an easy way to keep people somewhere. That's why Kongregate provides financial incentives for developers to build in their community features, like chat and achievements. But really, do we need to congregate at Kongregate? Their claim that Flash games are "easy in, easy out" would seem to suggest that people don't really want to go somewhere special to get them.

Is the only way to "make a living" to couple one's work to an aggregator's community? What about a business model that allows broader distribution, like MochiAds tries to do? Do we really need a community site for everything?

Something tells me these won't be the topics available for debate in Argue (About Everything), one of the games funded in Kongregate's first indie funding round.

Developed by Adam Schroeder and Roger Bankus, Argue (About Everything) is a multiplayer real-time strategy game that allows players to pick either side of an argument and duke it out on the field of battle. Featuring customisable characters, customised arguments and a web-page-embeddable argument status widget, players can attack with Passionate statements, refute their opponents with Facts, or rely on Reason to win fast, five-minute battles that will determine the final answer to any argument.

Making Flash More "Legit" [Next-Gen] Q&A: Kongregate Announces Indie Funding, Talks Innovation [Gamasutra]


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