If, for some reason, you don’t know who Limited Run Games are then this feature should fill you in. The awesome off-shoot from Mighty Rabbit Studios is providing limited physical runs of Vita games, and as you read this the fourth such title, Futuridium EP Deluxe will have released. We spoke to Limited Run’s Douglas Bogart to find out more.
Hello Limited Run Games! Thanks for talking to us again. How have the last few months been?
The last few months have been great! We have seen a lot of growth in our followers and a lot of developers have approached us. We are really starting to feel like a brand people know and love.
For those that don’t know, you have been instrumental in getting physical runs of Vita titles, initially with your own. What was the inspiration for that?
We really don’t like the direction the video game industry is going with being all or mostly digital. We are collectors at heart and have always loved owning physical copies of games. There is nothing better then buying a game, bringing it home, ripping off that shrink wrap and smelling that new game smell! Since we are also developers on our Mighty Rabbit Studios side, we wanted to publish our own games. So we used our games as a test with the intention of putting other developers games out as well.
You recently released Oddworld Inhabitant’s Oddworld: New ‘n’ Tasty. How did you go about arranging that?
They actually contacted us! It was pretty crazy especially since our only releases we really had planned were our own releases at the time and a few others.
So far we have Futuridium EP Deluxe, Volume and YIIK: A Post-Modern RPG as well as Cosmic Star Heroine confirmed for future releases. Just how many games have you got lined up so far?
Hmm, good question! We have a ton of titles right now so it’s a little overwhelming to remember all of them, there are a lot of contracts out there still waiting to be signed and finalized. I’d say release wise there are at least 30 releases coming. Now that number isn’t individual games, but PS4 & Vita releases. Game wise it might be around 18 to 20. Some are exclusive to certain platforms.
Can you reveal any future titles to us, or are we going to remain in suspense?
We can’t announce anything yet! But we are talking with a well known Japanese game company as a possible partner for future releases!
Editor’s note – since this interview was first published in Issue 13 of TVL Magazine, Futuridium EP Deluxe has released and Xeodrofter was confirmed for release and the company announced a partnership with EastofAsiaSoft!
All existing runs have sold out completely. Has the demand for these games surpassed your exceptions?
They definitely have! We are having to increase the run size for each game now. The trick is finding a balance, while a lot of customers wish we would always have stock, it’s just not feasible. To have that many copies of a game would require a lot of capital, which we just don’t have yet. We also need each game to sell out so we can make our investment back and so we can pay the developers. It also helps to show a future developer that “hey, look how fast games sell out under our brand!” which is something that has actually proven to work so far in securing new games.
Who sets the numbers for the print runs? Is it something that has to be limited or can you be flexible with the quantities?
We work with the developer to determine a size. We use our past sales and how popular their title is to decide on a size. Some developers don’t want large runs however, which is out of our control. In the end, it is their decision.
How much work goes into securing a game for a Limited Run release?
We will either reach out or a developer will reach out to us. What we do is discuss with them how the process works, how much money they stand to gain, how much work they have to put in (which isn’t a lot) and then we send them a contract to look over. The process in securing a game can take as little as a week to a couple months. It really depends on how many questions a developer has or if they are just really busy. The actual time it takes after that is about 2 months to get a game ready for sale.
Many gamers are keen for you to implement a pre-order system with these runs, given how quickly they sell out. Is this something you are looking at?
Ah yes, pre-orders… A lot of people want us to follow Vic’s system over at Gaijinworks. But we looked into it and it was a logistical nightmare with the system we use to ship out orders. We also didn’t like the idea that sometimes there are serious delays in production, which is why we don’t like giving out release dates too far in advance and people would be constantly asking us where their game was even though they just had a pre-order. When we announced that we were thinking about doing that or doing a membership, people acted like we put a gun to their heads. So we just want to avoid that right now and keep our current system. With the amount of work we do to keep people from buying more than our limit, we feel like it should work out. We are however looking into a loyalty program for repeat customers. Maybe they will get a day in advance to purchase, free shipping or something extra in their future orders. It’s still being talked about!
There are so many titles that would be perfect for a Limited Run release, what would be your dream titles, and how should those companies get in touch with you?
We would love to do Axiom Verge, Yakuza 5, Fatal Frame for Wii U (we would find a way to make it happen), any game by Double Fine, Outlast…. There are a lot of games actually! They can email us, reach out on twitter, or even find us at conventions. However they want to reach out, we will find a way to respond!
What are your long term plans with Limited Run Games? Do you intend to keep providing Vita titles for the foreseeable future?
We do! The Vita is awesome. We want to keep it well supplied with physical titles. It’s like the Dreamcast of this generation and as big Dreamcast fans we will support the Vita until it is officially declared dead by Sony. Even then we might still publish more games if they let us.
How many of the Limited Run Games collection do you have so far? What game would you love to see get a Limited Run release? Fell free to follow the team via LimitedRunGames and send some suggestions!
This article first appeared in May issue of The Vita Lounge Magazine. Look out for more exclusive and magazine first content in the magazine soon!