It is apparent that developing games is not simple, as it demands meticulous work from many people and a transparent process. Therefore, it’s not surprising that investors, and game producers need to spend a lot on each game project. Even though there are some ideas for reducing the game development budget, if you are going to launch a totally brand new game into the market you need to prepare a reasonable number. Now let’s find out the necessary amount that you should consider for each type of game!
An indie game or you may call independent video game, is a video game typically created by individuals or small development teams without the financial and technical support of a large game publisher. An average indie game will cost between $50,000 and $700,000 to make, from start to finish. A single developer usually makes titles that cost around $50,000 and take up to a year to finish. Naturally, as the project complexity increases, the team size and costs will increase as well.
Indie publishers typically expect their games to cost between $250,000 and $500,000 to develop, accounting for a team of five people working for two years on a game. The publisher may invest another $200,000 to $250,000 on testing, marketing, and any additional expenses they feel are necessary to succeed.
AAA Games or Triple-A games are both incredibly simple and incredibly hard to define. The most basic and broadly accepted definition is, “a game with an extremely large budget.” The term AAA can be used to describe a studio or publisher as well as a game. Normally, AAA games cost tens of millions of dollars, and teams of a few hundred people usually make them. AAA Games require at least two years from conception to release.
Significant publishers like FIFA and Call of Duty, for instance, develop new installments simultaneously, allowing them to release titles sooner. They do this by repurposing assets or having several teams working on a project at once.
Besides the salary expenses of a AAA game, you have to consider massive manufacturing, distribution, and marketing costs. These costs alone overshadow the whole production of AAA games.
III Game or Triple-I Game is the newest game classification to gain widespread usage, at least amongst industry professionals; many consumers are still unlikely to recognize the term. As one might guess from the name, III is meant to signify a game as being of AAA quality while still very much being an indie game. About development cost, most III games will cost between one million and ten million dollars to develop. Aside from the development costs, the company will have to pay marketing and distribution expenses.
The term AA (Double-A) is not as often used when talking about the quality of a game as few like to boast of being second-best. When you do find people defining this term, however, it is still most often in relation to budget. A concise traditional definition would be, “a game with a large budget but not as large as that of a AAA.”
AA games have similar costs to III games. These are usually around several million dollars but rarely exceed the ten million dollar price tag. The companies creating these games are associated with the publisher and will have their support but are not always a part of their company.