INTERVIEW

The Power of Indie Games and Subscriptions: An Interview with Utomik CEO Doki Tops

The Future is Digital

Words By: Amy Chen
Published Aug 13, 2019

Utomik, a PC game subscription service, added its 1,000th game to its roster today. 

Utomik has a wide variety of games from developers like Curve Digital, THQ Nordic, Idea Factory International, Another Indie, Raw Fury, Disney, and Warner Bros. Games.

Utomik’s 1,000th game, Neverinth, will also be showcased at this year's gamescom. Along with it, other indie games like LunaSea, Coffee Talk, and Decay of Logos will be featured at the event. 

The Power of Indie Games and Subscription Gaming: An Interview with Utomik CEO Doki Tops

“We personally know the struggle that is indie game development and indies are a big core of the innovations in gaming,” Doki Tops, the CEO and founder of Utomik, told CGMagazine.

“In this day and age, the quality of these games has risen drastically, but few indie titles get a chance to shine. Our team spends a great amount of time trying to find these great gems. We believe quality indie games deserve attention and we also want to give this diversity to our players,” Tops continued. 

Prior to starting up Utomik, Tops was the co-founder of a game development studio called Eximion, as well as Kalydo, a cloud gaming platform. 

With Eximion, Tops also had experience with indie game development. “In that time, we learned the hard reality of [how] a good game does not add up to the exposure you get or the money you make,” he said. “However, we did make some great technology that was eventually used to enable big MMOs to be played without the hassle of long waits and patching."

The Power of Indie Games and Subscriptions: An Interview with Utomik CEO Doki Tops 1

Tops added that in the process of licensing the technology, the end users for Kalydo suggested that he built his own platform. “At the end of 2013, we started talking about it and in 2014, we decided to pivot our technology company and build Utomik,” Tops said.

The initial challenge that Tops and his team at Utomik faced was convincing publishers and developers to put their games into a subscription service. Tops said that initially, there was a big push-back and it took time to grow Utomik’s content library.

However, Tops said his team was able to overcome this challenge by explaining their business model, as well as travelling and meeting up with developers. 

“Also, the continued rise of other organizations in the subscription space has had a positive effect on consumer behavior and developer interest in putting games on a subscription plan,” Tops added.

"A subscription model tied to our instant play smart download [technology] lets you try new games and genres without a hassle. We also do a lot of curation to ensure a broad collection," he said when asked about the effectiveness of subscription-based models in terms of discovering and playing new games.

Utomik will be at gamescom 2019 between August 20-24 this year with 10 day one releases. A game that Tops said his team is particularly excited about adding to Utomik is Devil's Hunt.