🎂 Happy Birthday to インディー通信 Indie Tsushin!

2023年 12月 01日 Animated image cycling through all the インディー通信 Indie Tsushin 2023 zine issue covers

One year ago today, Daikon and I launched the インディー通信 Indie Tsushin website! You can read about the origins of the site and zine in this entry I wrote on my personal blog. This time, I thought it would be nice to look back on some of the cool things that we got to do in the year since!

Interviews with developers

According to our archives page, we interviewed a whopping 44 people in the past year! We are very grateful to everyone who took the time to speak with us, and we hope that we were able to do them justice when translating their words into Japanese or English.

Before we ever started on Indie Tsushin, Daikon and I used to stream game jam entries and talk with other developers about their work. Reading their comments about how they approached their games and learn how they handled problems was fascinating. With Indie Tsushin, I wanted to keep that sense that these are not games made by faceless names scrolling past on a screen, but by human beings sitting at their computers and creating art. I really enjoyed learning more about these creators and their other works, and I hope that by publishing these interviews, it would spark an interest in readers to dig even deeper.

Going to game events

Nice Gear Games booth with a monitor and Nice Disc on the right, and a box of zines and postcards for Indie Tsushin on the left

Our booth from Tokyo Dungeon 3 back in July!

Outside of Indie Tsushin, Daikon makes games of his own, and I (Renkon) usually tag along and hang out with him at events where he shows off his stuff. This year, I also got to share table space with him at said events and show off print copies of Indie Tsushin! It was so great seeing people come up and flip through copies and talk about the games within. In some cases, I could even point them in the direction of the developer they were reading about because they were also at the same event!

I highly recommend looking up and going to any indie game events near you, whether you are a developer or not. The atmosphere is so much fun, and you get to see cool people showing off cool games. What's not to like?

Indie Tsushin postcards, print copies of the monthly interview issues, and other decorations for the Nice Gear Games booth

Preparing to go to Tokyo Game Dungeon 3!

Hearing from readers like you!

Fanart by Michi of Renkon and Daikon avatars streaming Happy Hour

Very cool fanart by Michi of Satoyama Note!

Probably the most shocking thing about Indie Tsushin is that apparently, a lot of you seem to like it?! When we first started working on this site, I thought only a handful of my friends would ever know about it, and only because I badgered them into reading my weird niche blog. But in actuality, this site gets hundreds, and occasionally thousands, of hits every time a new article goes up. Thinking about it sort of blows my mind. I am a complete nobody who is used to working on websites that have a lifetime visitor count in the double-digits. Honestly and sincerely, thank you all from the bottom of my heart. Daikon and I cannot express enough how grateful we are to our readers, and your outpouring of support has been truly humbling. It is thanks to you that we have been able to keep doing this for an entire year!

Fanart by nora of Renkon in the background Daikon, and Adele the purple penguin wearing red sunglasses and taking notes in the foreground

Wonderful fanart by nora of megamittz!

What's next?

We have begun working on the 2023 December-January issue, which should come out on time (I PROMISE) on December 29. We are planning to take January off for a little New Year's holiday, so the next issue after that will be in 2024 February. I'm also working on a little something that should release with the December issue. Here's a little preview of what's to come:

Cropped illustration of a horned oni with big bushy hair looking at the reader

What could this be... stay tuned...

Otherwise, I think you can expect more of the same from Year 2. We have a big stack of games we want to talk about, so don't worry about us running out of ideas! Here's to another 365 days at least of highlighting indie games and developers from Japan!

Other announcements

You may have heard that TinyLetter is going away. I have migrated everyone's addresses over to Buttondown, which is what I'll be using to send out the monthly e-mail digest from now on.

Just like last year, Daikon and I plan to ring in the New Year on stream! We're planning a marathon stream on the evening of December 31 and lasting until whenever we pass out in the wee hours of January 1. Subscribe to our YouTube channel to see when we start streaming!

Again, thank you so much for reading, and we hope you'll enjoy what we have in store for the next year to come!