Earlier today it emerged that the well-known Nintendo of America Head of Digital Content and Development, Dan Adelman, had left the company; his official title didn't make clear the fact that, to many, he was the face of Nintendo's drive to attract independent developers to its download stores.
Adelman gave a fairly frank interview to Kotaku with some interesting information, so hit up that link above for some choice snippets. Looking to the future, however, he announced that he'd be staying in the download scene to offer management services to developers, providing expertise to help them with their products. His new venture has now been somewhat formalised with a press release being issued, outlining what he'll aim to offer these businesses. An excerpt of the press release is below.
During his time at Nintendo, Dan oversaw the launch of hundreds of games and advised indie developers on game design, marketing campaigns, and general business strategy. He is best known for identifying and bringing great indie games like World of Goo, Cave Story and the BIT.TRIP series to major consoles before competing platforms took notice of indie developers.
Many indie teams recognize that the business-side is crucial to success but don’t have the resources to hire a full-time business or marketing expert. In his new endeavor, Adelman will take indie developers to the next level of success by working with them as a virtual team member to help them make informed business decisions and stand out from the rising tide of indies.
Prior to joining Nintendo in 2005, Adelman was a part of the launch team for the original Xbox, handling multi-million dollar third-party publisher business development deals as well as strategy planning for Xbox Live, which included launching XBLA. He graduated with honors from Oberlin College, and has an M.A. from Nagoya University and an MBA from Columbia University.
Also revealing is a blog post on Dan Adelman's website, in which he heads off any over-negative reactions with an assurance that the download scene is in good hands at Nintendo.
I’m often viewed as the main person behind Nintendo’s indie strategy and that without me, there would be no indie push by Nintendo. Although that may have been the case in the early days, in recent years the business has grown, and more and more groups have been established to take up the mantle. While my core team of awesome folks (shout out to Scott, Luke, and Shannon!) and I did everything from handle the operations to the marketing to reaching out to new developers, in the last few years whole new teams of people responsible for each of those areas have been formed. People at Nintendo don’t need to be reminded that indie games are important. They play them every day. In fact, one of the reasons I decided to leave was that there were fewer and fewer new battles to wage. Everyone was getting on the same page and starting to work together like a well-oiled machine. What fun is getting into an argument if the other person already agrees with you?
We wish Dan Adelman the best of luck in his new ventures, while his words of reassurance on Nintendo of America's indie strategy team are certainly welcome.