Earlier today, we reported on Devolver Digital's pledge to help support GaymerX, in the wake of yesterday's news about NIS America allegedly backing out of a sponsorship deal.
We pledge $3,000 for a 2015 @GaymerX sponsorship and challenge other game companies that have the means to do the same.— Devolver Digital (@devolverdigital) July 29, 2014
The giving spirit caught on with a number of other indie developers and publishers. Coffee Stain Studios — the maker of Goat Simulator, Bertil Horberg, creator of Gunman Clive, Stephanie Tinsley Schopp of Tinsley PR and Mike Bithell, creator of Thomas was Alone all followed suit with $3,000 pledges of their own.
The $15,000 pledged is for hosting an event next year, which the GaymerX runners have not been able to commit to, since financial woes have plagued the convention.
"We indeed saw that there was some issues with last year's event with unfulfilled sponsorships," said Nigel Lowrie of Devolver. "So in the interest of another GaymerX next year we simply wanted to pledge our support with $3,000 and ask the community and businesses to publicly pledge their support as well."
All of the developers we talked to were adamant about the importance of GaymerX.
"GaymerX is a cool, welcoming space"
"GaymerX is a cool, welcoming space, which caters to a community of gamers which is often underserved by other events," Bithell told me in an email. "It's something I'd like to see continue, and putting a bit of sponsorship towards a return in 2015 appealed to me," he said. "It's worth noting that it's up to the organizers if they want to continue, but hopefully today they've seen that there are some of us out there who want to help."
Tinsley Schopp offered a personal story for why GaymerX meant so much to her. "The games industry is incredibly diverse, and that goes for the gamers themselves and the people in the industry," she said. "Anything that can further promote diversity in any industry is a positive thing.
"If there was something [like] GaymerX where I grew up... I think my adolescence would have been a lot different"
"When I first started realizing I was different, it felt like the world was ending every day for years and years. If there was something [like] GaymerX where I grew up and I saw being gay as something that could be celebrated instead of being ashamed about, I think my adolescence would have been a lot different, and a lot less painful."
She woke up this morning to find IMs and tweets about supporting GaymerX and decided to throw in for $3,000 as well. "Chipping in for a sweet open bar seemed like a no-brainer," she said. "Everyone loves open bars, c'mon."
"As a gay, somewhat successful, indie developer," Horberg told me, "I sometimes feel a responsibility to do something to promote diversity the gaming world, but so far I haven't been able to do so in my games." So he decided to throw his hat in as well.
GaymerX CEO Matt Conn told me he was "honored and overwhelmed by the support," that developers have shown today, and noted that these donations could "potentially help" with another round of GaymerX. But he was quick to note that he had to talk to supporters and potential sponsors before he could definitively say whether the convention could be put on again.
"It's still a very large undertaking to do a convention, and I want to know that we can do it in a sustainable way before saying we'll do another one."