By: Derek Yu

On: April 2nd, 2008


Penny Arcade and Hothead Games have announced the launch of Greenhouse (Beta), their new portal for downloadable PC titles. The first title to be launched, of course, is Penny Arcade Adventures: On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness, which is being developed by Hothead.

[Jerry “Tycho”] Holkins says that the idea is to give indie gamemakers a better financial shake. “I think that most publishing arrangements are full of shit,” he says, pointing out that Greenhouse will give indie gamemakers a better share of the profits.

Naturally, the games will be hand-picked by Tycho and Gabe themselves. No indies are currently on board, although Gabe did have this to say in their interview with Wired:

[If] you’re asking me what sort of things are out there right now that I would love to see on Greenhouse? The crayon game. Crayon Physics. That’s the sort of thing that I would love to put in front of our audience, and say, you guys should play this, definitely. And obviously, we can link it, but to be able to actually distribute it through Greenhouse would be fantastic. It would enable us in a way that would be easy for the developer to get it out there with a royalty structure that is not full of shit. Which I think is a great combination.

So what to say, other than that this is exciting news? The enormous, built-in fanbase, the general attitude… I hope the PA guys pull this one off.

  • xerus

    Sign me up. I mean, sign RomeoPie up.

  • Derek

    Tycho told me Diamond Rider was what got him interested in video games in the first place. TRUE STORY.

  • MercuryBlind

    it would be interesting to see them pull this thing off.

  • mio

    Yeah, I wouldn’t mind watching them pulling this thing off, if you know what I mean…

  • PHeMoX

    *Coming soon*

    Exciting times!!

  • Trav

    I’m sooo just waiting for the big sell out of Penny Arcade. Every time I see something like this I think “damn, how can they get so big and not be evil?”

    Maybe childs play is secretly being used to grind the dead children into the white casing for Nintendo DSs or something.

  • Melly

    Indeed, something’s fishy. Perhaps they are gathering funds for some kind of dark secret project involving videogames and dark sorcery, and are slowly creating a giant enterprise in order to consolidate their power and attack the world’s governments.

    To be honest, if their iron-fisted rule made games more awesome as a whole, I’d be totally for it.

  • Zeno

    The evil is in the comics, which kill thousands every year with their overused and unfunny terror.

  • josh g.

    Wasn’t someone on the forums just suggesting that it’d be cool to have a centralized indie game download service? And I thought it was impractical and silly and who could pull that off without it turning into either a Huge Massive List of Everything that overwhelms people, or into Yet Another Casual Game Portal?

    I guess this answers my question. Oops, me wrong again! PA is pretty much the one group who could come up with a critical mass of users plus, um, not suck.

  • Mr average

    I prefer their cartoon faces.

  • Shawn

    I overheard Robert Khoo saying he’d think Jerry would like Battleships Forever @ the IGF expo at GDC… maybe it had something to do with this?

  • Eclipse

    yah, i was the guy that suggested the indie distribution platform and this news is making me happy, i hope to catch up with this guys, i love penny arcade

  • bateleur

    Let’s hope they do a better job than Manifesto Games does. That was a project I was excited about too until it actually launched at which point it became clear that when they said they were going to publish games what they really meant was that they were going to sell them and take a cut, not do any actual marketing or anything useful like that.

  • GirlFlash

    I like this idea, of course I like the idea of a PA conspiracy, with illuminati and aliens and stuff too. but meh, I’ve got my fingers crossed on this one and I’m hoping for the best. :D

  • josh g.

    The immediate difference between Manifesto and Greenhouse is that Manifesto had to conjure up marketing attention out of thin air, whereas Penny Arcade has huge marketing strength just by talking about stuff on their front page. Instant target audience.

  • Dominic White

    I’d love to see Aquaria up on Greenhouse. Considering how much Gabe & Tycho loved stuff like Odin Sphere, Aquaria fits right into their particular tastes in indie gaming.

    They’d likely advertise it for free.

    Might give it a bit of a boost to go along with the upcoming Mac/Updated PC release.

  • fartron

    I liked PA better when the drawings were bad and the jokes were funny. But it’d be awesome if they could make a portal that worked.

  • branewalker

    I’m pondering the name. Greenhouse.

    Is that because it will house little sprouting game designers, and give them the nourishment they need to become big, fruitful game companies?

    Or is it a description of what their future residence will be like, built brick-by-brick with fat stacks of cash?

  • Grax

    My question is what is their procing going to look like? Is it going to be over price episodic indy gaming (Much like the Penny Arcade game)?

    Just seems like starting Steam with a $60 Prey instead of HL2.