The Queer Games Bundle 2021 on itch.io is running throughout the month of June to specifically boost the work of queer creators, and “help nurture our diverse queer arts community”. Proceeds from the bundle will be split evenly between all contributors, where it currently sits at just over $50,000 raised in its first week.
With its specific pricing and in its description, the bundle points out the disparity between the budgets of mainstream games and the scale at which small independent creators work.
“If we had 1/3rd of the budget of an AAA game, we could give every solo developer a livable wage for a year and every single team a massive funding boost. Imagine what the developers and artists in this bundle could create a year from now if they weren’t worried about starving or how to pay their rent this month.
Purchasing the Queer Games Bundle is a direct action that you can take right now to support queer people in a life changing way and in exchange you get over 200 amazing, heartfelt, fun, and radical games.”
In addition to games, the bundle also includes tabletop RPGs and tools like blogging engine zonelets, or the Electric Zine Maker – in addition to a handful of zines others have made.
As an independent storefront, itch.io is significant in being explicitly friendly to both LGBT and adult content. Only a month ago, it was described as hosting “offensive and sexualised” content in the lawsuit between Epic Games and Apple. This was something itch.io publicly took in its stride, with a series of joking tweets about making games illegal, and renaming their sensitive content filter to “Unspeakable Games”, but it was a troubling sentiment on the part of both teams' lawyers.