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Ask Rami: The Ten-Thousands Rule

Rami reassures a South American developer on how much they can negotiate on a publisher deal before the publisher might walk away.

Rami Ismail
Rami Ismail
6 min read
Ask Rami: The Ten-Thousands Rule
Photo by Emmanuel Edward / Unsplash
Hi Rami, thanks for doing these and for the newsletter! We're a new studio in South America, and your lessons have helped us a lot to get to publisher negotiations. We even have more than one interested publisher! We read your article about the way publisher funding works with the Recoups and Upfronts, and it has helped a lot, but we still have one big question: is it OK for us to negotiate with the amount of money we're getting, and how much can we negotiate without angering the publisher? Or will we upset the publishers if we even try? We hope you can answer our question, because we're very worried to ruin this once in a lifetime chance.

Hey there worried developer,

Congratulations on this massive leap in your career - I work with tons of first-time developers and I know that getting to your first publisher negotiations is always terrifying. Massive congratulations on getting multiple publishers interested in your game! From what you added to your e-mail, I can absolutely see why they're interested, and I wish you the very best of luck with development.

So let's break your question down into two parts: your first question is whether you can negotiate with a publisher. The second question is about how much you can negotiate about money with a publisher - and for that question, I have the Ten-Thousands Rule.


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