YouTube streamers Ludwig and Thor open publishing label, starts with Rivals 2

Offbrand Games is looking to help developer dreams come true and will begin with the sequel to Rivals of Aether.


An old episode of The Simpsons had Homer's half-brother drop some knowledge with the saying, "All a man needs is an idea." That saying was later amended to "A man needs two things: an idea and money to get it off the ground." Long-time streamers Ludwig Ahgren and Pirate Software CEO (a.k.a. game industry veteran Jason "Thor" Hall) are people with money and they are looking to help indie developers make their dreams come true with a new publishing label called Offbrand Games. In fact, the new publisher has already gotten the ball rolling with its first client: indie fighting game sequel Rivals 2.

Offbrand Games will act as an offshoot to Ludwig's Offbrand label, which initially specialized in event and stream production. The new Offbrand website doesn't have a lot populating it, but its Steam publishing page does list a single client, which is the upcoming Rivals 2. To this point, developer Aether Studios had been developing the game independently, just as it did with the original Rivals of Aether. While Offbrand is starting with Rivals 2, the new label is actively seeking new clients to help bring their games to life.

Ludwig becomes the latest big-time streamer looking to assist indies with development through funding and other means. Animal Well developer Shared Memory (comprised of solo developer Billy Basso) teamed up with YouTuber Dunkey's BIGMODE publishing label. The game released earlier this year to high praise from various outlets, including Shacknews. The Offshoot Games announcement also comes hours after Among Us developer Innersloth announced the Outersloth indie publishing fund to help bring more indie games out into the world.

Rivals 2 from Aether Studios
Rivals 2
Source: Aether Studios

It's exciting to see those who have succeeded in the world of gaming looking to give back and help lift others. We'll keep an eye on Offshoot Games' endeavors, including Rivals 2. Rivals 2 is estimating a Q4 2024 release on PC.

Senior Editor

Ozzie has been playing video games since picking up his first NES controller at age 5. He has been into games ever since, only briefly stepping away during his college years. But he was pulled back in after spending years in QA circles for both THQ and Activision, mostly spending time helping to push forward the Guitar Hero series at its peak. Ozzie has become a big fan of platformers, puzzle games, shooters, and RPGs, just to name a few genres, but he’s also a huge sucker for anything with a good, compelling narrative behind it. Because what are video games if you can't enjoy a good story with a fresh Cherry Coke?

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