updated 06:50 pm EST, Tue December 13, 2011
Buyers determine price, allocation of funds
The fourth instalment of the Humble Indie Bundle, a set of DRM-free multi-platform games offered at a special low price to aid charities, is now live. The bundle includes up to seven games in which buyers name their own price and decide how the funds of their purchase should be allocated.
The core bundle consists of five games, including Super Meat Boy, Jamestown, Bit.Trip Runner, Nightsky HD and Shank, the latter of which is making its Mac debut. Many of the games are also appearing for the first time on the Linux platform. If purchasers pay more than the average price for the bundle (currently just over $5), they also get two additional games, Cave Story Plus and Gratuitous Space Battles. All of the games are also redeemable on Steam for multiplayer use.
As has been the case with previous Humble Bundles, the average purchase price is a sliver of the commercial value of the games, which in total are worth over $100. Currently the average purchase price is $5.12, with Linux users paying the most on average ($9.09) and Windows users paying the least ($4.62) with Mac users somewhere in-between (currently at $6.65).
Buyers can allocate percentages of the purchase price between four entities; the American Red Cross, the Child's Play charity that supplies games and gaming equipment to children's hospitals, the developers themselves and a "tip" to the bundle organizers, and are encouraged to contribute more than the average both to obtain the other two games as well as raise the average for other buyers and benefit the various organizations.
Purchasers can also opt to "gift" the bundle to another person, making it a worthwhile candidate for a holiday gift for those who enjoy gaming on Mac, Windows or Linux. The promotion is only available for the next two weeks, though it has already reached 126,000 bundles sold, making it likely that the promoters will meet their goal of $3 million for the charities.