Saturday, June 7, 2014

Greenlit on Steam!

I can't believe it.  After some months of languishing in Steam Greenlight, I got a random email that it was approved.  I didn't have much hope in the first place, and what little hope I had was quickly evaporating.  But now, everything is coming up Adman!

I'm actively working on getting a Steam store page set up, getting the Windows version of the game all up to date (adding the missing Options stuff, for example).  That's more or less done, but needs some debugging and testing.

I'm also kicking around the idea of adding some Steam features, like achievements and stats and so forth.  Not sure if that will happen or not.

Getting published on Steam actually looks like a very real possibility.  In fact, I could actually go and push the "review my game" button now and get the process underway, but I'd like to just take a little more time to get everything in order.  I'd also like to get some better graphics to represent the game on the Steam store, and am looking to enlist some help for that.

So....  pretty cool stuff.  I would have never guessed this game would make it onto Steam, but I'm excited that it is.  How well will a local multiplayer game sell on Steam?  I have no idea.  What I do know is that my ability to estimate this sucks (but luckily sucks in the wrong direction).  So, no expectations.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Ouya promotion...

Apparently Ouya is going to be promoting Hidden in Plain Sight over the Thanksgiving weekend.

There is also recent news that Ouyas (Ouyay?) are in Target stores across the country, which is pretty cool.  Sales have definitely dropped off since the initial surge of Kickstart units were all shipped en masse, but that is to be expected.  But it's still selling pretty regularly, and people are still spending more than the minimum, which is nice.

If you want to get it for the Ouya, you can find the game here.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Updates

Hidden in Plain Sight is going through a bit of a renaissance, which is kind of exciting.  First of all, the Ouya has officially launched, and HIPS is selling dozens of units per day.  And even though the minimum required price is $0.99, the average price people are paying is over $2, so that’s kind of cool.

Furthermore, a very popular YouTube channel has done a series of three videos, which cumulatively have over half a million views.  That’s led to a big spike in sales on the Xbox… 4000 copies sold in the first 11 days of this month.  If it’s anything like the Great SourceFed Spike of ’12, I expect there to be quite a long tail of sales as word of mouth spreads.

Crazy.

I got this email yesterday.  It looked like spam on the surface, but here’s what it said:

Hi I am 14 and i have played this game called "Hidden in Plain Sight ". i think you might know it. this game is really fun and i have played it with my sister and my friend and it is better than any 60 $ game i have ever bought.   me and my sister are not really close and we fight alot. this game made us laugh together and we had a good time together. its been a while since that happened. Thank you.

I was very emotionally touched by this.  It’s one thing to make a silly little game that people like playing, but to think that I’ve perhaps had some hand in helping create or restore a bond of friendship between friends or family… that’s a big deal.  So that was really cool.


I want to make a new game.  I’ve been fooling around in Unity, and getting lots of inspiration from all kinds of sources, but just am lacking the time and energy to actually sit down and work.  Maybe soon.  My daughter and I have been playing Fariune on the iPad, and she’s really enjoying it.  So my latest thoughts are a adventure’ish game kind of like Ultima IV.  Big world, lots of little puzzles and items to find and unlock areas of the world.  We’ll see.

Monday, June 17, 2013

The Price of Entertainment

Pricing games…

I have no idea how much to sell a game for.  And this is fascinating to me.

On the Xbox Live Indie Games market, it’s pretty clear that that selling a game for more than 80MSP ($1) is suicide.  Even bumping it up to 240MSP ($3) will reduce your sales be MORE than three times.  I think this is pretty well documented by people who have changed the price of their game.

Now, I’ve ported Hidden in Plain Sight over to the Ouya, and I left the minimum price at a dollar.  That only seems fair, right?  Why should it cost more on one system than another?  It’s the same product, it should cost the same.

However, I’ve gotten a lot of feedback from the players themselves that this is too cheap, and they’d gladly pay more. 

What I ended up doing was adding the option to pay any number of choices: $1, $3, $5, $10, $15, or $50.  And this has worked out really well.  About 40% of the people spend $1, and 55% spend $3 or $5, and then there’s the occasional $10 and $15.  What this indicates to me is that I was really leaving money on the table before.

Another thing that is strange to consider is that most people wouldn’t hesitate to spend $10 to go out and see a movie.  In fact, four friends could easily drop $50 collectively for a two hour experience, if you included a drink and some candy or something.  So why is it so difficult to even consider spending $5 or $10 on something that (according to some people) offers more entertainment value?

I’m not casting aspersions… I have a hard time spending even a few dollars on a quality iPad app, so I’m guilty of the same thing.  It’s just weird.

Anyways, based on the feedback I’ve gotten, I’m going to add a “donation” product to the game.  I figure if people want to give me extra money, I should make it as easy as possible for them to do so.


And finally, I’d like to go on record again and say that I’m not doing this for the money.  It’s a nice side effect, but I’d much rather get a nice email or tweet from someone than a dollar.  In other words, the happy feeling I get from making a game that has brought some family and friends closer together is worth more to me than a dollar.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

OUYA!

OOOoooooo-YEAH!

Hidden in Plain Sight has been published for the Ouya.  The free version includes unlimited play of Ninja Party and Death Race (which I think are the two best modes, but others disagree).  For $0.99, you get the other three modes unlocked, as well as the customizable options to play with.

I'm looking forward to hearing how Ouya players like it...  if you happen to have played it on the Ouya, leave a note and let me know how it all worked out for you.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Right in the feels...