Android or iPhone/Pad development?

Discussion in 'Game Development (Technical)' started by elias4444, May 27, 2010.

  1. hippocoder

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    The market changes so rapidly that for things like Android I'd be best of going the middleware route.
     
  2. PoV

    PoV
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    Yeah, by the time E3 comes and goes, the only platform left running Fixed Function 3D hardware might be PC's and Netbooks (Intel GMA, though there is some limited shading support in the GMA). Apple is about to end their continued support for the PowerVR MBX powered devices, once iPhone OS 4.0 goes live this summer. Now we're just waiting on Sony and Nintendo now, for how dramatically different they plan to make their next devices (and how soon I can get one). :cool:

    Assuming "I'd" is "it'd", yeah, Android is weird. I can "cleanly" mix Visual Studio, Xcode, Eclipse and Makefile based build systems in one hierarchy, but Android still poses a WTF problem (see the NDK's weird build system). Heh. Well rather, with their extremely limited country support, I've yet to have enough motivation to solve it. ;)
     
  3. gormlai

    gormlai New Member

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    Really? From what I am hearing from most sources, it is next to impossible to make any money from any of Nintendo's online stores as nearly none of the users are aware of the online shop and/or have access to the credit card.

    Or are you talking about packaged goods? If so, do you have any good numbers , you can be talked into sharing?
     
  4. gormlai

    gormlai New Member

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    Actually I have been having exactly the same discussion with myself, and I finally decided to put some action behind it all and try it out.

    So, I have gone through the expense of buying a mac and an iPod, and I am now co-developing a game with a company here in Denmark. I am completely new to mobile development, so there are still so many unknowns that I do not expect to earn any real money from this first game. If I earn back my dev + hardware costs I will be very happy.

    After that, I plan to port the game to my Android phone (which Google was kind enough to throw after me at GDC). Denmark doesn't have paid app support via Google Market yet, but I understand that there are a few people setting themselves up as middlemen like publishers (I think there is even one guy on these forums, though can't remember his name atm).

    For the iPad, I think a real success there requires a complete rethink of the game, as the iPad has the potential to offer a whole other experience than the iPhone. I think the iPad could be fantastic, for the 'family sitting around the table old-school board game kinda experience'. Of course, the experience has to be something a board game can't offer.


    Just my 2c,


    PS. I am currently experimenting a lot and trying to collaborate with as many people as possible, so if this could have your interest send me a pm.
     
  5. Applewood

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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  6. tolik

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    Announcing cross-internet ROFL Game Player, supporting HTML6, CSS4, SVG3GLES on all devices. You may start contributing your code to our GIT2HG repository in Ruby or LISP4Java now - it is completely open source! An easy 99 guide to launch hello world on every device out there is available. A CEO of ROFL::GP stated: "Welcome to the authentic world of J2ME as you've enjoyed it 5 years ago. We hope that variety of smartphones, resolutions, processors, targets and languages will finally move all the porting efforts back to India, which was the only country to produce and ceritfy 317 builds for carriers in less than 7 days. Only these guys are providing lifetime support for useless and obscure technologies that are pumping out on a daily basis."
     
  7. PoV

    PoV
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    Yeah, J2ME was dumb.

    Maybe it's just me, but as a developer, shouldn't I be able to actually understand what that Antix site actually says? I'm calling bullsh*t on whatever language they invented to sell themselves.
     
  8. Applewood

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

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    You're over-trolling mate. I've already made some money from this and there should be a lot more coming soon when our sokoban game goes live on several hundred thousand Korean TVs with built-in appstore. Not bad for a months work.

    Before you snigger too much, you need to take a guess at which nation spends the most money per capita on download games. Here's a clue, it's somewhere between Japan and China.

    Of course, it being me who found a license to print money, I'm sure nothing stupid will come along to fuck it all up for me. Like, say, a nuclear world war...

    And seriously. Please keep off this route to market - the more I can keep for myself, the better.
     
    #28 Applewood, May 30, 2010
    Last edited: May 30, 2010
  9. tolik

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    Wow, Korean STBs are hot again! Back to 2006! Launch sokoban titles earning $2000! AWESOME!!!!
     
  10. Applewood

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    zzzz

    You should know me better by now.
     
  11. zoombapup

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    Isnt this just another gatekeeper that could then turn around and screw you completely though?

    I'm very wary of that kind of thing (look at apple's recent shenanigans).

    If this was an open standard, then maybe it'd be good. I'm sure its currently a business opportunity, but in the longer term it'd end up screwing you I'm sure if you were to build a full business on the back of it. Unless I guess it ended up a zynga/facebook thiing where each requires the other.
     
  12. Applewood

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    Never really got that argument tbh. We wrote one game for a minority platform and it's already covered it's costs. I'm already at the stage where I don't care what might happen in a couple of years.

    Unless I make uber money from the TV thing, in which case I'll milk it as quickly as possible.

    Bottom line is that until you own either the internet or a retail distribution company with offices in each major city worldwide, then you'll always be at the behest of someone else. The trick is to get in, make some money and get out. Or stay in, not everything fails.

    To the wider point, I think "open" platforms should be avoided at all costs. You only make proper money on the closed platforms. For every cliffski, I'll show you fifty other struggling desktop developers. I don't know of anyone who is in the handheld space and struggling tbh. The exception being iShovel which is almost open and therefore most dangerous. How many times do you hear "you can make real money on iPhone", but the reality is that most everybody makes nothing.

    If you want it easy, do PC games. If you want it lucrative, do the hard stuff.
     
  13. Jack Norton

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    I'm not that sure honestly. What if you develop a title for 6 months and doesn't get released/approved? I knew personally a few teams that had that problem in times of GBA (not sure if is different now).
    Maybe you know nobody who's struggling, but you don't count those who hadn't a game approved in your statistic ?
    I think in open platform the business is different, since you have also to do marketing, while for closed system marketing is mostly done for you... with the move to online games even Pc/Mac scene can become quite profitable though.
     
  14. Applewood

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    I've never been in the position of not getting approval, so can't comment on that. I don't see how anyone could develop for 6 months without getting in touch with the platform holders - they are people you should be talking too weekly and meeting in person as often as possible!

    You're probably right about the open platforms needing marketing, whereas closed ones need less/none, but it's hardly a moot point is it. I mean, who here is good at both game coding and marketing? (A couple spring to mind, they're successful - everyone else is skint). And even if you're good at marketing, you're a better coder so you should be doing that all day instead.

    I see like writing for portals. There are a few people around here who doubtless make a decent living from that, but again most probably don't - there's only so much room in a top 10 that updates daily. If you put that same game on a DS and approach a small publisher for a retail deal, you can add at least one zero to your expected income. For the sake of spending a grand on kit. I honestly just don't get it.
     
  15. tolik

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    Really? How's your pool doing on XBLA?
     
  16. Applewood

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    Are your sources developers or pundits? Again, the devs I speak with are all singing the same song and I'm eager to find out for myself.

    My actual plan is to develop top-notch titles and get retail deals tbh, with DSi as a backup plan. We have already started on the first biggie, but in the interim we're doing a crappy churn out game to test the water for ourselves on DSi. The competion is hangman! :)

    Don't forget that DS2 is coming out soon which is full 3D with a touch screen. It will have an app-store built in and should run an "almost" version of ES2.0 which also means its easy to dev for, whereas the old 2D machine admittedly wasn't.

    Not saying its here yet, but you don't have your app yet either. As a bet on the future, I see this as a sure thing - at least for a couple of years. Certainly FAR more sensible than doing a PC game and pitching it against the 40 million others.
     
  17. Applewood

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    Bloody hell, you've got a good memory. We gained approval for that on PSN a couple of years ago but never followed it up.

    I'll give you half a point for catching me out there, but you're doubltess unaware that the pool game was originally intended for PC release when we started it, before realising that PC games don't make money. It's currently half-finished and will probably stay that way as it'd never earn back the 2 months dev it would take to finish it.

    We've learned a lot since then, the biggest lesson being don't write a PC game. Or another XBLA game for that matter. I will admit though that it was a blow when we couldn't get it on XBLA at the time - it would've taken no time at all to get running. With the state of XBLA now, I wouldn't push it out on that platform even if they said we could.

    On our todo list is switching Basement Pool to 3DS at some point, thank goodness we don't use middleware - it'll go over in no time... :)

    EDIT: I realise you didn't mention our Shogi game which /is/ out on XBLA. This was a massive dissapoinment and a bit of an epic fail - all the expectations we had about the Japanese market came to nothing, we missed the annual shogi champs for release which fubarred many sales. Our title has in fact been hovering near the bottom of the sales charts for some time.

    Why am I drawing attention to this dismal failure? We've still taken more money than I'll bet 95% of the guys on this board could show for a similar time investment. We and MS between us couldn't have fucked it up more, yet we still came out winners. +1 for the closed platforms!
     
    #37 Applewood, May 31, 2010
    Last edited: May 31, 2010
  18. Derek5432

    Derek5432 New Member

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    I currently serve as a publisher for the Android Market for a Russian developer. If anyone's in a similar situation, message me and we can talk. You need to have or apply for a US Taxpayer ID, though (the money is earned in the US, and you're responsible for paying the IRS on your earnings).
     
  19. Jack Norton

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    Thanks for the explanation Applewood :) From what you say, indeed seems that closed platforms are cool!
    There's only one difference that might be big or not (depending on how you like to develop games): while on PC you can make "decent income" as lone dev (one man company) I believe it's impossible to do that in a closed platform... I'm not sure though, maybe for DSi or other smaller ones probably?
     
  20. Applewood

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    Bloody hope so - there's only 3 of us atm, we're hardly Crytek! :)

    I would say the bar has to be set high - people don't buy crap on any platform. But the limitations of the devices mean you don't need to actually be Crytek to compete either.

    If your game looks professional and has good content, it's gonna sell. Ticking those boxes isn't any harder on DS than it is on PC or iPhone.
     

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