The Escapist refers to this forum!

Discussion in 'Indie Related Chat' started by GBGames, Aug 30, 2005.

  1. Andy

    Original Member

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    Make that game and publish it Daniel. :)

    No, seriously. Don't be offended. OK? But try to get visible and recognized after that. Even with non programmer graphics with just all that croud of terrible titles around. Just try this and say me later.

    EDIT: I've postponed the reading of that one of your always long speaches Joe. Hmmm. What to say?... Correct. Correct.

    The latest "probably" - i'd replace by something more appropriate like "may be" ;)
     
  2. Black Hydra

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    I think that Andy is definitely right (but I like to argue with people anyways). The article really made the shareware scene see like some financial orgy where you could come in and just reap in huge amounts of money. And that this was some hidden secret unknown to everyone in the world.

    The fact is, (and is always being pointed out by those who experience it) that shareware is a very hard business to survive in and although it has advantages if you are an indie developer you have a lot of obstacles to overcome.

    Dan - You really need to get those final touches on your games and get them up on your website. It seems like there are three types of people here. (1) successful indies, (2) indies, (3) time-wasting noobs. Until you graduate to the second catagory nobody really listens to you about anything (nobody listens to me either :D), usually with good reason. Get into catagory 1 and I'm sure you could probably tell most the people here that promoting white supremacy on your website is a good sales tactic and they'd listen to you.
     
  3. merovingian

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    From my perspective, most of the people on here will never amount to much financially, but they'll have a lot of fun either making a game or thinking about making one.

    That having been said, there's *always* room for new blood no matter what the naysayers say. Anyone who insists otherwise is just making excuses. If you've got it, flaunt it.

    Or to quote a dead president:

    "Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence.
    Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent.
    Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb.
    Education will not; the world is full of educated failure.
    Keep Believing. Keep Trying. Persistence and Determination alone are omnipotent." - Calvin Coolidge
     
  4. goodsol

    Indie Author

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    Hmmm... looks like some writer has been reading my blog :)

    I would be totally shocked if Pretty Good Solitaire sold less in its 2nd 10 years as it did in its first. Given that it currently sells more in one month than it did in its first 3 years combined (almost 4 years in fact), its 2nd ten years (which started in July) already has a nice lead.

    Every business is a hard business, why should shareware be any different? The point of the article, I think, is that shareware allows you to live a better lifestyle than those poor sobs who work for the big gaming companies.

    Currently the casual game space is experiencing what can only be a bubble where everybody is entering the area in the belief that they will make tons of easy money.

    Of course it won't happen that way because the bubble will pop. The supply of product will overwhelm the demand (can you say "Game of the Day"?) When the bubble pops, a lot of companies will go out of business and people will exclaim that no one can possibly make money in casual games anymore.

    This will be wonderful for the companies that survive because then there will be less competition again. I have no idea how long it will take the bubble to pop as bubbles can last longer and go higher than anyone would expect, but someday soon the market will change again.

    The beauty of the direct to the customer method of shareware is that these external factors really don't mean much to a shareware business. As long as you are up and running and your web site can be found, people will find you. Of course, the key is to have something that people are looking for. People rarely find what they aren't looking for.
     
  5. Allen Varney

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    I could have played up the statement I made on the article's last page: "Yes, it's definitely possible to get rich in casual games. In fact, though, most newcomers fail dismally. The many reasons include lack of patience, lack of originality (the world doesn't need another Breakout clone), and lack of marketing." However, I was primarily interested in changing the hardcore audience's perceptions of casual gaming.

    "This was some hidden secret unknown to everyone in the world" seems to me accurate. It really is a hidden secret, at least to hardcore gamers. I'm pretty sure that article will dumbfound the Escapist's target audience. Slashdot linked to it, and in the comments to the post, the geek community showed no awareness of the tenets of indie gaming.
     
  6. Jack Norton

    Indie Author

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    Yes but , pardon me, you situation is VERY particular. You were so smart to start early with a genre (solitaries) who will NEVER decline.
    Not saying that it was your only merit: but surely is influencing your business more than everything else.
    I didn't even dare to make a solitaire game. Why? I would have to compete with YOU :D
     
  7. monco

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    Talent and persistance are both necessary. The persistent lack-talent will continue to produce bad games which nobody buys, and sadly continue to blame "market forces" for their failure.
     
  8. terin

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    Don't take it personally Allen

    Heh Allen, I understood that was your goal and I certainly appreciated it :)

    -Joe
     
  9. ERoberts

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    Hey, Jack, you started with sports simulation/management quite some time ago now (is it 2 or 3 years?). But you kept making new products, didn't you? You didn't have the patience to keep adding to and improving USM, releasing richer and richer versions over the years, did you?

    What could you have achieved in these years had you had the same focus, dedication and drive as Warfield or Pavlina? If you had kept your head down and focused on making your product so good that it is irresistable for fans of the genre?

    I'm sick and tired of people claiming that the situation of the successful indies are so special and only a result of them being lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time, when it's clearly a matter of hard work, dedication and talent.

    I'm sorry Jack, but you've never come across to me as someone who's building a serious business, so I'm not surprised that you don't think it is possible to reach the same success as Pavlina or Warfield. But I think it is fair to say that this is because of YOU and YOUR decisions, rather than the state of the industry.
     
  10. Jack Norton

    Indie Author

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    I bow in front of you all. My excuses :D
     
  11. Emmanuel

    Moderator Original Member

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    I think you might be surprised by Jack's income and the fact he's been full-time and living off his games for years.

    Best regards,
    Emmanuel
     
  12. Andy

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    And at the same time he tries to be helpful and warn newcomers about the reality - this business in general is far away from a Golden Eldorado.
     
  13. soniCron

    Indie Author

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    I think goodsol hit it right on the head, however, that this business is just like any other: very risky and certainly not a sure thing.
     
  14. Andy

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    Nope, Daniel. Wrong. This is business is different from amount of anothers. Because here are just you (and may be few partners) and the market. And most of us should (have chosen) to do (almost) everything by their own. Compare this with retail software business for example.

    There is almost no an option to say - hell, this is not my fault, these are our managers, employees.

    And this is not very easy to accept at the beginning when you get no the results you were expecting. I say you for sure we've overestimated by 100 times the income from our very first game published as indie. 100 times Daniel. And we had pretty good and established consultants at that moment and more than 15 years of game development in the basement.

    That's really what I'm trying to warn you guys.

    PS Thomas?.. Well. I said that million times before I lOVE this guy, love the games he makes and respect the business stage he has established.
    But don't trust him too much. ;) He don't know too well another side of the coin. I'm not moaning as mention most of "have a talent and dedication" posters. I just know how is this to start in the current moment. Thomas doesn't. :)
    Pardon me Thomas. OK? We are not worthy! etc. :D
     
  15. soniCron

    Indie Author

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    I'm not sure I understand what you are saying. Or, rather, how you are disagreeing with me? I'm surprised there aren't more indies failing miserably, especially with the severly lowered entry cost. The market is way oversaturated as it stands. I'm patiently waiting for the housing bubble to pop and everyone's leisure money to go down the drain. I've got a feeling this'll knock the independent gaming market down to a more reasonable size.
     
  16. Jack Norton

    Indie Author

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    Just a quick serious reply:
    I stopped the original USM because I realized the mistake to have used Blitzbasic for such a big project. But USM2 is in production...

    Download UBM or The Goalkeeper, you'll find a readme.rtf file in the installation directory, with a detailed list of all updates I made. I kept improving of course only the best-selling games ;)
    I never said that, I only said that being at right place in the right moment IS A BIG factor, in ANY business, not shareware only. Hard to object this I think...:D
    What is your website? I would like to see what you've achieved so far, just curious. I'm sure you're better than me, like all the other forum members. I know, I'm lame :D
     
    #36 Jack Norton, Sep 1, 2005
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2005
  17. ERoberts

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    It's no different from other types of small business. 50% of ALL small business fail their first year, 95% fail within the first 5 years (source: http://usgovinfo.about.com/od/smallbusiness/a/whybusfail.htm). A large majority of the ones that survive the first 5 years will fail within the next 5 years. Indie business is no different to other business. Do you think Warfield and Pavlina made lots of money right from the start? I've gotten the impression that it took quite a long time for them to become really profitable. A lot of time, and a lot of hard work. Patience. It seems to me like many indies, who can't blame their failure on "managers, employees", just choose to blame it on the tough market conditions. While at the same time, a lot of indiegames are average or poorly done, and most with derivative gameplay and dozens of clones.

    I think it is the "get rich quick" mentality that is the problem here, not the viability of the market itself.

    What a load of crap. It is always hard to get a business profitable. I'm very sure Thomas could get a business to be successful if he started now. Wold it take him a few years? Yeah, of course it would. IT TAKES TIME TO GET A BUSINESS PROFITABLE. ANY BUSINESS.

    I say don't trust Andy too much, he doesn't seem to know what running a business is all about.
     
  18. ERoberts

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    Don't have a website, haven't achieved anything, and have never claimed that I have.

    But as this is one of those places that are open to anyone that want to vent their frustrations about things they don't really possess experience in or knowledge of, I thought I'd join the crowd. And I am certainly in good company.
     
  19. ManuelFLara

    Indie Author

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    Well, since as you say you don't have achieved anything yet and I'm pretty sure Andy has, why should we trust you but not him? I'd pretty much trust (a business advice from) someone who has built a successful business than one that hasn't, and I'm not talking about making six figures a year, just being profitable.
     

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