What theme sells more?

Discussion in 'Indie Basics' started by speeder, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. speeder

    speeder
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    I am making a game... A very simple game, and I realized I can fit thousands of themes on it.


    So, let's take a existing game as example: Ant Smasher for iphone.

    It is like any other rail shooter: Thing pop on screen, you click/tap/shoot/whatever it. And it dies.


    You can make that ant smashing, zombie shooting, alien exploding, ladybug scaring, devil smithing, and so on...


    So, when you have that great game design that you can fit a thousand themes, how you decide them? Specially if you are trying to choose the one that will be most popular.
     
  2. Desktop Gaming

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    Hidden object/adventure, pretty much. But they also require a huge investment of time and capital.
     
  3. Tobias

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    My 2 cents: You should first decide if you are going for the mass market or not (which depends on how much marketing power you have, since there's a lot of rail shooters out there). I am going to assume you have practically zero marketing power and advice you to choose a theme that will take care of marketing for you (while most likely also limiting your potential market size). Remember the game "Stalin vs Martians"? Yeah, it sucks, but it got attention before release just for the name.

    Here's a couple of tasteful names to get you in the mood for choosing a theme:
    McClane vs Bad German Accent Guy
    Hitler on Vacation
    Joyride Zombies in Vaginaland
     
  4. Richard Nunes

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    You could compile a list of rail-shooters and see what sorts of things players shoot and try to spot a hole in the market. That can be tough because it's easier to follow the trend... every match-three designer inevitably starts with jewels and tries to think of something different.

    Is there something topical like the heads of Republican presidential hopefuls you can pop?

    Borrow from film and make it an Indiana Jones style without using any trademark like the name or font.

    Who is your market? Can you focus on a market that is underserved? Tweens popping flowers with generic pop music in the background? Classic arcade music popping Tron-style shapes? Throw up an Egyptian theme onto it. I do mean "throw up" because, when in doubt, give it an Egyptian theme.

    Are there any gameplay mechanics different from the competition?
     
  5. Applewood

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    Someone please make this game!
     
  6. gamer247

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    I was just about to start a thread regarding this.
    Did anyone make a porn game or did some research about it?
    Just start with "A friend of mine ..." if you don't want to damage your reputation, I doubt any of us cares :)

    So is it an undiscovered land? What are the cons? Can you make the player play it longer then 20 mins :)
    I read about some games big sellers like Larry, Wet porn Empire apparently it was a big success.
    How about an indie porn game?
    Let's share the wisdom.
     
  7. Applewood

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    It's something I've given a lot of thought to. (sic)

    Porn studio where you have to film an orgy by moving the people and the cameramen yourself. You get points for creativity, variation, good close up money shots and etc. Need a really good skeletal animation system with proper IK to make it work well. :)
     
  8. gamer247

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    I wouldn't mind working with some porn stars :)
    But for real is there money to be made?
     
  9. gamer247

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    Honestly I get super motivated only just by thinking about it.
     
  10. Tobias

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    hehe... :)
     
  11. GMarkou

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    And use a 3D modelling program? Hell no! I would use some real motion-captured data, and to be sure that everything is top quality, I would drop programming and become motion-capture supervisor for this... :)
     
  12. Desktop Gaming

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    Interestingly, they did. It used to be on the BMT Micro affiliate program, don't know if it still is.
     
  13. HMAudio

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    Yikes! This thread derailed quickly, right into the gutter (of our minds!)

    Back on topic, if you're looking to get maximum sales safely, then take a look at what already is selling like hotcakes, and one-up it. Nowadays kid-friendly, cute/cartoony, and anything with zombies are all over the place. You need to stand out by taking these favorite themes and polishing it until it shines with high quality.

    I'd prefer of course to try to be as original as possible, with wildly creative ideas that make people look twice. Those ideas aren't as "safe" however, which is why they are hard to find and are frequently unpolished.

    Whatever you go with, best of luck!
     
  14. Tobias

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    I disagree HMAudio. In fact I think it's the opposite, that it's very risky to one-up what's popular.
     
  15. Grey Alien

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    Love Chess. Remember that? Sold like gang busters.
     
  16. Applewood

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    I'd missed that one.

    I wonder how many chess lovers have googled "love chess" and found something they weren't quite looking for! :)
     
  17. Man of Ice

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    We have tried the "as creative as possible" approach - and it doesnt work out well. You will always loose potential customers from simply having a weird theme that someone does not like or get.

    I'd definitely go for conventional and safe any day. Mind you, that this still could be "zombie" or "cute cute happy-go-happy" or similar. But feed the masses what they love basically and execute it as good as you can to stand out. Weird name helps I think.

    /Thomas
     
  18. speeder

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    My point is: What he masses want?
     
  19. ManuelMarino

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    yes, if you want to make money, a good arcade and conventional game will work. But, in the meantime, what about a text and deep roguelike rpg? :)
     

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