DefCom Promethean Wars: What happened after v1.2 is released

Well, the statistics I saw after the v1.2 update are really interesting, but more on that later.

I published DefCom on April, 2014. Until September, the game saw a little bit more then 700 downloads. I used a shareware model, so you can play the first 7 levels and you can then buy the full game for a measly 1.99$. Other then this, no in-ap purchases whatsoever. About 60 nice people actualy bought unlocked the game (thanks again). Which I concluded that game doesn’t suck, since I think a 10% conversion rate is OK. Anyways, I didn’t get any coverage or mentions in any medium to boost the downloads or sales.

Now back to the v1.2 update. This update added a new star-system to explore and also new missions and a boss level. The problem is, it came far too late. I was thinking that no one will bother to upgrade, since the average new downloads in the past weeks were only a handful. What shocked me is:

  • Actually 48 people updated. So basically apart from the newish downloads, I guess at least 30-40 people didn’t uninstalled the app for the past 6 or so months.
  • Moreover, 276 people have redownloaded the app. on the day of the update. However, when I check the reports, they are using “desktop”. I don’t know what it means, since the game is only available for iPad! I’ll appreciate if anybody can shed some light on this. (Edit: There is a good explanation of this on stack exchange. So basically, you can download an app to your iOS device from your desktop iTunes. Hmm)

Well, I’ll track the updates and the new downloads some more. If they reach a reasonable level, then I’m really thinling to add more content before starting to work on DefCom 2. Let’s wait and see.

DefCom Promethean Wars and Jewelled Stars Mythos updates

This month I’m busy with updating our older title “DefCom : Promethean Wars” to version 1.2. Also JS Mythos is getting an update that enables Game Center.

DefCom will soon receive a new system (The Koronis) with a number of new levels and a new boss level.

Honestly, the backend of the DefCom is not that flexible and adding new content prooved harder then I originally anticipated. However, I really like the graphics and the good-old tower defense concept. I’m thinking to re-write the whole engine, using the similar assetts and continue the story. But things may change and I may decide to add a third and a fourth system with some new enemies, plot and boss levels.

That will now depend on how many people actually upgrade to version 1.3. If I see an upgrade rate that is somehwhere close to the sales, then I’ll stick with upgrading. If no-one cares about this upgrade, then I’d say it’s time for the DefCom 2.

Let’s see how will it unfold.

How a simple side project turned into an iOS & Web Game – Part 2

I finally submitted the version 1.0 of the Jewelled Stars Mythos to the App Store. At the last minute I changed the name, partly not to have any issues for using the word “saga”. Anyway, I guess it will take a week for the approval process.

Jewlled Stars Mythos

I’ll use this blog for making more development specific posts. In the mean time I created another sub-blog for the game itself here.

The first technical topic I will write about is the automated content creation.

How a simple side project turned into an iOS & Web Game – Part 1

So we have this community called hobbygamedev on reddit. I also joined, hoping to meet fellow enthusiastic game developers and get some motivation. On April, Chris DeLeon started a warm-up round named April Collaboration. The idea is to start and deliver a game in one month with 0 budget. The aim was to stretch our game-making muscles and experiment on collaborating with volunteers.

Anyway, I accepted the challenge to lead a project, along with some more people and began working on the game. We aimed to make a simple concentration game. My personal target was to make all the coding and leave all the asset creation to the other contributors. Man, it worked! And here is fastest game I produced and readily playable in your favourite browser thanks to the super-duper HTML5+Javascript+impactjs.

Then something interesting happened. After posted a mini post-mortem in reddit, I got some comments and this one really got me thinking:

Excellent! My wife heard me playing this, came over and kicked me off the computer to have a go. She loves it.

This also happened with my wife and also my daughter. At least they played the game, commented that some sounds are way too high, graphics etc.., but basically said, well this is not garbage :>

So I thought, if I could make a game in 1 month, how well can I polish it in some more months. At that time, I had just finished my first iOS title and the sales were, how can I say, down-to-earth and frankly I wasn’t in the mood to start another project of that size.

Well, fast forward 3 months and here I have a concentration game with an attitude. I mean, the basic mechanics (and even most of the code) is exactly the same as the first one and also similar to what you can find in the internet by dozens. But adding the levels and difficulty increase, etc.. this is something you can play – I dare say- like Candy Crush Saga.

This post will continue, but if you want to play the alpha version, it’s here. I wasn’t going to post the game until I finished it completely, primarily for the reasons that someone can copy it before I hit the market and etc. But anyway, I don’t think that’ll happen. At the very least, this fear can provide some additional motivation to finish it earlier then anybody else 🙂

I’ll really appreciate any comments, here or in reddit. I’ll post part II in a while. Thanks for reading.