The mobile gaming space is finally exploding, growing at a faster rate than all other gaming segments combined. And while many game devs are finally embracing the platform, many of them aren’t really factoring in the importance of growing a community for their mobile games.
I remember growing up how I was the only real gamer on my block, and if you were a gamer, you knew the type. Someone like… me. It was my #1 hobby, and as such, I spent a great deal of time and money on my hobby. Til recently, there really was only one definition of a gamer to most people (though true gamers knows the distinction between a PC game, a console gamer, and who the Nintendo fanboys are, and who the Sony fanboys!) It’s impressive to see how things have changed.
So I run an indie game dev studio called Wicked Loot, and while we got team members all over the world, most of us live in the San Francisco bay area. Over the last year, the team I had some discussions of where we set up shop for Wicked Loot, often times in a fun filled conversation over drinks. We joke about being able to code on the beach, or on a villa somewhere south of the border, somewhere warm, and somewhere that inspires you. And the funny thing is, we always end on an awkward pause thinking “well, why can’t we do that?” After all, we’re not just building a game, we’re building a game studio too, and if we had our druthers, why not factor in where we work as part of this adventure we’re on?
I came across an article on Fast Company recently entitled “Why Your Brand Should Piss Someone Off”, and it really got me thinking. Not only because I take a particular interest in marketing techniques (although I do–residual from college). I think it really struck me because I love finding applications for hypotheses like these in real life. I have had the the privilege of playing “fly on the wall” for far too many hours of discussion related to getting an indie studio off the ground: what the first game should be, how it should be structured, who the target market is, and (according to this article, more importantly) brand identity. It’s all about grabbing your audience by the shoulders and shaking them.
If you love indie games, or make indie games, you gotta check out the documentary Indie Game: The Movie. It’s the sort of flick that can stir something up. In the last month or so, I’ve joined in several conversations about the movie, and interestingly enough, I found that people took different things away from it. All thought the movie was worthy of the indie scene. But for different reasons. Here’s two interesting takes!
It’s true, I have found myself playing a lot of Awesomenauts lately. How I missed this little gem when it was first released, I do not know. Perhaps it had to do with the overly colorful and cutesy marketing of the trailers and screenshots. Many potential players dismissed the game as a simple kids’ title, myself included. But upon reading more about the game on various forums, I was surprised to learn that Ronimo Games had created a quite challenging and addicting entry into the Mutiplayer Online Battle Arena genre. I decided to give the game a try and downloaded it on the Xbox Live Arcade.
Once upon a time, some people at Fire Hose Games had a conversation wherein it was noted that there are a lot of games out right now that feature zombies, but not so many with dinosaurs. Truly, a travesty. An affront to polite society. “It was one of those things that started as a joke, but people got more excited over,” said Eitan Glinert, Fire Chief and founder of Fire Hose Games. Hence, Go Home Dinosaurs, a game to satisfy your sauropoidal needs (sort of – more on that later).