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Category: Game Business

YouTube COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT appears!  SEGA used TACT! It’s super effective!

Sonic BoomRemember when Sega was yanking gameplay videos of Shining Force off of YouTube?  Even videos where fans were merely discussing the game were getting flagged for copyright violations.

Yeah, bad times.

Well, it seems like Sega has come a long way in the last few years regarding YouTube copyright claims as it has decided to exercise an amazing amount of tact while simultaneously making entirely reasonable claims.

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‘Essential Facts About the Video Game Industry’ are ESSENTIAL!!!

Essential Facts 2016Another year, another Essential Facts About the Computer and Video Game Industry report released by the Entertainment Software Association, the org that represents the interests of video game publishers but not necessarily gamers.  You’d think those interests would be one and the same but perhaps that’s a rant for another time.

The demographic data in the annual report is compiled from a survey of over 4000 American households conducted by market research company Ipsos MediaCT for the ESA.  You can read the report and devour all of its numbery goodness at your leisure but here’s the data I found most interesting:

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‘Uncensored’ should be a baseline expectation, not a special feature

Corpse PartyOn April 15, publisher XSEED hit up its tumblr to announce the forthcoming PC and 3DS releases of Corpse Party, a localization of the original Japanese horror adventure.

The lengthy post mostly concerns itself with assuring readers that the game is arriving in the west completely uncensored.

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The Promise Of The “No Sale Promise” Might Just Be Snake Oil

No Sale PromiseEarlier today, I learned about a new initiative created by a few developers. Chalo Chalo developers Tomasz Kaye and Richard Boeser created this initiative after reading an editorial by Castle Doctrine developer Jason Rohrer. In this editorial, Jason writes about why he feels that rampant game sales are bad for fans.

You can read Jason’s full article, but the gist of it is that gamers will wait until a sale rather than buy the games at launch. The problem is that game developers will see a reduction in launch revenue and be forced to rely on the months of long tail to break even. His solution is to reverse the sale process. His solution is to offer the discounts up front and then raise the price later.

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Tracer: Subway sandwich thighs and a ridiculously deep butt crack

Tracer ButtSee the lady in the yellow pants to the left?  That’s Tracer from Blizzard’s upcoming game Overwatch.  According to game director Jeff Kaplan, the creative team wasn’t “entirely happy with [that] pose” so late last month, the devs at Blizzard replaced it with the one they feel “speaks more to the character of Tracer.”

You can find Tracer’s new pose below the break.

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Could GameStop’s publishing plans hurt Game Informer’s credibility?

gamestopSo GameStop is starting its own publishing label, apparently. The company known for being the biggest video games retailer in the world has decided that it wants to publish “indie games” under a new label called “GameTrust.” This news about GameStop dipping its big toe into the publishing pond is fine, dandy, and wonderful for them, and I wish them well in their future endeavors, but I wonder how the magazine it owns – Game Informer – will cover them.

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Are Stretch Goals Right For Your Crowdfunding Campaign?

crowdfunding Indiegogo Kickstarter

You have all seen them. You may have backed a crowdfunding project because of them. But the question remains, are they good for your business? Kickstarter has finally written a blog post on the topic and it pretty much meshes with how I have always thought of them.

For a typical stretch goal a creator will promise to release their game in additional formats or add extra functions if certain funding goals are hit. But expanding a project’s scope can change the creative vision and put the whole project at risk. We’ve seen stretch goals leave some projects overwhelmed, over-budget, and behind schedule.

Many Kickstarter projects end up significantly overfunded, and creators often use those funds to improve the project’s end product. More funding might mean higher-quality materials and other improvements that thank backers with a better-made thing. For other creators overfunding means the project turns a profit. Both are great outcomes. Stretch goals, on the other hand, trade long-term risk for a short-term gain. Tread carefully.

This is pretty much how I have always looked at stretch goals. While they may seem like a good way to spend that extra money or attract additional backers, if you do not plan them out correctly, they can be a bad thing for your project. I would personally like to see that extra money just go toward general polish on the game rather than extra features that may or may not work out or that may or may not ever get completed.

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Ouya Matching Funds A Great Deal For Developers

The Ouya $1 Million Free The Games Fund

With the news yesterday on Ouya’s plans to match the successful Kickstarter campaigns of potentially Ouya exclusive games, a lot of people, both press and developers alike, have wondered if this is a good deal for indie developers. After thinking about it and seeing some numbers, I think it is.

The first thing going for Indie developers is that there are roughly 58,000 Kickstarter backed consoles in circulation right now. That is not including the thousands sold both by Ouya directly and participating retailers. That means there are 10s of thousands of console owners hungry for quality games to reach the console. While asking those console owners to wait a year or more for your game might seem daunting, it is nothing new. It happens all the time on Kickstarter.

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