December 17, 2014

Bloons Monkey City

From Jay is Games

by kimberlyfelix on December 17, 2014 05:00 PM

Platform: iOS, Flash — Bloons Monkey City In Bloons Monkey City you go behind the scenes to train, upgrade, and build a city for your monkey army to inhabit all while working toward one goal: Retake your land from the evil Bloons. Use your tower defense skills to fight back the enemy all while managing your town in order to grow your forces. Tagged as: bloons, browser, flash, free, game, ios, ipad, iphone, ipodtouch, microtransactions, mobile, ninjakiwi, rating-g, simulation, strategy, tablet, towerdefense, upgrades

Thermo

From Jay is Games

by Satori on December 17, 2014 02:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Thermo Dip your toes in this cozy ambient platformer and adjust the temperature to your liking to activate and reach the exits. Use special hot and cold abilities available in water to master each of its 30 beautiful and imaginative levels. Tagged as: awolfers, browser, dcarpenter, flash, free, game, gren, jgross, kjin, platform, puzzle, rating-y, rnason

Weekday Escape N°54

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 17, 2014 05:00 AM

Platform: Flash — Weekday Escape N°54 Games featured this week: My First Christmas Tree Escape; Room With Designed Windows Escape 2; Gangster's Escape — Just because Christmas is around the corner doesn't mean we have to be smothered in Santa! (Ew.) This week's installment of Weekday Escape features a little girl trying to trim her first Christmas tree, a colourful room with a clever minimalist design, and a dastardly escape from a buncha wise guys, you dirty rat. Tagged as: blog, browser, escape, flash, free, game, justpinegames, no1game, weekday-escape, yominokagura

December 16, 2014

$200 HTML5 Advance Opportunity Ends 12/31

From FlashGameLicense Blog

by Aaron on December 16, 2014 07:15 PM

Due to the overwhelming success of the $200 advance opportunity for HTML5 games that integrated our sdk, we’ve decided to end this promotion while we focus on building out the tools that will be needed to get them distributed to as many platforms as possible. We are currently distributing HTML5 games to Amazon, the new HTML5 Game Shop, Portal in a Box, and more; all with no additional work from the developers. We are actively working to improve our sdk’s functionality while expanding out to other platforms as quickly as we can and will automatically start distributing the games that have given permission.

If you are currently working on an HTML5 game and want it to be eligible for the $200 advance, please be sure to have it submitted for QA before the end of the year!*

Not to worry, though, we will continue to accept new HTML5 games in 2015, and will run them through the same QA steps,  distribute them to all available platforms where we have been given permission, and continue to maximize earnings for developers.

Please let us know if you’d like to review or change the distribution plan for any of your games and we’ll get it sorted as soon as possible.

*Games submitted must be complete games.  No partially finished games will be eligible.  Games do NOT have to be fully QA tested by the end of December to be eligible.  If your game is complete, but still in the QA process, then your game will still be eligible.  FGL reserves the right to reject any submitted game, for any reason.

The Way the Gingerbread Cookie Crumbles

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 16, 2014 04:00 PM

Platform: Flash — The Way the Gingerbread Cookie Crumbles George is throwing a Christmas party, but nobody is going to be satisfied until there are gingerbread cookies. Too bad his oven is broken and there's a blizzard out! Search the house to try to come up with a solution in this short and silly point-and-click puzzle game from Carmel Games. Tagged as: browser, carmelgames, christmas, flash, free, game, playthis, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-y

Ginger Joy

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 16, 2014 01:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Ginger Joy Spend a little Christmas time with TomaTea in this seasonal escape with a sweet tooth. With codes and puzzles hidden everywhere, along with some sweet seasonal surprises, Ginger Joy's clever bits make up for a few puzzles whose solutions might be a little obtuse. Tagged as: browser, christmas, escape, flash, free, game, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-g, tomatea

December 15, 2014

The Talos Principle

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 15, 2014 07:00 PM

Platform: Mac, Windows, Linux — The Talos Principle Gorgeous, challenging, and contemplative, this first-person indie philosophical puzzle adventure stars you as an unnamed robot who awakens, seemingly at the whim of a voice from the sky, who tells you to seek out sigils to prove your worth... but never climb the great tower. With a complex and engaging story and puzzles that will keep you wrapped up for hours and hours, this is one stunner that should not be missed. Tagged as: adventure, affiliate, croteam, demo, download, game, greenmangaming, indie, jkyratzes, linux, mac, puzzle, rating-y, scifi, steam, surreal, tjubert, windows

The Rosefinch Curse

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 15, 2014 04:00 PM

Platform: Flash — The Rosefinch Curse The last thing Tina remembers is a truck racing towards her. So why has she woken up in what appears to be a school filled with locks and strange mechanisms? A rough but impressive blend of escape and classic point-and-click adventure with multiple characters, endings, and a branching plot. Tagged as: adventure, browser, escape, flash, free, game, playthis, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-y, t34studio

Now Hiring: Game Designer!

From Gambrinous Blog

by Colm on December 15, 2014 02:46 PM

Hi folks!

I'm looking for a talented game designer to join the team here at Gambrinous. The ideal person would

  • love creating engaging, elegant systems that are a joy to play, learn and master
  • have a deep interest in board games and card games and what makes them tick
  • be keen to apply board & card game mechanics to a digital game
  • have a portfolio of previous games or prototypes they have built
  • enjoy working in a small team where everyone's effort makes a big difference
  • get to focus on gameplay rather than monetisation (we don't do F2P)
Doodley!

You too could be a Dungeoneer!

That person will be joining a team of four working on Guild of Dungeoneering, which is due to come out on Steam and tablets in mid 2015. More info on Guild of Dungeoneering can be found right over here.

We don't know what we'll work on after that but you can bet it will be something boardgamey and full of juicy game design challenges. We are based in Dublin, Ireland but I'm also willing to talk about working remotely with the right person.

Interested? Great! Drop me a mail (colm@gambrinous.com) and tell me about yourself. I'd also love to see some of your previous work and get an idea of your salary expectations.

Cheers,
Colm Larkin

Tightrope Theatre

From Jay is Games

by Johnny123 on December 15, 2014 01:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Tightrope Theatre You're a unicyclist tasked with performing death defying stunts for an eager crowd. You've got to roll and leap from tightrope to tightrope, avoiding spikes, flames and even cannonballs along the way. Another great hit from Ludum Dare! Tagged as: action, adventureislands, browser, flash, free, game, jsimpanen, ludumdare, platform, rating-g, retro

December 14, 2014

Vampire Legends: The Untold Story of Elizabeth Bathory

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 14, 2014 06:00 PM

Platform: Mac, Windows — Vampire Legends:  The Untold Story of Elizabeth Bathory Young women have been vanishing after being summoned to the Countess Elizabeth Bathory, but the king is too busy with the war to investigate. You, a young gypsy with a talent for mixing potions, have been called in to find out the truth in this rough-around-the-edges but appealingly grisly hidden-object adventure. Tagged as: adventure, affiliate, casual, demo, download, game, hiddenobject, mac, o2d, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-o, windows

Bundle Bounty: December 14th

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 14, 2014 03:00 PM

Bundle Bounty: December 14th Bundle Bounty is a new weekly feature that rounds up some of the best gaming bundles being sold! This week, pick up all of the best Batman games for less than the cost of a movie ticket, a huge pack containing everything from an indie visual novel/RPG hybrid to a boxing game, and much more! Tagged as: blog, bundle

Epic Time Pirates

From Jay is Games

by Lori.h on December 14, 2014 01:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Epic Time Pirates Work with your crew to take down time anomalies through king-of-the-hill battles, capture the flag games and the good old fashioned shoot 'em up death match. Epic Time Pirates is a quirky, fast-paced arena shooter from Jay Armstrong! Tagged as: action, arena, browser, flash, free, game, jarmstrong, platform, rating-o, shooter

December 13, 2014

Find the Escape-Men Part 129: Year-End Party

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 13, 2014 04:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Find the Escape-Men Part 129: Year-End Party It's a New Year party gone out of control in this escape game from no1game! Round up your coworkers and get them under control if you ever want to get home. Keep your eyes peeled for clues, and search every nook and cranny! Tagged as: browser, escape, escapemen, flash, free, game, no1game, playthis, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-o

Slydrs

From Jay is Games

by Lori.h on December 13, 2014 01:00 PM

Platform: iOS, Android, Flash — Slydrs Everyone needs a healthy dose of adorableness. And these sweet little robots provide that and more; a great mental workout in the form of a simple yet engaging sliding block puzzle game. Tagged as: android, browser, flash, free, game, ios, ipad, iphone, ipodtouch, mobile, oliverpearl, puzzle, rating-g, robot, slidingblock

December 12, 2014

The Empty Kingdom

From Jay is Games

by Lori.h on December 12, 2014 04:00 PM

Platform: Flash — The Empty Kingdom No more battle cries. No more allies or foes. No more levels or epic loot.The Empty Kingdom is coming to an end. Once the clock strikes midnight all the servers will be shut down. All that is left is a king, wandering around his empty kingdom in hopes of finding something; perhaps a new life to begin. Tagged as: browser, dmgoodbrey, experimental, flash, free, game, interactiveart, rating-g, visualnovel

Monkey GO Happy North Pole

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 12, 2014 01:20 PM

Platform: Flash — Monkey GO Happy North Pole The monkeys have gone way, way North this time, and not a moment too soon... Santa's workshop is a shambles! Can you help them put it together in this sweetly seasonal point-and-click puzzle game? Tagged as: browser, christmas, flash, free, game, monkeygohappy, pencilkids, playthis, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-g, rvencel

December 11, 2014

Rogue Legend

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 11, 2014 06:00 PM

Platform: Android, Flash — Rogue Legend Fantasy farming meets Minecraft-style building and action RPG in this rough but promising game made in just two months. Plant crops, care for livestock, fight monsters, and build your home block by block! Tagged as: action, adventure, android, browser, crafting, fantasy, flash, free, game, helpimadeagame, lanceknifehand, mobile, rating-o, rpg, simulation

How About Taking a Break

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 11, 2014 01:00 PM

Platform: Flash — How About Taking a Break Weird, silly, but not a little bit clever, this escape game may look simple, but a few coded locks you'll need to change your perspective to deduce and a whole lot of cuteness make this a short treat well worth heeding the title for. Tagged as: browser, escape, flash, free, game, kamotokamotokamo, playthis, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-g

December 10, 2014

Facility Z

From Jay is Games

by Lori.h on December 10, 2014 07:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Facility Z Waking up with no memory? Check. Underground abandoned facility? Check. Creepy mutant monsters wanting to nibble on your face while you have limited ammo? Check and check. Facility Z is ready to play. Tagged as: action, browser, flash, free, game, horror, mta, rating-o, shooter, sidescroller, zombies

Match Jong is coming soon

From Inside Pozirk Games

by pozirk on December 10, 2014 05:34 PM

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Maplewood Junior High

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 10, 2014 02:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Maplewood Junior High You've got a school assignment to finish, but all the computers are absolutely ancient, and you're totally unprepared! Despite some strange, out-of-place political talk, this point-and-click puzzle from Carmel Games offers a significant upgrade in several areas from their previous work. Tagged as: browser, carmelgames, flash, free, game, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-g

Weekday Escape N°53

From Jay is Games

by elle on December 10, 2014 05:00 AM

Weekday Escape N°53 Games featured this week: Fruit Kitchens No.14: Muscat Green; Button Escape 27; Escape from the Similar Rooms 16 — FunkyLand's way hip kitchen full of sweet green grapes, Tototo Room's quirky artwork strewn with hidden buttons, and Hottategoya's nearly identical rooms issue more escaping entertainment for all who come inside. Tagged as: blog, browser, escape, free, funkyland, game, hottategoya, pointandclick, puzzle, tototoroom, weekday-escape

December 09, 2014

Caravaneer 2

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 09, 2014 04:30 PM

Platform: Flash — Caravaneer 2 After nearly seven years, the beloved post-apocalyptic RPG trading simulation returns! You've grown up in an underground bunker all your life, but when your mentor goes missing, you're told to go bring him home... by any means necessary. Travel a dangerous wasteland, hire mercenaries, help people, and of course, make a mint buying low and selling high. Tagged as: browser, crafting, dzheltobriukhov, flash, free, game, rating-o, rpg, simulation, turnbased

Last Town

From Jay is Games

by Satori on December 09, 2014 01:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Last Town When too much witchcraft turns your town into a nightmare, it's up to you as the Mayor to quell a reanimated uprising — literally! — in this Plants vs. Zombies-like upgrade defense game. Tagged as: browser, defense, epace, flash, free, game, rating-y, timemanagement, upgrades

The 12 Days of Armormas!

From Armor Games Blog

by Ferret on December 09, 2014 12:25 AM

Around the kingdom of Armoria we’re hanging wreaths of garland and decorating Christmas trees for the season. While busy preparing for the festivities, we’ve received several tightly wrapped packages! What’s inside? We’ll be opening one each day, so come back starting the December 8th to find out what’s inside each one.

Link:

December 08, 2014

FGL Community Spotlight – A Chat with Matthew Bowden

From FlashGameLicense Blog

by Brian on December 08, 2014 10:10 PM

The Community Spotlight returns this week, and we’ve got a very special guest.  We caught up with indie triple-threat Matthew Bowden to talk about game development, publishing, and his writing projects.

——————————————-

Q: Can you introduce yourself to our developer and publisher audience?

My name’s Matthew Bowden and I’m an independent HTML5 game developer, publisher, and author. I was one of the first developers to start selling commercial HTML5 games all the way back in 2011. I currently run my online business from the comfort of my home in Brisbane, Australia.

I differentiate myself from other developers by publishing an online income report at the end of each month. In these reports I openly discuss my online earnings and growth strategies, and try to inspire hobbyists to make a living out of game development like I do.

Q: What drives your commitment to financial transparency?

Money is a taboo topic that I’ve had to approach very carefully. Personally, I’m always inspired when I see the success of others, but that’s not how everyone reacts.

When I started making games for a living I knew I wanted to use my experience as a resource for other developers to learn from. My financial transparency has helped me build an audience, but more importantly it has influenced the lives of others. I have helped dozens of developers turn their game development hobby into a career which is more than I ever aimed for.

I’ve found that while openly talking about money polarises people, it can also be influential in all the right ways. It’s also a great way to hold myself accountable – I share my bad months too!

Q: You mentioned that you took an early interest in HTML5 as a game development format. What was it that excited you about HTML5 back in 2011?

I could tell the technology had tons of potential. Adobe had just announced that they were discontinuing Flash on mobile, and had called HTML5 “the best solution for creating and deploying content in the browser across mobile platforms.”

I already had an interest in web games and mobile games, so when HTML5 presented itself as an opportunity to combine my interests in a new niche market with no competition I committed all of my time to it. I’ve been a leading proponent of HTML5 ever since.

Q: FGL recently launched its HTML5 Game Shop, and the SDK now includes support for GameMaker – an engine you’re quite proficient with. Tell us a little about GameMaker for those who may not be familiar with it yet.

GameMaker is a primarily 2D game development engine that has been used to produce indie hits such as Hotline Miami, Gunpoint, and Spelunky. The current version allows developers to export their projects to many different platforms, including Windows, OS X, iOS, Android, HTML5, and plenty more.

I’ve been using GameMaker on an almost daily basis since 2005. When I first started using the engine, I had no programming experience whatsoever; now I gladly attribute much of my success to it.

GameMaker is often underestimated (and even ridiculed) by the game development community. But if you’re making any kind of 2D game, it would be a mistake to dismiss GameMaker. It’s one of the best engines out there when it comes to rapid multi-platform development.

Q: You have an impressive social media footprint, even including your Klout score in your online income reports. How important do you think it is for developers to have a socialmedia presence?

All independent developers need a social media platform, especially when they have a minimal or non-existent marketing budget (as is often the case). I have invested a lot of time and energy into establishing my social media platform and it has paid off in spades.

When you have a social media presence you’re able to put any message you want in front of thousands of people at the click of a button. Plus, it’s free. There’s no downside to that.

Q: You recently hit a milestone with your book ‘Making Money With HTML5’ reaching$20,000 in total sales. Why has this book resonated with game developers?

I never expected my book to be as popular as it has been, especially since it’s self-published and only available on my website. The main selling point has been the market itself; compared to other crowded markets HTML5 is incredibly accessible. However, that’s changing as competition grows.

Making Money With HTML5 is the perfect starting point for developers who are interested in joining the market as easily as possible. Reader feedback has been extremely positive and it honestly just sells itself.

Q: Thanks for your time. Where can people find you?

You can read my blog online, and I’m on Twitter and Facebook as well.

Parable of the Polygons

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 08, 2014 07:00 PM

Platform: Javascript/HTML5 — Parable of the Polygons Billed as a "playable post", Nicky Case and Vi Hart use a series of simple puzzle games to illustrate how small biases can have a big impact as they talk about segregation and diversity thoughtfully and intelligently without ever pointing any fingers. Tagged as: browser, free, game, html5, ncase, nutcasenightmare, playthis, puzzle, rating-g, simpleidea, vihart

Flooded Village: Xmas Eve 3

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 08, 2014 02:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Flooded Village: Xmas Eve 3 What do you do if your boat won't float and your trees won't sprout? Well, if you're a pirate, you figure out how to flood the area in this cute and simple puzzle game with a bit of festive Christmas cheer. Tagged as: browser, christmas, dmillidge, flash, free, game, pixelchunk, playthis, puzzle, rating-g, ystaal

December 07, 2014

“Stick Nodes” on iOS – One month later…

From ForTheLoss

by Ralph on December 07, 2014 11:08 PM

So it’s been a little over one month since Stick Nodes was released on the iOS App Store.  I wanted to share some info with how it’s doing. There aren’t many stats to show, so here are the important ones:

  • 7,400+ free installs
  • 210+ pro installs

Now, the thing that really struck me is just how much more likely iOS users are to purchase an app than Android users.  For comparison, I believe the combined number of Android pro purchases across all markets is less than that of just the App Store.  (Note that the Android version has been out for almost four months vs. one month for iOS.)

The second thing that struck me is just how much more profitable ads are on iOS than Android.  I’m not going to go into numbers just yet, but the iOS version is bringing in at least 4x more revenue with ads than the Android version.  This number is only increasing as the iOS version penetrates deeper into the market.

Stick Nodes iOS stats

The graph above should tell you everything you need to know.  Notice the big spike this weekend.  I couldn’t tell you the reason for it, but I’m not going to complain.  Whether or not those kind of downloads persist is yet to be seen, but again – no complaints.

So that’s the quick rundown for how the App Store has been treating me.  The great thing is that from all of the revenue from the iOS version alone, I’ve almost broken even in terms of the money I spent for a developer license and a used Mac Mini – in only one month.  Definitely didn’t expect that, but it’s great news.

I’ll do a more in-depth summary of both the Android and iOS versions once some more time has passed.

Impressions: I Am Bread (Early Access)

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 07, 2014 05:00 PM

Platform: Mac, Windows — Impressions: I Am Bread (Early Access) One lonely little slice of bread has a dream... to be perfectly toasted. Too bad getting there is way, way harder than it sounds in this ridiculous physics game from the creators of Surgeon Simulator 2013. Currently in Early Access, I Am Bread can be frustrating, but also charming, hilarious, and a lot of fun if you're patient. Tagged as: action, adventure, bossastudios, download, earlyaccess, game, highdifficulty, indie, mac, physics, rating-g, windows

Mikke Escape 2

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 07, 2014 02:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Mikke Escape 2 Detarame Factory provides sequel satisfaction with this cute, cuddly, and most importantly clever escape where you must find and click on ten circles hidden throughout the puzzle-filled room if you want to get out! Tagged as: browser, detaramefactory, escape, flash, free, game, playthis, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-g

City Siege 3: Jungle Siege FUBAR Pack

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 07, 2014 12:00 PM

Platform: Flash — City Siege 3: Jungle Siege FUBAR Pack Blast your way through a whole new pack of levels for The Podge's popular mission-based squad shooter series! With things to explode and destructible environments, you can play it as sneaky or as massively destructive as you like... just save the civillians! Tagged as: action, browser, citysiege, flash, free, game, platform, playthis, rating-y, shooter, thepodge

December 06, 2014

Chick Mini Games (Neutral)

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 06, 2014 03:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Chick Mini Games (Neutral) What better way to celebrate the season than with three games from beloved escape creator Neutral? Though each game is short, they're all definitely sweet, and since they're all linked together, make sure you play them in order! Tagged as: browser, christmas, escape, flash, free, game, neutral, playthis, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-g

December 05, 2014

Christmas Stories: Hans Christian Andersen's Tin Soldier

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 05, 2014 07:00 PM

Platform: Mac, Windows —  Christmas Stories:  Hans Christian Andersen's Tin Soldier Charles is finally home from the war and back with his beloved Nina, but the jealous Baron has cursed everyone to toys, and with his box troll army, he might just be unstoppable... if not for you, in this gorgeous, funny, and unexpectedly heartwarming Christmas hidden-object adventure. Tagged as: adventure, affiliate, casual, christmasstories, demo, download, elephantgames, game, hiddenobject, mac, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-y, windows

Raze 3

From Jay is Games

by Johnny123 on December 05, 2014 05:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Raze 3 Aliens are back and it's up to you and your rag tag team to get out there and stomp those monsters into goo. Run, jump and shoot your way through fifteen arenas of alien on human combat, then make use of a staggering amount of upgrades. Tagged as: action, browser, flash, free, game, physics, platform, rating-o, scifi, shooter, sky9games, upgrades

Christmas of the Mazy Forest

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 05, 2014 01:45 PM

Platform: Flash — Christmas of the Mazy Forest Choko-Chais precocious cat trio have been invited to a Christmas party by the witch of the forest... too bad getting there means solving puzzles and escaping the maze in their way first! Tagged as: browser, chokochai, christmas, escape, flash, free, game, playthis, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-g

December 04, 2014

Free-To-Play vs. Customer Happiness – Part 3

From FlashGameLicense Blog

by Brian on December 04, 2014 11:12 PM

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3 (Currently Reading)

The following is a presentation created by Martine Spaans, owner of Tamalaki Publishing and frequent contributor on Business Development matters here at FGL.  Martine has 8+ years of experience in the online gaming industry and has served as Licensing Manager at Spil Games, worked in Online Marketing at Ubisoft, and is a Marketing Advisor at CFE.

———————————————

Part 3 – What Can We Do?

In retail, 6 to 12% of goods are returned. Returns are also on the rise—up 19% from 2007. For every $1 spent on merchandise today, 9¢ is returned. (Business.times.com) Online retail 60% of goods are returned. Crazy high numbers! Retails Return Policies are on a counter-movement of becoming more strict again, to protect themselves from all the abuse and costs. Compared to that, our Free-to-Play problems are nothing. Compared to that, our audience actually loves us, right?

Also, most people who are silent are just silently enjoying your game. Sometimes the biggest complainers are the most loyal players. Don’t be shocked when you see lots of bad feedback. Compare it to the hard data. Your analytics. Follow the trend of your players instead of listening to the ones with the biggest mouths.

So…if Free-to-Play is nothing new, and is apparently a problem that is not exclusive to the gaming space, how can we learn from examples outside of our own industry? I have one for you.

Several large North American cities have attempted zero-fare systems, but many of these implementations have been unsuccessful. A 2002 National Center for Transportation Research report suggests that, while transit ridership does tend to increase, there are also some serious disadvantages. This report suggests that, while ridership does increase overall, the ultimate goal of reducing emissions by enticing drivers to take transit instead is rarely met: because fare-free systems tend to attract large numbers of hooligans, vagrants and other ”problem riders”, zero-fare systems often have the effect of frightening potential riders back into their cars.

When we translate this to F2P, this is an example of a badly executed F2P design. Originally designed as premium multiplayer, then suddenly transformed info F2P. Because of the bad design, trolls can take over, and create a bad experience for the nice paying players.

When we think if the primary goal of games, it’s to make something fun. Something people really enjoy. This counts for any type of game.

For educational games, learning should be the secondary goal.
For dancing games, physical benefits should be the secondary goal.
For multiplayer games, social interaction should be the secondary goal.
For Free-to-Play games, Monetization should be the secondary goal.
For any of these games, if Fun doesn’t come first, the second goal will never be met. If you design your goal to get maximum monetization, you increase the risk that players will not think your game is fun, and they will leave the game before spending a dime. That’s how many badly executed F2P games came into this world and failed.

Skinner Box: Don’t condition your players that they will suffer a disadvantage when they don’t pay. It worked in the beginning of F2P, but by now there are too many competing games out there who focus on fun, that a punishing system is not immersive enough anymore to keep player attention. Focus on making a game fun for everybody, and reward the players who do go out of their way to pay in your game.

Payment wall: Don’t design your game in a way that players have no other option than paying when they reach level X. People will just abandon your game and play something else. There are plenty of alternatives out there.

Gaming Medium: Be aware of the short game sessions. Try to keep that in mind when designing your In-App Purchase options. People should be able to play for free for 5-10 minute sessions if they like. Or special premium content shouldn’t force them to sit through long sessions either. The hardest thing of mobile design is to make it possible to play a game for only 5 minutes, but to also make it possible to enjoy a game for a few hours.

Overwhelming: People need to get the feeling that they only scratched the surface, and that unlocking content and getting to higher levels faster will open up more gates.

Spending cap: When people can spend $20 max on in-game items that will never expire, you’ll never get more out of your 2-3% payers. Even though they might want to. When you build in some purchase items that expire, or they can stock up, you open up a way to spend more. However, be careful that you don’t make it feel unfair by taking away their purchase. For example, a system where players can “rent” special armor for 24 hours only works when there is a clear incentive, like a special quest they can use it for.

Ownership: Character customization, gender specification, naming, building a house or town, etc.

Generosity: Something they desire, that helps them in the game. Something that makes them feel good. Take away that fear that you only want to earn money from them. Give them a cool gift for free.

Easy: Very attractive discount. Turn off advertisements. Add exclusive goodies.

Different: Various flavors of the game. Some people go for customization, some for high scores, some for collecting achievements. Make your In-App Purchase options attractive for everyone.

Gifting: A mechanic that not many games have tried out yet. Do you know that feeling when you see a silly gadget and you feel ashamed if you’d buy it for yourself, but you think it would make a perfect gift? Same with the emotion behind In-App Purchasing. Works well in multiplayer games in Korea. Works in immersive co-op worlds. When you’ve captured a certain audience in one game, try to transfer that audience to your new games. This is a lot easier when you stay with the same genres. It might be fun to try out new things, like building a racing game, a puzzle game and a shooter. However, it will be hard to capture an audience that shares this scattered love. This way you have to re-invent your audience over and over again, and you might end up spending a lot of budget on buying users.

Tamalaki publishing focuses on Hidden Object games, and sometimes we publish something slightly different for a similar audience, like a Match-3 game or a Time Management puzzle. This might be less challenging for the developing teams, but this way it’s easy for us to always capture the attention of our audience and serve them new games they will probably like. We don’t have to spend a lot of marketing money trying to find our audience, because we already have them. The snowball of users keeps on growing this way.

Gamesbrief.com -> subscribe and get a free F2P forcasting sheet that allows you to calculate the financial success of your F2P model.

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We’d like to thank Martine Spaans for sharing this presentation with us.  If you have any questions or comments for Martine regarding Free-To-Play games, monetization strategies, or any of the other topics touched on in this series, feel free to leave your comments below!


 

Elliot Quest

From Jay is Games

by Tricky on December 04, 2014 07:00 PM

Platform: Mac, Windows, Linux — Elliot Quest In Elliot Quest, the retro adventure platform game by Ansimuz Games, you can't die. Well, you can, but you always wake up at the last glowing rock thing you passed. Which is kind of weird when you think about it, and you need some answers. It's an enjoyable 8-bit throwback that doesn't pause the action to engage in any handholding. Elliot Quest will probably make you feel lost, but offers enough cool things to find to make it all worth while. Tagged as: action, adventure, ansimuzgames, download, game, indie, linux, mac, metroidvania, platform, rating-y, rpg, windows

Bubble Dreams

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 04, 2014 05:00 PM

Platform: iOS, Android — Bubble Dreams Free for iOS and Android, Chompy takes you through a whopping 250 levels of classic match-3 bubble popping puzzle gameplay. Tagged as: android, free, game, ios, ipad, iphone, ipodtouch, match-3, microtransactions, mobile, playthis, puzzle, rating-g

Stachmou and the Golden Compass

From Jay is Games

by Tricky on December 04, 2014 02:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Stachmou and the Golden Compass Stachmou and the Golden Compass is a humorous point and click adventure by Didier Guagliano where the titular impressively-facial-haired pirate sets out for adventure and riches. Short and silly with generally logical puzzles and only a few translation errors getting in the way of the comedy. Tagged as: adventure, browser, dguagliano, flash, free, game, pirates, pointandclick, rating-y

Two Dots

From Jay is Games

by Lori.h on December 04, 2014 12:00 AM

Platform: iOS, Android — Two Dots It's time for this lovely couple's getaway to see the wonders of the world. Connect dots on each level to reach the objective, letting the couple travel deeper and farther in this mobile puzzle game. Tagged as: android, free, game, ios, ipad, iphone, ipod, logic, match-3, microtransactions, mobile, puzzle, rating-g, simpleidea, twodotsinc

December 03, 2014

Jelly Lam

From Jay is Games

by Tricky on December 03, 2014 11:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Jelly Lam Still don't feel sufficiently prepared for this jelly? Well, maybe Jelly Lam, a simple idea physics tentacle-swinging puzzle game by Alexander Balabanovich will give you a little security. With its warm color palette, intuitive physics engine, and lightly challenging puzzles, Jelly Lam hits that sweet spot of visual appeal with pick-up-and-play simplicity, even if the best levels are in the back third. Tagged as: abalabanovich, browser, flash, free, game, physics, puzzle, rating-g, simpleidea

Free-To-Play vs. Customer Happiness – Part 2

From FlashGameLicense Blog

by Brian on December 03, 2014 05:47 PM

Part 1

Part 2 (Currently Reading)

Part 3

The following is a presentation created by Martine Spaans, owner of Tamalaki Publishing and frequent contributor on Business Development matters here at FGL.  Martine has 8+ years of experience in the online gaming industry and has served as Licensing Manager at Spil Games, worked in Online Marketing at Ubisoft, and is a Marketing Advisor at CFE.

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Part Two:  The Problem


When people set out to buy a boxed game for their console, they have a sense of ownership and commitment. It’s their game. They will try their very best to master it.

This is something that Free-to-Play games are lacking. The user does not feel that sense of commitment. They will not go out of their way to master something that comes for free. In fact, it seems they get more satisfaction out of complaining about their free product. So now you end up trying to sell something for nearly nothing and most of what you get back is negative feedback. How did we end up in this spiral?

 

I just love this quote, because it fully captures the problem of the value of free. Entitlement to getting a product for free turns into hostility towards the creator.

To prove that the problem is not with the quality of the product itself, but really with the perception of free, I only had to look in my own Customer Support mailbox for evidence. Rory’s Restaurant is a game that is available on Google Play for free (with advertising), and on Amazon and Nook as a premium game for 1.99 (without ads). During one of the updates to the game, we accidentally wiped player progress. Of course this did not go well with our players who spend hours and hours getting to the higher levels, carefully building up their restaurant. Statistically, most of the customer complaints come from Google Play.

Amazon has a nice promotional service: Free-App-of-the-Day. A Premium app suddenly gets the opportunity to harvest a lot of eyeballs and downloads during this 1-day free promotion. It also brings in worse user reviews then when the same app is just a paid one. FREE opens the floodgates. And that brings in the crap players. It basically means letting a death metal band play during the Superbowl. A lot of people will complain that the band was horrible, even if it was the best metal band in the whole world.

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Tomorrow: Part 3 – What can we do?  Some solutions…

Weekday Escape N°52

From Jay is Games

by elle on December 03, 2014 05:00 AM

Weekday Escape N°52 Games featured this week: Cute Bunny Home Escape; Find the Escape-Men 127: Hiking; Escape from the Big Clock Room 2 — Hey, you want festivities? Celebrations? Fun? These three escape games from Flash512, No1Game, and Yomino Kagura have all that and dipping sauce on the side. Well, at least they'll distract you with cute bunnies, weird hikers and big clocks, if you're looking for ways to stay out of trouble this time of year. Tagged as: blog, browser, escape, flash512, free, game, no1game, pointandclick, puzzle, weekday-escape, yominokagura

December 02, 2014

Game of Thrones A TellTale Game Series

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 02, 2014 10:00 PM

Platform: Mac, Windows, Retail — Game of Thrones  A TellTale Game Series When you play the Game of Thrones, you win or you die. In this first installment of TellTale's new episodic adventure game, House Forrester, bannermen to House Stark, find themselves struggling to keep their heads above the water amidst political machinations. Who can they trust? Your decisions could forge new alliances... or lead them to a bloody end. Tagged as: adventure, affiliate, console, download, episodic, fantasy, game, greenmangaming, grrmartin, indie, mac, pointandclick, ps3, ps4, rating-r, steam, telltalegames, windows, xbox360, xboxone

Free-To-Play vs. Customer Happiness – Part 1

From FlashGameLicense Blog

by Brian on December 02, 2014 05:08 PM

Part 1 (Currently Reading)

Part 2

Part 3

The following is a presentation created by Martine Spaans, owner of Tamalaki Publishing and frequent contributor on Business Development matters here at FGL.  Martine has 8+ years of experience in the online gaming industry and has served as Licensing Manager at Spil Games, worked in Online Marketing at Ubisoft, and is a Marketing Advisor at CFE.

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Part One: History and Current State of Free-To-Play

Some people seem to think that the Free-with-optional-upgrade model is quite new and exclusive to gaming. I disagree and would like to point to the newspaper as an example. Do you know those small black&white comics that you get for free every day? They’re short, lower quality, and you have to wait for a day until you get a new one.

Or…you can go out to the store, spend a bit of money, and get all the content instantly, get some exclusives, in full color.

Or how about movies? You can pay for the cinema now and get the full big-screen immersing experience, or you can wait 1-2 years and see the same content for free on a smaller TV screen.

This has been around forever. Consumers are used to this model. So if Free-to-Play is a problematic model in the games industry, I don’t think that the monetization mechanic itself is the problem. I think it lies deeper within the emotion behind the introduction of Free-to-Play to the gaming industry and the rapid changes that we dealt with in the last few years.

Another example:  Who remembers the old Panini stickers? You had to spend ALL your pocket money on buying blister packs, not knowing what stickers would be inside. Especially hunting down the last few missing stickers could cost you piles of money. The grand prize was to proudly complete your sticker book.

So why is that all accepted and fine, while Puzzles & Dragons “Complete Gacha” was banned in Japan?

I can even give another example of our skewed thinking within our own industry. Go out to the store, buy a boxed console game for $60 and play it for 60 days. That’s 2 months of daily fun. Quite a reasonable amount of content for a console game, and the price point is just an accepted given. So compare that with a Free-to-Play game where you gradually spend $60 over the same amount of time. Why is that considered a lot of money? I don’t even want to know how Arcade machines would compare against this, where you only get a few minutes of gameplay for a quarter.

Actually, I think we are looking at this situation with the wrong glasses. Think of F2P as a street artist. His music is for free. His audience is big. If you really enjoy his music and you stop to listen to his music for a few moments, you are expected to give him a small fee. His conversion rate is maybe the same as the average play-pay ratio we work with. Maybe 1 to 5 percent of his audience pays something.

He has no marketing and no magazine will write about him. The only audience he captures are the people walking by that street corner where he’s performing.

A big chunk of his audience doesn’t want to pay for his music, because they are used to getting it for free. His audience doesn’t see the value of paying for something that comes free. And that is where the street performer and Free-to-Play games struggle.

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Tomorrow: Part 2 – So what’s the real problem?

Yurius's House of Spooks

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 02, 2014 02:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Yurius's House of Spooks In this short and silly point-and-click puzzle game from Carmel Games, your nephew's remote-controlled plane wound up inside the local "mad scientist"'s house, and now you have to get it back! Tagged as: carmelgames, escape, flash, free, game, playthis, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-o

December 01, 2014

Super Chibi Knight on Steam

From Armor Games Blog

by Ferret on December 01, 2014 10:30 PM

Super Chibi Knight is now available on Steam for Apple and PC! An action adventure platformer made by 33 year-old dad and 8-year-old daughter Team PestoForce.

The Kingdom of Oukoku is threatened by the spicy influence of General Tso. Citizens have placed their hope in a small knight who fits the requirements of ancient legends. Which path will the Chibi Knight choose… the path to the mysterious Island of Mahou to learn spells from its sorcerers or the path to the Beastmaster mountains to summon and ride an array of ferocious animals? Your choice will determine Oukoku’s fate!

Links:

Win a FREE Steam Code?

Screenshots:

unnamed (5)

unnamed (3)

unnamed (4)

New Quest:

In celebration of the release of Super Chibi Knight, we’ve also launched a Quest for the classic Chibi Knight. Play it for 3 days, and get properly rewarded!

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One More Line

From Jay is Games

by LDora on December 01, 2014 04:13 PM

Platform: iOS, Android, Flash — One More Line How long can you last in this simple yet addictive one-touch arcade game as you rocket down the endless corridor, latching onto and swinging from node to node while you leave a colourful trail behind you? Tagged as: action, android, arcade, browser, flash, free, game, highdifficulty, ios, ipad, iphone, ipodtouch, mobile, rating-g, simpleidea, smgstudio

A Date in the Park

From Jay is Games

by Lori.h on December 01, 2014 02:00 PM

Platform: Windows — A Date in the Park Lou is waiting to meet the girl of his dreams for a second date in the park. When he gets there she is nowhere to be seen but Lou is a man who appreciates nature and good exploration. Even with the peaceful birds chirping away without a care in the world, there is something in the air that just doesn't fit right in this free indie point-and-click adventure. Tagged as: adventure, cloakanddaggergames, download, free, game, horror, indie, pointandclick, rating-r, windows

November 30, 2014

I Was on the Throne

From Jay is Games

by Lori.h on November 30, 2014 04:00 PM

Platform: Flash — I Was on the Throne Another day in the office turns into a surreal adventure. Explore the alien land and find your escape back into reality, probably causing a lot of mayhem for others along the way, in this point-and-click puzzle escape. Tagged as: browser, discofishgames, escape, flash, free, game, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-r, skyflys, surreal

Isamu Carre

From Jay is Games

by LDora on November 30, 2014 11:00 AM

Platform: Flash — Isamu Carre No escape game this time, Detarame Factory's latest is a cute and bizarre point-and-click adventure that has you traversing the kingdom looking for the ingredients needed to craft a dish to please royalty! Tagged as: adventure, browser, detaramefactory, flash, free, game, japanese, playthis, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-g

Review: The Untold History of Japanese Game Developers

From Blog.Sokay.net

by Bryson Whiteman on November 30, 2014 09:02 AM

This is not only a review, but my highest recommendation of what I believe to be the most comprehensive text written on the Japanese game industry in the 80’s and 90’s. At least in English! ;) The book I’m talking about, as you might’ve guessed by now, is the following…

untold_history_of_japanese_game_developers_book

The Untold History of Japanese Game Developers by John Szczepaniak available on Amazon.com

Yes, the title is a mouthful. The book itself has a lot of writing as well at over 500 pages, so I’ll try to keep this short. If you have an interest in knowing what the Japanese industry was like “way back when,” or you want to know the story behind some of the cherished and/or niche titles you grew up loving, this might be the only place for you to get a glimpse of that world.

The author, John Szczepaniak, created a Kickstarter that allowed him to travel to Japan and interview dozens of game developers for this book. He gets firsthand accounts of the world of Japanese game developers. The book’s helped me to materialize an image in my head of who these guys were — busting their asses to make these products with so much passion. It also shines light on some of the business aspects of the industry as well. In the early 80’s, it sounds like it was commonplace for companies to cram as many recent graduates into office/living spaces where they would work feverishly in hope of churning out the next hit game.

I have no idea how he was able to land so many amazing interviews from developers that worked at companies like Capcom, Falcom, Enix, Game Arts, and so on. The common thread amongst all of the interviews is that I get a sense of passion from all these people. They hustled to do their best and overcome the challenges and limitations of game development in those days. Also finally being able to put names and faces, along with personal stories, to games I’ve heard of or played makes me feel like “Hey, these games aren’t just made by some massive company. They’re made by people. People that love games!”

As a game developer, I’m always looking for new inspiration. My inspiration sometimes comes from a game I love, sometimes great artwork, even from the mood a song puts me in. Lately I’ve found that it’s the people and their stories that drive me. If these guys could do it, there’s no reason I couldn’t do the same thing!

The DVD

untold_history_of_japanese_game_developers_dvd_screens

So I didn’t contribute to the Kickstarter for this book. When I first came across it I was kind of skeptical. Like this guy was really going to go to Japan and get all these interviews? I reconsidered backing it but I had already missed the boat, no bother. Sometime afterwards, I saw that they were selling the DVDs separately on Hardcoregaming101.net. It looked like the real deal, so I dropped $50+ on it to take a chance on it. After all, where else would you get to see footage like that?

The DVD is basically home movie quality footage of Szczepaniak’s trip to Japan. It mostly consists of interviews, but there’s also some trips to places like the old Hudsonsoft building. This isn’t a well-made documentary, it’s not very professionally presented or edited. The author is a much better journalist :) . But you get a firsthand glimpse at things like the original Strider artwork, game pitch documents, Westone offices (Wonder Boy), Enix level editors, game book archives and more. For that I felt like the DVD was priceless.

enixpixels

In conclusion, I think it’s a great thing that John Szczepaniak’s done with this book. I’m starting to appreciate the work of him and people like him, chronicling the history of games so these stories don’t get lost in the void of history. It’s funny to see that in some interviews the interviewees are surprised at the breadth of Szczepaniak’s knowledge of trivia related to Japanese games. That, to me, shows that he has a true passion for what he’s doing. He goes above and beyond the typical ‘clickbait’ journalism we mostly get in the game industry today. Check it out!

November 29, 2014

Forest of Drizzling Rain

From Jay is Games

by LDora on November 29, 2014 04:00 PM

Platform: Windows — Forest of Drizzling Rain After Shiori's parents die in a car accident, she drifts listlessly until she discovers a photograph of a relative she doesn't remember, in a town her parents did their best to make her forget about. Despite a rocky translation and some annoying gameplay sequences, this creepy free indie horror adventure emphasizes story, mystery, and character for a solid and engaging play. Tagged as: adventure, download, free, game, horror, indie, rating-r, smakoto, tosiaki, windows

Alice House No. 8: Mock Turtle and Gryphon

From Jay is Games

by LDora on November 29, 2014 02:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Alice House No. 8: Mock Turtle and Gryphon Find five items with gryphons on them in order to escape from this latest bite-sized game from Funkyland. Turtles, jellyfish, pig faucets and more await, with just enough pint-sized puzzles to brighten your day. Tagged as: browser, escape, flash, free, funkyland, game, playthis, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-g

November 28, 2014

Let There Be Life

From Jay is Games

by kimberlyfelix on November 28, 2014 09:00 PM

Platform: iOS, Android — Let There Be Life Need a game to help you unwind from the daily grind? Escape to your zen place as you build trees and preserve flowers in this beautiful and relaxing game available for Android or iOS. Tagged as: android, backwardpies, game, ios, ipad, iphone, ipodtouch, mobile, puzzle, rating-g, tablet, zen

Submolok

From Jay is Games

by LDora on November 28, 2014 04:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Submolok Nitrome goes underwater in this exploration-based action game as you control an alien looking for parts to fix its satellite. The twist? You're piloting a submersible with a very unique control scheme, and with upgrades scattered about the ocean to discover, the end result is a fiddly but creative game that needs patient and a delicate touch to appreciate. Tagged as: action, browser, exploration, flash, free, game, metroidvania, nitrome, rating-g, upgrades

Failman

From Jay is Games

by LDora on November 28, 2014 02:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Failman This is one superhero you wouldn't want to see speeding towards you, mainly because the star of PPLLAAYY's short point-and-click puzzle game always seems to make things worse when he tries to save the day! Tagged as: browser, flash, free, game, playthis, pointandclick, ppllaayy, puzzle, rating-y

November 27, 2014

Monkey GO Happy Thanksgiving

From Jay is Games

by LDora on November 27, 2014 02:00 PM

Platform: Flash — Monkey GO Happy Thanksgiving It might be cold outside, but when your belly is empty and your Thanksgiving feast is missing, you know there's more important things than a little frostbite! Help the monkeys find their turkey in this short but sweet point-and-click adventure. Tagged as: adventure, browser, flash, free, game, monkeygohappy, pencilkids, playthis, pointandclick, puzzle, rating-g