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Ways to promote a free game?

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Well I've got a free game out-- very well-built and complex free online card game; it accepts donations, though, and is on the same site as a store which sells a (semi-related) music CD, so I'm hoping to start doing this stuff for a living once I get enough money in from the donations and CD sales. I contacted as many game magazines & websites as possible about it, but only one has expressed an interest in reviewing so far. What are some other free ways to get the word out? [edited by - _JC_ on May 7, 2004 9:17:35 PM]

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While I have never promoted a free game, heres what I would do.

1. Goto the annoucments forum on this site, put a post up telling about your game and include a link to the site.

2. Try sending a email to one of the news editors on GameDev and maybe they'll put up a news article for you.

3. Head on over to www.garagegames.com and submit a screenshot of your game and maybe it'll get picked for the IOTD.

4. Start telling some friends, word of mouth can be a very good way to get information out.

Hope this helps somewhat.

-Limb

[edited by - ibelimb on May 8, 2004 10:17:24 PM]

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Since it''s an online game, you probably used one of several popular technologies - Java, Flash, etc. There are websites for these technologies that are eager to link to quality products created with them, particularly those that they don''t have to host, because it creates positive associations in the minds of gamers and developers.

Also search the web for pages that list online games and pages that list card games, and submit your title for consideration.

GDNet news is user-contributed, then reviewed and posted (IIRC), so add a news item.

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Thanks Just submitted that news item, actually. (When I submitted it took me back to the main page, there was no confirmation, so I hope it got through okay!)

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FREE, in essence, promotes itself. Give it about 2 weeks, usualy spreads by word of mouth. I remember when I released a rougelike (similar to nethack) back in 99'', I put it on one computer in the school building. Told 2 people about it, over the course of 1 week, that computer was taken up indefinitly. People would then come up and ask for the game constantly to boot up at home. Now days its even easier, as you can point to your website, and they will download it themselves.

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