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KalvinB

setting up shop for games

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I''m looking into an e-commerce opportunity using my parents business license (will be scanned and easily available to view when shop opens) while I apply for my own. I''m definitly going with one line of products (non computer related) but am also curious about selling games. The basic idea is that if someone wants to sell a game they let me know some basic information including how much they want to sell it for. What they want to sell it for is their profit. I add a dollar or two to the price (my profit) and charge shipping (Priority mail 3.50 for up to one pound). They ship the product. Payments are done through Pay Pal for now (already have a business account). I can also use VeriSign. I''m wondering if that''s a good business model or if anyone has any suggestions. Ben http://therabbithole.redback.inficad.com

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Some questions:
Who would have responsibility for Customer / tech support? Hosting patches, etc?

Second, what do you offer to a game developer that makes it worth the $1-2 fee? Marketing? PR work? Why wouldn''t a game developer just make their own website with a paypal account? I wouldn''t expect a dollar or two to buy a lot, but I don''t see the benefit.

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Customer support...depends on the issue. Any business issues I''ll handle. Any specific game related questions will be forwarded to the author.

Tech support for any given game...the author. Unless I became familiar with the game I wouldn''t really be able to help people get it to work if there was a problem. I''d be more than happy to host FAQs and manuals on the site for any given game. I can also host patches. I have 40gigs (upgradable as needed) of server space to work with. It''s not much of an issue.

Basically, I can legally cover the business end of it which most people can''t. Anyone can do what I''m doing. It''s just a matter of do they want to.

I also have an established web-site. I plug it all the time to people and I would expect that the authors pass the word around as well. It''s to their advantage. My fee covers the basic operations of the site including the PayPal fee (7%) and state tax (8%) I get to file each month.

Say someone wants to sell a game for $20. They will get that $20 plus $3.50 for shipping. To break even I''d have to charge $27.03 at the site. I''d charge $30 in order to make a bit of profit. Any kind of discount that the author wishes to give will come out of their $20 (or whatever they charge).

The benefit is having another outlet to sell your game with zero risk. Even if an author decides to start their own online outlet, my shop is still an option. I''d work to match prices in that case.

It''s intended for people who want to get their game on the market to see what it can pull in but don''t have the investment to go all out at this time. If you want the fancy box and mastered CDs, this isn''t your place.

If you have any other questions or need something clarified let me know. I''m working to get this up and running by August 1st. The site is already created and on-line. It''s just a matter of putting in inventory and posting the link on the main page.

Ben
http://therabbithole.redback.inficad.com

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Actually, he''s not trying compete with anyone. He''s just offering a service because he can. He is doing the prep work for himself, anyway, and he can offer the service to others at little or no cost to himself. It''s basically a "co-op" setup. He''s not looking to get rich off of the deal, just to help out other developers who might not be willing or able to go through the trouble of doing the same thing for themselves.

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Exactly.

I''ll be working on writing up the forms and whatnot this week. A public demo site will be up probably by this weekend.

Ben
http://therabbithole.redback.inficad.com

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Why shouldn''t I be?

If you start ragging on me like you do Crystal Interactive I''m going to ignore you. This is something I am going to do and I would like input on making it work as best as is possible given the resources I have.

I''ll be more than happy to answer your questions as long as you keep them civil, direct and unassuming.

Ben
http://therabbithole.redback.inficad.com

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Guest Anonymous Poster
whatever man....

you''re an amateur just like all the rest....
Crystal Interactive, Garage Games, GarageDeveloper International,
Xtreme Games, Shrapnel Games and all the rest who claim to care about independent game programmers.

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I think all those are worth it just for the publicity, say you have a game and you sell through them, but you still sell on your own, you sell to the other sellers for the $20 a piece you charge at your site, they will have to charge more than you do or no profit is made, most customers will buy from you, and eigther way you get the $20, and when someone makes a search on a web search engine for games, they will get your URL + the urls of the other sellers that sell your game, heck! they might get the sellers URL and not yours.

my 2 cents.

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