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Investing into a Game Project

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Hey guys. I was lucky enough to inherit some money and part of that money i would like to invest into a game project.
Im lookin to put aprox about $30k-$40k
Is that a decent amount to create a decent project?

I currently dont have any ideas about what game or what engine or whatever im gonna do. Its just a thought which will take a while for me to make a final decision.
Just a general question this is

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$30k is about 30 man-weeks of wages for a cheap developer, or 10 man-weeks for a more experienced one.

That could be enough to make a very small game, as long as you keep it very simple amd run the project well...

Typical small mobile games are probably more like 80 man weeks of work, or "indie games" could be hundreds. Typical PC/console games would probably be at least 2000 on the cheap side.

 

If you yourself were a developer, you could probably use $30k to pay basic living expenses for quite a while - maybe a year in an expensive western city, much longer in cheaper areas. If you're highly experienced, then this is much better value than hiring someone else for just 2 months.

 

You could co-invest in a larger project. e.g. if a small indie team has already spent $150k but needs a bit more, then you'd bring them up to $180k and be able to buy 1/6th of the company.

Edited by Hodgman

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To be honest if you are looking to invest money, a game is extremely high risk. I suggest you speak to a financial advisor not ask here as that is a lot of money to throw into an industry you are unsure about.

I assume from your line of questioning that you are not experienced in the game industry at all and perhaps just enjoy playing games. What level of past experience do you have creating games, as this would help identify a bad investment from a good one.

Good luck and invest WISELY.

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Only put 30k into a game project if you can definitely afford to lose that 30k! You should have low to very low expectations of returns on it, especially with little or no experience in the industry.

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Is that a decent amount to create a decent project?


I don't understand why this was in the Job Advice forum. Moving it to Business.
As the other respondents said, $30-40K is not much money in terms of a game project. And nobody should invest in just one project - much better to invest in a company, a business. I suppose a raw and small indie might have a use for $30-40K but a wise indie owner would not want to give too much equity away, and of course a raw and small indie is a hugely risky investment. Edited by Tom Sloper

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Hey guys. I was lucky enough to inherit some money and part of that money i would like to invest into a game project.
Im lookin to put aprox about $30k-$40k
Is that a decent amount to create a decent project?

I currently dont have any ideas about what game or what engine or whatever im gonna do. Its just a thought which will take a while for me to make a final decision.
Just a general question this is

 

First thing you need to do is determine your financial goal with this investment.  What are you looking to accomplish by investing this money?  Do you have a dream project you want to realize?  Are you looking for a specific return on your investment?

 

The reality is that throwing $30-40k at a project is going to result in losing it.  And especially so if you don't have any professional experience behind it.

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While I agree with the general comments regarding financial investment, I can also add the following:

 

If you like games, you might want to invest only a smaller part of your money to help talented (and professional) indie teams. This has a very high risk, but I'll detail in a later post why I think it's reasonable.

Edited by thomascalc

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If you like games, you might want to invest only a smaller part of your money to help talented (and professional) indie teams. For example, we've a very professional project (with proper marketing etc.), but our USA team member just quit for different reasons. We are looking for a US team member who is willing to invest up to $2000-$3000.

Something about this doesn't sit right and maybe it comes across as a bit inappropriate?

I repeat my initial advice, speak ONLY to a qualified financial advisor and take no no other advice until you have done so...

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(I removed the inappropriate part from my previous post.)

 

To further clarify my point: if he likes games, he should invest a small part of his money to a project he likes and finds convincing (financially and in other aspects as well). NO financial advisor can tell you what business to invest in without a serious risk. They will suggest you a portfolio, depending on how risky investion you want. But there will always be a "faith" factor. You can indeed lose all your money with it, but if anyone knew the recipe of what business to invest in, that person would be billionaire, have a Nobel-prize, and probably could rule the world. So the personal factor (and luck factor) is always there. If you don't invest at all to a very risky thing, your chance stays a guaranteed 0%.

 

So we should really know how much risk the OP is willing to take. This is what the financial advisor will first ask him, too.

Edited by thomascalc

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It is a rather tiny sum for a "decent size" game project (usually, when muggles or even starting game devs talk about "decent size", they talk about AAA-ish or at least very large Indie project sizes... which cost north of 1'000'000$, sometimes 10 times more. LArge AAA go up to many 100 millions of $).

 

So if you want to make anything more than a small web or phone game with it, you need to spend that money REALLY smart, ideally invest some of your time and skill (that you hopefully have if you want to make anything with such a tiny sum of money) to reduce the cost of the game somewhat.

Your project will need to be cut down to size, because even creating the static 3D assets for a single small AAA level might cost much more than that. Without assembly by a level designer, all the planning that needs to take place before it, coding or any characters and enemies that should fill that level.

 

 

Then there is the whole issue with spending this sum on a project that will, most probably, fail. No matter how good you think your game idea is, most probably it is not. Even if it is as good as you think it is, the execution of that idea is what makes or breaks a game. A good execution of a stupid idea can still make a very successfull game... the other way round will seldom result in a runaway success.

Sadly, good execution needs good and skilled people, and will cost more money and time.

 

So most probably, whatever you can have produced with that money will not be successfull in the market, save some brilliant idea that can be produced cheaply in a short time, and will set the gamin market ablaze Minecraft style.

 

Recently there was a discussion about that on this forum. Somebody mentioned that even for expierienced studios, only 1 out of 10 started projects are successfull. Thus either you only invest 3000$ per project, or you risk all your money on a project that has 10% statistical chance to become a success. How is that not throwing money out of the window?

 

 

If you want to just make game for fun, then go ahead, and do it. Personally I would rather start learning game development myself instead of throwing money at other people hoping they will make my ideas a reality. But to each his own. If you want to have your ideas turned into a game, but lack the skill for it and the patience/time to aquire these skills, by all means, invest your money into your project.

Just be aware, 30k$ is almost nothing even for an expierienced project lead with a very modest idea. The project you could do with that sum of money most people wouldn't call "decent", outside of phone games and some special genres (like Indie games with retro or very stylized graphics)

 

 

 

 

Congratulations. Might I suggest you pile it all in your back yard and set fire to instead? It will likely be a far more entertaining use of the funds and will have about the same net result.

 

 

That made my day, man. Couldn't have said it better smile.png

Edited by Gian-Reto

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If you really want to invest your 30k into a game project then why don't you just buy shares in an existing game company.
Many game companies have shares openly traded on various stock exchanges world wide.

Even some of the smaller studios have shares available.  Heres the Google finance info on Frontier Developments:

http://www.google.co.uk/finance?cid=143305947622647


 

Your money is more likely to net you some return and possibly even dividends if you invest in a real company rather than some game project that may never even see completion.

Of course take this with a pinch of salt.  I am not a financial advisor but if you go and see one and explain that you want to invest in games related companies they will be able to create you a sensible package.

Edited by Buster2000

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invest into a game project.

 

Depends what you're going to "DO".

 

If you invest in assets/tools/etc. but actually develop and design the game yourself, it could help you tremendously being a basement indie and could lead to a decent game.

My advice, in this case, would be to sit on this cash for a long while, retain any day job you may have, and consider the design phase carefully (if you do it at night and on weekend, it doesn't cost you a dime!). Once you ARE satisfied with your first pass, show it to other developers, and work on it some more.

When you have something solid, start working on it part-time, and when you're absolutely blocked and are in need of assets/tools, start to spend if you feel you have something you are likely to finish. Spend as late as possible, even if you feel you totally need this or that.

 

If your intent is to step back, just infuse an idea, and pay a team to get it done, that's not nearly enough money to get anywhere sadly. Might want to invest in stock options of something unrelated to videogames and make it grow, then come back when you've got 5-10 times this amount.

 

Alternatively, screening the web for a serious indie team that has a promising project halfway through, and a defunct kickstarter but that you feel their project has merit could lead to some form of partnership where you finance their last stretch and cash in on sales. Think of it this way, without that money, the game will either never make it out, or it will, but a lot of the original scope will be broken to pieces and the overall experience may be incoherent. You're giving them a chance to complete their last few efforts, possibly contribute yourself, and cash in. Of course, being able to determine whether a game will work or not requires a lot of business acumen, and even so, you could fail, but it may be an experience worth having if this is an angle you'd like to refine for the future.

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