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dex7

Downloads -> Sales, How many pieces do shareware games sell ?

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hi, i''m going to try it as a shareware developer cos i''m programming for 8 years now & i think i have got enough experience in game developement... so i wonder how much do shareware games sell ? i''d say it depends on quality & promotion ... is there some relationship between downloads from some download site and sales ? please can you kick me into the problematic, i''d appreciate some numbers - maybe examples on your recent projects will be great thanks & regards, dex

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Guest Anonymous Poster
In 5 months I sold 2 copies, so not much.
You need luck and a verry innovative game.
So not a breakout game or simple space shooters etc.
There are dozens of that kind of games, also of good quality and design. And also there are very much free out there.
So try the genre of bingo, casino, chess games.
It''s not my type of games. But for a lone wolf there is a market
for that kind of games. So if you like it, I advice you
to choose one of that type family genre games.
Especially casino is very popular.

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You don''t have to have the most innovative game in the world to sell copies. Look at Longbow Digital Arts who apparently made some very good money with DXBall (breakout game), enough to fund full-time development of Treadmarks. Or how about Kyodai Mahjong? There''s nothing extremely innovative about Hamumu''s games but that guy and his wife are making a living selling them. Look at all the solitaire packages that still sell.

There''s a market for just about any kind of game you can think of, but it has to be good and you have to market it well. This forum''s moderator DavidRM has done pretty well with his games and his Journal product, search the forum and you''ll even find some real sales figures he posted on here a while back.

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We should mention though, Artifact was not his first title and I bet he got a lot of Artifact subscriptions from Paintball NET players. If you''re around, DavidRM, do you have any figures on paying Paintball NET players who went on to Artifact? That''s another thing I''ve read a lot from people who''ve been in the business a while - your sales are not going to explode in the first day, week, month or even year. It''s about building word-of-mouth, building a customer base to sell other things to, adding continued value to your products, stuff like that - sticking it out for the long haul and developing multiple, continuing streams of revenue.

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thanks all, every body else please post your opinions, experience

to the marketing stuff, i''ve read a lot of articles regarding this and i think i will promote this way (however i wasn''t think over it too much):
1. download sites (+awards)
2. send out to game mags / mag cds - cd collections (btw is there some comprehensive list of game mage/download sites - shareware related ????)
3. webpage
4. maybe some forums
5. don''t have money for targeted ads - however,from what people say this cost a lot to be effective ?
6. newsletter (for the second game)

what you think? is there something missing ?

-dex

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I would have to say just about every Paintball NET player that was around at the time atleast _tried_ Artifact out.

So thats a given 150-500 players Atleast that tried that game to form an opinion that they could recommend to their friends or tell them about it.
Word of mouth is always the best kind of advertising.
Also regular updates help to keep the user base.

I would like to point out a few (old) shareware games like Exile Series, Castle of the Winds, and Mordor.
The first 2 did quite well with little effort other than creating good games. Mordor was also a great game but registering it was almost impossible so I''m not sure what happened to it.

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The funny thing about shareware, it''s not really so much about the game(it''s important that you have a decent one though) it''s about exposure. Reaching your target market is critical. Basically it comes down to marketing. If you sell 1 in 200 downloads then you''ve got a 5%(not too shabby) rate of registration. If you only get 200 visits to your site in 6 months your hurting. However if you can ranked on the search engines and other marketing channels, game sites, download sites etc. convince shareware reviers to review you game. You stand a chance of seeing 200 hits a day, now your selling one copy every day, then you start tweeking with your game, deciding how to best cripple it to get registrations and how to prevent users from registering without paying you (hacking registration). You may be able to increase to a 10% rate of return. And so on..
in my opinion it''s way too much work for someone who just want''s to develop games, I think you''d be better off approaching some publishers like Dexterity to do the markiting crap for you, so you can get on with making games.

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ironside: hmm... i thought Dexterity is just developer, but when i read their dev/publishing section i found it very attractive for me ... please tell me more about Dexterity - are they serious - i knew about the company before, from tutorials that their president write (dont remember the exact name, starts with S) - so are they thrustworthy - i would say yes - do u have some experience with them.

2. are there some alike shareware publishers like Dexterity - those who do the marketing stuff for you ...

thanks for replies
-dex

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there is also Andre Lamothe''s www.xgames3d.com, and if you are thinking BIG www.godgames.com (Oni, Max Payne)

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