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benjamin bunny

Thinking of selling my game

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benjamin bunny    838
I'm thinking of selling my game, Wall3D, using the standard shareware model, via my website. Please take a look at it (it's pretty fun IMHO), and then answer this question for me: Assuming it had scoring, 32 varied levels, a score chart, menus (so you don't have to press ALT-F4 to quit), a 2-player mode, more powerups (including non-random placed powerups) and better sound, how much should I sell the full version for? I was thinking about £10 (or $15). Is this too much? Too little? Any opinions appreciated (probably). Also, what sort of percentage of downloads can I expect to translate into sales? Any other general advice is also welcome, as I've never done this before -- I'm completely clueless, basically . (This was originally posted in the lounge, until cliffski reminded me of the existence of this forum). ____________________________________________________________ www.elf-stone.com [edited by - benjamin bunny on May 5, 2002 3:09:24 PM]

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DavidRM    270
The way we have tended to set the prices in the past is to pick a number that makes us vaguely uneasy...a price that seems "borderline" on maybe being too expensive. Justifiable, of course, but perhaps a bit high.

This has seemed to work for a couple of reasons:

1. We tend to undersell ourselves (human nature?). So pushing a bit helps to overcome that.

2. We''ve never raised a price once set (we''ve also never *lowered* a price). So what might seem a bit high in the beginning seems to "even out" over time, figuring in improvements made to the game over time based on user feedback.

I would recommend just looking around at comparable products that are already available via shareware and doing at least reasonably well. That''s going to be the pricepoint you are expected to be near, whether somewhat higher or somewhat lower is up to you.

Best of luck.


DavidRM
Samu Games

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Guest Anonymous Poster   
Guest Anonymous Poster
The best sold breakout game DX Ball 2 is developed and sold online by: http://www.longbowdigitalarts.com/

Prices at:
https://secure.bmtmicro.com/ECommerce-OffSite/LDA_win.html

Price range from $14.95 is fine or $19.95

Try to do it better then Longbow (game design quality)
That is they key for succes and promote it well and online distribution as shareware.

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benjamin bunny    838
Thanks for the replies so far.

My original 8-level Wall3D got 35000 downloads on CNet, which I was pretty pleased with. If I can get a similar figure with a sequel, any ideas how many of that I can realistically translate into sales?

____________________________________________________________
www.elf-stone.com

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bishop_pass    109
quote:
Original post by benjamin bunny
Any other general advice is also welcome, as I''ve never done this before -- I''m completely clueless, basically .

benjamin bunny, in a more general sense, aren''t you really asking this: How can I make the most money from my game without expending vast time and resources? I am not faulting you for that, rather I am hoping that is your intent, rather than some altruistic (and unfathomable one).

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Mark Tanner    100
Hi,

You know, you cannot answer your question. Its like asking: I've got a car, how much can I get for it when I sell it? Depends on the car. When you say: I will add this and that, you'd still need to know how things will look in the end. Having some text on the screen can be called a menu, but commercial games also have a menu. Good sound for a shareware game may not be considered 'good' by other people. They can be two entirely different things.

Getting 30K downloads on download.com is nice, but its not hard.
Now, the AVERAGE download<->registration ratio is 1 to 100. But a lot of games have 1 in 500 to 1 in 1000 or even less. Some people have had no registrations with more than 30k downloads.

If your game would be of commercial quality, you could get much better ratios, like 1 in 25 or even better. But then again, you could sell it to a publisher for 250K+.

Looking at your game, I do not think you would get that many registrations. You would really need to upgrade some of the graphics and presentation, and make sure it runs straight away on most PC. Think about it: say you ask 14.95 or even 9.95. For that amount, you can buy a budget release of a major commercial game. Unless your game gives a customer the same addictiveness or value-for-money, they won't buy it. MOST customers know this.

Don't get too hung up on download numbers. Download.com is a big site with millions of visitors per day. Downloading a game and buying it are very different things. Don't be surprised if you only get a dozen or less people buying your game with 30K downloads, unless your game looks the biz. You could get none.

Finally, remember that 30K downloads does not mean everyone actually downloaded the game.Its most likely a click through number. If the download was slow, a lot of people stop it. I do and I know a lot of others who do. Even with small downloads. Adter getting broadband, I often find myself cancelling unless I get 25K+ transfer rate.

Sell it and try. Just don't expect to make much money unless you spend some serious time upgrading the game graphics. Most customers still know when something is 'worth paying for'. This is not to put your game down, like I said, it didn't run well on my PC, its just general info.


Mark




[edited by - Mark Tanner on May 12, 2002 10:08:16 PM]

[edited by - Mark Tanner on May 12, 2002 10:20:46 PM]

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benjamin bunny    838
quote:

benjamin bunny, in a more general sense, aren't you really asking this: How can I make the most money from my game without expending vast time and resources? I am not faulting you for that, rather I am hoping that is your intent, rather than some altruistic (and unfathomable one).

That's pretty much it, yes.

Mark: it's strange that you should say that, but the graphics are the one feature I would consider up to standard. Of more concern is the sound, lack of levels, scoring, menus, options, and a 2-player mode, but I'll bear your suggestions in mind.

I am surprised it didn't run well on your machine - it doesn't use any non-standard openGL features. I'd be grateful if you could you could provide me with a bit more information about your 3D hardware and also the nature of the problem so that I can look into it with later releases. Also, did you try the no_stencils version?

____________________________________________________________
www.elf-stone.com

[edited by - benjamin bunny on May 21, 2002 9:10:10 PM]

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FXO    122
Benjamin bunny, I tried your game some months ago, and I think it was fun.

It think the graphics are good and the shadowing is a cool feature also, it adds more feeling to the game than just a flat, non-lit/shadowed view of the "level".

I enjoyed your game, it''s perfect when your stuck in some coding-problem, and you don''t wanna engage in Quake or something
I believe that you have a market in the non-hardcore gamers, or anybody who want''s to take a break and "clear their mind".

Bottom line: I think you should definately give it a try, fix tha last parts and go for it!

btw. I would go for the $9.95 pricing.

PS. If you decide to do it, I''ll buy a copy in the end of the summer when I get $$$

Good luck!
/Fredrik Olsson

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Jester101    145
I disagree with the comments posted here. Price your game what you believe is worth it. There might be cheaper games, but your game costs X$. Of course if a similiar game is BETTER than your game and if it is cheaper too, you shouldn''t be disappointed if nobody buys it. Bottomline here is: Without an excellent game you will sell no copies at all no matter what the pricing. With an excellent game you WILL sell enough no matter what the pricing (well, don''t charge them 40$ if its not commercially quality, but 9.95 - 19.95 (or even up - look at Spiderweb) should really be fine).



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alex mcandrew    122
Jester, I''m afraid that I must disagree. Sure, the game costs money and time to develop, but the buyer does not care about this. If some other developr creates a game of similar quality but taking less time to do so, the buyer will buy the cheaper version. That''s why it is essential that you base your pricing strategy on the price of similar games.

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Jester101    145
Sure the customer doesn''t care about you.

Anyway in my opinion you would be right if we would be talking about shoes or food. My point is that you cannot really compare games with each other. Two games about star trading for example are (as long as one is not a clone of the other) be a lot of different, even when the main game goal (get money by trading goods between planets) is the same.

Take at it a look this way: You know of two games about star trading. Now you download the demo of Smugglers 2 - for example. Lets assume:
a) You liked it. It is great fun and you are addicted. You want to know how the game goes on, want to see the whole Universe, want to play longer. Do you go and download the demo of the second game and then compare and buy the cheaper one? Hell no, at least I go out and buy the one I am already addicted to!
b) You don''t know whether you liked it. It was OK, but nothing spectacular You will never get your creditcard out and buy it in the INet from forgeign people. Or would you buy a game that you do not like 100% if a game you really costs 5$ more?

Summary (again): If they are hooked, they NEED this game no matter what it costs. If they are not hooked, it is very unlikely they buy anyway.

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benjamin bunny    838
Clearly there are mixed views here. I could sell my game for $15, and stand to gain more money, but possibly no-one would buy it; yet if I sell it for 9.95, I''ve got one sale already (thanks FXO) , but then possibly no-one else would buy it.

I''ll have to decide what it''s worth when the game gets nearer completion. I have a 4 elements entry to complete before that though, so it might be another month or two. Thanks for the feedback.

____________________________________________________________
www.elf-stone.com

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