Search Unity

Developer Success Stories

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by VNL Entertainment Games, Dec 19, 2015.

  1. Aiursrage2k

    Aiursrage2k

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2009
    Posts:
    4,833
    Things have taken a strange turn. I just assumed you found a hole in the market and just built a product they wanted but maybe you used a bunch of fake reviews as well. The mobile market is such a crapshoot we will never know
     
    aer0ace and N1warhead like this.
  2. Master-Frog

    Master-Frog

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2015
    Posts:
    2,297
    I can recognize patterns in speech and my memory can recall a whole bunch of stuff, to the point that I don't know where everything in my head comes from. Right now, you're communicating a mix of telemarketer and life coach.

    You are shoveling S*** really thick right now. In my mind, you now have zero credibility and people who want to believe you should really verify things you are claiming, including your identity and your role in the development of any games.

    As for me, I have heard enough to be 100% certain that something is amiss with what you're saying.
     
  3. dogzerx2

    dogzerx2

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2009
    Posts:
    3,825
    I think it still comes to a point there's nothing you can "say" to help someone. Like telling someone how to run faster... stops making sense very fast, and it's about getting up and start forging your own skills.
     
  4. dogzerx2

    dogzerx2

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2009
    Posts:
    3,825
    I was still hoping for moar success stories. But people tend to be reserved about this, for obvious reasons, which is ok.

    All in all the more info the better. There are lots of little hints you may pick up from watching what games did better and others that didn't. You can reinforce or prove theories wrong, and try to understand why. Maybe a game looked pretty good, but was too expensive, or was more suitable for mobile than PC; or it had iaps, but they were hard to find; or a game was doing bad... until some review site shined some light on it; all sort things that are good to keep in mind when deciding what to do about your game, business model, and how you market it.
     
  5. AcidArrow

    AcidArrow

    Joined:
    May 20, 2010
    Posts:
    6,331
    You're looking for shortcuts, there aren't any. Plenty of people have been telling you that, you just don't want to accept it.
     
  6. neginfinity

    neginfinity

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2013
    Posts:
    6,768
    There are probably shortcuts, but whoever finds them is not going to tell about them for sure.
     
  7. AcidArrow

    AcidArrow

    Joined:
    May 20, 2010
    Posts:
    6,331
    Mostly because those shortcuts are impossible to replicate (and aren't really shortcuts):

    Met person x at the right time.

    My game was covered by x site which turned out to be awesome for the game (at the time).

    Spent a lot of time working on feature X which was a hit and created a lot of positive word of mouth.

    Etc etc

    All of these can be summed up as "work hard, try to get your game out there and good luck".

    See? No secrets.
     
    Kiwasi, Ryiah, dogzerx2 and 2 others like this.
  8. neginfinity

    neginfinity

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2013
    Posts:
    6,768
    It is not THAT kind of shortcut. There's no universal recipe to win that would work for everybody - aside from "keep working and hopefully learn from mistakes"

    To replicate Bill Bates's success,. for example, you need to be Bill Gates. That includes being born when he was born and making every choice he made. And since there's already one Bill Gates, you can't be him. That's what ArrowX said, pretty much.

    Now another issue is that someone may have stumbled upon untouched market niche or strategy that brings them more money. A loophole, or uncharted ground, or whatever. They WON'T tell you about it. Benefit of this kind of "shortcut" won't be very big to begin with, and usually those kind of things stop working when more people learn about them (kinda like with stock market - when everybody knows winning strategy, winning strategy stops working).

    You're pretty much looking for "I win" button or "make a mmo" button right now and you know how well those kind of threads go.

    Funny enough, searching for recipe of success creates people that will try to sell you fake recipe, "only today, with a special discount for a mere hundred bucks" or something like that.
     
    Ryiah likes this.
  9. AcidArrow

    AcidArrow

    Joined:
    May 20, 2010
    Posts:
    6,331
    Are you looking for something like "sell your game for 190$ on Google Play"?
     
  10. neginfinity

    neginfinity

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2013
    Posts:
    6,768
    How does this one usually go..

    "The secrets of the successful businessmen, every loophole and every trick of the game development industry, explained in inredible detail by our team of professionals! All this exclusive is available in this book right now just for you in this amazing limited-time offer!

    Buy the book that will guide you on the road to success today! Only today, get thousands of dollars worth of information for a mere $300! Why waste years of your time trying strategy after strategy, unsuccessfully? Instead, buy this amazing product today and take the first step on the road to success! Do not miss out, only 3 copies left!"


    Or something.
     
  11. AcidArrow

    AcidArrow

    Joined:
    May 20, 2010
    Posts:
    6,331
    You know what I mean.

    I am out of this thread. I think the question you want answers to is different to the one you are asking.
     
    theANMATOR2b likes this.
  12. Ryiah

    Ryiah

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2012
    Posts:
    15,140
    Nonsense. We're not asking for specifics anymore than you are. If @zombiegorilla, who works for Disney and is most assuredly behind at least one NDA, is capable of providing an extensive post I don't see any reason why you cannot.

    No, what you're asking for is more akin to a handout than actually sharing. The very definition of sharing is joint use of a resource or space with others. Yet you're withholding your own secrets while asking others for theirs. It's not sharing.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2015
  13. Ryiah

    Ryiah

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2012
    Posts:
    15,140
    Exactly. It isn't simply enough to have a good product. You have to be in the right place at the right time with your competition making the right decisions (or wrong ones depending on how you look at it).

    What if CP/M had become the standard OS rather than MS-DOS? What if Xerox had not designed and developed a prototype UI? What if they had decided to build their own product and take the market themselves?

    I'm confident we would have been at the same point technologically but the players could and most likely would have been completely different.
     
    GarBenjamin likes this.
  14. tedthebug

    tedthebug

    Joined:
    May 6, 2015
    Posts:
    2,569
    The only secret to having a successful game is to already have one. Once you have a successful game you pretty much get an instant boost, at least initially, for your next game because you already have a profile & can easily market to those people already playing your first game.
     
    Kiwasi likes this.
  15. Aiursrage2k

    Aiursrage2k

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2009
    Posts:
    4,833
    As long as your next game can be sold to the same people, look at what happened with thomas was alone dev's next game volume he went from over 1 million units to less then 10k .
    http://steamspy.com/app/365770

    The guy that made Gratuitous Space Battles sold 500k units, he tried to recapture it with Gratuitous Tank Battles - 60k, Gratuitous Space Battles 2 - 9k
    http://steamspy.com/dev/Positech+Games

    Edmud mcillen cant seem to miss -- each of his games sell over a million units.
    http://steamspy.com/search.php?s=binding+of+issac
    http://steamspy.com/dev/Team+Meat
     
    Manny Calavera and theANMATOR2b like this.
  16. GarBenjamin

    GarBenjamin

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2013
    Posts:
    7,442
    I think this shows that many of these "hit" game devs really don't understand how they actually made a hit to begin with. And maybe it also shows it wasn't really them doing it to begin with but other factors. When you think about it in some ways it would be a worse situation to have found such success and never be able to reproduce it again then it would be if they never had it. I mean sure they always have that one hit and they have the money from it (assuming they don't spend it all trying to duplicate its success) but you see what I mean I think?
     
    tedthebug and PenguinEmporium like this.
  17. PenguinEmporium

    PenguinEmporium

    Joined:
    May 30, 2013
    Posts:
    134
    I'd say that the real reason behind the varying success is based on trends, the market's taste, and what the developers actually consider failure. Big Pharma was considered a success by its creator. He actually made a post about his success via Youtubers. Granted it wasn't Millions of dollars, but it was substantial.
     
    theANMATOR2b likes this.
  18. theANMATOR2b

    theANMATOR2b

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2014
    Posts:
    7,782
    Polish !
    Your welcome all - and Merry Christmas. :D
     
  19. tedthebug

    tedthebug

    Joined:
    May 6, 2015
    Posts:
    2,569
    Reading a lot of interviews/post mortems it also appears that to have a successful game you have to devote so much to it over a long period of time that
    • Your mental health suffers
    • Your physical health suffers
    • Your relationships suffer
    • You owe so much $ that all the success buys you out of debt with a bit left over
    • All your 'friends' suddenly want to hang out with you because they only hear of the $ you made & not the $ you spent
     
  20. Ryiah

    Ryiah

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2012
    Posts:
    15,140
    Having an existing fan base helps immensely. It's a large part of why Jeff Vogel is still in business. :p
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2015
    theANMATOR2b likes this.
  21. Kiwasi

    Kiwasi

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2013
    Posts:
    16,631
    I made half a million dollars at my day job yesterday. Admittedly that's money for my employer, not money for me. With those kind of figures its going to take a while for my game dev income to catch up.

    But as a hobby its been moderately financially successful. Game dev certainly shows up on the household budget. Here are some of the 'secrets' I've learned.
    • Work for others. Working for people who have already made it successful and have money to spend is a great way to learn the business.
    • Make connections. Almost all of my game dev work has come from making connections with people.
    • Find niche under served markets and build products for them.
    • Match your product title and description to what people are actually googling for.
    • Sell shovels to miners
    I would be cautious on living by these secrets. After all, I'm not yet making half a million dollars in one day in my game dev career.
     
  22. AcidArrow

    AcidArrow

    Joined:
    May 20, 2010
    Posts:
    6,331
    Also I heard that if you have more than 6k posts on the forums, you automatically join the inner circle of game developers everywhere and are let in on all the secrets.

    Of course these are just rumors that we have no way to confirm.

    :p
     
    theANMATOR2b and Kiwasi like this.
  23. tedthebug

    tedthebug

    Joined:
    May 6, 2015
    Posts:
    2,569
    +1 to my post count, 4252 posts to go. C'mon secret........
     
    theANMATOR2b, dogzerx2 and AcidArrow like this.
  24. jpthek9

    jpthek9

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2013
    Posts:
    944
    I agree. Jumping into game dev is really hard. Working for others is an incredible experience that'll develop your skills and help your confidence. And if their game can be based on your work, so can yours.
     
    Kiwasi and dogzerx2 like this.
  25. Ryiah

    Ryiah

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2012
    Posts:
    15,140
    Give me another year or two. :p
     
    theANMATOR2b likes this.
  26. Kiwasi

    Kiwasi

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2013
    Posts:
    16,631
    Actually I don't yet consider myself a success on the forum. I still have yet to dethrone my nemesis ;)

    On the other hand if I was to take this seriously as a career, spending less time on the forums would be a good beginning. All indications point to junior game devs working incredibly long hours to get a foot in the door. I did my time with 12+ hours days and 1 am call outs getting into engineering. At this stage in my career I'm not quite ready to do that again.
     
    AcidArrow and GarBenjamin like this.
  27. Aiursrage2k

    Aiursrage2k

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2009
    Posts:
    4,833
    The missing ingredient. Now everyone can be a millionaire!
     
    theANMATOR2b, GarBenjamin and Kiwasi like this.
  28. Ryiah

    Ryiah

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2012
    Posts:
    15,140
    You're not too far away from it though. I'm only keeping up with mine because I haven't got much of a life. :p
     
    theANMATOR2b and Kiwasi like this.
  29. Kiwasi

    Kiwasi

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2013
    Posts:
    16,631
    The gaps been pretty constant between 150-200 for months now. I'm beginning to think I might never do it. And therefore fail at the forums, and by extension life in general. :p
     
    Aiursrage2k likes this.
  30. Farelle

    Farelle

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2015
    Posts:
    504
    I can't talk about myself, but I can link a video about someone talking about that kind of experience :)
     
    Valkrysa_Herja and theANMATOR2b like this.
  31. jpthek9

    jpthek9

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2013
    Posts:
    944
    Just because Alexander Bruce had that experience doesn't at all mean that that's the experience of all successful game devs. I don't see any reason why mental health, physical health, and relationships must suffer to be successful - if anything, they need to thrive.
     
    Recon03 and Ryiah like this.
  32. Master-Frog

    Master-Frog

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2015
    Posts:
    2,297
    # Of Developer Success Stories In Thread Called Developer Success Stories: 0

    (in my view, a specific story about a game and making money from that game)
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2015
    dogzerx2 likes this.
  33. Eric5h5

    Eric5h5

    Volunteer Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2006
    Posts:
    32,208
    THEY ARE JUST RUMORS AND THERE IS NO WAY TO CONFIRM.

    --Eric
     
  34. tedthebug

    tedthebug

    Joined:
    May 6, 2015
    Posts:
    2,569
    The first rule of secret dev club is you don't talk about secret dev club
     
  35. zombiegorilla

    zombiegorilla

    Moderator

    Joined:
    May 8, 2012
    Posts:
    8,000
    In truth, anything that I could say that is covered by the confidentiality of my contract would be of no use to anyone outside our company (or direct competitors). And most of it wouldn't be very interesting. (at least not to game developers... comic fans, star wars fans, etc... that is a different story). ;)

    ---

    The 'secrets' we use make successful games are the same as everyone else. You have to make an engaging game that people enjoy playing. That is pretty much it. Same as making a good movie or writing a hit song. Skill, creativity and experience. Marketing, publicity, advertising, etc, are things that get people to look at a game. They can't convert a crappy game into a good one. If you don't start with a good game, all the marketing tips in world won't help. To make money, convert players into payers or convince people to buy requires a good game at the core.


    I shared mine. And there are definitely other successful developers here on the forums, whether or not they opt to share.
     
  36. jpthek9

    jpthek9

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2013
    Posts:
    944
    I'm kinda hitting it off. 17 years old so I got bills and everything handled by my parents for a year. Making roughly 40000 a year via freelancing. Haven't got any of my own games popular though, so it's not the kind of success story most are expecting. Games of personal love like Antechamber and Minecraft are hard to make by yourself, and even harder to market.
     
    Recon03, Aiursrage2k, aer0ace and 2 others like this.
  37. zombiegorilla

    zombiegorilla

    Moderator

    Joined:
    May 8, 2012
    Posts:
    8,000
    Considering most make <1k, you are well above the curve. You are well on your way. Congrats!
     
    aer0ace and jpthek9 like this.
  38. tedthebug

    tedthebug

    Joined:
    May 6, 2015
    Posts:
    2,569

    Welcome to the world of taxpayers. I hope your parents are getting a good Xmas present this year :)
     
    theANMATOR2b and jpthek9 like this.
  39. jpthek9

    jpthek9

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2013
    Posts:
    944
    I'm the least creative gift giver ever. For my mom, it's always a purse with varying prices based on what's affordable. For my dad, a wallet or hiking backpack with the same price requirement. Basically, I buy them the most useless things to have a lot of xD. No clue what else to get though.
     
  40. goat

    goat

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2009
    Posts:
    5,177
    40K a year and they are paying your way? Well, you might consider giving them gift cards worth 20K each, or 10K each seeing as the government's going to take at least 50% of that 40K.
     
  41. Kiwasi

    Kiwasi

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2013
    Posts:
    16,631
    This. I'm also under strong NDA stuff with my day job. And yet knowing the exact manufacturing procedure for high strength herbicides would be useless for almost everybody that might read it here. Our competitors might be fascinated. But it's totally useless unless you are in the industry.

    And before you ask I'm not sharing. There have been weirder ways for competitors to get data.
     
    Ryiah likes this.
  42. FuzzyQuills

    FuzzyQuills

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2013
    Posts:
    2,869
    Interesting thread... :D
     
  43. nipoco

    nipoco

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2011
    Posts:
    2,008
    Yeah but having quite a few of the most well known entertainment franchises on this planet definitely helps :p
     
    zombiegorilla likes this.
  44. Ryiah

    Ryiah

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2012
    Posts:
    15,140
    Are those ways entertaining? :D
     
    Master-Frog likes this.
  45. FuzzyQuills

    FuzzyQuills

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2013
    Posts:
    2,869
    @BoredMormon: I'm with Ryiah on this! :p
     
  46. zombiegorilla

    zombiegorilla

    Moderator

    Joined:
    May 8, 2012
    Posts:
    8,000
    Indeed it does. But it also means the bar is very high, as are the expectations. I spent more time getting the holograms to a level of approval than I have on some entire games. ;)
     
  47. Kiwasi

    Kiwasi

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2013
    Posts:
    16,631
    The classic story that's told in IP protection class involves google earth, a newspaper report with photos, and an engineer posting questions on a public forum. Apparently engineers at my former company were able to put together the entire plant design and capacity. Knowing the exact limitations and capacities of a competitors process is a huge boon to the marketing and sales team.

    There are other stories of R&D chemists with Chinese girl friends. Then there was the guy who simply downloaded the entire R&D database and tried to sell it to the Chinese.

    And finally there are the more mundane methods like simply buying your competitors product in the store and reverse engineering it.
     
    Ryiah likes this.
  48. FuzzyQuills

    FuzzyQuills

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2013
    Posts:
    2,869
    First one... Wow. :eek:

    Second one... Lolwut? They didn't even have encryption?

    And third one... that's the story of basically every game console, only it's the 'average' customer doing it. ;) (But... what if I told you Nintendo that customer was from Microsoft? :p)
     
  49. Kiwasi

    Kiwasi

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2013
    Posts:
    16,631
    The first one was impressive. There are other similar stories. Logistics reps will take notes of the amount and type of competitors products stored in ware houses, and back calculate to figure out their production schedule or prices. There were other similar things.

    The second one was done by an R&D chemist working within the company. In order to work the chemists have to have access to the database. As an engineer I only get access to the pieces I'm working on. But the senior R&D chemists can get everything. Here is a news report about it.

    At Dow we even had a guy who's job was to scan all of the patent filings, newspaper articles and financial reports and send out a report to everyone on everything that had happened in the market. Knowledge of what our competitors and the market was doing was powerful.
     
    FuzzyQuills and Ryiah like this.
  50. FuzzyQuills

    FuzzyQuills

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2013
    Posts:
    2,869
    Destroyed on the inside... there's the way to do it. ;) And having people like that around must be doing those companies favours. Who wouldn't succeed with that? :)

    Still, scanning ALL de patents is overkill... ;) (and "de" was deliberate. :p)
     
unityunity