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On your 2nd game (not 1st/try) overshooting vs undershooting, profit expectation/time dictates

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by unitedone3D, Jan 24, 2021.

  1. unitedone3D


    Jul 29, 2017
    Hi there! Just a 2 cents. Saw this. TR DR: If you are after making serious revenue wage, then one day (after made a small game or 2 or 3 or 4 before) make that big game. If not, carry on making small games to learn/perfect skills (but the thing of 'when will I make that big game' will hang over your head)).

    ''Maybe making seven games in seven years makes a lot of sense for learning, but no matter what your goals are (hobby, indie, pro, ...) I can not remember a single game I played in the last ~40 years (for as long as I have played games) that were worth playing and that was created in a short amount of time. Even (or especially?) small games created by a lone developer in their free time had years of development put into them before they were really fun to play.
    I mean I love game jams and find it worthwhile to spend time trying out whatever people managed to make in 48 hours or so, but none of those games that I ever tried are more than maybe 15-60 minutes of fun and then I am likely to forgot it even existed. More fun to make than to play? (Good for learning of course.)
    Recommending beginners to not make huge games is one thing, but if someone wants to eventually make a game that is not just yet another forgotten insignificant game among the thousands released every day, I do not see how there are any other options than to eventually switch gears and stop making small silly games and focus on something bigger, even if it has all the problems that big projects have and everyone is probably correct that it will almost certainly fail (at least you tried?). Unless all you want are endless small silly games, hoping to win on the app lottery to get rich fast or whatever, but I doubt that even works for anyone now.''

    Most likely, most people (am generalizing a bit sorry) probably are not looking to make revenues (large ones) from a small game.

    I believe that saying : ''you can't run before (learning to) walk(ing)''...but once you have enough walking -capability, you have to stop walking, or 'upgrade the pace/cadence', and start running;...How Long is that?

    That is the question...but it can be 12 months or 12 years, that really depends on you and your learning speed/work proficiency. Your Will/If You Believe You Are Ready. It depends on how much risk you want to take also.

    You could spend 6 years as hobby going slow to learn it all (maybe making 1 game per year/small) (unrisky)
    you could spend 6 years on your 2nd game (but 1st Big game) as a hobby, hoping it becomes a viable product at the end. (very risky)

    If you are not after making any profit/revenue...then you can spend however long perfecting your skills to be the best...but one day, (if you wish to make bigger scope...) you still have to start that game (that one (bigger 1) you had in mind all along).

    It comes down to that, if you wish to make 'some' small revenue then you make may small games, it could actually be enough to make a living out of it. albeit, that chance/odd reduces yearly as the pile of game rises. More Competition/Market Saturation = Less Odds of making anything.
    More Offer - than Demand = 99% will be ignored (that means a lotsa of small games will receive no interest) as people will select the 1% Best.

    But. If you are looking (or hoping, is more like it) to 'hit it big' or let's say make more that 'some' small revenue; like, more Serious revenue (think 500K$ or more...not under that), then I guess continuing to make small games is probably not going to reach that; unless by remote chance you make Candy Crush or Flappy Birds.

    It means you will have to make a bigger game to reach those bigger revenues. It scales (up, revenue vs scope).

    The reason is most gamers are not interested in 1,000,000th other app/mobile game or smaller game; it is a bit like the 'short film' analogy...most people don't go see 'short films' (that last 5-10 minutes)...they go see full films in the theaters...rarelt 'short films'..hence rarely anyone pays for a small game. That is the reality.

    If small game Sold Like Crazy, I would not say that, but it is not the case. Small games are faster to make, easier and 'made to learn' the craft...they rarely sell and some may even say: ''don't ever sell your small game, no one (or almost no one) will pay for that (unless you reinvented the wheel/genius idea (à la Candy Crush/Flappy Birds)''.

    If you just want to learn by practice/making small games is Very Good...but don't ever expect any money out of it, or very little. Once you have done that/feel proficient enough/know enough skills (or think you do), then think about that game you wanted to make and start doing it (to one day, finish it..because it will take years to make if aimer bigger/higher scope/size etc...).

    ''Here's the problem though. There are also many experienced game devs who published many games, but their talent/ambition are average at best, yet they use their experience as a justification to give advice. They like to laugh at upcoming game devs with big dreams, bigger dreams than theirs.

    So just because an experience game dev failed to achieve what they wanted to achieve and
    turned into middle of the road devs doesn't mean they should be condescending to upcoming devs
    . They need to stay humble and watch their tone.

    Yes start small is important. But I would say: don't listen to anyone, that's even better advice, because in the end first hand experience will teach you what you need to learn. Go crash and burn and learn from it!''

    I tried to refind a great comment but could not find it again, the gist of it:

    ''Big game is a completely different thing/ is does not have the same challenges and limits/constraints that a small game dev has, meaning you might make 100 small games, it does not amount to a big game('s rule/challenges/constraints/designs/etc...). A big game is all that, but a small game (or the 100th) is not that.It is why even if you are more proficient from making 100 small games, you still never have made a big game (unless you started/tried/you did before) and faced the differences/challenges/complications/constraints/designs challenges/complexities/specific 'unique' problems (to big games) ..of making 1 Huge/High Polish/High Scope game''. Making a huge game 'over the years' a feat, to not abandon 'for the long haul'....the largest Difference between small game vs big the Time (it will take). to achieve that scope/size/polish...

    And I believe that, it is why after you feel adequate enough (of making smaller games) you should give it a shot at that bigger (scoped/polished) game, because the challenge (of it taking years to make that game) will be different and a new thing than making 1 small game per 6-12 months. If you have no desire to make large revenue (serious revenue not 20,000$ from your small game), than you don't ever need to make a big game, you can keep this a hobby and just something to learn the really comes down to that/if wanting or hoping to make (serious) revenue (down the line) or not. Nothing is assured - but if you never try, it is nearly 100% certain you will not make that larger revenue. You can make a living (with making small games that make 20K per year), but to make more revenue than that, will take more than that (make bigger game).

    An old saying:

    ''You miss 100% of the shots you don't take''.

    Making small games to 'make it big' is probably not 'taking shots''s learning and improving; one day (if you care about revenue and wish it to increase; you have to Have Ambition for a bigger thing - to Want It bad, ''bad enough to start doing it''), you must take that shot' for bigger game (and may fail but, at least, tried).

    Thanks for reading.
    Just a 2 cents.

    PS: They say it's blindness of the (fool(ish)) hobbyier seeing 'stars/dollar signs in their eyes', that it's crazy to 'attempt' even to make something bigger (when you are hobby person learning), you ahve 100% chance of failing so don't even try. Right? I think that is the problem/crux of this, it is people speaking from experience and wishing to give well-meaning advice. But most 'huge inventions' were made 'against the current'...when everyone told you 'don't..dont''s people that believed in themselves and their idea..that made it happen/and made it big; it's rare (because so many tried and failed), but that is basically how the 'big ones' came to be. But, since we can't run before walking, maybe not your First game to make that big one, on your 2nd, you can then aimer higher.

    With that said, I don't/won't stop people from making their big game on their Very First Try/First Game...if so they wish. But it's true to most Big games (like Stardew Valley, Cuphead, Subnautica, Bright Memory)...were not exactly 'first game', the solo developer had developed knowledge and made small games before or decided was proficient enough, that Could start doing their Big game 1st time. I read that Candy Crush and Flappy Birds were like the 50th game/version they made and 'Refined' before it actually worked/became a hit. With that said, the thing of making small has to have a 'maximum amount of time' allowed to that (were you feel 'proficient enough'), and then you have to try on that bigger 1 game.
  2. BrandyStarbrite


    Aug 4, 2013
    Interesting post.
    MadeFromPolygons and Antypodish like this.