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Setting up your own shop

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by SparrowsNest, May 20, 2019.

  1. SparrowsNest

    SparrowsNest

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    My first game is soon done, and i wonder if setting up a website to sell it(and future games when they come) is worth it yet, i was looks over the web and you can set one up for around 10-20 bucks a month.

    I don't know how many sales a month to expect, im gonna start advertising in a couple of week and ill see where thing are headed.

    How many sales a month on average for the first year do you guys think makes it a good investment?
    Lets assume a 10 dollar price.

    I plan on putting my game on steam and as many other stores as i can but having a dedicated place for my games gives people a better place to go to than a steam page imo.

    What do you guys think of it?
    Writing it mid work in like 10000 parts so sorry if i missed something i should have mentioned.
     
    Ony likes this.
  2. dogzerx2

    dogzerx2

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    Similar logic to writing your own game engine. I wont say don't do it, but it'd be a huge amount of work to reinvent the wheel when you have already made solutions that work well.
     
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  3. SparrowsNest

    SparrowsNest

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    I don't think this is reinventing the wheel, a lot of game makers and artists in general have a websites.
    I'm not talking about a competitor to steam or gog, if thats what you thought.
     
    angrypenguin likes this.
  4. dogzerx2

    dogzerx2

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    Ah, fair enough then.

    Definitely have a website for your game.

    Regarding making a store, providing the same services as Steam (refunds, update notifications, misc) and the hardest part which is bringing traffic, that's what I meant by reinventing the wheel, and I estimate it'd take a lot of resources.
     
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  5. Ony

    Ony

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    As usual, this primarily depends on the game, the genre, and how much demand there is for what you're offering.

    Personally I love when I can download and purchase a game from its own web site. It makes it so much more personal, as if I'm directly supporting the author in a meaningful way.

    The presentation needs to be there, of course. If you aren't very skilled at making web sites that sell, be prepared to keep tweaking and honing things until it works. You've got a few specific jobs to do if selling games from your own web site:
    • Attract people to your site.
    • Arouse their imagination.
    • Gain their trust.
    • Get the sale.
    The big third-party online shops already have these things pretty much down pat, with the exception of arousing imagination, which is largely up to you. If you are selling from your own site in addition to selling your game from third-party sites (as you mentioned), then the trust issue is more easily taken care of.

    The standard course for the vast majority of developers is to simply slap their game on Steam or itch.io and call it a day. By creating and thoughtfully maintaining your own presence in your own way, you gain an advantage over all of those games.

    Do it right, and it could make a huge difference in the success of your game. You become more than just the author at that point, relying on someone else to do the hard lifting for you. People notice that, and it is a powerful thing.
     
  6. dogzerx2

    dogzerx2

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    Daily tip: Listen to Ony, ignore dogzer!!
     
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  7. SparrowsNest

    SparrowsNest

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    That can be handles by a service provider (as i'll mention below), you don't have to do everything yourself.
    refunds are dealt by the service provider i believe, updates i guess you can have users and send them all an email with what you want, misc is handled by etc. (;

    Yeah that is the hardest part, you really thing that's gonna be the game now, won't you?
    Thats why I don't know what to expect, am I gonna be able to attract just 15 people a month on average and only 1-3 buys a copy making it financially a bad decision currently (that I can't afford), but it would still be a good idea marketing-wise because it makes everything much more professional, or am I gonna "explode" with hundreds of people a month with a couple dozen sales that I just can't afford to miss, the website's bottom line is better retention rate and better conversion rate imo (kinda like an upgrade if this was some sort of game dev game thingy, haha), and if that's the case I have to have the website.

    Really, I think all, well -- most, serious game dev, be it solo like me or a studio have a dedicated webpage, I just don't wanna jump the gun on that one.
    about the game - genre is complex, I label it as strategy most though, I don't know how much demand there is for that game, but the only thing I could find that's close to it is in the spoiler below along with how I iterated on it, in case you're interested.
    I found some games that are similar-ish, in some gameplay element, graphical style and the "mindset" of the game
    for lack of a better word,
    they had a nice audience with a decent following that if I were to get on my first game I'd think some one is playing a huge prank on me, haha.

    This is the game that first inspired my current game: https://www.kongregate.com/games/thewaste/bot-arena-3
    It's called "Bot Arena" (mine is called "Robattle" btw), it has basically roombas with weapons fighting each other, a cute flash game for back in the day, I think the reason I did this is I played it when I was a kid (24 now) and I always wanted it to be better, it's AI is kinda dumb to say the least, very short game as most flash games are, a very limited part catalog.

    the way I improved on it (with out writing my WIP thread here) is first of all make it 3D,
    give you more variation on the tanks, more components/types of parts to assembly a tank, a lot more of parts for each category,
    an AI you can actually control with setting up it's heuristics and direct mid-battle control,
    the ability to get into one of the tanks and control it yourself,
    robot-wars(the tv show) type traps on the arena,
    up to a 6 teams FFA (more just gets way to hectic, but you can still do it, I just give you a heads up and paint all the numbers red, haha),
    an exhibition match/pitfight as I called it with randomly generated enemy teams that match your teams strength(plus or minus a modifier that also effects the final score for a match),
    single/double elimination, round robin, ladder(that has like 100 steps instead of 10)

    and a whole lot of other S***, if you're actually reading this keep an eye out for a thread in the WIP section in a few weeks

    I know, that's exactly my mind set, not to even mention the cut you have to pay to steam, it gives off a much more professional vibe.




    I fiddle around with it a bit when I was younger, but nothing that's gonna help me today.
    My brother know how to build websites and I know a couple of UI ( or UX as they insist, but what ever) designers that can help me with making it attractive and intuitive.
    those 4 things are the easier said then done. (;




    I thought about a service like Wix, they can give you a simple online shop with a layout thats good if you slap your own art there (I blindly assume you could), but there's a lot of other providers and worst comes to worst and every thing is just a no-go I can also get my brother to set me up, but then I gotta worry about what @dogzerx2 said (see, we listen)
    I am planning on slapping my game everywhere I can, and about the trust thing, I'm planning on being very engaged with my audience, but not like the companies that send you 3+ emails a week on stuff you don't give a S*** about, still working on it though, hehe.




    Thanks, this is exactly what I wanted to hear, great feedback.
    Much love. (;
     
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  8. angrypenguin

    angrypenguin

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    Between a DIY website provider (like Wix) and the Humble Widget you could be selling your own game on your own site in no time, with the technical stuff handled for you.
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2019
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  9. GameDevCouple_I

    GameDevCouple_I

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    As mentioned above, humble widget on your site and your good to go!
     
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  10. AndersMalmgren

    AndersMalmgren

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    We just have a link to Steam very effective way :)

    http://virtual-warfighter.com/

    I'm pretty sure having your own payment system in place isn't worth it. People will just buy through steam anyway
     
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  11. ShilohGames

    ShilohGames

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    You should definitely have a website for your game. However, the only time I would recommend using your website for direct selling instead of using Steam would be in the case of a game that is literally not allowed on Steam. If your game is allowed on Steam, you want to use Steam.
     
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  12. SparrowsNest

    SparrowsNest

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    that type of website isn't what I mean, this obviously serves its own purpose.

    but i'm talking more about a website for me where my game will be, not a website for the game it self.
    where you can (obviously) see all my games, a "about us(me)" page, information about upcoming games.. stuff like that.

    I definitely don't wanna get into creating a payment system myself(I can barley scrap enough time to work on the game), but you can pretty easily get that sort of stuff with the website itself if you're using stuff like Wix I mentioned earlier (I don't know if wix is the best option for me, there are a lot of others, but what they offer seems like a very good value to a very fair price).

    the goal of the website isn't to bypass the x% I have to pay steam/gog/we , it's like @Ony said,
    even if you're not "directly supporting the author" and get linked to steam/we when you buy, you still get a better vibe out of the whole thing. (call it home-y, warm, professional, i don't know exactly how to label it)
    you start building up a newsletter list from there, I think it's much harder though steam/the game itself (unless it's online) but i don't really know.

    What, you mean like that rape simulator game? hahaha
    I saw someone post it here a week ago i think.

    I don't plan on putting it only on my website, I've said that I'm gonna slap it on where ever I can (I fully understand if you didn't read all I said here), i'd even go around cities around where I live if I thought I'd make a sale instead of getting arrested.
     
    Ony likes this.