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Why our games don't go viral !!

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by CloudFs, Jun 21, 2014.

  1. CloudFs

    CloudFs

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    Hi guys ..
    So today i was just reading some posts in the forum
    and i found out that most of people including me
    say that they want to make a game like ...
    that means that they saw a game before and they would like to make a game that rassemble it !
    i think that we sould be original ..
    i mean i made 2 or 3 simple fantasy games but they didn't go viral
    ... i think that's the reason why ..
    what do you think
     
  2. sootie8

    sootie8

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    For a game to go 'Viral', there needs to be a unique feature that differentiates it from other similar games. Unless you invent a new genre of game, taking an existing game's design and improving upon it is 'the business'.
     
  3. wccrawford

    wccrawford

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    Originality has nothing to do with it. Just take a look at Minecraft, possibly the most successful viral campaign ever.

    It has to do with games being fun. *How* it gets to be fun isn't important.
     
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  4. BIG-BUG

    BIG-BUG

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    Sorry but your comment doesn't make any sense. Minecraft went viral BECAUSE of the originality and the creativity of players who wanted to share their creations in YouTube.
    It doesn't matter if similar games are already existent, if the masses don't know about them. Minecraft is original to 99% of players - and that's one reason it became so successful.
     
  5. Windexglow2

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    Have the user talk about it to friends, and their friends ectect.
     
  6. SmellyDogs

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    The reality is - nobody knows exactly why memes, games, images, and so on go viral. Attributing characteristics such as fun or funny or original or creative aren't exactly descriptive enough and in many of cases are downright FALSE.

    There have been scientific studies into viral media; a great deal would ride upon the results of the studies. Imagine what corporations would be willing to pay for the secrets to viral success. It would be enormously cheaper than running an advertising campaign.

    One study suggests it has to do with emotional contagion. I prefer this idea over others.
    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0747563213001192
     
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  7. SmellyDogs

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    Or perhaps it was just appealing the common human desire to build and organise?
     
  8. TheRaider

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    maybe if you showed your games you might get more informative replies. Make sure you have a good product and get some suggestions on why it might not of caught on.
     
  9. Khyrid

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    OP said "we sould be original", not "the players should be orignial". Minecraft was a good example of a game that was not original. wccrawford's point was valid.
     
  10. christides11

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  11. TheRaider

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  12. zDemonhunter99

    zDemonhunter99

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    Markus "Notch" Persson had created minecraft by blatantly copying from infiniminer...
     
  13. Devil_Inside

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    I also think that originality has nothing to do with this. Practically every major successful game is a clone of another game.
    In hindsight you can say that their success is the result of their talent and specific actions. In reality though, their success is the result of a number of random circumstances, which no-one can actually plan and predict . Notch's other "games" are a good example...
     
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  14. CloudFs

    CloudFs

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    hi guys thanks for all your replies ..
    but i don't think that you got me
    mincraft gone viral because it has a style of game which didn't exist before ..
    i mean a game played online where you can do what ever you want to do ..
    that's original .. that's why it gone viral ..
     
  15. TheRaider

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    I think it was showed in this thread it wasn't, and I don't think Notch has ever done anything but embrace where it came from.

    It went viral because a lot of stars aligned properly and it was clearly a good product as well.

    There are lots of reasons different things go viral, luck is normally a part of it, but product is also another big part of it.
     
  16. DallonF

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    Originality is important for a game to go viral, but it's not the only factor. Originality in this case, though, is based on the player's perspective, not reality. If a player hasn't seen a game like this before, they will consider it to be "original", even if hundreds exist.

    That means that a great game with poor marketing is highly vulnerable to "idea theft"! I think this may be the only case where "idea theft" is a legitimate concern for an average indie.
     
  17. imaginaryhuman

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    Agreed on the perspective, when a game seems to be `new` and unlike anything they have seen before, there is a lot of appeal in that... a certain wonder and awe and a lack of understanding... it takes time to get used to something to realize its flaws and for the honeymoon period to be over, so it's good to take advantage of that newness while you can. Maybe take something like Blek, or Threes as examples of games people said `ooh its so original`.
     
  18. Aiursrage2k

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    Yeah hell if i know
     
  19. christides11

    christides11

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    Minecraft was originally a copy of infiminer more or less, but has evolved passed it a bunch. It went viral due to the timing, since infiminer was a bit of a old game by the time.
    It could have failed, but it was shared around and such. That's what usually helps a game, but yea what helps alot is doing a game that isn't like everything else out at the time.
     
  20. CarterG81

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    No one knows how things go viral.

    If they did, they would have a monopoly on youtube.

    I wouldn't be surprised if AAA companies spent millions trying to figure out the formula to "go viral". Not just game companies, but marketing companies, political controllers, any sort of business that can take value from free marketing (which is everyone).

    Even those with teams of scientists and million-dollar research budgets studying the "going viral" phenomenon have next to no idea how to go viral.


    The same goes for making a successful video game. Bad games make millions, good games make petty cash. A game can make anywhere from $0 to Infinity money in 0 days to Infinity years. No one knows how, or why, or what, or when, or where.

    If they did, they'd be hot fuzz in every article known to man for years to come.
     
  21. SmellyDogs

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    But there won't ever be infinity money in the world. Also there will not be infinity years.
     
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  22. randomperson42

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    Actually you should start with a negative number instead of zero - don't forget that money is lost on many games.
     
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  23. CarterG81

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    Oh yea. Scratch the former number. The number is:

    You can make Negative Infinity to Infinity money in 0 to Infinity days.

    Not sure why it unignored SmellyDogs. I'd report such chilidness if it didn't bother the moderators so much to deal with such pointless posts.
    SmellyDogs, you make yourself look really.....*thinks of a nice way to put it*....bad...when you nitpick like this.

    People with intelligence understand the statement "You can make 0 to infinity money in 0 days to infinity years."
    Also, infinity certainly exists. If it's higher than you can counter (which is probably not very high) it's pretty close to the concept of infinity. It's not like we're debating the details of economic theory or measuring when time ends.

    I'd try less to sound like a pompous nitpicking fool, and try harder to integrate into normal conversation. This is what people call "talking" and "getting across a concept or idea". The formal word is "C.O.M.M.U.N.I.C.A.T.I.O.N." When you get bored of trolling, you should try it sometime. It's fun!

    *facepalm* I still don't understand why it unignored him when I clicked that button. There is a reason he is on it, lol.
     
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  24. SmellyDogs

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    /
     
  25. randomperson42

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    He was making a lighthearted (though accurate) joke. Not everyone that you disagree with is a troll or deserves to be reported.
     
  26. CarterG81

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    *rolls eyes*....I see it was a mistake to give you another chance kid...anyway......

    I believe the higher quality of something (funnier video, more irony, better game) has a lot to do with going viral. However, it is not a requirement.

    I think the higher quality allows it more staying power, but in the end who knows how viral works.
     
  27. Murgilod

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    Anyone who says that Minecraft and Infiniminer are similar past "there are blocks" has played neither.
     
  28. randomperson42

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    Wow. Just wow.
     
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  29. Ryiah

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    Minecraft went viral because it happened to be in the right place at the right time and appealed to the right audience. Really there are too many factors to specify any major causes, aside from luck, but originality is definitely not one of them.

    http://notch.tumblr.com/post/227922045/the-origins-of-minecraft

    Except Minecraft went viral when it was approximately functionally equivalent to Infiniminer.
     
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  30. JamesLeeNZ

    JamesLeeNZ

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    On the topic of viral

    Hear about that Yo app, the one that recently got hacked?

    Another app that does f***ing nothing except allows people to send each other 'yo' messages... viral.

    I dont wanna live in this world anymore.
     
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  31. drewradley

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    I think being original is actually detrimental to going viral. People are afraid of things that aren't familiar. The trick, I think, it to take something already popular or familiar and make it better. Or easier. The same, but different.
     
  32. DallonF

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    I'm guessing most people who played Minecraft early on weren't familiar with Infiniminer. That said, Minecraft does have some very familiar elements: the first-person view with familiar controls, and a building element that people often compare to LEGO despite the game being very, very different from LEGO building.
     
  33. Ryiah

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    Infiniminer died out rather quickly because the developer abandoned the project shortly after the initial release. I believe the reason given was the binaries were released with obfuscation and it was quickly reverse engineered and the source code made freely available. Though I don't feel like that alone should be enough to kill off a project it certainly doesn't help developer morale.

    I know I only heard about Infiniminer long after I found Minecraft and I suspect most people were the same.
     
  34. Murgilod

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    It was never functionally equivalent to Infiniminer, with the exception of Infiniminer's sandbox mode, which was completely secondary to the actual game.
     
  35. Ryiah

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    Functional equivalence is irrelevant. The point is that Minecraft is not original. The concepts it has were borrowed from other games. Not that it matters as very little in the gaming industry is truly original.
     
  36. Murgilod

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  37. Ryiah

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    The key word in the quote is "approximately". Minecraft, in its very early stages, was little more than mining and placing blocks. Both concepts were present in Infiniminer, among other gameplay elements, which is why I stated it was approximately functionally equivalent when it went viral.
     
  38. Murgilod

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    Not really. It wasn't even that.

    Hell, minecraft didn't even really go viral until survival dropped, which was nothing like Infiniminer aside from having a first person camera. If that's your metric for this sort of thing then I'm incredibly mad at how Minecraft is a shameless Chex Quest clone.
     
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  39. Ryiah

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    Survival? You mean running around pretending that the enemies could actually hurt you? Because they didn't initially. I remember having to roleplay to make it feel like a complete game.
     
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  40. Origxn

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    Yes but no one knows about them. That's what he's saying with minecraft, when gamers saw minecraft it was the first block(?) game. (or whatever u would classify minecraft as) that they have ever saw
     
  41. sedativechunk

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    Well OP, not to sound like a jerk but number one, is your game actually good? Considering you up to about three games now, are you taking shortcuts in the quality? Like everyone else here, a game has to actually be good. No matter how much you promote it, advertise it, and spread the word, if the game sucks then people are not going to get into it.

    Number two, what have you done to seriously advertise the game? If you want your game to be mildly successful, you HAVE to advertise it. Get an ad agency if you have to. People just aren't going to stumble across it. That's a big gamble. You have to get your foot in the door and promote it.

    Number three, you are in a huge market. There are tons of indie games out there. What separates yours from the competition? If it's just another generic fantasy game then it's not good enough. You need to make yourself stand out.
     
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  42. Nicholas Ostheimer

    Nicholas Ostheimer

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    Maybe take a business course or read some books on how to market properly.
     
  43. MaxieQ

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    Maybe stop screwing around chasing what goes viral and hire a PR person to market your game to a niche that will give you a solid, although not omg-amazing income?

    If you hire that person, you can concentrate on what you're good at - making games - instead of dropping game creation in order to sell copies out of the boot of your car.
     
  44. Ryiah

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    It might help if we had a link to your games.
     
  45. Murgilod

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    Guess what! Books about "proper marketing" don't apply to indie games at all since they're written to target a different space than indies can afford and taking a business course outside of a diploma mill will cost thousands of dollars while having the same effect!
     
  46. CarterG81

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    I second this.

    Show us the game, and people might be able to tell you why it didn't go viral.
     
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  47. CloudFs

    CloudFs

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    oky
    *
     
  48. CloudFs

    CloudFs

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    +1
     
  49. DallonF

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    You know, I've just realized something. We've all been talking about what makes games go viral, when the OP asked why some games don't go viral.

    That question is much easier to answer. Games don't go viral because "going viral" is not something that happens - or even deserves to happen - to every good game. Going viral is pure luck - when the stars align and an influential person notices and mentions a game that happens to have the qualities of a viral game - solid gameplay, something unique that gamers haven't seen before, etc. The latter part is in your control - but the first is not. So if your game doesn't go viral, it's not necessarily the game's fault or anything you could have done to change it except for trying again with a new game.
     
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  50. dogzerx2

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    This is easy to answer!

    Much like a virus, a game must spread by spreading faster than it kills its host (aka. getting them bored).

    Initializing game market simulator...... 100%

    Lets say you created some hype, so on release you managed to make 50 sales.
    Now lets just pretend your game has a spread ratio of 20% - that means 2 out of 10 people are compelled to talk about you game, and successfully convince a new person to buy it every day, as long as they like the game.
    Lets also pretend, that host's survive factor is 3 full days (after 3 days user gets bored).

    50 sales on release! YAY!

    DAY 1: 50 active users.
    10 new users expected (20% of 50 active users)

    DAY 2: 60 active users. 0 got bored.
    12 new users expected

    DAY 3: 72 active users. 0 got bored.
    14 new users expected.

    DAY 4: 86 active users. But 50 got bored (from day 1). 36 remaining users.
    7 new users expected.

    DAY 5: 41 active users. But 10 got bored (from day 2). 31 remaining users.
    6 new users expected

    DAY 6: 37 users. 12 got bored. 25 remaining.
    5 new users expected.

    Day 7: 30 users. 14 got bored. 16 remaining.
    3 new users expected.

    Day 8: 19 users. 7 got bored. 12 remaining.
    2 new users expected.

    Day 9: 14 users. 6 got bored. 8 remaining.
    1 new user expected.

    Day 10: 9 users. 5 got bored. 3 remaining.

    Day 11: 0 users. left.

    The game has killed all its host. Since you don't invest in marketing, and your game is now deep inside the sea of flappy clones, no one can find it.

    That's how a game doesn't go viral!

    Moral of the story. Create more hype. Invest in marketing. Make a game that compels people to talk about it, so you increase the spread factor. I bet if a kid talked about minecraft in his classroom, he would compel 10 other kids to buy it... that's a 1000% spread factor! Could we accomplish the same?...
    That's the difference between a game that slowly perishes, and a game that sells exponentially... like minecraft and stuff.

    I guess the key is, by the time X amount of people start getting bored of your game, they've convinced a bigger number than X to buy it.

    Or just invest heavily in marketing.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2014