Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Game is tasteful?

History and Reasoning:-
Quite some time ago i decided to create a game called 'Cards en Fuego'. However it did not get many downloads, but as it is Ad supported i could track the amount of playtime the game was getting. It appears that it got a lot of people coming back to play again and again. However both myself and my partner felt like one of the problems with the initial download numbrs was that the name was not in English.

So we reskinned the game and relaunched it as a new game called 'Cards on Fire'. This we felt would be a great move and it did not take too long to reskin the whole game. Once it launched we took down the original version and then waited with high hopes of doubling our measly 1.3K downlaods of the orignal. The downloads for this version were actually lower than the downloads for the original, barely making it over the 1K mark in the first week. Very disappointing and also we think proving that the name did not appear to matter. However, once again the retention the game was showing was very good. A lot of playtime for so few people. We had also gone to only approximately 5 downloads a day.

We really felt at this point that awaremness or visibility was a major problem. As of course i have noted before on the Xbox for my games. Great sell thru, but hardly any downloads.

So whats next.. My partner and I banged our heads togetehr and decided to try something we had not wanted to go near. A more Risky version of the game.This time using pictures of semi naked women. These pictures also had to be something that our wives would not balk at :)

The Game gets Girls:-
Now of course there are moralistic standpoints to take about having pictures of scantily clad women in ya game, and it did bother us that we were going to try this out. We decided we should be 'Tasteful' and in reality it was going to be just another reskin. This time the cards in the game would become pictures of females and also we could enhance the product by giving it a more personal feel, by adding pictures of women on the pause screens and game over showing their feelings at the current situation. This did indeed enhance the product and in fact i would say the whole game experience was improved when the card matching no longer required you to simply look at numbers to match. Now you had to look at details such as the color of their bikini or the color of their hair etc. A more interesting game for sure. One more note i might add at this time is that obtaining these pictures of the ladies was costly, and that is a cost we hoped to recover with a lot of downloads.

I made the decision that i would not put this game on the Sorcerygames web site, a decision i now find to be silly. The game is very tame, but is still the same good game we wrote initially.

So the important question is how has it done on the Windows phone 7 platform. As we did in fact release it about 6 weeks ago. Well it's initial downloads are around 3K, so that is 3 times better than before. But not the 10x or more we were hoping for. The idea of using this titilation factor we hoped would allow us to get noticed on the WP7 marketplace. I would not say that it was a great success. It is though a success in the fact that the daily downloads are around 50 or so, getting the 10x we had hoped for. All in all the experiment has not really proven much one way or the other (apart from continued downloads).

So now we are hopeful that the iOS and Android platforms being about 100 times the size of WP7 could bring in that 100x more revenue from Ads. That will at least allow us to pay for the development costs and maybe buy us some lunch.

An interesting experiment, but inconclusive.

Da Voodoochief

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