Game Design, Programming and running a one-man games business…

World Of Love

I was at this yesterday:

Giving a talk about the business side of indie game development. I have my phears that I will be forever known as ‘the piracy guy’ or ‘the business guy’ which would be sad. Even the ‘my powerpoint slides screwed up guy’ would be better than that.

However, I gave a talk on the topic because I know a lot of indie guys struggle financially, and I wish they could afford to be full time, supporting themselves from their games so they get to make more cool games. I hope what I said was helpful, and not too negative. When you look at the hard numbers behind indie gaming, it can seem impossible. If you can’t sell a game every 52 minutes, you will need a day job, basically. (And that means a demo download every 5 minutes, assuming an awesome game, 1 game a year, 100% of the profits, and one person consistantly making popular games without a flop, illness or other eventuality).

Anyway, I met tons of cool people, and shook hands with loads of people I’ve emailed and forum-chatted to but never met. Eskill Steenberg gave an amazing demonstration of how Love was made, which makes my tools look like the amateurish crap that they are! I finally saw a live demo of subversion, and that was fantastic. This may be the first introversion game I like enough to go buy. Plus Terry Cavanagh gave a great presentation of games that made me laugh out loud, which is rare enough.

It was also pretty surreal to end the conference in a karaoke bar singing bon jovi whilst eating chinese/japanese? food. Maybe now people will finally believe me when I say I cannot sing. I accept kierons explanation that I was trying to do ‘Bon Jovi, sung by Bob Dylan’, the best.

I am 100% convinced that waiters in karaoke bars are given special, probably year-long training not to show any facial expression as they enter a cubicle full of drunk english people singing out of tune. Especially if the song is called ‘I touch myself’. All very strange…

Back to work tomorrow methinks.

8 thoughts on World Of Love

  1. Do you know if any of talks will be going up online so we can watch or listen to them?

  2. I’m sure the karaoke folks have seen it all. It’s all a matter of perspective. Like if you see American Idol and how horrible the worst are there only to catch the UK version later and realize it wasn’t nearly as bad as it could have been. ; )

  3. Wow that conference seems very interesting! All the speakers are pretty important independent developers (including you of course ^_^). I wish I could have listened to your talk and that of the Introversion guys and of Terry Cavanah (not sure how to spell it right)!

    Too bad I live about a quarter planet away o_o’

  4. Hey Cliff,

    Have you made the presentation slides from your talk available anywhere? I’d be very interested in reading them if there is a way for me to get to them. Video would be even more awesome.



  5. There was talk of video being uploaded by the organisers. If that never happens, I’ll try and get around to putting the (uncorrupted) slides up at some point.

  6. Hello.
    First of all, please forgive my English and my use of €, I am French.

    I have a question regarding your “1 sale every 52 minutes” sentence. Are you speaking of every minutes of every day in a year or of every minute spent working on the game?

    In the first case, it means around 10 000 sale/year, which means roughly 200 000€/year, or 170 000£.
    In the second case, it is : 48 000€/year or 35 000£ (assuming 40hours/week).

    My extremely rough estimate would be closer to the second case, assuming the aim is a personal income of 35 000€/year, which would cost something like 70 000€/year for the company.

    Jeff Vogel wrote two interesting post on a related topic:

    I am asking this question out of idle curiosity; I am going to buy GSB as soon as managed to persuade my bank that trying to buy a gme on the net does not means that my card has been stolen.

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