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

Wolves, arrows and ads that work

First up, let me point you at this interview with Celso Riva from winter wolves games. He makes ‘visual novel/ RPG hybrid games that you will love or hate, and pretty much owns that as a niche, which is a cool position to be in. Some of the art in his games is great. Also, I humbly point out that ShowMeTheGames now has an RSS feed. I presume I coded it properly, but who really knows!

I shot some arrows yesterday, in my first archery bout of the year, although sadly it’s not so warm today. I did surprisngly well. Only 1 out of 20 missed the target, which after 6 months of no shooting ain’t so bad. Got 4 bullseyes too. It always amazes me how much archery makes you realise how stressed or distracted you are. It requires you to be attentive, focused and relaxed, and right now I’m none of those :D

Here is a lesson for those who think ads don’t work. I recently bought a car (haven’t physically got it yet, but I’ve ordered it). It’s my first new car since going full time indie, so it’s about bloody time. Anyway, I’m not really a ‘car’ person, and know very little about them. I have no idea why I need multiple valves or what torque is.

Anyway, I did a little bit of research, wanting a geeky car with awesome mileage that looked nice. I did 3 test drives, and bought the one I liked the most. So far, so meh.

THEN, I realised when watching TV, a few days later that an advert I *know* I’d seen before (because I commented on the way people hold drumsticks in it), but which I hadn’t even realised was for a car (I must have ignored the rest of the ad) was the car I chose. Not only that, I really *like* the ad. It appeals to me in the way 99% of car ads do not.

Now that could be a co-incidence, but there are not a ton of car ads on TV right now, probably due to the recession. There is a BIG variety of cars to choose from, and the one car I chose was the one car ad I like, from the limited pool of car ads currently running. That could be just luck, but to quote a wise man “In my experience, there is no such thing as luck“. It might seem like I could have bought any car, but it always looks like derren brown is offering you a choice of a pack of cards, but he isn’t really. We are all sooo soo easily led.

Food for thought, perhaps.


10 thoughts on Wolves, arrows and ads that work


    I’ve already bought all your games.



  2. Interesting.

    Ads that work aren’t necessarily ones that people like.
    (think shake n vac, ferrero rochet, halifax etc.)

    And some ads that people love that notoriously failed to shift the product:
    (blackcurrant tango, levis)

    Though I guess for a car the rules might be different – you’d want a really positive association. I remember the lexus advert that had a guy driving around on completely empty roads in 2002. It actually mad me want to drive a car, which is pretty awesome as I can’t drive to save my life, nor have any intention of doing so.

  3. My wife is buying an Alfa thinking that she hadn’t seen any adverts for it and that her decision was purely because she had done her research. Then when she saw the Alfa ad after committing to purchase she realised that she had seen it a few weeks back. So yeah, car ads work in mysterious ways.

  4. I bought my Scooby back in the day because I’d been driving it on Gran Turismo 3! I then checked out some reviews and it sounded awesome, so I test drove it and it was amazing, so I bought it. It was a wonderful car for many years, sold it to move to Canada :-(

  5. So, I’ve decoded all of the letters in your latest post using an algorithm derived from the titles of all of your previous games (It’s now clear that you work for MI5).

    The message states “Go take Archery Lessons”…

  6. Like you I’m a full time indie that work from home. So, why on earth did you buy a NEW car :) It’s not like you are going to drive a lot.

    Buying a NEW car is equivalent to buy a recent second hand one (1 year old) but paying a huge % more. In 6 month time, your br car will look identical to the second hand one but you bought it

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