Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

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jacobfrey121
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Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by jacobfrey121 » Thu Jun 04, 2020 10:07 pm

I remember reading a couple years ago an article talking about the "Indie apocalypse". I don't recall the exact words but it was something about the market becoming so saturated and competitive that it would be financially unsustainable (or incredibly risky) to invest time or money into building games.

I'm a Unity dev and I've built a dozen private educational games for a company, and recently I started considering launching my own games on mobile. After a couple weeks doing research, I must say the market doesn't look very attractive... a few companies making hundreds of millions of dollars and kicking up advertisement price to the sky, many high-quality creative games having very low download statistics, monetization strategies either involve annoying the user into watching as much ads as possible or making a pay to win mechanic that apparently are inherent to 90% of successful games, people ripping off whatever they can to make an extra buck, paid star ratings and reviews.

Am I missing something or building/publishing mobile games has become a nightmare? I don't want to be a pessimit or a critic, I'm actually posting this in a hope you guys would change my mind.

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Re: Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by FourthWorld » Thu Jun 04, 2020 10:38 pm

There's definitely a glut of knock-off apps, yet software continues to eat the world and remains an uncommonly-profitable industry overall.

The key to not getting lost in the deluge of newcomers cranking out cookie cutter apps is to not make cookie cutter apps, instead focusing on finding and exploiting an under-served niche.

I wrote a bit about this in a thread on "monetization" a couple weeks ago, but most folks think of "monetization" solely in terms of the mechanics of ad integration rather than on the bigger picture how to make money, so the post was apparently of no interest:
https://forums.livecode.com/viewtopic.p ... 76#p191573
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SparkOut
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Re: Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by SparkOut » Fri Jun 05, 2020 7:45 am

FourthWorld wrote:
Thu Jun 04, 2020 10:38 pm
I wrote a bit about this in a thread on "monetization" a couple weeks ago, but most folks think of "monetization" solely in terms of the mechanics of ad integration rather than on the bigger picture how to make money, so the post was apparently of no interest:
https://forums.livecode.com/viewtopic.p ... 76#p191573
Au contraire. I was interested, but had no good response. Everyone and his dog wants to be a millionaire with minimal effort. "Look at 'Flappy Bird' - we could make tonnes with crappy games like that. Where's the ad forcefeeder?"
I found your piece a sound note to hopefully clue-in everyone and his dog. I agree that they probably didn't want to divert from what they perceive as the easy route.

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Re: Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by bogs » Fri Jun 05, 2020 10:32 am

I'm with SparkOut on this, your post was a.) interesting and b.) thought provoking, however, as you know, I don't program for money as the end goal and so have little commentary to add to what you posted.
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Re: Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by jmburnod » Fri Jun 05, 2020 6:24 pm

Hi All,
I develop educational software for 30 years with modest financial success, but I have learned a lot and appreciated the mutual aid encountered with the developer community and this is what keeps me motivated.
Currently I have an iOS application on the AppStore which I maintain with the financial support of foundations.
The main selling point was:
Free license, no advertising, local use, no in-app purchases.
Best regards
Jean-Marc

IleneMurphy
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Re: Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by IleneMurphy » Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:55 am

I am also begin to develop some online educational tool which going to solve the problem of typing practices of folks. I developed some online games and typing tools for that...
Last edited by IleneMurphy on Thu Jul 02, 2020 5:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by FourthWorld » Wed Jul 01, 2020 4:06 pm

IleneMurphy wrote:
Wed Jul 01, 2020 10:55 am
I am also begin to develop some online educational tool which going to solve the problem of typing practices of folks. I developed some online games and typing tools for that...
Sounds like some good work. Which version of LiveCode did you use for those?
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Re: Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by richmond62 » Mon May 24, 2021 3:19 pm

Personally I'm in the process of signing a contract with a publishing company
to start producing an abstract table-top game . . .

1. The market is booming.

2. Some people have got "totally fried" with computer games and would rather sit down with a bunch of friends
and play something that is NOT on a screen.
Last edited by richmond62 on Sat Jun 12, 2021 9:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by FourthWorld » Mon May 24, 2021 6:53 pm

richmond62 wrote:
Mon May 24, 2021 3:19 pm
Personally I'm in the process of signing a contract witha publishing company
to start producing an abstract table-top game .
Congratulations.

This golden era for tabletop games has not only seen a vast expansion of the audience for such things, but also an ever-greater number of new titles entering the scene, which makes your move to becoming a published gave designer that much more of an accomplishment.

Please keep us posted as it approaches release. I look forward to playing it.
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Re: Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by tomBTG » Sun May 30, 2021 4:22 pm

Congrats to all you survivors! Maybe one of you (or more if we count likely knockoffs) will make a game about surviving as an indie game dev. I guess you'd have to know a winning strategy to write such a game, which I don't.

We are in the final stages of shutting down our indie dev biz after 20 years. Our niche market was in decline anyway, but the pandemic smashed it as flat as Godzilla squashed Bambi.

Retirement time. It does help to laugh, so I'm enjoying Apple TV's "Mythic Quest" comedy about game devs.

Best of luck to you all!
Tom Bodine

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Re: Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by stam » Sun Jun 06, 2021 12:05 pm

tomBTG wrote:
Sun May 30, 2021 4:22 pm
We are in the final stages of shutting down our indie dev biz after 20 years. Our niche market was in decline anyway, but the pandemic smashed it as flat as Godzilla squashed Bambi.

Retirement time. It does help to laugh, so I'm enjoying Apple TV's "Mythic Quest" comedy about game devs.
Hey Tom,
sorry to hear this, the pandemic has been hard on so many...
If you don't mind, what was the niche market? (URL?)
Stam

PS: I find "Mythic Quest" a lot funnier than my wife does, so don't get it to watch it much...!

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Re: Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by richmond62 » Sat Jun 12, 2021 9:29 pm

MH.png
-
Currently having a "fight" with both a lawyer and a wargame model company in Spain,
BUT, with any luck . . .

Watch this space.

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Re: Mobile game development in 2020. Is Indiepocalypse here already?

Post by richmond62 » Sun Jun 13, 2021 7:32 pm

Don't watch it for a long time as "chummy' has said that they have another game in development for the next year, and then . . .

. . . my underpants will turn purple with yellow spots.

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