Monday, November 28, 2016

Success and scale

I have an interesting idea of how to approach making games for living.

You might have heard that game X is a "commercial failure". That's because the profit could not compensate money spent.

Based on that instance, many pro game creators is going around talking what kind of games can earn money, be it gacha game or match-3 with lives, but in the end your "design" is limited by this kind of situation.

I could not make a simple 2D action game because it would fail commercially. For example.

Then I have an interesting idea, what if I think this way, if I manage to reduce money spent on the game? What if I degraded to working alone so the large cost of salary money for team is going away? What if I does not party every now and then and save money?

Suddenly, I think many possibilities have opened. Many "low money" design is now possible depends on your scale...

Looking at the music game I am working now. To think about it, the game would fail if I did not work alone! The salary cost would heavily outweighs its monetization design. If I want to have teammates I might have to change its IAP model to something other company is doing. But thinking in other way, because I am working alone and cutting cost, a new game design is now possible! Isn't that exciting? A game where a lot of content is free and that is possible because not much money is needed for the devs, the players might be happy and feel refreshing to play, and also sufficient for me alone to live from it..

Someone said, making a game is not a one man show. But that really depends on your game's scale. By reducing the team size, at the same time you can reduce the requirement for your game to become a success. What is a success? Success is when you are happy with your work. That might be you get enough money from it or you are proud of it.

The post does not have conclusive end, just an interesting thought.

Monday, November 21, 2016

The wonders of salary

The more I work alone, the more I thought "salary" is such a very good system.

By having the required skill set, you can register to receive money periodically! It's like from that very moment, you have become invincible already! I learned this by having no income, as of currently. Moreover, it's "waiting for you". The job, that is. Without this system, you have to "get creative" to get money. You just can't "drop in" and get it.

That is not all, I found that now you can subconsciously abuse this system by slacking off at work. The work stops, but your income does not because it depends on time. You are free to slow down or speed things up later in a month to meet your requirement, and you still receive steady income. I found this out after I realized when I work alone, if I stop, I basically became a trash. I yield nothing at all! (absolutely nothing!) Even when I am studying in schools back then, when I slack off and play around I still "going" towards the "goal" (graduation). At day job, slacking off still nets me salary at the end of the road.

Moreover, you are actually more happy with your work with salary system. Everyone is happy when their efforts paid off, and that is what salary ascertain you. Not only that, you are loyal and happy to your work because salary "never betrays you, never lies to you". Almost surely you will get money from salary.

I learned this from doing a game team with no salary but with post-launch income dividends. You got to have a next level of self-push, because you will be "betrayed" when what you do does not paid off. And this shows as my teammates loses motivation real fast without salary system. I understand that the result is not immediate, not worth it even. But not everyone have extreme self-push so I don't blame them. Because looking at myself, I am basically killing myself little by little right now (and no one want to be a part of that?).

Also, I have real respect to "someone" who pays salary now. Before this I have never thought about it, even when I receive month allowing from my parents. Now when I thought how much money I will lose if my 3 other friends were to get salary (and in turn be more happy, more loyal to work, more friendlier to me too) it turns out that in only 2-3 months I would go bankrupt with nothing to eat. (Me alone can survive for 1.5 years minimum) That makes me thought, all those company that pays salary to employers each months are truly awesome. How did they do that! What if the income does not turn out well! In salary system, you can survive together with few great people that will certainly share some money with you.

It's kind of like ads system in games nowadays, even in my game too. I don't know what kind of millionaires paid so much money into ads which in turn goes to my pocket when people watch it. I even feel sad for them because I am leeching money of them while probably someone who watch ads does not care about their content at all. But... it's like salary in the way I get paid by rich people, and this feels really "safe". I respect them too.

Lastly, to those who have salary (and even "bonus") and is complaining about your low numbers, the salary system itself is your valuable asset! It is so common that maybe you haven't thought about it, but it is truly wonderful. Please be proud and protect it.