Guild Hall Adventures

Hey all, it has been such a long time since I have posted on the forums.
Glad to say that I am back, me alone this time, doing solo development is hard, but yeap lets keep it up.

I have started by making myself a Clicker RPG game, seeing that it is relatively easy to learn and I am using the concept of making a clicker game, but making it a story that can get told while playing the game.

The proof of concept is by having a powerful enemy destroying your town and family and you basically want to put an end to this.
A guild hall symbolizes in my eyes where Heroes meet up and do quests together to fight monsters. But why have a guild hall already?? in this game I am creating the visuals and experience of how you go to a broken land with rubble and disaster and you are going to rebuild everything!!! you are going to use the foundations that was once a thriving town and rebuild it into a City with a Guild Hall in the center where all the heroes and management gets done to make your City thrive even more.

This is all click based though, so no running around unfortunately and no big things. (My skills and time is not on par to get that done)

First the character screen where I had a 2D idea for the game, but then me being able to post about the game became very limited as it looked meh. So it first started out like this and then ended up to be a bit 3D afterwards.
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Once I liked the look and feel of the second bit, I improvised and started making a more done concept of what I wanted.

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The gameplay which would be the clicking part is imagined in 3D point view which is like this :

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And then the story scenes could be where you are either reading what to do next, or just skim through it. It is all up to the player at the end of the day. Previously the story was just a button here and a panel there and with text just ontop of the panel, no visuals, so how does someone promote that?? there is nothing to look at basically, almost like playing a DOS game haha. But then I changed it where you will see who is talking to you.

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I have been busy with basic implementations of how the game plays through, but there is so much coding and unity gameobject drag and drops that needs to happen and screens that needs to be made and then models that needs to be made with some animation here and an animation there. That this small project feels big still, but in the end I will be pushing through.

But one thing that I am finding myself struggling with, is how do I get a following without giving the story away? or some nice aspects of the game? I start with creating myself a youtube channel, which I will post about progress on the daily programming I do , but edit here and there so that I don't give all my secret saucy code away of course.

I can make a gif here and there just like the guy that made "The First Tree" - but the question remains, how do you have enough time if you have been working almost a full week on just implementing code and stuff looking like :

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This can be made looking perfect, when I actually have a nice background of buildings that I have modeled with Blender and added some props with one peasant beating another peasant [hehe] - but ya it takes my time. LOL

I have registered on Steamworks finally. It cost me $100 but meh, needs to happen, did not upload my game yet, as I heard that once you upload your game then they evaluate it for 30 days and in those 30 days you need to get as much wishlists as possible so that after the 30 days you can be featured in "Upcoming Popular Releases" - sooooo now I don't want to upload my game as my following = 0 and the only people that knows a little bit about it is the small twitter following I have created and the South African Game Developers group that I am the admin of.
So how does one go about this? Do I need to dedicate one day to make enough gifs for a week of posting? or enough images for a week of posting? post 2 times a week? is it wise to post on reddit when I gave myself a full 10 months to complete this game?

Main question would be, do I need to make sure my following is 1000 people before uploading to steam, so that the following can support me by wishlisting my game during the 30 days? and should I dedicate the 30 days on just promoting? Because this will mean that I will also need to get my game to a 50% or 70% completion rate so that I have loads to post about.

But yea that was me rambling a bit about marketing crap.

What do you guys think about a clicker RPG? think it would be nice? A person that lost everything and working from nothing to something. From starting with only a stone axe and -> chopping logs -> making a lumberyard -> chopping logs -> making planks -> repairing guild hall -> researching -> combating monsters etc etc :D

Comments

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    While a lot of people talk about posting regularly on social media because of how various platforms (particularly evil Facebook-owned ones) apparently prioritize posts by accounts that have more activity, the thing that typically makes something really popular (especially on Twitter) is just one or two gifs that show something very clever, very beautiful, very funny, relatable or unusual or otherwise entertaining.

    There's some danger to this, in that when someone sees a really great gif they gets them excited about the game, if they're not seeing gameplay they typically have an idea in their minds of what the gameplay is. They're imagining the best possible version of the game, which might get them disappointed if your actual game isn't what they were hoping for. (You can mitigate this by talking to them and either incorporating their ideas into your game, or managing their expectations.)

    You typically want to think about what it is that makes your game special/unique/interesting, and throw as much energy as you can making that part really great. Letting people be able to play a prototype is great, but that already requires them to be invested. Having really good gif hooks to get them invested in trying it out is important imo, especially when they don't know you.

    I agree with building a fan base before uploading to Steam. I would personally want to have something about my game go viral, already have a significant fan base, or significant numbers of daily downloads on itch, before even considering Steam.
  • So would you recommend making a demo for itch.io for people to play it first? And this is the exact thought process I was thinking. You have to captivate with a gif that would explain something, I have something in mind, but this requires me to be done with more of the modeling aspect and decorating of the game more for me to be able to do this.
    But also I have never played demos before, so ill have to see what is the concept of how much to give the player to play with.

    "I would personally want to have something about my game go viral, already have a significant fan base, or significant numbers of daily downloads on itch"

    - Please give me a link to your game, just so that I can get some ideas on what you are doing. :)
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    Two itch games that I've been involved with that have been pursued more seriously have been Terra Nil and Second Earth.

    It's not really even about making a "demo" for itch (although functionally I suppose it's kind of that). We literally release the full game that we've made on itch, for free (or pay what you want). If people aren't even going to play the game when you give them the full thing for free then you have pretty much zero chance of making any sales at all when asking them to pay. The idea being that if the numbers prove that there's interest in the game (thousands of downloads, gets picked up by media/streamers), we can polish it further, use feedback from itch players, make it look prettier, add more content, etc., and sell a paid version of those (edit: both in Itch and on Steam or other platforms). It also potentially gets it noticed by publishers, and good stats give you more room to negotiate a better deal (or allow you to make some napkin-maths calculations to more easily walk away from a bad deal). I suppose in that sense it's as much a "demo" for us as developers as it is for players. If the "demo" doesn't give us the numbers we want, maybe we should be spending our resources on another game.
  • I really appreciate this feedback, this will make me look at it from a more different aspect and aim on actually releasing the game for "Free" on itch and see how people judge the game. It can give me a good concept for if the game is going to make it or not. And also im sure it will also point out all the bugs the game might have lying around :P
  • As per @Elyaradine suggestion.
    I have made the game possible to be played on Itch.io while I am working on it. Now anyone can get the current version and play it tell me what they think and if they get any bugs, let me know. Join the discord even and let me know there what you think would be cool in the game etc.

    https://obsessivegames.itch.io/
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    Looks awesome! Love the concept :) Im looking into something a rebuild similar theme and going through some Brackey videos to start learning :P Good luck!

    I wanted to ask, have you started thinking about your marketing as well?

    Off hand things I can think of are:
    • Making list of curators you respect and would like to review your game on steam
    • Making a list of local (or international but local is easier) blogs/news/social media platforms who would promote your game
    • Starting a website where you can start sharing your steps,thoughts etc (great to build fanbase) and you can also ask use it as a gateway to your steam page,social media profiles etc - Also a great way to build up a email database if you need to send out an email on publication day (the more communication platforms and channels the better)...ps dont spam :P Good solid advice from @Elyaradine

    "I agree with building a fan base before uploading to Steam." ~ Elyaradine

    *This is just me coming from a campaign strategy/online marketing skillset, im sure there are more people who can point you in the right direction in terms of contacts and relationships to pre-emp build
  • No - I am basically asking here what would be good for marketing, I am just thinking about posting it all on youtube and facebook basically until it is 70-90% done then I can start asking youtubers to promote. It also helps with it being on Itch.io so that people can see it so long - but I am also not sure what to limit people on.
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