Team KamaGames Studio with the help of friends from KamaGames decided to consider the question of choice publisher of mobile games. This issue is relevant to many indie developers, and sooner or later have to solve it.
First we would like to discuss why in some situations necessary to go to the publisher. In this article we will consider only the f2p- games, as this monetization model brings the most money in the shops of mobile applications. You can verify this by looking at the AppStore Top Grossing US. Picture below.
Unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately ), the global mobile gaming market is changing rapidly and thus strongly saturated. So fortunate to run the game without a publisher is very difficult, if not impossible. Our experience has shown that the publisher should have a history of successful running games, experts in the gaming and game design and marketing rather big budget for promotion. Stories about two brothers who wrote the bestseller in their free time – almost never occur. Now hard to compete with larger companies in terms of quality games, experience, understanding queries players and the more difficult to fight for the user.
If you decide to run the game for yourself, you should clearly understand your marketing opportunities. Count on organics is not necessary – for example, to get to “New and Noteworthy” or “New Releases” possible only if your game ” immaculately ” demonstrates the functionality of the last axle or device.
Ideally, you should have a marketing plan, budget, and understanding how to maximize profitable to spend your budget. Believe in your project is very important, but realistic assessment of the situation is necessary, as in the game, holding the top position in Grossing USA, filled impressive marketing and advertising budgets. For example, the guys from ZeptoLab spent on launching Cut the Rope: Time Travel $ 1 million. Now imagine the budget for promotion of the game, which no one has ever heard of. And even if your game has the potential to one hundred times greater than at the time of Slash Slans – without competent marketing of this one can not learn.
Certainly, Hon reader aware of, but we also note that there are three main channels to promote the game : featuring ( in, for example, App Store and Google Play), PR and buying users ( buy traffic ).
As mentioned above, featuring hard to get into. But, if you are convinced that your game will satisfy the store, go ahead! Write employees App Store and Google Play, find out what’s current and general requirements and try to convince them that your game just deserves special attention.
Savvy PR will give you several thousands of downloads, and possibly in the TOP Free in one country for a while. Buying A user need not only money, but also an understanding of where, how and what to buy traffic better. It must be remembered that this process requires ongoing promotion efforts, as soon as you slow down a little, your place will be others, and the number of daily downloads drop.
If after reading you want to go to the publisher, we recommend to ask him some questions, after which you will see who actually sits in front of you.
Choosing the publisher. 5 questions that the developer should ask first
1. What are the opportunities and potential of the publisher?
Not all publishers the same ” package ” and, most importantly, equal opportunities ( and sometimes even on unfavorable terms ). The first thing you need to watch – what may be useful is this publisher for your particular game. Some people asked about the first thing under the division of profits. But what is the use of having 80 % (for example) of the profits if the game does not make money and nobody plays it? Think about what is better: 80 % of ten thousand dollars or 40 % (again, for example) from the hundreds of thousands or millions?
The best proof capabilities publisher – is issued to them and their game performance. In particular, the number of installations and active players, what position in Top Free in which countries were bred game and most importantly – the top positions rating Top Grossing. If none of this – do not waste your precious time, get up and leave.
A publisher must be proven marketing channels and solutions that show results. Anything else that you can tell – the lyrics. There are, of course, novice publishers, but in any case they have to be their successful projects that can be concluded is consistent whether or not the publisher.
2. Do you have a publisher professional and experienced producers?
Develop and produce her game – two fundamentally different problems. Promotion requires a holistic understanding of the market, desires players competitor analysis, genres and key mechanic. Producer must know which mechanics work best and which are suitable for your particular game. It is important to understand the scale of the marketing expenses for your game as well as its desirable and achievable performance (retention, life-time, etc.) and ways to achieve them.
Ideally publisher you will help in this. His experience will save you development time and will make a typical and quite unnecessary mistakes. It can be any issues related to the development and promotion of technical, food, interface, virality, etc. Be prepared for the fact that the publisher will propose changes – work together on improving the game will help you learn from the experience and increase the chances of success.
3. Do you have experience in developing its own publisher?
It is important to understand whether the publisher to be useful to you in terms of development and whether he is able to speak with the same language. Published experience developing already faced with a heavily loaded Server optimization, has solutions for working with statistics, in general, to offer a systematic approach to the solution of many problems.
Published on the experience learned that will work and make money, and that – no. Many things have to be taken not just somewhere, but checked his own needs its own experience. In short, the publisher must be able to make games and they earn. Therefore ask his opinion on all matters get a reply from him, how he sees your game, what changes you need to make and what to add to it. If there is a publisher who specializes in games is your genre, it is better than others tell you how to make the game better than the general publishers. Also, remember that the PC does not power mobile and adaptation experience under the rapidly changing mobile market is a must.
4. Do you have a publisher willing to work on your game?
The question seems a bit strange, why the publisher ” to sign the game ” if he does not want to work on it? Nevertheless happens is that publishers signing game quickly lose interest in her, and she is ” on the shelf.” At the same publisher almost nothing to lose (except your time ), and the developer has thrown out at least a few months of its operation, in which he put his soul.
We must understand why the publisher takes your game : he wants to make it with you or you just need to sign a game, for example, to fulfill its KPI ( or for some other reason known only to him ).
Feel free to ask questions about his publisher plans. Ask what would happen if after starting the game performance will not like expected. Will continue to work on improving the game, increase conversions and key metrics? Was the publisher similar successful experience? Or in his portfolio most of the games, which he had forgotten a week after the test run?
Making the publisher to ensure continuous operation of the project difficult. In the end, the game can not really be in demand, then it is necessary to close. But asking these questions, you will be able to understand his plans and reduce their risk of being in a similar position.
5. Under what conditions the publisher wants to work?
Universal advice on what conditions work, no – this is very individual. All depends on the situation : Experienced developers game quality, its potential complexity approach to the market and so on.
Different variants of profit sharing, pay structures, financing development, guarantees each side and whatnot. Advice here can be only one : weigh all the risks – and their own, and the publisher. Try to think one step ahead, to provide all the situations and read text written in the contract fine print.
Your first game will not necessarily be one hundred percent hit at all times. But every game – it is at least a step to the next game, which is already more likely to just be the most hit, and the main thing – to get from the product already made??the maximum, which will continue to do what he likes.
Do not be afraid to work with publishers, because the market is extremely a lot of options. There are old-timers of the market, there are young publishers who are successful developers and own accumulated a lot of experience. Look for the option that is best for you. But do not forget that the most important thing to work with a publisher – combine your efforts to get a good, high-quality and successful game. If you realize that someone you do not exactly achieve, and it is not worth wasting your time on them!
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