So its a little bit over a week, meaning that everything pretty much calmed down.
Now I have to calm down. I’m having a bit of a hard time returning to normal, because during the spike it was so easy to be focused when there were non stop issues to be dealt with and questions to be answered. I’m getting there, but now have to work on focus.
The release went really well – was it better than I expected? I dreamed of the sun and moon, and what I got was very nice, still remaining on solid earth. There was nearly no media coverage, big sites didn’t cover the game, I think this was to be expected, but I had hopes for much more. Still the game sold really well, at one point I was in the top 20 on Steam. It was up against giants with million dollar budgets. How awesome is that?
It felt great to see positive reviews and comments from players. Its hard developing a game – you don’t exactly know if its good – to anyone besides you. Sometimes a review will get the idea – and you go – Yes! That’s what I was going for! This person gets it!
For the most part players were very happy to have found the game, and that was incredibly gratifying. I’m very happy with that outcome. Thanks gamers, I hope you know how much I appreciate you.
There were critical – or better put negative reviews. I tried to approach them with the idea that both me and the person writing it – have the same goal. A player bought a game that they want to enjoy, and I made a game that I want the player to enjoy. So in cases where I didn’t understand the problem I tried to understand it. In cases that I could help the player, I tried to help the player. Every time that this yielded a positive outcome – that’s a huge success. In a way its great that I’m small enough to be able to address players in person.
Players often remarked how – out of the norm – it is that I was so active on the forums. But why should this be odd? While the game isn’t my life – it is a big part.
Not only did I get big amounts of enjoyment out of talking about the game and helping players, but I know that this surge of activity won’t last, so I might as well enjoy it at its peak.
When I think back at the amount of work I did the past few weeks – it was incredible. At some points my spine hurt from sitting – not my back/muscles – but the actual bones in my spinal column. They hurt from the constant contact with a chair. I then added some pillows between me and it. This helped for a little bit and I then had to resort to kneeling on pillows – then my knees started hurting. After a good night’s rest and a bit less activity, everything went back to normal more or less.
Other than the above physical aspects – I can’t say anything particularly negative. Though if I had to do it over again – I would have seriously investigated hiring some kind of marketing. I was doing both – while my efforts would have probably been best fixing issues. Writing emails to YouTube channels and Media outlets – after midnight and being very fuzzy brained isn’t the greatest combo.
When I re-read some of the emails and thought I sounded like a 5 year old (no offense intended to my 5 year old readers).
Here’s kind of how some of my emails sounded – when I read them back to myself:
My name is Paul and I am 5 years old.
I made a game. It is a good game. It has space ships.
Please play my game.
Only with many more spelling errors. Fun times!
There were bugs, scripting issues, and oversights. Every time there was a crash bug found I cringed… oh man how embarrassing… I then rushed to fix it and felt great. Only to get the news of another. Still Early Access did help a lot – there were repeated issues that were easier to deal with.
Ok, I think I wrote enough, there’s so much more to say and tell, but for now let’s leave it at this.