The game made the top 10 “best new paid games” charts on Google Play, including the top 50 all-time version of that list. And we landed somewhere in the top 100 on iTunes. Not as great as Heroes of Loot did, but still a nice rushy feeling.
I think iTunes version could have done better and end up higher, but the app store had various problems with people telling me the game wasn’t available or not downloadable in their country or on their iTunes. Possibly fixable by retrying various times, or using tricks to clear the app store cache. So not sure if it made an impact on sales, but it surely can’t have helped.
I launched the game with a “50% discount” during the first few days, and extended that until Sunday. Main reason was to give the loyal Orangepixel followers (and newsletter subscribers!) the discount and the people who don’t blindly buy my game will have to pay full price (which is still about 50% of the PC version).
The feedback on the game has been awesome, players really loving it and the more they play the more they start loving it. As a game developer it’s always hard and tricky to add a bunch of secrets and multiple layers to a game, because many people will probably stop playing the game before they notice the depth it has. Not saying Space Grunts is a very deep tactical game, but it IS a game with many layers and lot’s of stuff you won’t see in your first 10-20 hours of game-time (until you are extremely lucky).
I pushed a first update to Android on Friday, as I finally figured out how to do the leaderboards and also add daily-leaderboards, and I just wrapped up that same work on the iOS version so Leaderboards are also coming to iPhones and iPads.
So far there haven’t been many reviews posted about the game, but that’s okay cause I think it’s a very flawed model these days; “anybody with a game” writes their own opinionated review and posts it as an official journalistic impression of a game. Player feedback says a lot more and the 4.5/5 star ratings on both platforms (and the 97% positive on Steam) are clear signals that the game is good.
Obviously the game did great, but it hardly made me rich! You’d have to be on #1 for multiple weeks on either of the stores. The game took about 9-10 months of work, and with a very simplistic average of €2000 per month it means I would need to make about 20k to break even on the development costs (VERY simplistic math). I think I’m about 75%-80% there right now (that’s including the PC sales) and that makes me extremely happy. It means that before the year is over that other 20% will be made and after that profit will be coming in from the game.
Of course the math is simplistic and flawed, during those 9-10 months of development I also worked on, and released, Heroes of Loot and Gunslugs 1 on Steam, did various business things to increase revenue on those PC releases (sales, bundles, etc) also started on a few prototype idea’s, and used Space Grunts to lay the groundwork for more turn-based games in the future (!)
Meanwhile I’m also working on Heroes of Loot 2 for a few months now, and hope to have it in pre-order/early access around April which is a much shorter development cycle then Space Grunts was. Mostly because I had to figure out a lot of new stuff for Space Grunts, and with Heroes of Loot 2 I could re-use a lot of Space Grunts’ and the original Heroes of Loot’s code and design decisions to quickly create a new game.