Orangepixel has been a full-time one-man indie-developer since 2004, creating games that range between the 4 month and 9 month development cycles. Creating games for a niche, and loyal, group has allowed Orangepixel to “survive” all the indie-pocalypse events that people have been crying about for close to 13 years. All that without any real “hit” titles but good business sense, budget control and probably some luck.
My next game was supposed to be AshWorld, a Mad Max inspired open-world-action-adventure-rogue-like, and it’s a big game for just one guy. Funny side note, it’s also in a genre I normally don’t enjoy as gamer or never created a game in.. Guess I wanted a challenge!
It’s currently nearing the 10th month development, and far from completed.. To get some extra funding I decided to ignore services like Kickstarter, and in all my foolishness, I instead created another game: on a very tight budget.
Why not Kickstart it?
Why I didn’t go for Kickstarter? Simply because it’s not an easy thing to do, running a kickstarter campaign requires a lot of weeks preparation, coming up with a lot of interesting rewards for backers, and then IF you manage to get funded, you need to invest more time (and some of your funded money) into fulfilling those rewards. A lot of work for just one guy, and while running that campaign, I wouldn’t be working on the new game or create any revenue-streams (especially if the kickstarter would fail).
So I came up with a solution that plays to my strengths: develop a game, available on multiple platforms, with the only goal: create enough funding to add a few more months of development to Ashworld.
The results will surprise you…!
Pardon my click-bait heading there, but the result just might surprise you. So for this to work, I had to create a game that had a very short development cycle, because the more hours put into the game the more money it burns and has to make back in return. Meganoid is the game I created in close to two months time, if you don’t mind me comparing it to known titles, it would be the love child of Meatboy and Spelunky, made in space.
The game sells at a decent budget price for $4.99/£3.99 on Steam(Windows, Mac, Linux), iOS and Android. It’s a challenging platformer with rogue-like elements, giving a lot of replay-value due to the procedurally generated environments resulting in a different gameplay every time you start. It provides multiple hours of gameplay, and has been entertaining early-access players for close to two weeks on daily sessions.. and they all have yet to unlock everything there is to unlock.
It’s not a small game, it’s just a game developed on a very tight-budget.
Meganoid was released today (March 30th – Press release available here), and it’s not yet certain if my gamble will pay-off.
Pre-orders and Android Early Access have so far generated about a 10th of the revenue-goal set, the first reviews are dripping in with 9/10 ratings, and player-feedback has so far been nothing but positive, so there is hope!
Perhaps I found a personal alternate answer for Kickstarter as funding? We’ll know in a few weeks time, and you can chat me up and ask about it if you want!
For now I’ll be back working on Ashworld.