What if No One Plays It

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Kokoro Hane
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Re: What if No One Plays It

#16 Post by Kokoro Hane » Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:34 am

I think this is a fear a lot of us have, even simply posting a WiP can be scary nowadays due to the increased activity, so you sink to the bottom or next page quite quickly. It can be hard to get exposure for your game. I released my GDC Jam visual novel last year, and when I posted the announcement thread here, I didn't really get any replies save for one. I do think one of the main problems is due to the fact I didn't make a WiP here, but it was a 72-hour jam so I couldn't waste any time. In fact, the game was uploaded 20 minutes before the jam ended xD

Personally, I always scavenge the Completed Projects forums more than the WiPs actually, looking for new and exciting VNs I can download and play. Most games (aside from NaNos) I never followed their WiPs. If the game ends up turning into a series, then I will probably follow their WiPs when the next installment comes out or if it's from my favourite dev. But I dunno if there are anyone else out there who will go through multiple pages of the completed area--'cause I will, especially since I tend to disappear periodically and new stuff has been coming out more often than when I started here. I'll even look for stuff on Ren'Py's main Game List. So even if you do work on getting yourself exposed, it also depends if anyone is looking.
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Journey of The Scroll [COMPLETE][RPG]IGMC'17]
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The Only One Girl [WiP][Up.5/20/2017][1stQ ver. released]
30 Kilowatt Hours Left [COMPLETE][GameJolt GDC Jam2016]

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Re: What if No One Plays It

#17 Post by PassiveChicken » Fri Mar 03, 2017 2:46 am

Sonomi wrote:...making yourself active on this and other forums can be a great way to self promote.
I'm curious, what other popular sites for visual novels are out there? Tbh I've never looked, but it would probably be good to build a report with multiple communities, yeh?
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Re: What if No One Plays It

#18 Post by Zelan » Fri Mar 03, 2017 4:01 pm

PassiveChicken wrote:
Sonomi wrote:...making yourself active on this and other forums can be a great way to self promote.
I'm curious, what other popular sites for visual novels are out there? Tbh I've never looked, but it would probably be good to build a report with multiple communities, yeh?
I think you mean "rapport." :P. Tumblr and Twitter both have pretty active VN communities, although you do have to work a bit to find them. I don't use Reddit myself, but it's my understanding that they have a subreddit for VNs. Fuwanovel is also a name I've heard a few times, but I don't know anything about the site.

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Re: What if No One Plays It

#19 Post by Aviala » Sun Mar 05, 2017 7:17 pm

Basically, when you're making a game, you don't just make a game. You need to start talking about it as soon as you have any decent graphics to show.

A lot of people here are mentioning they'll make a WIP thread here on lemmasoft to get more visibility, and that's a good first step but that's nowhere nearly enough if you want even a decent amount of downloads, let alone comments or feedback. Here's a list of things we've done so far to market our game:

1. A good logline - a phrase that'll catch people's interest.
2. Facebook page
3. Tumblr and Twitter accounts
4. Reddit posts on appropriate subreddits
5. Posts in Facebook developer groups
6. Lemma Soft WIP thread
7. Mailing list
8. Website
9. Press Kit
10. Visits to events, flyers
11. Posters at our school, possibly other locations too

...And that's probably not everything, but it goes to show that even an indie game needs a lot of marketing if you want any eyes on your project. The gaming market is so saturated that you need to work hard to stand out from the crowd. If you're just making a game for fun, just getting a few comments on your thread will probably make you happy, but even for that you might need to do more than just a WIP thread and a post in the completed games section. If you're going commercial, it's a full-time job.

EDITED TO BE LESS PLUGGY. Sorry everyone.
Last edited by Aviala on Mon Mar 06, 2017 10:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: What if No One Plays It

#20 Post by Imperf3kt » Sun Mar 05, 2017 8:10 pm

You could add "plugging" to that list, Aviala.
Whilst frowned upon at most forums and similar messageboards, there are ways with words, you can use to advertise while appearing to be answering the thread topic. :wink:
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Re: What if No One Plays It

#21 Post by PassiveChicken » Mon Mar 06, 2017 5:11 am

Imperf3kt wrote:You could add "plugging" to that list, Aviala.
Whilst frowned upon at most forums and similar messageboards, there are ways with words, you can use to advertise while appearing to be answering the thread topic. :wink:
Ugh, plugging is so grotesque, don't you think? I mean, it's like, against all online etiquette. Stick to the subject at hand, am I right?

I mean, jeez. I have a character in my upcoming musical dramedy game, Apocrypha (Winter 2017), that does stuff like that all the time. Always turning the conversation back to him, it's just ridiculous -- but even he's not as bad as pluggers. Ugh..
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Re: What if No One Plays It

#22 Post by Aviala » Mon Mar 06, 2017 9:55 am

Imperf3kt wrote:You could add "plugging" to that list, Aviala.
Whilst frowned upon at most forums and similar messageboards, there are ways with words, you can use to advertise while appearing to be answering the thread topic. :wink:
Ahh, that wasn't really my intention, but it really came out that way, didn't it? :0 I'm really sorry, I didn't mean to break etiquette. I've been living and breathing this game project so it felt natural to write about it, but now that you mentioned it, it really came out like an advertisement :oops: What would be the best course of action here, delete my post?

EDIT: I edited my post to be less pluggy. Thanks for correcting me, I can see now that the post was distasteful.

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Re: What if No One Plays It

#23 Post by Imperf3kt » Mon Mar 06, 2017 5:35 pm

Well, I literally meant the way you wrote it was an excellent example of how it should be done, sorry if it came across like I was accusing you.
In hindsight, I could have worded my post better.
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Re: What if No One Plays It

#24 Post by Aviala » Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:30 am

Oh, okay :'D Well thank you, then! I think on it's own I think I might have read your post as positive, but since there was that other comment too, I thought I had committed a crime worth 2 people calling me out on it! :'') TBH I freaked out a bit.

But back to the topic at hand - there's (at least) one more thing you should definitely do to market your game. Talk about it to your friends and family, both on social media and IRL. We just launched our Kickstarter campaign for Your ROyal Gayness (ok, there it is now ;)) and most of our early backers have been people we know.
Just make sure you don't talk about your game just to one or two people constantly, because that's gonna get annoying fast.

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Re: What if No One Plays It

#25 Post by PassiveChicken » Thu Mar 09, 2017 7:09 pm

Aviala wrote:since there was that other comment too, I thought I had committed a crime worth 2 people calling me out on it!
Oh. I was actually making fun of myself there, sorry about the confusion.
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Re: What if No One Plays It

#26 Post by Marmoon » Sun Mar 19, 2017 7:50 am

I am having that fear, right here, right now.

I just finished 10-15k words and realised I haven't thought about whether it was an interesting premise or not! I didn't have any friends who wrote, and when I tried to get my family or friends' opinions they tend to be... too nice.

I probably should go join some writer's community but I don't know where else, so I went ahead and posted in the idea's forum. While sifting through lemmasoft a little I found a post with a poll - asking for your opinion on which of his/her twelve characters you liked best. Perhaps you could do something similar?

Have you heard of fail fast? It's a concept I learnt from an entrepreneur in a networking event. He also went on to say if 9 out of 10 start ups fail, then I will just start ten businesses and my tenth would succeed! So if you post in the ideas forum and you'll either fail fast (get some critique) or succeed (get some interest). Having said that, there's always the story of J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter being rejected by 12 publishers before the 13th finally accepted it.

Good luck, and all the best!

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Re: What if No One Plays It

#27 Post by AsHLeX » Sun May 07, 2017 11:46 am

It happened to me quite a couple of times in the past haha. I would say just move on. Make another game and keep going. In one of my later games, I got fairly good responses and people started asking about my other games so I used it as a crutch to promote my list of somewhat obscured games that I made in the past. (Got a few comments on them too, yay!)
Also, being really active around the forum helps. People also tend to support a creator that they like. E.g. "Oh! She's the one who made X game! This is bound to be good too!"
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Re: What if No One Plays It

#28 Post by Xerofit51 » Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:14 pm

I don't expect much, tbh. If it's out there, it's out there, granted I have my luck on people playing my games. but it could be better with marketing of course.

How do you market VNs anyway?

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Re: What if No One Plays It

#29 Post by Imperf3kt » Tue Nov 21, 2017 12:58 am

Xerofit51 wrote:
Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:14 pm
How do you market VNs anyway?
Social Media.
YouTube
Facebook
Twitter
Forums.

The usual 'mindless masses' congregation areas work well.
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Re: What if No One Plays It

#30 Post by Karamelow » Tue Nov 21, 2017 9:40 am

I will do the thing I know to do better : cry in the corner of my room x)
Then review what was wrong with my project, ask people about advices and try to improve the next one with even more tears, tears and... tears. And also love and passion, because if I don't have that, I would probably just drop the project (°___°)
But yes, to tell you the truth, I have this fear every single day about my own current first project xD
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