Earth Alone 2: The Search For More Money!

Hey Guys!

Back to my project! In this post I want to take the time to talk about both my ambitions for my game project, and more specifically, I want to start talking about the financing of my project. As such, I’ll be addressing this topic to the best of my ability…

Just to recap, my game, Earth Alone, brings the player into a dystopian future Earth where the veil separating the realm of nature spirits has ripped, colliding worlds, and creating a brand new era on our Planet. Essentially, it’s about bringing a malleable, player-driven narrative into a Final Fantasy/Dragon Quest-esque 2D turn-based RPG. Here’s my latest developer diary if you’re interested in learning where I’m at:

Thus far, the main financial hurdle I’ve had to cross in the making of my game was the purchasing of the RPG Maker MV software on Steam. My main mission now is to create a demo that will successfully whet the appetites of consumers who would be interested in potentially investing in the game. While I could create a complete game using the software and the free resources I’ve collected online, I ideally see the project manifesting as a crowd-funding campaign. These raised funds would serve to:

  • hire artists to create original assets that compliment my vision;
  • hire animators to design rad cutscenes;
  • hire voice actors to voice the characters in my world;
  • hire a small team of devs familiar with the software to help streamline the creation process, especially regarding the realm of scripting;
  • and last (but not least), hire a team of cheap servants to worship and provide for me while I, like Jabba the Hutt, lounge and oversee production from my elevated concrete slab.

Given my sore unfamiliarity with the world of marketing and funding and all that jazz, I found ‘s article, “How to Fund Your Indie Game,” to be indispensable! There he concludes stating:

“There’s a wealth of opportunities for game development companies seeking to procure funding for their next foray, with more alternatives propping up every year. With so many options available, there’s hardly a need to limit yourself to one source.”

Aalphafunding
Alphafunding for Indie Games, by Greg

One opportunity I certainly see complimenting my vision is working towards an Alpha-funding model, that is, allowing gamers to purchase the game prior to its commercial release, a popular business model that’s allowing many successful indie games to truly blossom! While it not only allows you to release the game early,  it also allows the community to play test your unfinished title, a community who are rewarded with frequent updates promising new content!

Eric Barone, aka ConcernedApe, the incredible developer of Stardew Valley, perfected this business model in my opinion. Not only did his game, more or less, become an overnight success, he still regularly releases free content updates to build on the game, and even takes time out to communicate with his Stardew Valley community, both on his website and on his twitter feed. If you’re interested in learning more about his creative process, I’d recommend checking out the interview he did with Tom Marks from PC Gamer.

In the long run I’d eventually like to see my project ‘green-lit’ through Steam Greenlight service,  a service which allows new game developers worldwide to pitch their game ideas and projects. If successful, these games are destined to become a part of Steam’s growing indie game library. Although before I become too ambitious, I’d love to hear your thoughts in the meantime, and I’d especially love for you all to try out the demo I’m working on!

Oh, and last but not least, here’s a bonus video where I quickly look at the Day/Night system I designed which I’m super proud of:

If you’re interested in checking out the rest of my developer diaries, here is the playlist.

Anthony.

Reference List:

Robert DellaFave, (2014), “How to Fund Your Indie Games,” envatotuts, <http://gamedevelopment.tutsplus.com/articles/how-to-fund-your-indie-game–cms-20514>

7 thoughts on “Earth Alone 2: The Search For More Money!

  1. I’m glad that you included the most important reason for people to fund you, that is to serve you in all your glory (that may not be something you write in your Kickstarter though). Anyway, I agree with your idea of hiring others with those raised funds as the end product would definitely be more polished and pleasing to the audience. With voice actors however, I feel like this is an unnecessary expense as many 2D RPGs just use text for cut scenes and it would be more beneficial to add recognizable noises for your characters (think Link’s “hyah!” and Mario’s “wahoo!”). Following this idea, rather than investing in voice actors, I feel that a sound designer would be better suited for your game and could also help in making a killer soundtrack.
    I’m also a big fan of Stardew Valley and what especially struck me about the game was that Eric Barone was able to develop the initial game entirely by himself. Although he had a degree in computer science, it still shows that you don’t need a big team or that much experience in game development to make a hit game.
    And great work on your game, I love how it’s coming together – I’m glad that your overnight stay at the inn worked correctly!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for checking my stuff out! And you’re actually very correct, a great sound designer would be perfect. Most of my favourite games have memorable sound and music – would be fantastic to have someone work on that for me!

      Like

  2. The Greenlight feature of Steam’s has been great for indie game designers and players. Games which are marketed and presented before release are definitely more likely to be greenlit, so obviously including videos and images of game play will be great for increasing your chances. This is a great article the gives heaps of tips to getting your game greenlit: http://gamedevelopment.tutsplus.com/articles/tips-for-getting-greenlit-on-steam-greenlight–gamedev-13938

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hey Anthony!

    Earth Alone looks like it is coming along really well! It is exciting to see your hard work paying off! I think you’ve done really well! I agree with Jess in that I would rather see you putting the funds into the soundtrack rather than voice acting. I think it is equally important that you invest in cheap slaves though, that is non negotiable. 🙂
    Getting back to Earth Alone, I think your night system is great! Must have taken a long time to get right. I’m so glad everything is working out for you! Hope all goes well!

    Jacob

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I absolutely love your video diaries! What a great idea, and entertaining too 😉 I too have wanted to be worshiped, uh, I mean, crowd-funded, and have been looking at different resources re: getting apps and mobile games funded. While I think you should consider and browse sites like http://indie-fund.com/ and http://www.gamasutra.com/alternative-funding I definitely don’t think you should give up on your steam dreams! This AMA is actually a really fascinating, informative look at the process: https://www.reddit.com/r/gamedev/comments/25mj3y/my_game_got_greenlit_on_steam_after_35_days_ama/

    Good luck! Can’t wait to see the finished product.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Really cool stuff Jabba-, uh, Anthony. That day-night cycle is pretty damn cool, did that actually require custom coding is it it a feature within RPG Maker’s toolset? As for hiring voice actors, I think you would be able to find some drama students rabid over the opportunity to work for free on a potentially successful product. Obviously a professional VA isn’t going to work for free, that’s their livelihood, but as a student of the arts I don’t think it’s unreasonable to poke about and see if anyone would be interested in broadening their skill set a bit. I’d be less comfortable requesting the same from actual ‘art’ students though, as let’s face it, that takes more effort and time investment. But I digress, great stuff Anthony, hope you’re in contact with others who are using RPG Maker for this assignment and have shared some tips and tricks!

    Liked by 1 person

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