Author Archives: Karl Bunyan

Mobile Gamers Cost More Than They’re Worth

“Mobile Users Cost More Than They’re Worth” is the slightly pithy interpretation of this piece on Venturebeat titled “Developers, brace for a bloodbath: The cost of getting a new mobile gamer exceeds revenue that user¬†generates“, which is a summary on mobile user acquisition costs versus spend published by Superdata Research. The short version: the average […]

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Is An Energy Mechanic Fun?

I think it’s fair to say that the energy mechanic is one of the more hated of the free-to-play game mechanics that have emerged over the past few years. In simple terms, the energy mechanic prevents a player from playing a game as much as they’d like to by allocating energy within the game and […]

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Mobile or PC Development?

Does Betteridge’s Law apply to the headline “Game devs ditching mobile in favor of PC, console?” (i.e. is the answer “no they’re not”?) The piece does raise some interesting points about risk vs reward, taking into account investment needed, piracy, and expected returns. The rough thrust, as I understand it, is: PC games can still […]

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Jesse Schell on Ideas in Games

Jesse Schell goes into some depth on a subject that I’ve long believed in: it’s better to tell other people your ideas than worrying about having them stolen. In bullet points, the reasons for this are: No one has time to steal your idea Even IF someone did steal your idea, by the time they […]

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“Dear indie mobile game developer”

There are a lot of truths in this article about mobile game marketing, even if it makes slightly depressing reading. The main point is that developing a game is only part of the way to having a games company and without a marketing plan, or just being extremely (extremely) lucky, then making money is going […]

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Ace Patrol on Steam Store for PC

A while back I wrote about Sid Meier’s Ace Patrol and how it’s difficult to make the transition from boxed retail game design to free-to-play microtransaction-focused game design. Now it seems that Ace Patrol is available for PC on the Steam Store. The interesting thing about this is that it appears to shun microtransactions altogether: […]

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Confessions of a Failed Indie Developer

Confessions of a failed indie developer is a thought-provoking post by an experienced console developer who tried to “go it alone” as an independent game developer. The lessons learnt seem largely familiar compared with other failed indies that I’ve talked to or read about, and to take an extract from the original article: I vastly […]

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Space Hulk and PC Versions of Board Games

I own a copy of Space Hulk, the board game. If you know nothing about it, then just imagine something like Aliens with lots of tiles and lots of figures to move around a map made of corridors and rooms. It’s a fun game that mixes a surprising amount of tactics in with a huge […]

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Jesse Schell on the Imminent Future of Consoles

Jesse Schell talks to Games Industry International about the next generation of consoles: “There’s one mistake that they all make, and that mistake is listening to their customers” He goes on to talk about how Microsoft may actually have made the right predictions for the future of consoles with the Xbox One, but their current […]

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Project Choice in the Free to Play World

While most discussions about Free to Play (F2P) games revolve around the ethics of microtransactions versus up-front purchase costs, from a game developer’s point of view one of the biggest effects that F2P is having on the games industry is its influence in the types of titles that are built. Games that work successfully as […]

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