Sunday, 21 June 2020

20 Tips for your Indie Game Launch!

Hi indiexpors and game developers! A lot of time we received emails about how to prepare the Game Launch. We prepered 20 tips inspired by a very famous books for Startups, "The $100 Startup" by Chris Guillebeau!
  1. Be sure that your game has something that makes it different from other games.
  2. Choose a prize for the first players, however small.
  3. Is the game launch going to be interesting?
  4. Did you record a Video about it?
  5. Are potential players excited for the launch of this game?
  6. Share the release date (day and hour) in advance.
  7. Check the description of your game, the selected images and the video over and over.
  8. If you add External Links, check them out as well.
  9. Try to download and start your game, multiple times, on multiple devices.
  10. Share the description and images with your friends. Ask them for feedbacks.
  11. Did you create banners, artworks and extra images to promote it (if you could have)?
  12. Choose a goal to reach (number of players, followers, comments, etc.).
  13. Reply to all of your emails before the day of the launch.
  14. That same day, write a short and incisive message and send it to your friends, as well as to magazines, blogs, YouTubers and streamers.
  15. The day before your game launches, prepare a post to write on your Social Networks.
  16. Write to the first 5 players that play your game, thank them, and ask them for feedbacks.
  17. When the game is up, write once again to your friends, as well as to magazines, blogs, YouTubers and streamers.
  18. As soon as the game is up, make a post about it on your Social Networks
  19. Write a message to thank your players.
  20. Have fun, and prepare yourself for the next game!
Good luck!


Tuesday, 17 March 2020

Posts, New Easter Egg Hunt and few updates!

Hi guys! Few updates!
As we said previously, we are publishing on indiexpo blog, several reviews of Game Developers for (new) Indie Devs with interesting projects!
The first one was about the pixel art, made by the pixel artist of Fantastico Studio, and the second one (posted few days ago) was about an adventure game by an artist of Ars Goetia Studio.


It's also started a new Easter Egg hunt! If you will play this game, Rookie Hero, and you will be the first to find the Easter Egg, you will win 500 Gems!
Remember to stay logged.

We also improved the desktop design of the website with few details and just one bar on the left. It's added a new Share button in the game-pages to share your favourite games easily and quickly!

Friday, 13 March 2020

From Dev to Dev. Baptiste Miny, from Ars Goetia, for Mutropolis!

Another post from the serie "From Dev to Dev"! This time the artist behind The Blind Prophet left us several tech-tips about a recent adventure game released on indiexpo, Mutropolis!

The Blind Prophet


The Blind Prophet is a very interesting project, developed by Ars Goetia (from France), a dark, bloody and stylish narrative driven point and click adventure where you take on the role of an apostle, sent on a mission by God to protect humans from the corruption of demons., that passed a Kickstarter Campaign during the January 2019.

Check out the tech-tips of its artist about Mutropolis! Let's go!


This game already looks good, and is very well written. It was hard to choose any specific tips, but here are a couple of little improvements that could be made to the game.

First of all, I’d love to have some context for the plot, even if it’s nice to discover the lore through the characters’ conversations. Any presentation of the plot, even a short one or mysterious one, would help lead us into the adventure more smoothly. There might be some easy question that are easy to answer, and that would help the player understand what they later see. For example, introducing the location, and the time period the game takes place in.



Some parts of the illustrations are still too rough in my opinion. I know how it is, as an artist: you always wonder whether or not you’re going to ruin the illustration, if it loses the energy it had while a sketch. My advice would be to add some precision and stiffness where the gaze of the players will focus (and where there are objects to interact with), and let the rest of the picture be a little but rougher.



I love the work of artists like Richard Schmid, for instance, in which you instantly know where to look at, and the rest of the picture helps you focus on those elements. Also, a general tip would be to never hesitate to go for particles and special effects in your environments!



The characters have some good animations, timing and are well written and designed. I hope you’ll be able to put in some voice acting, even if it’s expensive (don’t worry if you can’t though, I can’t do it in The Blind Prophet either). An in-between solution is to go for a couple of intonations and expressions, and re-use them. It’s cheap, but effective!

As I said, I couldn’t really tell more from the demo, but it’s already a good quality production. Good luck to you.

P.S. Please, put a clear a tutorial for the inventory, I really struggled to find out how to open it! 

- Baptiste Miny from Ars Goetia

text checked and reviewed by DarknessAwaits

Sunday, 23 February 2020

2019 vs 2018

Hey guys! We missed to post the stats about 2019 Vs 2019!
We was distracted by this month that is going very good!
So...Here they are!
The 2019 was very positive! More new users, more page views and more sessions!
What's the main reason? Probably the social networking and the good games!



As you can see Facebook is still the social #1 for our traffic, also because on indiexpo there are a lot of pc games and Facebook is used by "pc users".
YouTube helped us thanks to several big YouTubers that played several games uploaded during the 2019 on the website!



We are continuing to grow up and a lot of users visited the website typing directly " indiexpo.net" in the URL bar!



They know it and they like it! And we continue to improve it with new features, new games, new developers and new events also this year!

Wednesday, 5 February 2020

From Dev to Dev. Francesca De Vivo, from Fantastico Studio, for Ultimate Reality!

from Instagram
A new series of posts about Tech-tips! From expert developers and artists to newbies on indiexpo website!
We are very happy to start and to introduce Francesca De Vivo, from Fantastico Studio, an indie Team based in Rome, Italy. She is the talented pixel artist of the group, that made also indiegames for Nintendo Switch and other consoles.



She tried and analized Ultimate Reailty, a new game published in November, played by several youtubers and with an interesting pixelart style in a cyberpunk city.

Here it is the word of Francesca about this game!

"indiexpo has recently asked me to write my thoughts on a new indie game called Ultimate Reality. I’m not much of a writer, but since this is a website patronized by experts, I thought I could just muddle through by being very technical and hope you guys will get bored and give up halfway through this.
But then I started to play the game and I started taking notes and I got so involved with the process that I’m actually thinking of being serious for once in my life. This is a very interesting experiment that Indiexpo has roped me up into! Let’s get started!

Ultimate Reality

Ultimate Reality
is a game that has you wear the mask of a caped superhero with the ability of shifting though dimensions. Something dark is afoot and you have to use your superpowers to thwart these evil plans! The story is set in a fascinating cyberpunk world where you jump on roofs and punch villains like there's no tomorrow.

What has made pixel art so interesting in recent years are the new takes on it we have seen in the indie games community: so many artists play around with hues, effects, transparencies and larger color palettes.
This sort of thing wasn’t even in the realm of possibilities when pixel art was born in the 80s, but what we see nowadays is a mix of the abstraction pixel art is know for and of the richness of modern game art. I would be lying if I said I didn’t love it!

Ultimate Reality does exactly that: it takes a very synthetic pixel art style and adds hues, glows, smoke effects, camera shakes and the likes. It’s a fitting choice for a rich environment like the one portrayed in the game. It creates a very fascinating atmosphere for the player to enjoy. Just look at these colors.



The neonoir vibe is very strong with this game, and the environment is so detailed and varied that it makes me want to explore.
The character design is really well thought out too and I really like how the artists create such a wide variety of enemies when constricted to such a low pixel density. As usual the less pixels you use the harder it is to make things look good, but if you do it just right, the art will look great.

One thing it took me a while to learn is that UI and HUD are the places where you have to compromise. Sometimes you just can’t cram all the infos you want into a pixel art interface.
The artists of Ultimate Reality did a neat job with the UI, and I l love the illustrated menus where you can pick your suit, check your upgrades and navigate the map, but there are places in the HUD where they had to alter the pixel size to fit in everything the gameplay would need.



As I said, you can play around with hues, transparencies and all kinds of effects, and still get the 80s vibe going, but when you see different pixel sizes on the screen, that’s when the pixel art illusion is suddenly broken. These are not the 80s anymore! Where’s my Thundercats lunchbox?
My recommendation when you just can’t go for a full pixel art interface would be to use a simple and clean regular HUD/UI, possibly one that disappears when you don’t need it. (think Celeste or Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP)

You have to keep the gorgeous UI illustrations though. I love those.



I would also encourage the artists to boost the vaporwave palette in the intro. It looks so cool in the rest of the game! Same goes for the dynamic effects like the smoke, the rain or the camera shake: I would love to see more of those in the intro too. I know that creating big illustrations and long animations in pixel art is probably the most time demanding part of the job, but I really want to know more about the world of Ultimate Reality and I hope the artists will expand the narrative.

I guess what I’m saying to the artists is: you’re doing it right, go deeper!"

- Francesca De Vivo

Official Website
Twitter
Instagram

Saturday, 11 January 2020

The 2020 is here!



Happy 2020, everyone!
Let's start right away with a nice devlog to talk about what's been recently added to the site!
Then, at the end of this devlog, we will also talk about what's coming next!
First off, let's talk about the goals we'd set ourselves last year and what came of them.

  • More events like Egg Hunting -> No Egg Hunting(s), but we had more games with a leaderboard system!
  • More exclusive games, FREE as always! -> DONE! And the last one for 2019 was Ultimate Reality
  • Continuining to improve the Recommended Area in the Home Page (it's very important for us) -> DONE!
  • More games with online functionalities -> DONE!
  • Improvement of the News Area -> DONE! Now it's easier to add images and youtube videos, since a few weeks ago we improved the Markdown system!
  • More comments on the latest games -> DONE! Thanks to the recommendation algorithm 
  • More ways to use indiepad -> DONE! With new buttons and the indiepad screen for mobile phone- read more below!


What did we add this year?

  • New logo!
  • Area Events & Challenges -> Added the 'Latest Champions' list
  • (Inspired by Reddit) Icons when clicking on the Download button if it contains an external link or file name
  • When adding links to images, gifs and youtube videos in the comments and in the News Area, the website will display them automatically!
  • New ANTI-SPOILER funtion in the comments (and in the news)
  • Online status in User Pages
  • Subscribers lists (like Instagram's) 
  • Indiepad: new Home button (to go back)
  • Improved the Search Area's SEO
  • Added a chart exclusive to recently uploaded games (less than 30 days), only visible to developers, so they can see how their games are doing, compared with new ones
  • Trending Games tab
  • Improved the Ukranian and Polish translation of the website, thanks to @Wolod and @Soulrender


What have we done lately?

  • Indiepad on the screen when you play an indiepad game on your phone!
  • In the homepage you can now see the 3 latest indie games to gain over 1000 players!
  • Players List (only for the games' authors), accessible by clicking on the Player Counter on your game's page!
  • Rating filters. Now you can only rate a game if you already downloaded it, your account is more than 10 days old, and your level is higher than 2.

Coming soon?


  • Website available in yet another language: Persian!
  • "From Dev To Dev". A series of technical articles written by more experienced users by looking at more promising games. The first will be by @FrancescaDeVivo, the artist for Fantastico Studio's games
  • Making the indieconsole even better
  • New blog posts about a few statistics of the site, comparing 2019 to 2018

What are our goals for 2020?


  • Focusing on the players
  • Supporting more developers or small teams putting their games up on Kickstarter
  • Making user experience on the mobile site different from the desktop site's
  • Raising the site's 'gamification'

Will we be able to do all this? Keep following us and we'll find out together!