While competition is hotting up for indie game devs, fresh opportunities continue with ever more tools, services, and other resource emerging to help turn your ambitions into reality. To help you become one of the winners, the Indie track brings together the indie community plus a few super star speakers to share hints, tips, lessons, and dreams.
From picking which game to make and building communities all the way through to presenting your games in digital stores... all the best stuff has already been done. So here's 25 ideas nicked from observing thousands of indie game launches.
The Unity Asset Store is a great resource for developers, but it can also be a surprisingly profitable secondary revenue stream for small Indies. John Campbell shares his experience of developing for the Store. During the development of a game we all create tools, systems and assets for our own needs, but often these are valuable to others and can enjoy a second life on the Asset Store providing not just additional income but also secondary benefits to your studio. Learn the publishing process end-to-end, starting with identifying potentially successful assets, creating and refining them for best success, release and store presentation, and post-release growth and curation. Also practical advice on user experience, documentation and how to efficiently manage your community and support requests. Triangular Pixels has been publishing to the Asset Store for four years. We started as an experiment but have steadily grown our store presence to where it’s an important part of our business. We include knowledge gained from our successful (and unsuccessful) assets, what we did right and what went wrong, and how we’ve integrated our learnings into our day-to-day development of our game projects. We also cover the risks (and perceived risks) with publishing on the Asset Store and how to evaluate their impact on you, how to mitigate those that are relevant and which perceived risks you don’t need to worry about.
Guy Cocker is a games journalist of 15 years' experience including editing GameSpot UK and Stuff Magazine. He has helped video game publishers including Electronic Arts, Activision and Sony by consulting on their in-development products and giving insights on how they are viewed by journalists and the media at large. This session will reveal some of the common issues faced by developers/publishers when communicating with journalists, insights on the prejudices and pressures journalists bring to the reviewing process, and specific methods the games industry can use to make sure their games are well received by the press.
Part of a team responsible for securing multiple high-profile projects, Natalie discusses her methods for designing, creating and delivering successful pitches and presentations. Whether you’re pitching your own game to a publisher or trying to secure work-for-hire, a thorough and well-reasoned approach can make or break your project. The lecture will include practical advice on how to approach and create high quality documents, as well as talking about common pitfalls and easy-wins, with content ranging from high-level objective-setting, document design rules, presentation delivery and applying a product design methodology. The lecture focuses on objective-based design as a tool for creating contract-winning work.
Every game starts as an idea, but not every idea will make a good game. So, how do you test your idea? And how do you test it fast? This talk will reveal the prototyping process at Bossa Studios, taking game jams ideas like Pigeon Simulator and I Am Fish through to prototypes in the hands of players worldwide. We will explain methods to achieve more with a small team and where to focus your energy so you can get the right feedback from your audience.
Releasing your first game on Steam can be a daunting prospect when you're a solo developer or a small indie team. What happens when you release a small game on Steam? What can you expect from Steam in terms of impressions and visibility? How does that affect sales? In this talk, Brian Shingles will attempt to answer those questions as he shares details and stats from his experience with releasing three small games on Steam through his microstudio, Bad Logic Studios. Brian will discuss the mistakes that were made and the lessons that were learned along the way, as well as offer advice and strategies for small indie studios looking to release their own games on Steam.
At the end of this session you will
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A lot of the opportunities that come from being here are speaking to other developers who are doing exactly the same thing as you. And there are some good parties – it’s very much a pleasurable work experience!
It’s really nice to see some of the younger people in our studio come to Develop, interact with other people in the dev community and make new contacts. I think it’s really important to learn from other people.
There’s something creative about Brighton, so it’s the perfect place to have the conference.
I’ve been to every single Develop in the last 12 years. One thing you get here is networking - you will meet the most amazing individuals in the video games industry.
I’ve felt a big passion here at Develop!
Develop:Brighton’s a great conference. It’s got a spread of people from all parts of the games industry talking about such a wide range of topics.
Building games is hard and it’s taxing physically, mentally and emotionally. So being around a community that understands that is great – there’s a comraderie here.
If you really want to have a good interface with the British game developer community then this is the place to come.
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Develop:Brighton is especially unique - it’s by the seaside and there’s a lovely relaxed tone that goes with that.The talks are cool, the networking is cool and having the opportunity to catch up with people – that’s always the excitement for me!
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