With the video game industry surging – a lot of new indie developers are stuck in gold rush fever. I think a lot of people need to step back and ask themselves – why am I going indie? The control and freedom you obtain in an indie studio is empowering at first, but that very freedom often ends up becoming isolating and stressful. Too many people are deluded by the simplicity of some successful iPhone games and instantly say “I can do a way better job than this. I’m going to be rich. Muwahahaha.”
You have to be in it for more than money – there has to be passion. The humbling truth is, nobody gives a crap why you left XYZ studio to pursue your dream of eating ramen noodles and fighting against poverty – billions of people have it way worse than you. So accepting that nobody cares about your story, even if you were a one armed dwarf developer who struggles daily with reduced typing speed and the height of ergonomic chairs. (Wait, I take that back. I’d 100% support that developer.)
Connecting Your Passion with Your Audience
People care about what you do for THEM. Your company’s purpose should not be what it does for you – but what value you provide to people. Gamers now have more choices than ever, but there are so many facets of life that people are interested in. Whatever game you make will have an audience somewhere out there on earth. Specialization is crucial now. If you go into the fray with no marketing plan or budget and you think that you’re going to be the next Clash of Clans, think again. Big companies can survive without a heart because they replaced it with a huge marketing & pr department that can manipulate organic search discovery
You cannot afford to not love the games that you are making. People don’t care about why you went indie, they care about why this game will be fun & interesting. Don’t accept the gold rush mindset, be careful and develop relationships with your small fan base. Overtime, it will grow if you are actually show heart and communicate with your audience. They’ll know who you are by what you create and how you make them feel. Never forget that video games are a method of self expression. Let your work speak for itself and people will herald you not as Mr. Ramen, but as a talented and passionate individual – someone they can respect and admire.
Originally Posted at MobileGamesCEO