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Getting Funding for Your Casual Game App Idea Via Crowdfunding

Published on 29 January 14
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When you have what you think is a great idea for a casual game app, if you are from a development background your main interest is likely to be getting to work on the software lifecycle required to produce that game so you can get it onto the App Store or the Google marketplace and start gaining some players (and hopefully making some revenue). Unfortunately, no matter how skilled developer or game designer you are, there is a surprising amount of cost involved in writing and promoting your own game, especially if you are used to working in a team environment where things like budgets and resources are the project manager's problem, and all you have to do are the actual coding related tasks.
Once you have run the figures, developing your own game can look prohibitively expensive. While at first you may have thought it was a simple matter of designing, building and testing the game in your spare time, when you look at the practicalities of actually releasing something for public consumption, and you realise you need to work out a monetisation strategy as well as a plan to help your game compete in a crammed marketplace, where you have hundreds of other small developers along with major game products like Fruit Ninja, The Simpsons Tapped Out, Angry Birds and even games where players can actual win real money like the iPhone Royal Vegas game vying for people's attention, there are all kinds of extra costs. Will you need someone to manage your website, write and distribute your press packs, and run your social media campaign? Will you need help with SEO? There is a lot to think about.
One way a lot of indie developers attempt to raise funds to sustain their own coding efforts and pay for the other things they need to make their product a success is to use crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter and IndieGoGo. With a good pitch and good rewards, you can attract pledges of money from all kinds of people who are interested in making your project happen. However, this is not the easy source of money it may sound like to the uninitiated. A lot of work goes into a successful crowdfunding campaign, and the sites and their users have preferences that may decide whether they approve your project and whether to pledge money to it. Here are some tips for a good campaign:
  • Work hard on the video. It may seem annoying to have to produce a really good video pitch when your time seems like it could be better spent working on your actual game, but the crowdfunding sites love video and so do their members. A good video means you stand a better chance of being placed in a good position on their site, where more people will see you and hopefully pledge.
  • Reply to any questions you get asked by people who have bid on your project, or are thinking about it. If you don't have an answer, tell them so, but tell them when you plan to be at the stage to be able to give a clear reply.
  • Try adding a few more rewards for people who pledge part way through the campaign. Many campaigns plateau a little in the middle, and this can e a good way to revive interest.
When you have what you think is a great idea for a casual game app, if you are from a development background your main interest is likely to be getting to work on the software lifecycle required to produce that game so you can get it onto the App Store or the Google marketplace and start gaining some players (and hopefully making some revenue). Unfortunately, no matter how skilled developer or game designer you are, there is a surprising amount of cost involved in writing and promoting your own game, especially if you are used to working in a team environment where things like budgets and resources are the project manager's problem, and all you have to do are the actual coding related tasks.

Once you have run the figures, developing your own game can look prohibitively expensive. While at first you may have thought it was a simple matter of designing, building and testing the game in your spare time, when you look at the practicalities of actually releasing something for public consumption, and you realise you need to work out a monetisation strategy as well as a plan to help your game compete in a crammed marketplace, where you have hundreds of other small developers along with major game products like Fruit Ninja, The Simpsons Tapped Out, Angry Birds and even games where players can actual win real money like the iPhone Royal Vegas game vying for people's attention, there are all kinds of extra costs. Will you need someone to manage your website, write and distribute your press packs, and run your social media campaign? Will you need help with SEO? There is a lot to think about.

One way a lot of indie developers attempt to raise funds to sustain their own coding efforts and pay for the other things they need to make their product a success is to use crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter and IndieGoGo. With a good pitch and good rewards, you can attract pledges of money from all kinds of people who are interested in making your project happen. However, this is not the easy source of money it may sound like to the uninitiated. A lot of work goes into a successful crowdfunding campaign, and the sites and their users have preferences that may decide whether they approve your project and whether to pledge money to it. Here are some tips for a good campaign:

  • Work hard on the video. It may seem annoying to have to produce a really good video pitch when your time seems like it could be better spent working on your actual game, but the crowdfunding sites love video and so do their members. A good video means you stand a better chance of being placed in a good position on their site, where more people will see you and hopefully pledge.
  • Reply to any questions you get asked by people who have bid on your project, or are thinking about it. If you don't have an answer, tell them so, but tell them when you plan to be at the stage to be able to give a clear reply.
  • Try adding a few more rewards for people who pledge part way through the campaign. Many campaigns plateau a little in the middle, and this can e a good way to revive interest.


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