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Updating graphics, make much difference?

11-04-2011, 03:05 PM
#1
Joined: May 2011
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Posts: 122
Updating graphics, make much difference?

Do any developers out there have feedback on updating their game's graphics? Does it make a big difference in downloads after the fact if the game is updated from fairly unpolished to pretty polished, even if the game has been out for a little bit? A decent graphic artist isn't cheap so any thoughts or experiences are greatly appreciated. Thanks.

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11-05-2011, 02:33 AM
#2
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Hollywood, CA
Posts: 1,869
Quote:
Originally Posted by 30BelowStudios View Post
Do any developers out there have feedback on updating their game's graphics? Does it make a big difference in downloads after the fact if the game is updated from fairly unpolished to pretty polished, even if the game has been out for a little bit? A decent graphic artist isn't cheap so any thoughts or experiences are greatly appreciated. Thanks.
well, it certainly made all the difference for Trainyard - when he did a RD update, it set off a series of events that ultimately wound him up at #2 on the paid charts! Although he did plenty of other things to follow-through, and you certainly shouldn't ever expect a similar situation just because of a single case.

In general, graphics are one of the huge "make it or break it" selling points with any product. If you have a game that plays great but doesn't look like much, odds are that it will usually perform poorly. Alternatively, if the game is kinda crap but looks awesome than it will possibly get a nice bit of downloads, but even so it's tough to say these days.

You really have to take a long hard look at your app and decide if it is worth it to keep pushing with an app (if you want to actually spend money to keep chasing it) - if it has ever had any kind of positive feedback in some way or other, that's a good sign for starters. Otherwise, maybe better to spend the time and money on something new..

11-05-2011, 05:19 AM
#3
Joined: Feb 2011
Location: Isle of Wight, UK
Posts: 1,509
Graphics are more important then gameplay.

Many people won't agree with that sentiment and I'm one of them on face value. However, to say "gameplay is everything" is naieve to the point of being silly.

Your game will have to be truly epicly fun to play to do well commercially whilst having bad graphics, as you're relying on word of mouth only.

If your game has great graphics, people are going to see the screenies and maybe download it and give it a go. If the gameplay is crap, it's at this point that you will lose your potential sale. If the gameplay is also good, you'll get their money.

The fact is, you need to get people to look at your game before they pay for it. Only after they've initially looked can you rely on the gameplay to actually secure the sale.

Bad graphics, bad gameplay: no sales
Bad graphics, good gameplay: some sales
Good graphics, good gameplay: relax and enjoy!
11-05-2011, 05:55 AM
#4
Joined: Sep 2010
Location: Morestel, France
Posts: 572
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubicon View Post
Good graphics, good gameplay: relax and enjoy!
Yea, right! If only it was that easy

JC
11-05-2011, 06:07 AM
#5
Joined: Feb 2011
Location: Isle of Wight, UK
Posts: 1,509
Well yeah, it's relative of course.

Mine's more of a negative post - "Don't do something to auto-kill your app".

"How to make it succeed" is another conversation, but one that has to start with getting it looking good. Sadly got nothing more to add to that one.
11-05-2011, 09:33 AM
#6
Joined: Dec 2009
Location: Berlin, Germany
Posts: 1,674
well depending on the product and how long its been out there maybe your better off making part 2 and put the improvements into that..

you can market a new product more easy than a update especially if the initial game was not being spotlighted by anone at the time of its release..

just making an optical rehaul will doubtfully make much noise.. where as a new with a successor you try over..
11-05-2011, 01:08 PM
#7
Joined: Jan 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 548
Graphics matter "."

Lots of apps are impulse buys and are purely judged by their screenshots and reviews by casual gamers.

We put a very heavy emphasis in graphics and animation in our games and it pays off. Of course if there is no gameplay to back it up, you're not going anywhere fast.

www.livgames.com
Creator of the award winning Legendary Wars, Monster Wars and Stellar Wars.
11-07-2011, 01:56 AM
#8
Joined: Jun 2011
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 286
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubicon View Post
Graphics are more important then gameplay.
Sad but true! Bling sells...

30BelowStudios, if your graphics are lacking or you feel they could be better I would definitely put some time and effort into an update on that before any gameplay changes.

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11-07-2011, 11:49 AM
#9
If it's a complete graphical overhaul and your sales so far haven't been impressive, pull and relaunch. Start fresh!
11-07-2011, 02:30 PM
#10
Joined: May 2011
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Posts: 122
I really appreciate all of your points of view everyone. Very helpful. This will pretty much be a complete overhaul of the graphics and I think I'm going to pull the trigger. I'm also going to put out a lite version at the same time. After speaking to people it seems many people scroll right down to the screenshots when looking at apps in the App store and totally skip the written description.

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