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Sales Stats at 3 weeks.

08-04-2009, 11:07 AM
#1
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 290
Sales Stats at 3 weeks.

So we've received our 3rd week of sales stats for Roadkill Cafe.
I was kind of surprised considering the good words we've received from people so far, great comments and reviews. I expected it to go farther than that.

Anyway, we've had:

215 sales
467 pirated copies

Thanks for the support of those who are buying the game. You rock
Pirates can suck on a monkey.

The piracy started just before this weekend, so that's actually not too bad. Other developers have fared worse, as we've seen.

So if sales continue at this pace on a single app, the hardware investments will pay off in a few months. For those of you who are just thinking about getting in, this may look bad, but it's really not that terrible.

When I first looked at the state of the app store, it wasn't quite as heavily saturated as it is now. So I had expectations based on a greater chance of market penetration.

We didn't pre-hype the game. Spreading the word about the game didn't start until the day of release. While keeping your mouth shut prevents a shovelware company from ripping off your idea and making it in 3 days with an army of underpaid developers crammed into a hot room overseas, it also keeps you out of the eyes of the public. Reviews are good, but the impact they appear to have on volume spikes is negligible. They will probably contribute more to the steadiness of sales.

It's the volume spike you'll need though, if you want to get on the front page of the app store. That sudden surge of sales will put you in a place that continues to get you more sales. *Get Apple's attention*

If our next game manages to garner Apple's attention, this may increase the sales on RKC simply by association. This would be a nice benefit.

If you have an awesome, epic idea for a game - wait. Make some smaller projects, highly polished, and let them build a community of users for you.
We have a game sitting in the pipeline that will likely take 6 months of full time development. As much as I'd like to be working on that one right now, it makes more sense to be working on some of our other smaller designs, establishing a name and a following, however small, of happy gamers.

Also, if you're a new developer and you don't have a twitter account yet. Get one. It doesn't matter how silly and pointless twitter seems to you now. It is your *free* connection to both the other developers and the public who want to know what you're doing.

The app store is a lot more volatile than the console/PC market so if you're coming from there, you're going to have to relearn what consumers want. People paying 99 cents to 5 dollars for a game have different spending patterns than those laying out 50 to 80 dollars for one. Just watch some of the top sellers and you'll be shocked that they're selling so well.

Consider pricing as well. When awesome games like Harbor Master, Pocket God, and Westbang, and FAST are 99 cents, it's hard to justify pricing your own game above that. What's a kid with a 5 dollar budget this week going to choose? There was a noticeable increase in sales as soon as our price dropped to 99 from 1.99, and that's even with the low volume of sales so far.

Anyway this is just a bunch of random notes and observations. Let's all keep moving, onward and upward! And consider one parting thought:

With Khalid out of the way, your chances of selling your apps this week just got better.

Hopefully this name will update soon as I requested a name change. I'm no longer affiliated with Atommo games.
08-04-2009, 11:16 AM
#2
Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 10,963
Quote:
Originally Posted by atommo View Post
Atommo hungers for reviews.


Sorry. Couldn't resist!

(Done with Cartoonize Me)

Quote:
Originally Posted by NickFalk View Post
Squids!?

Worst idea ever!

08-04-2009, 11:32 AM
#3
Joined: Aug 2009
Location: L.A.
Posts: 5
Good reviews don't necessarily push you, but bad comments may harm the sales. It's like a roulette game - the personal taste is such a big factor. Either the masses can connect and bring more customers (-> charts) and it grows bigger and bigger or really brilliant games get ignored by the rabble and stay under the radar.

I wonder what effect professional PR would have on the sales. Did you work together with an agency?

Wish you much success (maybe its a sleeper hit).

Down on the upside
08-04-2009, 11:40 AM
#4
Joined: Jul 2009
Location: florida
Posts: 104
what do you mean by the 467 pirated copys? not that i want to know how to pirate a game, but how do you know, or is there just some way to track similiar games, or if there is more then one itunes account on the same computer? i didnt know you could pirate a game... that sucks, sorry guys

as in the other thread i whole heartedly endorse Roadkill Cafe, i love the game!

-cory
08-04-2009, 11:43 AM
#5
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 290
We know how many unique iphones have registered a score, and we know how many copies have sold.
There are probably more pirated copies playing offline, but those are the hard numbers we're working with at the moment

Hopefully this name will update soon as I requested a name change. I'm no longer affiliated with Atommo games.
08-04-2009, 11:45 AM
#6
Joined: Jul 2009
Location: florida
Posts: 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by atommo View Post
We know how many unique iphones have registered a score, and we know how many copies have sold.
There are probably more pirated copies playing offline, but those are the hard numbers we're working with at the moment
ah i see, well that sucks, i'd rather you make money to make more great games, but i suppose that is the nature of the beast...

-cory
08-04-2009, 01:26 PM
#7
Make that 216... I just picked up a copy. Clever game, I liked it a lot!

It's awful to see the affects of piracy and the disorganized, bloated mess of the app store hurting new developers. Both of these are things that Apple should be doing something about, but seems to be taking their sweet time with. At least they're starting to improve search by adding keywords to apps.

There were half as many apps out there when Rogue Touch was released in February. Back then it was easier to get noticed, but you still had to have a quality app to make any headway. The "everything must be 99 cents or I'm not buying it" mentality had not taken over quite yet...

I did not hype RT madly, I actually took extra precautions to keep it under wraps until shortly before release. Youtube videos were kept private, web pages were kept on my local network, etc... Daily sales when it went live were pretty brisk. The App Store is a different place now, but I think that too many games try to build hype over too long a period of time. People lose interest. Starting a concentrated campaign within 3 to 7 days of going live in the store (basically after its been in submission for a while) would probably be more effective in creating that initial surge in sales you need to make one of the top 100 categories.

On piracy, I know that almost every version of Rogue Touch has been pirated, but either people never actually played it, or were never online with their device, I don't know. Basically, the distinct number of users in my online leaderboard is only about half of my installed userbase. So thankfully the load on my server never got out of hand. Others have had it much worse than you or I. Some games I've seen stats on put pirate users at 10 to 1.

You have a lot of good ideas and thoughts. I disagree with pricing along with the lowest common denominator. That just perpetuates the issue that many devs have when attempting to justify their costs of production. Other than a brief sale when I was featured by Apple, I started at $2.99 and remain at $2.99. Less than a McDonalds value meal for hundreds of hours of gameplay is a pretty fair deal in my book, and based on feedback I've gotten many of my players would have gladly paid even more.

Keep up the good work, keep making good games, and hopefully it'll pay off for you someday!

--- ChronoSoft ---
Support your roguelikes! Play Rogue Touch today!
Spirit Hunter Mineko: Demons Reach --- Work in progress! Follow us on Twitter!
08-04-2009, 02:36 PM
#8
Joined: May 2009
Location: Durham, UK
Posts: 96
Send a message via MSN to daveak
Quote:
Originally Posted by atommo View Post
We know how many unique iphones have registered a score, and we know how many copies have sold.
There are probably more pirated copies playing offline, but those are the hard numbers we're working with at the moment
Apps can be installed on multiple iphones from a single itunes account, doubtful that accounts for the piracy number you are stating, but is a possibility.

Alpha Numeric - Find words and solve sums against the clock.
08-04-2009, 02:54 PM
#9
Joined: Jul 2009
Location: florida
Posts: 104
Quote:
Originally Posted by daveak View Post
Apps can be installed on multiple iphones from a single itunes account, doubtful that accounts for the piracy number you are stating, but is a possibility.
i wondered about how that works, but i have never done it. it would seem to me like how xbox live works, where you can take your hardrive to a friends and play all his arcade games without paying for them, getting achievments and stuff, but microsoft has deleted gamer scores and even baned people for doing that same thing. sucks all around but i am unsure how the "rules" really work for things of that nature.
08-04-2009, 03:26 PM
#10
Joined: Nov 2008
Location: Munich, Germany
Posts: 754
Send a message via Skype™ to mobile1up
Quote:
Originally Posted by daveak View Post
Apps can be installed on multiple iphones from a single itunes account, doubtful that accounts for the piracy number you are stating, but is a possibility.
piracy happens - accept it.

the numbers shown are low - typically it is a 80/20 ratio. where 80% are pirate copies.. you can also insert checks in your code and send a special code from a pirated copy.. this is what we did in our games, we know people pirate; we dont penalize them - but, we do track them

// Aaron Ardiri
Mobile 1UP is a proud indie developer - support us!
developer of Caveman / Caveman HD and GW Series