★ TouchArcade needs your help. Click here to support us on Patreon.

The problem with Lite Versions

02-11-2010, 10:50 AM
#1
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 1,068
The problem with Lite Versions

So I was looking into Spider: SOBM and noticed it had a lite version (Hornet Smash). I decided to get that to test it out.

I loved HS and literally played it to death before I bought S: SOBM. When I ended up playing that, I still enjoyed it but found a lot of the novelty had worn off and I didn't enjoy it as much as I would have (still loved it).

Anyone else found this?

Mad

www.oneclickmac.com - News, Reviews and Discussion on Mac App Store Gaming.

Latest Reviews:
RAGE Mafia II Doodle Fit
02-11-2010, 10:53 AM
#2
Joined: Dec 2009
Location: 37° 19′ 54.55″ N, 122° 1′ 52.25″ W
Posts: 1,116
Yup, I played Rolando lite very often and I ended up trying to blow through the first world, because I had already played it 10 times

02-11-2010, 11:22 AM
#3
Joined: Sep 2008
Location: Berlin/Germany
Posts: 946
There’s another problem with lite versions: Since there are so many games coming out every day, no one has the time to complete the games. For most of us, a lite version would be all we need .

I mean, take a look at Battle for Wesnoth. There’s the lite version, than the version with 30 hours and the version with 300 hours. The lite version is all, most people will ever need .

--
taptoplay.de

Plus+: Lakeshore / OpenFeint & Game Center: taptoplay.de
02-11-2010, 11:43 AM
#4
Joined: Aug 2009
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 430
It's definitely a double-edged sword for me. I hate that I sometimes have to pay for a game before I know if I'll even like it because no lite version has been released, but I've also found that sometimes I won't complete the lite version of a game even if I really enjoyed it and even if it was worth the asking price.

I think lite versions should be super stripped down, even more so than they usually are now. Like two or three minutes of gameplay.
02-11-2010, 12:02 PM
#5
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: London, UK
Posts: 3,741
Hornet Smash is a Spider spin off promotional game, it's not really supposed to be taken as a lite.

Anyway, you say you loved Spider regardless, yet the topic suggests there's a problem. Does not compute.

  /l、
゙(゚、 。 7 ノ
 l、゙ ~ヽ
 じしf_, )ノ
02-11-2010, 12:11 PM
#6
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 1,068
Quote:
Originally Posted by MidianGTX View Post
Hornet Smash is a Spider spin off promotional game, it's not really supposed to be taken as a lite.

Anyway, you say you loved Spider regardless, yet the topic suggests there's a problem. Does not compute.
Well it does include one level from S: SOBM.

I meant that when I played Hornet Smash I was amazed at the controls and movement of the spider and love jumping from one ledge to another etc. By the time I bought S: SOBM that novelty had worn off and I didn't feel that same excitement and joy of playing when I started.

However, I did enjoy exploring the house and capturing different types of insects, I just wish that I hadn't played on HS so much, so that I could of burnt my the novelty on the actual game (exploring all the levels, rather than playing one level over and over again).

But the game was good, and I enjoyed playing it all the same.

www.oneclickmac.com - News, Reviews and Discussion on Mac App Store Gaming.

Latest Reviews:
RAGE Mafia II Doodle Fit
02-11-2010, 06:39 PM
#7
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Hollywood, CA
Posts: 1,869
Yeah Lite versions are a very difficult issue to wrangle with. I am getting ready to release on for our new game and testing the HELL out of both the Lite and full versions. I've decided to do a 2-minute timed Lite that will allow the player to learn the gameplay mechanic, and hopefully that's enough of a hook for the player to realize that what they've learned would be much more enjoyable in a longer play session (at least 2-3 times longer). As it's a puzzle game, I suspect most people would expect that the way a game plays can change drastically as even a little more time/speed is added..

But it's rough. How many of my audience will be completely satisfied with just the limited 2min version, how many casuals would even want it to get harder/faster and therefore unlock a potentially stronger depth of gameplay? That means I gave away a bunch of no-sales. But as an indie, I have to have a lite 'cause I haven't got a reputation yet. Most folks (not even me!) will try anything by a no-name unless it's got incredible word-of-mouth, stunning graphics, et cetera.

Anyway, some have criticized me for "giving away too much," I feel that we are giving away enough to learn the gameplay (as I said) and hopefully our audience will be hungry enough for more to spend the couple of bucks we are asking for the more gratifying experience. Time will tell - Keep an eye out for our demo of 180 in a couple of weeks and see if it gets you
02-11-2010, 07:59 PM
#8
Joined: May 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 741
I resisted putting out a Lite version of Ground Effect for almost three months for several reasons. The nature of the game is that it's all about mastering the controls. During development I watched a lot of people struggle with the games, partly because back then it was accelerometer only (I hadn't implemented the touch option) and partly because the controls are extremely 'analog' compared to most driving games. It's supposed to be all about the smoothness.

Because of this the first two levels are extremely simple flat levels, some people still struggle but some find it too easy. I guess this amounts to 'balance' in a control based racing game. Luckily a reasonable number of people get the game and those who get beyond these tutorial levels seem to love it.

I was always against a Lite version because I reasoned that people who hadn't parted with cash would be even less likely to invest the 5-10 minutes it takes to get through the 'tutorial' levels but then I added Openfeint to my full game and realised quite how few of the paid app users were getting through them either!

I made a lite version and it features these two tutorial levels and another two more exciting maps. It's only been out a few days but, surprisingly, the proportion of people finishing 3 and 4 levels has actually gone up and the lite version actually has better ratings than the full.

-=< Fat Owl With A Jetpack >=-
-=< Topia World Builder >=-
-=< Twitter >=-
-=< Blog >=-
02-11-2010, 08:08 PM
#9
Joined: Jun 2009
Location: Hollywood, CA
Posts: 1,869
I've done a lot of research on this, and everyone (of note) who's released a lite noticed a sizeable bump in sales - and they all said they wished they'd released lite+full together simultaneously. Food for thought..!
02-12-2010, 09:30 AM
#10
Joined: Jan 2010
Location: Europe
Posts: 526
I would like to have a lite version of touchgrind. That would be more than enough for me