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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Dragon Souls Prologue Status Report #4 (Convention Ready)

     I officially predict that I will not make the game in time for the Christmas close-off. I'm now aiming for January 9th - 11th. A lot of things were occupying my time last week. Between finals I was in a frenzy to get all the facts together and plan my trip to my first ever convention, which is also the first time I'll be presenting my games to a huge crowd. Sure I'll have the experience from my school's BYOC party in April, but BronyCon will be a totally different beast.

     One of the big things I did this week was make a DeviantArt account in order to be more social with my target audience (people who like ponies and RPGs as much as me). Check out a link to that along with some sales data below.

Trying to make a pose for the app icon.
One of these and a dragon symbol should work.
But which looks cooler?
Now to trace and edit these until I have a nice pixel versions...
See the rough draft result below the blog banner. 

  • Fall 2014 Semester of School
  • Created A DeviantArt Account
  • Animated All Enemy Sprites
  • Player Character Movement Sprites (4 Directions)
  • Glowing Tile Sprites
  • Animated Player Character (No Attacking)
  • Set Aside Money For BronyCon
  • HUD Sprites
  • Read Tons About Online Bookkeeping & Indie GameDev Accounting
     Lessons Learned:
  • Presenting My Panel Is Nothing To Get Nervous About. Just Demo The Game, Explain It, and Answer Questions.
  • Getting Social Online Has Tons Of GameDev Benefits. Take The Time To Speak With People You Think Are Cool.
       I'm nearly done making all the pieces to put Dragon Souls Prologue together. I'm also almost done with my BronyCon research. I calculated everything I'd need to attend as a guest sharing a room with 4 of my friends and hit a total of $380. Now I have to worry about what I'll need to stack on that to host a panel at the con. I'm wondering if I need cheap rental laptops and business cards. Do panelist's get free admission? If so that'd be $70 in my pocket. I shot off an email to the convention runners on the 8th and haven't heard back yet.

     I'm assuming they give you the basic things I've seen all the panels share for free. The long table, a projector, a room of a thousand people or so, microphones, etc. I basically want to do what these guys did for Super Smash Ponies and have my game playable in the Baltimare Arcade.


If Unicorn Training Demo hits 4000 I'll know there's an audience of
4000 people interested in pony RPGs out there that knows me.

    I'm fine with making an average of $5 a day from Unicorn Training so long as it never goes below that. The Google payout threshold has been lowered to $1 so I don't need to , it's just that $100 or $150 a month in-pocket will help me save up for all the expenses coming my way.

     To recap, I need $380 for the convention, $1100 for a Macbook, and $500 to become an LLC. And those are just my immediate goals. Once those are covered there's still tons of crazy expensive things to save for like rent, college loans, a new car (my old thing won't last much longer), and a desktop computer (my laptop is slow, can't make Windows Phone games, and has pieces regularly overheating or falling off). With my first paycheck combined with what I have saved up so far, I should be able to cover the entire BronyCon trip myself. That's one down.

     I'm sure the BronyCon trip will pay for itself instantly with a spike in Unicorn Training sales if I plug it at the con. Even without that, the goal here is to introduce myself to as many people as possible. If people at least check out my website because they saw me at the convention that's a win. I want people to like me so the like my upcoming game.


     Putting my stuff on DA is a great way to get some exposure. I can leave my usual friendly comments and people will see the Yotes Games name next to them. Being social and spreading positivity helped get my Twitter numbers above 200, so the same principle should apply here. Also, I'm sure this will help with my Google image result ratings.

     I uploaded tons of my drawings from high school and unseen promotional art for my old games along with all my Unicorn Training stuff. If this helps boost sales either now or in the future, it was worth the 10 hours I put into it. It really took forever to get all my stuff up and follow the people I want to get in contact with. I'm really hoping to make friends with some hard working people on the site who know what it's like to put your heart into your art.

     One such person I found like that is Sylverstone Edge, who's been working on a fangame called Pinkie Pie's Perilous Platforms for years now. He's been showcasing his latest builds at conventions since 2012 and has already gotten the hang of things I have yet to do like developing for Ouya, presenting at cons, wearing promotional T-shirts, meeting people like Reggie Fils-Aimé, and drawing attention in a crowded convention hall to get people to try his game.

     I can learn a lot just by talking with peers who are around my experience level. I could even make some long-term friendships this way. I hope to meet more folks like him as I become more of an outgoing developer.
I finished this thing just as the post went up.
     Hopefully my payment will arrive by the next status report. I read that they start going out for the previous month's 30th on the current month's 15th. I'll see a pending deposit pop-up on my bank account and jump for joy. Until then, back to work.

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