You're all wasting your time making games for Apple's platforms

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Post: #1
So says Nintendo...
http://www.electronista.com/articles/10/...rofitable/

Quote:Nintendo's US president Reggie Fils-Aime has denied that Apple's handhelds are having an impact on sales for the DSi. The executive in an interview claimed that the iPhone and iPod, as well as the iPad, can't affect Nintendo's device or game sales since buying habits themselves don't encourage game development. Since iPhone gamers don't commit to gameplay before moving on to other apps, they often aren't willing to pay much if anything and make it difficult for software teams to justify large titles.
"Clearly it doesn't look like their platform is a viable profit platform for game development because so many of the games are free versus paid downloads," he told Kotaku. "If our games represent a range between snacks of entertainment and full meals depending on the type of game, [Apple's] aren't even a mouthful, in terms of the gaming experience you get."

Hey Nintendo, it's Magnovox calling, they want you to join then in yesterday's gaming news.
LOL

Carlos A. Camacho,
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iDevGames
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Post: #2
Actually, from Nintendo's point of view he's got a very good point.

Because Nintendo (and all the other console manufacturers) restrict how many titles go on their device they don't have hundreds of thousands of fartware titles driving the prices down so for Nintendo (who make a big chunk of license fees off each title) they're quite profitable.

In Nintendo's case, their own games pretty much control the market on their consoles, so they get most of the money coming in from Wii & DS game sales too.

What he does seem to have missed is that there's a greater number of gamers nowadays who just want a snack (or a lot of cheap snacks) rather than the full gaming meal when they're looking for portable gaming, so the gap is widening between the full on current gen consoles such as the 360 and PS3 and what people consider for their mobile gaming. By getting bigger and lumpier with the DSi, Nintendo may actually have gone in the wrong direction.
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Post: #3
How many devs have heard friends complaining about app store pricing? I know a number of people... and we're talking complaining about prices in the range of $6 - $15 for a game on the iPad.

Before the iPhone, apps cost a little money, but now people are budgeting for the excessively low prices that existed on iPhone... which I don't think is sustainable.

Zwilnik Wrote:By getting bigger and lumpier with the DSi, Nintendo may actually have gone in the wrong direction.
Isn't the iPad just a bigger (perhaps not lumpier) iPhone?

KB Productions, Car Care for iPhone/iPod Touch
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All too often, art is simply the loss of practicality.
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Post: #4
It's true that iPhone games are generally not sustainable for developers. Everyone's heard of the people with the huge hits, they make a few year's worth of salary off one game... But believe me, that's the exception.

When I did this year's New Year App Blowout, naturally, I went through the previous year's participants to see if they were interested again. Many of them hadn't made another app, and their blogs had died off, and it was clear they had moved on to greener pastures.

The iPhone's low barrier to entry is nice, but the negative consequence is the massive number of apps driving the prices down. We're competing with John Doe, who might have another job and doesn't care if his game can support himself. He'll turn out a decent game in his spare time (maybe over months), sell it for 99 cents, thus setting the expectation for consumers at that price range. If it doesn't sell great, John won't make another game, but all he's out is 99 bucks and a few evenings a week (he would have been playing WoW anyway). But it's not sustainable for him, so that's it.

Now normally, this is where a market would correct itself. Companies (like retail stores) that sell things for a loss go out of business and the other companies with sustainable prices survive. But on the iPhone, where starting a business costs pocket change, there are always people willing to undercut themselves.

Now let's contrast this with Nintendo's approach. Even at the low end of the spectrum, Wiiware dev kits will cost you $10k USD, required secure office space, required localization into English, German, Spanish and French, and generally more work than an indie dev can do without some planning. As a result, there are fewer games, and they sell for more reasonable prices.

Sure there are hits on the Wii, DS, and for Wiiware, but there's still room for non-hits on the platform to recoup their expenses.

Howling Moon Software - CrayonBall for Mac and iPhone, Contract Game Dev Work
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Post: #5
The iPhone has 100.000 apps, and 90.000 are rubbishware.

Free and cheap apps have killed off, or are killing off, the platform for actual working developers who are trying to make a living.

The occasional hit app is irrelevant.

Sad stuff!
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Post: #6
funkboy Wrote:Isn't the iPad just a bigger (perhaps not lumpier) iPhone?

I dunno... I've been playing my new game, Ace Omicron, on the iPad a lot in the last few days on the iPad and it feels like a really solid gaming device. I went back and played it on iPhone for a little bit to test OpenFeint, and I gotta say: iPhone sucks pretty bad for games, in comparison.

One thing I noticed right away about iPad is that it *screams* for games to have virtual d-pad/virtual dual analog controls. Just the way you hold it in landscape feels like a perfect fit for gaming. iPhone just doesn't have enough room for any controls IMHO, although many games have managed to do it anyway.

So I'm saying that I get the feeling that iPad might maybe turn out to be something more than just a big iPhone after all. The jury is still out of course, but I have to admit I'm pretty happy with it, and I certainly have been skeptical up to this point.

Of course, being a better gaming device doesn't fix the nasty low pricing issue. To be honest, we're looking at transitioning back to the desktop and perhaps other platforms, at least in addition to any iPhone/iPad offerings, if not instead of them altogether. iPad is really the only thing that got my attention back to the App Store possibilities. We were working on other stuff and dropped that just to poke around on it a bit. And again, we are getting burned by some terribly unfair decisions and dropped balls by Apple. To be fair, Apple did do some things well too, but not being able to browse anything but top apps and "blessed" apps on the actual device is devastating to many. It looks like we're actually making some sales compared to many other games on iPad so far, but I'd say that is 100% due to Casey busting his balls and working the press like a pro. Hopefully that'll continue to work out, but sales could drop off any day... Like Andy said, success stories aren't anywhere near as common as most think.

On iPhone, I think it's a combination of 3 things:
1) make a good game (making a great game is even better)
2) you can have the best game in the world but no one will buy it if they can't see it, so you need to market like a maniac, or roll with a publisher
3) luck

If you go with a more exclusive platform, like Nintendo's stuff, or even XBLA (I'm thinking non-indie), then you start to diminish the importance of #3, and #2, which is what is most important to serious game developers, I think. I know I'd like to go that way myself.
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Post: #7
funkboy Wrote:Isn't the iPad just a bigger (perhaps not lumpier) iPhone?

It's bigger and definitely not lumpier but it's actually bigger enough to make a huge difference in how you use it. I just got mine today (yay for having a US publisher!) and just the difference between web surfing on the iPhone and the iPad is amazing. It's different from surfing on the Mac too as it's an anywhere device like the iPhone still and doesn't require a stable surface to work on.

With the DSi it's basically a slightly bigger screen with a few new features that'll only get used by a couple of games. That's vs the surrounding device being noticeably bigger and moving it away from the easily portable DS but without actually making it any better at anything. Its upside is that it's still a DS so they don't need to get devs supporting it specifically.
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Post: #8
AnotherJake Wrote:I dunno... I've been playing my new game, Ace Omicron, on the iPad a lot in the last few days on the iPad and it feels like a really solid gaming device. I went back and played it on iPhone for a little bit to test OpenFeint, and I gotta say: iPhone sucks pretty bad for games, in comparison.
After spending a little time with mine, I have to agree. The large multitouch screen is simply a game-changer... pun not intended, but seems fitting.

AnotherJake Wrote:So I'm saying that I get the feeling that iPad might maybe turn out to be something more than just a big iPhone after all. The jury is still out of course, but I have to admit I'm pretty happy with it, and I certainly have been skeptical up to this point.
I've had many engineer-type people laugh at my interest in it... and they are not the target market, so I'm not too concerned. Still waiting to see how it plays out, but if 500,000 devices have been sold already, meaning about 1 million in a week or two... that's not a bad start.

AnotherJake Wrote:... not being able to browse anything but top apps and "blessed" apps on the [iPad] is devastating to many.

I have to believe that this was done in the rush to get the iPad and software to market, and will be corrected in the near future.

AnotherJake Wrote:It looks like we're actually making some sales compared to many other games on iPad so far, but I'd say that is 100% due to Casey busting his balls and working the press like a pro. Hopefully that'll continue to work out, but sales could drop off any day... Like Andy said, success stories aren't anywhere near as common as most think.
Hard work and sweat is often at least somewhat worthwhile, though I agree with your 3 keys to success.

KB Productions, Car Care for iPhone/iPod Touch
@karlbecker_com
All too often, art is simply the loss of practicality.
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Post: #9
funkboy Wrote:I have to believe that this was done in the rush to get the iPad and software to market, and will be corrected in the near future.

I have to believe that too, because the alternative theory goes something like: Why should Apple be in any hurry to fix this problem when it clearly benefits them for it to be "broken" the way it is?
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Post: #10
AnotherJake Wrote:I have to believe that too, because the alternative theory goes something like: Why should Apple be in any hurry to fix this problem when it clearly benefits them for it to be "broken" the way it is?

So you are not a pessimist like a lot of us then. Wink

Scott Lembcke - Howling Moon Software
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Post: #11
Skorche Wrote:So you are not a pessimist like a lot of us then. Wink

Not publicly, no.
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Post: #12
Personally, when I think of games on iPhone, that little voice in the back on my head keeps screaming "Atari!". Maybe someone should jokingly make an E.T. clone and try to get it through Apple's Black box as a joke.

I would laugh my balls off if it did, and seeing the swarm that already exists out there, I should be readying my balls for hurt about now.

To be honest, I don't see the iPhone game development trend lasting long, it would be nice if it did, but I doubt that.
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Post: #13
A very good article here btw by someone who gets the iPad..

http://seekingalpha.com/article/197660-the-zen-of-ipad
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Post: #14
That's a good article and pretty well sums up what iPad is all about.

The iPad is definitely a different device. Outside of what he mentioned in the article, I've found that it works great for reading online over breakfast. I've been using my usual morning paper as a pad for the iPad. I really should get that case for it so it can be tilted up a bit.

The iPad tends to follow me around the house a lot more easily than my MacBook, since my MacBook is typically plugged into stuff on my desktop. The iPad just sits there ready to go at a moment's notice and is every bit as easy to surf the web and check email with.

As expected, it is absolutely fantastic for reading in bed. It seems to have about the same weight as your average book.

I think I'm having a harder time accepting the keyboard than he is though. One thing in particular that bugs me is the lack of an apostrophe on the keyboard. I realize there just isn't room for it, but that one particular detail is continuously bugging me.

Another thing that really stands out to me, which has already been discussed ad nauseum, is the lack of at least some basic form of notification. It bothers me to hear my email ding in and then have to hit the home button to see who it is. Why can't they have basic notification windows that pop up? I don't need full multi-tasking but I can really understand why folks are so disappointed that they can't chat while in another application. Also, the graphics performance is good enough on iPad that I think it could probably handle it over an OpenGL view now, without causing tooooo much problem. Maybe I'm wrong about that though.
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Post: #15
OS 4.0 includes multi-tasking, though obviously not in the same spirit as it does on our tile-able window managers (where if I wanted to, I could put a movie next to my email window. I don't, but the point is that I could.)

http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2010/04/l...+Stories+2))

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