根据Game Dev Midlands的组织人Ash Morgan，问题非常明显，也就是“没人愿意开口交谈。”
TIGA的首席执行官CEO Dr Richard Wilson也补充道：“我同意开发者需要更频繁地进行交流。”紧接着Wilson列出了一些能够帮助世界各地开发者更好应对这类事件的步骤。
举个例子来说，在最近的TIGA Mobile & Tablet Games活动中，来自Fireproof Games的三个代表上台解释了《空房间》成为App Store上一款热门游戏的原因。
该工作室有趣的商务总监Barry Meade解释道，Fireproof Games并不会投资任何钱于《空房间》的市场营销或PR，而“获得苹果的推荐则是我们唯一的策略。”
这也是Tag Games的总经理Paul Farley所考虑的问题——产业中人人都在摸索成功，但却很少有人愿意去分析失败。除此之外，Farley还认为成功的经验总是比失败的教训“短命”。
Opinion: Successful devs may have wisdom to offer, but let’s learn from failure too
by James Nouch
This week, PocketGamer.biz has played host to some spirited debate among members of the British games industry over developer meet-ups.
According to Game Dev Midlands organiser Ash Morgan, the problem is simple. “No-one talks.”
Even areas that are densely populated with development talent struggle to form effective community meet-ups, says Morgan, and the abundance of London-based events are of little benefit to developers based hundreds of miles away.
TIGA CEO Dr Richard Wilson gave his take on the issue too, adding “I totally agree that developers need to network more.” Wilson went on to outline some of the steps his trade association are taking to order to give developers around the country easier access to such events.
Making it easier for developers to gain access to the networking and knowledge-sharing opportunities that these events provide is undoubtedly a good thing, but the content of industry events is just as important as their prevalence.
And in that regard, I’d suggest there’s a problem.
The industry venerates success, and all too often brushes aside opportunities to learn from failure. Successful games are dissected from every angle, whereas quality flops all-too-often sink without a trace.
A room with a view
At the latest TIGA Mobile & Tablet Games event, for example, three representatives from Fireproof Games took to the stage and explained how The Room came to be an App Store hit.
An audience comprised of interested UK developers and indie talent listened closely for takeaway advice, practical guidance and nuggets of useful information.
The studio’s always-entertaining commercial director Barry Meade explained that Fireproof Games didn’t spend a penny on marketing or PR for The Room, and that “getting featured [by Apple] was our only strategy.”
“We have no interest in doing what everyone else is doing – no interest in advertising, in-app purchasing, freemium, premium,” Meade continued. “People try way too hard to do far too much. We think, if you have a great user experience, you’re going to get great word of mouth.”
A reasonable observer could come away from that talk with the impression that marketing and PR is fundamentally unnecessary, that premium-pricing is no barrier to success and that quality will always find an audience.
I’d argue that none of those things are consistently true, and that hearing from a developer who’d learned these lessons the hard way might make for a more informative – albeit, perhaps, a less high-spirited and enjoyable – talk.
The plural of anecdote isn’t data
The problem with calling on successful developers to share their stories is that this creates a biased sample.
Attendees gain an insight into the strategies employed by the most successful studios, but these techniques and that success are not necessarily linked.
After all, correlation does not imply causation.
In other words, it can be difficult to figure out exactly what causes a mega-success, even if a company is willing to share its ‘secret sauce’ completely candidly.
What’s more, that very fact that these super-hits make up such a small proportion of games available for any given platform makes them inherently atypical examples to learn from.
As such, we might get a fuller and more accurate insight by listening to the stories of developers at both ends of the spectrum – those who’ve made big bucks and those who’ve made buck all.
It’s an issue that Tag Games MD Paul Farley has pondered on these very pages – that the industry is keen to examine successes, but resistant to analysing failure. What’s more, Farley argued, the lessons of success are inevitably more short-lived than the lessons of failure.
“In mobile gaming technology, platforms and audience trends move at break neck speed. Even if you did happen upon the formula for success now, you can guarantee a few weeks later that formula would be irrelevant.”
And even those games that do manage to find an audience don’t necessarily find financial success too.
Take Punch Quest, for instance. RocketCat and Madgarden’s endless runner launched to positive reviews and healthy download numbers, but poorly-tuned monetisation mechanics left its developers out of pocket.
To their credit, RocketCat and Madgarden have been admirably open about the game’s difficulties, and the Punch Quest story can serve as a useful case study for free-to-play developers.
That’s what industry events need more of – talented developers who are willing to talk about their failures. Smaller meet-ups in particular – where one-man developers and tiny indie studios arrive seeking wisdom – would benefit from some cautionary tales alongside the aspirational stories.
Success stories are undoubtedly worth listening to, and taken together, they contain lessons to be learned. But let’s face it, we humans have a tendency to dwell endlessly on failure while complacently accepting success as an inevitable consequence of our limitless genius.
So we might as well turn that self-recrimination into something useful – and help the industry in the process.(source:pocketgamer)