Game Design: How to stop your game from failing
Last week we took a look at some of the reasons why video games fail. We came up with a short bullet point list and today we’ll be going back over this list and telling you how to fix these problems. With our help, you’re game won’t be added to the growing list of failures.
Developers don’t listen to their players
If you refuse to listen to your players then there’s not much else I can do to help you. One of the most important things you can do is pay attention to what your players want and are asking for from your game. This will add more content and more reasons for them to play the game.
Now, not everything they request will be realistic but the sheer fact you respond and explain why it’s unrealistic will give you bonus points to your players. Gamers respect developers who respond to them and are open about the development of a game. Games can be saved if the developers start to listen to their community, just like at what happened with Ubisoft’s The Division. The game was falling to pieces but then the developers started working with the community to fix the game and almost all of the issues are gone now.
Lack of Content
This is something that can often be fixed by paying attention to what your community is asking for. Did you create a multiplayer game without a co-op or PvE mode? Then chances are your community will request you add this. Including this is very important as it lets you reach a new target audience while also appealing your current players. You don’t HAVE to add a PvE mode though, you could decide it doesn’t suit your game. Just pay attention to what players want and add new content periodically to keep them happy. There’s a reason why Respawn Entertainment added a single player to Titanfall 2. Just saying.
No advertising and marketing
This one really depends on the type of game. A single player game may not sell well but that’s the end of the problems. A multiplayer game with a low playerbase however is filled with problems ranging from long wait times to unbalanced matches. Just look at the state that Nosgoth was in before it was cancelled, there ware barely any players and matches were unbalanced messes. Fixing this is a very difficult thing. You need to have the money to advertise the game.
One of the best ways to do this right now is to invite YouTubers and Twitch streamers to play the game while also approaching video game websites to see if they’ll review the game. You’ll want to do this several times with a wide range of content producers if possible. The bigger the better and maybe if you have funds you could see is someone like Dan Bull would be willing to write a song about your game also.
Bad release date/period
When you first finish a game, you want to get it out as quickly as possible without really wanting to move the release date. Well sometimes you really should. Battleborn was released shortly before Overwatch and the poor game was completely overshadowed by the Overwatch Open Beta which was the exact same weekend. Needless to say not many people played Battleborn that weekend. And any other weekend after that. Which is a shame as it is a good game. A bad release date can be killer so you should always keep and eye on what other developers are doing especially when it comes to games which are similar to yours.
Is your game a MOBA and League of Legends has a double XP event on your release day? Move the release date. MOBA fans will be in LoL grinding all weekend and will completely forget about your brand new game. Is it a FPS game and there’s an eSports tournament the same day? That’s a tricky one. Many hardcore and casual FPS players will be distracted by the tournament, especially if it’s for a game such as Counter Strike or Halo. At the same time however, the FPS genre is so large that many players won’t be watching the event. So it’s up to you to decide the best course of action.
Bugs and glitches
There’s no excuse for a game riddled with bugs and glitches. You MUST fix these problems if you want your game to survive. Nosgoth had huge problems with this where certain bugs were in the game for over a year without being addressed. One of the reasons people quit Nosgoth was due to the bugs in addition to unbalanced matches and long wait times. Have bug finding competitions with your players to catch and stomp out as many as possible or pay close attention to what players are saying when they talk about bugs. Let them know you’re currently fixing certain bugs so they don’t think you’re ignoring them. Communication is key here.
That’s everything for this week, hopefully you learned a lot from us and you’ll be able to save your struggling game. Let us know how you found these tips!
This post was provided by Clare from Lunawolf Gaming
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