When I started this journey, I wanted to be transparent about when working towards my dream. I’d share my challenges, achievements and reflections.
This post is a ‘monthly progress reflection’ blog. I’ll look back a the goals I had set and then reflect what has been done. This means numbers (stats, money) but also general insights.
This post is actually the “month and a bit of the other month” progress report – as the beginning of my journey started in half August.
What where the goals this period?
In this blog post I started with a plan of attack. Looking back I realised that I did not define features to build in this period. No wonder, since structuring the plan was done later. I did have, roughly, the following goals for the ‘shorter term’:
- Finish up harvesting resources
- Add a few more core features to the game (with Dune 2 graphics as placeholder)
- Set up a new company/identity, its social media infrastructure and update Patreon accordingly
- Get to 50 visitors (not views) on this new site
- How? Blog about as many things I can that have been done. (I do not want to blog about what I am ‘about to do’)
What is achieved? Numbers!
- At the 13th of September 2017 Indienamic went live, along with a Facebook page and Twitter account 🎉
- Finished 4 core features (I did not blog about all of them yet) 🤘
- Made 4 demo video’s 🤘
- Made 2 in-depth videos for Patrons only 🙌
- Published 4 blog posts on Indienamic, and 4 on stefanhendriks.com🤘
- Indienamic has had since its live-date: 162 visitors and 325 pageviews
- An unknown amount of visitors have been visiting stefanhendriks.com about my harvesting resources blog. Since I am unable to distinguish those who came for the game or where there for my (other) technical blogs I will not count these visitors/page-views.
- Games released: 0 😅 (just kidding)
Lets talk about costs/benefits
I have spent ~87 hours in August and September. Most hours spent by taking leave of my freelance work. I see this as an investment. As a freelancer I have a decent hour rate, if I would have spent this time working for that rate I could calculate that as ‘invested money’.
Benefits / Revenue
So far Patreon is the only source of income for this adventure. In total Patrons donated 5 dollars in August and 6 dollars in September. Thanks, you’re awesome!
Become a full-time indie game developer. Earning money from my games and/or journey to create them. Patreon fullfills a role in the journey part, as you can support me. Selling games would be the other part of the dream. Where and when to sell still need to be figured out.
What about the release date?
In the plan of attack blog post I mentioned the 29th of October for an Alpha release – with Dune 2 placeholder graphics. Currently I think the (final) graphics should be derived from the Game Design. By postponing the ‘graphics problem’ I noticed I’d be delaying an important aspect: what will the game exactly be about? So I have decided to tackle this question first. This has impact on the release date for an alpha. How much, I will elaborate further in another blog post.
Since I’ve given myself 12 months (end-date is 1st of September 2018) to get to my end goal, I’ve defined the following sub-goals/milestones:
- Produce a clear picture of the game, how it will work, etc. So, a Game Design Document should be produced.
- Produce graphics, sounds (depends on GDD)
- Engine feature complete (requires GDD to know which features)
- First alpha 30th November 2017
- Publishing, how to earn money from it (requires all of the above)
- Marketing wise: Get to 12k visitors at 01-09-2018 -> 5k visitors at 01-03-2018 -> 1k visitors at 01-01-2018, 250 visitors in October 2017
What are the goals for October 2017?
- Produce a first version of the Game Design Document
- Up to 250 visitors in October
- Produce: 3 blog posts
- Fix attacking, it is broken
- Work on 1 engine feature (depends on GDD)
The GDD is very important indeed. I can work on as many engine features I want, but as long as I don’t have a clear picture of the game I cannot produce it. I’ve been working on and off on a GDD for the past few days. I hope to complete it soon and share with you the first results.
The past period has been a busy one, it had more focus, and I can get more focus by getting my GDD finished. A date has been set for the Alpha release and with a GDD I can more deliberately focus on the features to get an Alpha ready at that date. Next month I’ll reflect again and share again some numbers.
If you like a reflection like this, please let me know. Want to know more details about some things? Leave a comment or contact me at stefan[at]indienamic[dot]com.