Max Did It
Game Design
,Fri
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Gamedesign Review of Satellite

I have already posted an article about how Satellite performed when it comes to views and ad revenue, this time I want to analyse the game itself.

I don't want to look only at the good things, but also, maybe even more, at the things that haven't worked as intended.

In the end, I find making mistakes not that bad. It is only when you make the same mistakes more than once that it gets really frustrating in my opinion.

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Miscellaneous
,Mon
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Satellite Numbers and Statistics

Satellite has been released for 6 days now, and it's safe to say that it's lifecycle is pretty much over.

The game had peaked at 80 to 90 visits per hour and is now down to 5 to 10. The game hasn't been featured on the first page of Newgrounds "Latest" games category anymore for a couple of days now, so I don't expect the numbers to go up significantly.

Old Graph

©2009-2012 ~SPikEtheSWeDe

I do consider Satellite to be a success. It is the first of my very own projects that I went through with from start to finish and actually published.

The overall number of times the game has been played may appear relatively insignificant compared to successful browser MMOs or long running games on Newgrounds. Also, I am far away from actually being able to pay my bills with my games.

I do have enough data to draw some conclusions for future games, though. I wanted to find out how much money in-game advertisement can make and I can now say that it is unlikely that I will be able to live off of ad revenues alone.

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Announcements
,Wed
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Satellite Released

Satellite, my first Flash game I produced as an independent developer, has been launched. It is now available on this website to play:

Play Satellite

I will post Satellite to several Flash game portals over the course of the day.

Satellite

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Audio
,Wed
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Satellite Title Theme

This is the title theme to my upcoming Flash game, Satellite.

Satellite Screenshot 01

Find it after the break.

It's been a long time since the last time I wrote a full song, and I was very happy I had the opportunity to do so once again. This also marks the first post in the audio category after most posts on this blog have been about coding so far.

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Coding
,Tue
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Testing Google Ads In Flash

I plan to pay my bills with the games I create as soon as possible. The first experiment I'm conducting in that regard is displaying advertisements within my games.

Is that a viable source of income for what I'm doing? What amounts of money can I expect to earn with ads? Will I be able to make enough money off this to finance a couple more games with the same business model or do I have to quickly move on to more promising ways of monetization?

Blank Billboard

©2011-2012 ~seraphunk

Basically, I'm about to make a similar step that Flash programmer and web developer Emanuele Feronato made five years ago. He started an experiment in 2007 where he tested how much advertisement money he could make with Flash games that took different amounts of time to develop.

He mostly used MochiAds, which I will check out as well. But for now, I want to see if I can get ads from the big one: Google's AdSense.

Being a developer, one of the first things I want to know is how I implement Google ads into my game. This is how that went:

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Coding
,Sun
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Hitting a Dead End with Facebook and Flash

I have made good progress the last couple of days. I learned a lot, and I got a lot of classes and neat features done. Too bad I won't be able to use any of them in my upcoming game.

I managed to create a working implementation of the Facebook Connect button in Flash. And I would have gotten away with it, too, if it wasn't for Flash's meddling security features.

Dead End

©2004-2012 ~NoxxStock

The work I got done will not go to waste. I'm sure I will be able to reuse most parts of it in the future. But for now, I have to admit that I've hit a dead end. This is what happened:

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Game Design
,Thu
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Planning The User Interface Flow

Yesterday, I had posted a link to my Facebook page for an early game prototype. People could play the (very) early version of the game and I could see whether the idea is working or not.

First of all, thanks to everybody who took the time to test the game and special thanks to everybody who gave me feedback! I already have a couple of ideas to improve and expand the game.

Satellite Prototype 0.0.6

Not much to see yet... (graphics are not final)

Now, I'm moving on to the next iteration of the game. The next version should come a lot closer to the final product. If everything goes well, this next iteration actually will become the release version. We will see.

The first step I've done is to plan the flow of the user interface the game will be embedded in. The prototype had barely any interface, let alone menus. For the next iteration, I wanted to implement the communication between game and UI early on. Doing this late in the production can give you quite some headaches.

So I sat down with yEd and drew some lines and boxes.

Satellite UI Flow Preview

An excerpt from the UI flow diagram for my next game.

See the full diagram after the break.

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