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Questions tagged [business]

Business refers to the operations of a company in the context of game development; this includes planning and strategy as well as execution.

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155
votes
18answers
45k views

What things should an indie game developer never do? [closed]

What are some of the biggest - and better yet: insidious and unexpected - mistakes that indie game developers make? Especially when making the transition from hobbyist to full-time indie?
105
votes
12answers
31k views

Why are people developing and publishing games online without charging money?

What's the incentive of sharing games one designs themselves for free online such as itch.io? I see people doing this and I don't understand.
61
votes
6answers
11k views

How to calculate the price for acquisition of a mobile game

I searched long and hard thru the Game Dev community here and I didn't manage to find a good enough answer for a situation that I need help with. Here is the deal - I've spent about a year to single-...
41
votes
10answers
42k views

Why would a game developer write their own engine instead of using existing ones?

I have observed that many big and well-known game developers often develop their own engines. Examples include Valve, Crytek, Ubisoft, Epic Games and Square-Enix. Could it simply be because they can, ...
28
votes
4answers
11k views

Game artist computer workstation set-up – is this overkill?

I'm part of a small business (so very limited constraints) working with a very talented, professional game artist and will need to provide all necessary equipment. The artist has asked for the ...
25
votes
3answers
3k views

Should independent game developers target older hardware?

A developer I work with tells me that indie developers should target hardware that is around six or more years old (at max settings). I get the idea that one should allow everyone that wants to play ...
21
votes
8answers
939 views

What pitfalls should one look out for when starting a studio

What are the common mistakes or oversights made when starting a new game studio? Please only one mistake or oversight per answer and if you can explain why it is an issue and what one should do to ...
19
votes
4answers
11k views

Set up indie game studio (UK) - how?

I am UK based and am looking to set up my own game studio - essentially, just myself working from home, looking to build casual game apps. I want to ask you guys what steps or process i need to go ...
17
votes
4answers
1k views

It is worth adding 'futuristic' features to our game, or should we put our focus elsewhere?

I'm lead programmer in a medium-sized indie game studio. This is our first game as a team. We're working on a futuristic FPS game, with a profit-sharing buisness plan. Anyway, we have some very good ...
16
votes
7answers
10k views
15
votes
1answer
2k views

Must know legal issues when releasing a game?

Alright, some day in the far future I would love to independently release my own game. My question is, what is the minimum amount of familiarity I need with copyright law, software patents, and other ...
15
votes
1answer
403 views

Where can I find legal or business resources for a game production company?

Where can I find information on the legal or business aspects of running a game production company?
15
votes
1answer
508 views

As an indie developer, what should I learn about the business end of game development?

I assume I should look into intellectual property law, copyright law, and money management, but what else would be good to know? My ideal goal is to be able to handle all legal/monetary business ...
14
votes
4answers
10k views

Can and should a game design be patented? [closed]

I have an idea for a game that I want to develop and I feel is unique, and I'm wondering if I should patent it. I read on the web that games can be patented, but just because it can be done doesn't ...
13
votes
9answers
884 views

What's in a name?

How does the name of a game relate to how popular it becomes? Have there been studies around this subject? Are people influenced by the name of a game?
13
votes
3answers
2k views

Where am I obligated to put credits?

First of all this is not a discussion for the best place to put credits, but rather where it's allowed. So for instance is it fine if I just include a credits.txt file in the install directory, or ...
13
votes
2answers
638 views

How do I move from mainstream to indie development?

I'm a game programmer for a AAA-level developer and publisher—which I know falls into the 'nice problem to have' category. However, I'm becoming disenchanted with the direction of both the company and ...
12
votes
2answers
3k views

What type of legal entity do I need for my game company in the USA?

I'm the leader of a group of 4 of us that are contributing to a game and it has come to my attention that we will eventually need some kind of official title or something along those lines. We've ...
12
votes
1answer
385 views

Conundrum with quality and virus reports: is our game releasable?

I've just got done talking to the CEO of our independent game studio about one of our projects nearing completion. We're considering canning the whole project for a number of reasons: There are ...
10
votes
3answers
772 views

What legal matters do I need to consider when releasing an MMO?

Let's say I've finished programming an indie MMO game similiar to Tibia. I've got: a stable server application ready to launch; a tested, bug-free, working client application ready to play; the game'...
10
votes
3answers
548 views

UK Indie studio registration

I'm from the UK and I've just about completed making an indie game and had some interest from several online retailers that sell games. This requires me filling in a basic contract. I'm just one guy ...
10
votes
2answers
225 views

How is custom-written music generally licensed for a small game?

I am relaunching my career as a game musician; previously I have done a little bit of licensed work and writing music for game jam-type games, after having written music as a secondary job duty for my ...
9
votes
4answers
835 views

Do “Results-Oriented Work Environments” work?

A game development company seems like an ideal testbed for experimenting with new or uncommon models for work environments. I'm curious if there's anyone out there successfully doing something ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

Independent Arcade Game Development

So I've been looking around, but it seems that information on this is scarce. If one wants to develop an arcade game (as in, coin operated), ignoring the software side, where does one start on the ...
7
votes
2answers
491 views

What constitutes satire? [closed]

For business reasons, I would like to know what constitutes satire in a game. Also, is there a better place to ask questions like this on the business side of game development?
5
votes
5answers
430 views

Are there any good blogs or articles on the business of indie games?

Interested in both successes and failures (and semi-successes). Maybe this might be better at OnStartups but I think the game market is quite a bit different than the business market that's prevalent ...
4
votes
7answers
674 views

What are some Game Development Publications that accept outside articles [closed]

What Are some Game Development publications (electronic or otherwise) that aren't so large that there is no chance to potentially get included in the publication after a few well-written articles sent ...
4
votes
2answers
508 views

How to develop a concept to receive funding?

I have a game concept which I wish to develop but don't have the funding to begin it. What should I do?
4
votes
3answers
364 views

If a game is made for Windows or MacOS, and sold for profit, is Microsoft or Apple entitled to royalties, even if it's sold on a different website?

I.e. sold on some website some game developer made, and NOT sold on Apple Store or Microsoft Store. 2) Also, for any game made and sold for their platform, does Apple or Microsoft look at the game/...
4
votes
2answers
349 views

Can I publish a game on Steam while obscuring my personal identity from the public?

I'm looking to publish a game on Steam that contains explicit adult content. I am seeking to make this a hobby that earns passive income as opposed to pursuing it as a full time job. I would prefer ...
4
votes
1answer
501 views

A game community equivalent to IMDb Pro?

Is there one resource that tracks and lists games in development, similar to what IMDb Pro does for films in development? MobyGames is good for post-mortem, who did what, but what about a resource ...
3
votes
3answers
734 views

Dream Benefits at a Game Development Company [closed]

Besides salary, what are the benefits you dream to get from a game development company as an employee? For example, I would find these things useful for both, me and a company: Right to suggest own ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Rules to start and naming a game studio

I would like to know if there is any copyright related rules to name a game studio specially for android appstore. I searched at the U.S. Copyright Office website and found many matches for same names....
3
votes
2answers
3k views

Do I have to ask for permission to use real company logos for advertising props in the world in my sports game? [closed]

I'm making a simple turn-based Android ball flicking soccer game and I was thinking of creating a theme in a sports game, like soccer for example, usually had advertisement banner on walls and a bit ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

Is it acceptable to say “Inspired from … game”

For a game I'm developing, I would like to use "inspired from ... game" to acknowledge and praise that game. But I'm not sure if this is a good idea from a legal point of view. They might think my ...
3
votes
1answer
868 views

What sort of GDC pass (if any) is best for a cash-strapped indie?

I'm doing a web game startup with one other person. We support ourselves with contract programming. I'm considering attending GDC for the first time, but we're really tight on cash. Money spent on ...
3
votes
1answer
185 views

Where can I find sales figures for PSN Minis?

I work for a small game studio that develops games for iOS and Android currently. The engine we are building will be portable and our upcoming game is quite ambitious. Therefore we are considering ...
3
votes
1answer
109 views

Questions to answer and heuristics to use when selecting a new project?

Say I have a list of (in my case, indie) game ideas, from which I need to select a new project to work on. What are the questions/heuristics that you would use - and ideally have already used ...
2
votes
6answers
2k views

Why is professional game development harder in Europe? [closed]

In comparison to the U.S.A., there seem to be far less leading or successful game companies in Europe. The recent salary survey of GameCareerGuide shows that the average salary of a games programmer ...
2
votes
2answers
285 views

Do old games still generate revenue for their developer companies?

For the purpose of this question, let's say an "old" game is one released over 20 years ago, or for which the platform it runs on has become unavailable. Do the developers still earn revenue off of ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Where to find market research info on adventure games?

Looks like adventure games are on the rise again. There were several great releases in 2012, including brilliant and highly acclaimed Walking Dead from TellTale. Is there a market research that ...
2
votes
1answer
382 views

Are mobile devices a viable platform/market for “User-Generated Content”-based games?

I intend to do a lot of research into this, but I know this community has a knack for delivering hard-to-find gems of knowledge, so I figured I'd ask here first. Preamble (My Situation) I'm ...
2
votes
2answers
589 views

Examples for simple, succesful social games

We are a small developer company planing to create our first social game. Social games look like a promising genre for monetization, but looking at the actual market (dominated by big players) and ...
2
votes
2answers
119 views

share distribution question

I just developed a facebook game(mifia like), but the graphics I made are not good, because it is reference with some existing photo, trace with AI, and coloring it. Therefore, I invited my friend ...
2
votes
2answers
747 views

demographics of paying mobile gamer

I was googling for this now for a while but didn't find any relevant data. Does someone know any statistics of the demographics of mobile gamers that actually spend money on their games? It's clear ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Costs/profit of/when starting an indie company [closed]

In short, I want to start a game company. I do not have much coding experience (just basic understanding and ability to write basic programs), any graphics design experience, any audio mixing ...
1
vote
1answer
202 views

Would a company take a game pitch seriously if they were pitched a fully finished game? [duplicate]

Let's say hypothetically that I had a fully realized and functioning game using a well known IP (a character from Nintendo or from another company, for instance), where the game is finished and wouldn'...
1
vote
1answer
152 views

How to calculate how much revenue a game will make?

Let's say I've made a game X. Things we know about the game: It's a board game Game will run on PC, Macs, iOS and Android Sold through Steam, App Store and Google Play store Turn based Has few to ...
1
vote
0answers
47 views

Partnership vs. Limited Partnership vs. LLC for not-serious gamedev project [closed]

Me and one friend are getting close to releasing our first game to the App Store. Right now we're registered as a "partnership" with the IRS. I don't expect to make much money, and I have a day job so ...
1
vote
0answers
217 views

What is an expected conversion rate in a free to play game?

I understand that there's a lot of factors at play that decide how much free users will become paid users. What can be expected from different marketing strategies such as selling non-gameplay ...