mazoku

Current state of the market

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As someone who makes mobile web games for fun, I hardly play games on mobile browser, because..

1. ADs - mobile web game experience gets spoiled by Ads. When a publisher displays 5 seconds AD everytime I die.. it kinda spoils the gameplay experience. Also lack of back button logic in games.. I need to use touch screen to close to AD, sometimes the skip button hit box are shady.

2. Lack of offline experience - I just want to open the game quickly and play for few minutes. Most of the time it takes more than a minute  to launch a game because of slow preloader AD.

My next game is gonna be primarily desktop browser game.. I can scale down the game for mobile web and add some touch controls. But it will be desktop browser first experience.

P.S: I don't know anything about marketing HTML5 games. So far I have made only 50 cents (USD) on gamejolt. My opinion is from someone, who likes to play games.

 

Edit:

Also I haven't seen any originally game in html5, most of the games are mini version of the native games or just clones.

Only original html5 game I have played is "crosscode" - demo is playable in desktop browsers and full version is download only.

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3 hours ago, True Valhalla said:

It feels like the time is right for WebGL.

I certainly hope you're right, personally I like slower-paced retro games which often don't need super speedy graphics, but, some web stuff more graphically complex feels like a jump forward for the platform.

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The big restriction on web based games in general is asset size, both on disk and in RAM. Flash worked around the download size issue by using vector graphics which are tiny. With HTML5 whether its canvas or WebGL you are general using pngs and jpegs which very quickly hit the limit of both what your users patience can handle while downloading and also device memory at run time if targeting mobile.

[Edit] To be fair, apps also have the same memory limits, so its really just the downloading issue.

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Yeah hopefully stuff like http/2 (and before that SPDY) that mean a server can intelligently throw stuff at a client to use will help (as will better offline support that could ease subsequent visits), but, yeah, network speed is what it is and the speed of light isn't going to change anytime soon!

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13 hours ago, labrat.mobi said:

My next game is gonna be primarily desktop browser game..

If this is the case then you should strongly consider developing with Unity or another engine/framework that takes advantage fully of WebGL. The only reason I'm using a JS framework it's because of Canvas support which it's essential on mobile.

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Hey there! Talking about an HTML5 market - is there any Market (except of CodeCanyou/Envato, MarketJS) where you can post games with prices and wait for publishers right like it was on FGL? It seems that it's not always very effective just mailing and I'd like to have an additional place to look for some publishers.

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On 3.5.2017 at 11:41 PM, EvaFatal said:

Hey there! Talking about an HTML5 market - is there any Market (except of CodeCanyou/Envato, MarketJS) where you can post games with prices and wait for publishers right like it was on FGL? It seems that it's not always very effective just mailing and I'd like to have an additional place to look for some publishers.

I dont know of any. People reported that MarketJS is only promoting their own games, am i right? As for CodeCanyon, i think its a great place to offer scripts or simple templates but not for complete well made games, but personal opinion here. You could also get in touch with a member that has contacts and doing well, offer him a reasonable share and outsource the business stuff. I havent made any html5 related business for a while so please take my advice with caution.

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I was looking to do something with eager.io a while back,  they came out with a simple Word Press plugin that could be used for embedding webapps and games.   They also had their own little market place. Then seems they got bought out by cloud flare.  Supposedly cloud flare will be using the market place to sell to their own customers.

https://eager.io/

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22 hours ago, Daikrys said:

I dont know of any. People reported that MarketJS is only promoting their own games, am i right? As for CodeCanyon, i think its a great place to offer scripts or simple templates but not for complete well made games, but personal opinion here. You could also get in touch with a member that has contacts and doing well, offer him a reasonable share and outsource the business stuff. I havent made any html5 related business for a while so please take my advice with caution.

You are correct about marketjs

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What about promoting your own games? If you make a good HTML5 game, can't you just put it on a website, and then promote that site?  You would have total control over the ads. Maybe use in-app sales and skip ads completely.  If you managed the site, it would also allow you to put some hooks in to a backend, so people stealing your game would not get a working copy.  I think both True Valhalla and OkinJin games were going to pursue this.  Personally, I would prefer to be the master of my own fate, than rely on some other company to license my game (though I realize that's the way it has traditionally been done).

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4 hours ago, vornay said:

What about promoting your own games? If you make a good HTML5 game, can't you just put it on a website, and then promote that site?  You would have total control over the ads. Maybe use in-app sales and skip ads completely.  If you managed the site, it would also allow you to put some hooks in to a backend, so people stealing your game would not get a working copy.  I think both True Valhalla and OkinJin games were going to pursue this.  Personally, I would prefer to be the master of my own fate, than rely on some other company to license my game (though I realize that's the way it has traditionally been done).

And how are you going to generate millions of user traffic to play your game in first place?  There is a reason why portals put 100s of thousands of dollar in advertisement. If you can generate that kinds of traffic without investing in ads then my friend you are the next bill gates. 

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On 06.05.2017 at 6:17 PM, Daikrys said:

I dont know of any. People reported that MarketJS is only promoting their own games, am i right? As for CodeCanyon, i think its a great place to offer scripts or simple templates but not for complete well made games, but personal opinion here. You could also get in touch with a member that has contacts and doing well, offer him a reasonable share and outsource the business stuff. I havent made any html5 related business for a while so please take my advice with caution.

Thanks for the advice! Yes, as I have studied the MarketJS, they really seem to steal others' games, their gameplay, graphics and even level design! and then they sell their own versions, I don't feel that I'd like to work with such sort of guys. CodeCanyon -yeah, I agree with you, it doesn't fit the big project at all. Hm, I'm not as experienced at the moment for making business with someone else. So, I have to make this way myself at the beginning. We are a small, I'd say, tiny studio - and marketing is the biggest problem this time. I've been reading a lot about it before that "As you've made a game, everything tested, polished, graphics/code are good - it's not the success at all! You should find a good marketing strategy" - I admit, that's true. 

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6 hours ago, vornay said:

What about promoting your own games? If you make a good HTML5 game, can't you just put it on a website, and then promote that site?  You would have total control over the ads. Maybe use in-app sales and skip ads completely.  If you managed the site, it would also allow you to put some hooks in to a backend, so people stealing your game would not get a working copy.  I think both True Valhalla and OkinJin games were going to pursue this.  Personally, I would prefer to be the master of my own fate, than rely on some other company to license my game (though I realize that's the way it has traditionally been done).

Well, what I needed is just a little bit of cash earned on sponsorship. For living, website and other self-promotion costs. I understand that if you are doing something new or simply not a clone - you've got big problems... As sponsors rely only onto their audience. So, self-promotion would be great for my case. However, I'm totally afraid of all this stuff with ads >< I've found tons of services, I've read here on forums which ad companies are good and so on, however -it's just making a mess in my head >< I have no idea which one to choose, and I'd like to have a control over the earnings - without waiting a month for approvement. Yeah -great idea about the hooks, however, it depends on what is your game was made for. If you have your ads there, maybe there's nothing bad in it if someone steals your game to their website - it will show your ads, you'll earn your money and your game becomes popular. Oh, my ideas are always a kind of Utopia.

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On 5/8/2017 at 11:44 PM, vornay said:

What about promoting your own games? If you make a good HTML5 game, can't you just put it on a website, and then promote that site?

Yes, that strategy has worked well for many game devs (and non-game devs) and it has significant advantages over  licensing, but it has disadvantages as well. You have to do your own marketing and building an audience will likely be a slow process unless you have a lot of money for ads. It also works better for known game types that people search for in Google, like solitaire, chess, sudoku,  But those games already have competition so you really have to produce something that's top notch. It's a longer, tougher, riskier route than licensing, but it can lead to a nicer destination if you're successful.

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I've heard about HTML5 games business several years ago but decided to start in 2018 so I'm newbie. Can You tell me if I understand this market right?

Tier 1: 

You sell non-exclusive licenses in marketplace like codecanyon or scirra store. Average price is between 20$-60$. You can expect 0-20 sales (codecanyon provide numbers). 

I've noticed that most projects are Construct2 projcets. Is it becaouse it's popular among devs or market prefer this more than javascript sources?

 

Tier 2:

You sell non-exclusive licenses to publishers like softgames/spligames/etc. Average price is 300$-500$ (very not sure about this numbers). I Have no idea how many sales can You expect.

My hypothesis is to show first your games to publishers and if they reject this then move to marketplaces like codecanyon. Am I right?

Are publishers ok to show them game in progress (for example raw gamepley on rectangles without artworks) ?

 

Tier 3:

You sell exclusive license to publishers metioned above. Average price is 2000$-5000$ (even less sure).

What is most common scenario of exclusive deal? Developer offer non-exclusive license and publisher says that he wants it exclusive? Or it's developer offer exclusive license first?

When I sold my game as exclusive Can I publish it on my website in portfolio section (without ads)?

 

Extra tier: Contract work.

 


This is how it works?

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@mkardas91, I'd say that's a fair summary.  But because it's all very niche there are no golden rules - most games go unsold so be sceptical if the goal is to make money.  Some extra experiential info that may be useful:  "Tier 1" value is often in the upsells (extended license and custom work), not the regular license.  "Tier 2" suffers from hassle of making sales and time to add custom API requirements that can negate the value of the underlying license - therefore sell in bulk / build up a back-catalog first.  "Tier 3" is prove-it first, sell-it second - lower odds of any positive outcome - but why sell a cash cow when it's more lucrative to milk it?  "Tier 4" is gun-for-hire, usually more robust income than other tiers but not as fun.  But don't forget "Tier 5" where it's whatever you make it - look around to see where else browser games are relevant beyond this niche ...

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On 28.01.2018 at 5:01 AM, b10b said:

But don't forget "Tier 5" where it's whatever you make it - look around to see where else browser games are relevant beyond this niche ...

What do you mean by that?

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8 hours ago, sk1e said:

What do you mean by that?

We (and others) leverage several opportunities beyond the 4 tiers listed, but I'd be irresponsible to suggest them as viable options to potential newcomers.  Consider that really good advice (with evidence to support it) is usually obsolete by the time its published - so intentional vagueness can be more effective inspiration.  Money is patience.

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44 minutes ago, b10b said:

We (and others) leverage several opportunities beyond the 4 tiers listed, but I'd be irresponsible to suggest them as viable options to potential newcomers.  Consider that really good advice (with evidence to support it) is usually obsolete by the time its published - so intentional vagueness can be more effective inspiration.  Money is patience.

So you, being for a while in this market, when you think what game to do next, you just guess from your previous experience, or you just know from sponsors what they want?

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@sk1e when we create new IP we make games quickly that our friends or family want to play or that leverages our existing interests.  That has worked OK for us as our expectations are set low when it comes to spending time on indie.  How about you, how do you select your next game project?

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2 minutes ago, b10b said:

@sk1e when we create new IP we make games quickly that our friends or family want to play or that leverages our existing interests.  That has worked OK for us as our expectations are set low when it comes to spending time on indie.  How about you, how do you select your next game project?

We just have started (have 2 games, third in production, but no sales so far) so, we are just guessing/experimenting at this point, i think. Third game is based a bit on previous feedback, but it is really hard to find some meaningful info for newcomers like us.

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On 1/27/2018 at 2:06 PM, mkardas91 said:

I've heard about HTML5 games business several years ago but decided to start in 2018 so I'm newbie. Can You tell me if I understand this market right?

Tier 1: ...

Tier 2: ...

Tier 3: ...

Extra tier: Contract work.

6

From the outside, these just don't look like a promising business perspective and I'm not sure why developers continue to spend their efforts with these goals/markets in mind. There seem to be a finite number of publishers (less than 10?) who (may) buy (non-)exclusive licenses.

I read that there is some secret list with publishers that is hidden from new forum members but after spending some time here I am left with the impression it's not something I should care about...

I  recently started working on a few HTML game ideas and I do have plans for the monetisation of the eventual final products. The plan is quite long-term and for now it's nothing more than a fun project.

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Hehe, times go by, years pass, but something never changes - TV is still plugging his book :D

10 hours ago, blossy said:

From the outside, these just don't look like a promising business perspective and I'm not sure why developers continue to spend their efforts with these goals/markets in mind. There seem to be a finite number of publishers (less than 10?) who (may) buy (non-)exclusive licenses.

I read that there is some secret list with publishers that is hidden from new forum members but after spending some time here I am left with the impression it's not something I should care about...

I  recently started working on a few HTML game ideas and I do have plans for the monetisation of the eventual final products. The plan is quite long-term and for now it's nothing more than a fun project.

Golden dream to make your hobby your best source of income. Reach ikigai.

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