Anyone have experience working with Chillingo or other publishers?

Discussion in 'Public Game Developers Forum' started by Jimbo_00, Oct 12, 2010.

  1. Jimbo_00

    Jimbo_00 Well-Known Member

    Oct 12, 2010
    100
    0
    0
    Anyone have experience working with Chillingo specifically?

    We were contacted by them and we're basically a really small indie studio that has never worked with any publishers. Any advice?
     
  2. They are quite the accomplished team.
     
  3. Jimbo_00

    Jimbo_00 Well-Known Member

    Oct 12, 2010
    100
    0
    0
    Yea we were pretty excited and surprised they contacted us but then we did research and got some mixed reviews. So now we're unsure.

    Anybody here worked with them? Was it good or bad? How much do publisher's take and would you recommend working with one?
     
  4. Eli

    Eli ᕕ┌◕ᗜ◕┐ᕗ
    Staff Member Patreon Silver Patreon Gold

    I've heard more than a few stories of Chillingo emailing developers out of the blue offering to publish their games. Always seemed kind of strange to me to make offers like that without even playing your game.
     
  5. karlth

    karlth Well-Known Member

    Jun 2, 2009
    278
    0
    0
    Iceland
    How does it work when a publisher handles a game in the Appstore? Is it usually revenue sharing or an upfront payment?

    Anyone here who has used a 3rd party publisher?
     
  6. Stroffolino

    Stroffolino Well-Known Member
    Patreon Silver

    Apr 28, 2009
    1,099
    6
    38
    Software Engineer
    Pennsylvania
    I'd think that an emailed "offer to publish" based on video or screenshots is little more than a letter of intent - they're not yet legally committing themselves to anything, and in any event, the developer is the one that does the lion's share of the work, and Chillingo would have final say over when the game is "good enough" to publish - a decision which would be based on playing the game.

    On a related note, I suspect that all things being equal, being featured on Touch Arcade gives an app a much bigger leg up than being affiliated with a company like Chillingo. You guys could probably make money hand over fist by becoming an actual publisher.

     
  7. cyberbum

    cyberbum Well-Known Member

    Apr 15, 2010
    203
    0
    16
    Programmer
    Canada
    I've also been contacted by them, they seem like a cool bunch, I'm polishing up my demo for them.

    They seem to have all the right contacts to help publicize games, and they recently published Cut the Rope and Angry Birds.
     
  8. Eli

    Eli ᕕ┌◕ᗜ◕┐ᕗ
    Staff Member Patreon Silver Patreon Gold

    Seems like a pretty big conflict of interest there, Stroffolino! I mean I can't even post about ngmoco without getting passive aggressive emails. I can't imagine if we actually had any real financial interest in anything we post about. ;)

    Anyway, regarding Chillingo, a lot of people see them as the force powering the success of Angry Birds or Cut the Rope. However, when you look at their catalog of 140 iPhone games currently there are a lot of games that never got any significant traction. I kind of think that both Angry Birds and Cut the Rope are good enough games that they likely would have seen a similar response with or without Chillingo.
     
  9. Astraware

    Astraware Well-Known Member

    Jan 22, 2010
    372
    0
    0
    Games Studio
    UK
    It's worth considering that if they have access to the user base of Angry Birds via their Crystal social platform that's a pretty massive audience they could be promoting the other titles they publish to.

    Maybe a question to ask them if your discussions go further.
     
  10. Eli

    Eli ᕕ┌◕ᗜ◕┐ᕗ
    Staff Member Patreon Silver Patreon Gold

    Also worth asking the number of daily active users Crystal even has. With so many games switching to Game Center I think Crystal could be on the downswing? Maybe? How much success has anyone even seen being featured in OpenFeint or other similar networks? I don't mean to downplay it, but the only time I can think of where I've seen real movement on the charts because of in-game referrals is Plus+ stuff when they do promotions to get free food/energy/mojo/whatever to download. In those cases, not only are the apps they're being driven to download free, but I really doubt many of the users ever do anything more than launch it to get their free credits in the games they actually play.

    I don't mean to be overly critical of Chillingo, social networks, publishers, or anything else... This is just all worth considering before agreeing to give an outside party xx% of your pie.
     
  11. Jimbo_00

    Jimbo_00 Well-Known Member

    Oct 12, 2010
    100
    0
    0
    Were the flexible and easy to work with? I know you can't talk about your agreement with them, but did they want a ridiculous %? Or was everything fair.
     
  12. Jimbo_00

    Jimbo_00 Well-Known Member

    Oct 12, 2010
    100
    0
    0
    This is all great info.

    I've also went to Chillingo's website and would say they have about 60ish games. More than half of them don't look like they are doing well. But now that the 'general public' are more aware of their brand due to Cut the Rope and Angry Birds, I'm wondering if NOW is a good time to have Chillingo's representation?

    I'll have to call to inquire about more info. If they do request 40%, which is what I've heard from other forums, than that's a huge chunk for all the hard work our indie team has been doing. But than without their 'brand' attached to our game, would we even sell as much? I personally think our game is good but not sure if people will give it a second look since they've never heard of us.
     
  13. cyberbum

    cyberbum Well-Known Member

    Apr 15, 2010
    203
    0
    16
    Programmer
    Canada
    I'm not at that point yet, I'm more in the demoing portion. They saw the post for my game on here (Touch Arcade upcoming forums) and I had also filled out their submission form.

    I got some prelim feedback about the game which I totally agreed with and I am currently tweaking my game for this. Once I send over a demo, I'll see where things go from there (hopefully positive!)
     
  14. cyberbum

    cyberbum Well-Known Member

    Apr 15, 2010
    203
    0
    16
    Programmer
    Canada
    #14 cyberbum, Oct 12, 2010
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2010
    You can think of them as a PR firm in a sense, since they have deeper pockets and more connections in a sense. Personally I think it is extremely hard on the AppStore without any viralness/connections, and a publisher could bring that. If they request a large chunk, that's the price to pay for having a chance at being launched higher. My reasoning is, is it better to share 40% of a fairly successful game, or claiming 100% for a game that doesn't sell well.

    You can also check out Triple Point PR (http://www.triplepointpr.com/), the guy who worked on the GeoDefense partnered with them for good effect. But they have high upfront fees.
     
  15. Foursaken_Media

    Foursaken_Media Well-Known Member
    Patreon Indie

    Personally, I believe both Angry Birds and Cut the Rope have succeeded much more because they are games that embody what the average iphone owner looks for in a game: cute/interesting characters, loads of personality, easy to get into gameplay side by side with the option for challenge more hardcore/dedicated gamers (with things like collecting all the golden stars and stuff).

    Anyway, if you intend to develop for the app store long term, I would seriously consider NOT joining up with a publisher. You need to start creating your own brand recognition, and once you sign on with Chillingo, that game will essentially forever be associated with Chillingo, not your company. Of course that won't matter if the game ends up being a flop bc no one will know the game at all in the first place :/ But if you believe in your product and see that it is getting early interest (in forums, with previews, heck, even being contacted by Chillingo is an indicator), then you should have confidence in your game.

    We are actually in the same boat with our game Bug Heroes. We were contacted by Chillingo (twice) and we have decided to go at it on our own. Sure we might not hit it as big without the Chillingo brand, but if we keep churning out quality products, hopefully people will start to recognize the name Foursaken Media, start cross promoting, etc -- and I think thats what you will need if you want any sort of longevity.

    Anyway, thats just my opinion :)
     
  16. Jimbo_00

    Jimbo_00 Well-Known Member

    Oct 12, 2010
    100
    0
    0
    Since I haven't had any experience with PR firms, I'm not sure how it generally works. Do PR firms put out money (since they have 'deeper pockets') to invest in your game? Say... pay for advertisements, game updates to meet their needs, media campaigns?
     
  17. Jimbo_00

    Jimbo_00 Well-Known Member

    Oct 12, 2010
    100
    0
    0
    I agree. As indies I suppose we're always at risk of a game flopping just due to the fact that no one knows its out there. We are in this for the long haul and I'm also hoping we'll create one that sticks.

    Btw, your BUG game looks awesome. How big is your team and how long did it take to produce?
     
  18. Foursaken_Media

    Foursaken_Media Well-Known Member
    Patreon Indie

    Thanks! :) We are 4 brothers. We're about to hit beta stage and we've been deving on Bug Heroes for about 5 months now, not including the conceptual stage (we're not all full time on the project though). So when all is said and done it'll probably be a 7-8 month project.
     
  19. Jimbo_00

    Jimbo_00 Well-Known Member

    Oct 12, 2010
    100
    0
    0
    That's cool. We're also a family team too. 3 of us plus one other dev guy. Luckily we all get along, except there were times I swear I was going to lose my mind.

    Did you by any chance get any offers of studios wanting to 'buy out' your game? I got one today, which weirded me out. It was cool that people are noticing but a complete buy out, I haven't heard of.

    I didn't post any info on this thread about our game or indie company since I didn't want to jeopardize anything for my team members in case they had other thoughts on the publisher/offer. But if you, or anyone want to check out our game, PM me, I can pass along trailer website and all that good stuff:)
     
  20. cyberbum

    cyberbum Well-Known Member

    Apr 15, 2010
    203
    0
    16
    Programmer
    Canada
    They basically handle the PR aspect. I don't have experience in using them, I just heard them referenced from the Geodefense dude.

    And I also agree with Foursaken_Media, by all means, if you can secure your own future and publish on your own, more the power to you! Bug Heroes looks pretty damn awesome!!
     

Share This Page