iPad Are Tower Defense Games Easy To Code Or Something?

Discussion in 'iPhone and iPad Games' started by rootbeersoup, Dec 22, 2008.

  1. rootbeersoup

    rootbeersoup Well-Known Member

    Oct 4, 2008
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    Why are there so many? Are TD games just so ball-squeezing fun that there has to be so many versions? Are they trying to outnumber the number of sauces made by Heinz? Are they really easy to code?

    I am confused
     
  2. diffusion8r

    diffusion8r Well-Known Member

    Dec 21, 2008
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    Nah - if you think about it, Square Enix (if the new Crystal Defenders game was the cause of this thread) have struck a winning business formula.

    First of all, this is the main reason for so many Castle Defense games, is that they are extremely popular. In my school, at lunchtimes, the only game people play are the CD ones. Also, judging by the huge sales of the free Tower Defense game that is already out on the iPhone, it is a hit with the owners of the handheld.

    Most developers would have stopped by now, and Tower Defense games are probably as hard to make as any other. But Square Enix had to add Final Fantasy. You can't disagree here, FF games have probably the biggest fan base for any sort of game, so they would be intrigued about this new Crystal Defenders game. Also, people not within the fanbase who had a good time with FFTA2 would be interested with the similarities with this new game and the DS one.

    The fatal flaw Square did was release a Lite. Yes, it may make some people buy the game, but what about the nsuspecting people who just were in it because of the Final Fantasy references? They would have bought the paid version instantly, but because of the Free Lite demo they may have been scared away by it.
     
  3. Knight

    Knight Well-Known Member

    Oct 2, 2008
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    #3 Knight, Dec 22, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2008
    Couple of reasons why we did 7 Cities:

    -we love Tower Defense. We are huge fans from the Starcraft / Warcraft days. Don't believe me? Check this out: http://td.trueshot.net/
    It's a Tower Defense mod for UT2004 that we did in 2004.

    -we started on 7 Cities on August 1st, before there was any TD game on the market. We were initially supposed to finish by September, and could have beaten Fieldrunners had we not decided to go for depth and great gameplay. Some might say thats our biggest mistake, but I don't have any regrets for making something that I love as good as can be.

    -we wanted to take the core gameplay and make it different. Just ask anyone who has played our game. It is not vanilla TD. It is quite different.

    -our game was definetely not easy to make. We spent about 4.5 months on it, working on it every day. I didn't get more than 5 hours of sleep each night, and no free weekends, since I had a full-time job as well. I almost fell asleep couple of times just walking to work.

    I don't mean this to be a plug for our game, but it is a TD topic. I just want to share why we did TD. I love the genre, we still play the warcraft 3 maps like burbenog whenever we have time.
     
  4. diffusion8r

    diffusion8r Well-Known Member

    Dec 21, 2008
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    Cool - thanks for putting some light over this matter. It just seems that why get a game that costs $4.99 and get good gameplay than get a free TD game and, although lose some of the gameplay, get it for no money and put the money saved towards another game? Your thoughts on this?
     
  5. Knight

    Knight Well-Known Member

    Oct 2, 2008
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    Ask those who have played 7 Cities. If the majority say Tap Defense is still better, then I will shut up.

    You get what you pay for. Tap Defense has ads as well. Also by your logic, we should just make all games free?

    Here is a question for you: how can a game with 1/10th the feature list sell millions of copies, while a game that has much more features and has been well-received by customers (just read the reviews on the App Store around the world) be thought as too expensive when both sell for the same price?
     
  6. JClark

    JClark Active Member

    Dec 20, 2008
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    #6 JClark, Dec 22, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2008
    Easy: I'll pay more for a better experience. It's as simple as that.

    It's the same reason I use a Mac, even though I could get a "better" PC for less (no flame war, please, it's just that for me a Mac works better).

    That's also why I don't like Fieldrunners. I don't think it's significantly better than the competition that charges the same or less, it actually offers less gameplay than most (my personal favorite is Besiegement, for the variety it offers, though I'm looking hard at 7 Cities).
     
  7. diffusion8r

    diffusion8r Well-Known Member

    Dec 21, 2008
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    I wasn't complaining - I recently bought 7 cities myself and think it is far superior to Tap Defense. It's just because of the App Store and the fact games can be free, I was curious how developers like you think about free games and how they effect sales.

    Another question - how do you developers decide on the price of your games? Do you take work hours and such into account, or do you base it around the 'opposition' games of the same genre, and their pricing tied with their gameplay?
     
  8. spmwinkel

    spmwinkel Well-Known Member

    Oct 22, 2008
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    I believe that it was Frand (developer of SPiN) who said that they had a price in mind, but when the game was finished the app store changed so much that they had to change their price as well. I think a lot of it is based on the market.

    Those who started developing with a $10-20 pricetag in mind may have to cut their price in half (or more!) and simply hope that their game will sell enough to pay back for the time/effort put into it.
     
  9. Knight

    Knight Well-Known Member

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    #9 Knight, Dec 22, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2008
    Nah, I didn't mean to imply that you were complaining or anything. Rather, it was a point towards the general App Store customers in general. I think we developers have long screwed ourselves in terms of pricing our apps, so now we are paying dearly for it. And its partly Apple's fault for having such a broken way to list apps on the store. But it is still early to make that call though. Maybe we will get featured :)

    Thanks for buying 7 Cities, I hope you enjoy it. :)

    As for pricing our app, we decided it based on both our feature list, and what the competitors had, and then had to sell it for a lower sale price just to get visibility. But due to the way the App Store is, and the fact that other developers are lowering their prices just to get on the Top 100, we might not be able to take a serious approach to this market for our future projects as we thought we could before we started. Currently, I make more money from my full-time job than off the App Store.
     
  10. diffusion8r

    diffusion8r Well-Known Member

    Dec 21, 2008
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    Yeah, I understand now! The App Store is a bit of a mess because of how it lists apps, so I hope you do get featured! :)

    Also, I am playing 7 Cities now, and am really liking it and yeah, I did get what I payed for and possibly more. Also I have to comment on the polish it has - a lot better than that of Tap defense.
     
  11. JClark

    JClark Active Member

    Dec 20, 2008
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    It should be noted that the App store is a distribution channel, not a marketing venue. It's not on them to make sure your game gets noticed, only that it can be purchased. Say you produce a physical game, would you complain because Best Buy or Walmart didn't put your game on the end cap where it's more visible? Maybe, but they're only obligated to carry your game. Marketing is your job.

    Sites like Touch Arcade are all about marketing. If you have a good game, and it gets a favorable review, that's a good thing. I've purchased several games now that I hadn't heard of before Touch Arcade covered them. If I were you, I'd make sure that every iPhone game review site out there got a copy of 7 Cities. If it's good (and it looks really good), that's about the best advertising bang for the buck you can get.
     
  12. jakemann23

    jakemann23 Well-Known Member

    Oct 20, 2008
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    i agree with this to an extent, the difference being that there is only one place to sell your iphone apps verses many retail stores like best buy...
     
  13. Birdsoft

    Birdsoft Well-Known Member

    Oct 16, 2008
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    Unfortunately... that isnt really all that true. The AppStore IS the MAIN marketing channel. Sites like TouchArcade are great, but overall they have very little effect compared to the exposure directly in the AppStore. Even as popular as it is, the audienice of this and other sites is a tiny percentage of the actual market. Yes, promoting is very important out here too but the BIGGEST marketing venue for AppStore is AppStore and the main ads and poor rules of that venue are all controlled by Apple and their isn't all that much a developer can do to go around it... This isnt your typical market.
     
  14. The Lab

    The Lab Well-Known Member

    Nov 17, 2008
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    I'll purchase a good tower defense game any day before I ever download a Sudoku app even if its free... I think there can be thousands of Tower Defense games they can all bring something new to the table... a game like Sudoku... what will it give me... nothing but a headache..
     
  15. JClark

    JClark Active Member

    Dec 20, 2008
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  16. Birdsoft

    Birdsoft Well-Known Member

    Oct 16, 2008
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    See... and nobody is counting on Apple for that. Just to make it a more fair shake so that we can get there without it being a crapshoot or having to take advantage of broken systems.

    And Im sure you've heard all the other answers to that question. Make the top lists be based on a more fair formula than simply total # of apps sold without factoring cost or age. More fairly distribute the advertising and feature spots so the majority dont go automatically to companies with names like Atari, Apple, Pangea, or Sega whether the quality is there or not. Allow better sorting of the on device appstore (there is a big spot on the right of the top bar that would be a great place to select how the list is sorted), show the correct review count and rating as opposed to random ones that dont even match up... Cross selling, trial versions, coupon codes.... Well.... Id hope you get the idea...

    Whether you agree with it or not it isnt a traditional market... and there is no comparing it to retail stores. Its just not the same. And the main reason is because like jake said, it is the only place you can buy applications.
     
  17. brewstermax

    brewstermax Well-Known Member

    The big names make big money, and the indie devs make nothing.
     
  18. rootbeersoup

    rootbeersoup Well-Known Member

    Oct 4, 2008
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    Too bad, so sad

    I'll play my tiny violin for all the indie devs
     
  19. eedray

    eedray Member

    Sep 28, 2008
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    Student, hopefully developer by summer
    BTW email is reedrwalter@gmail.com
    Well couple things;
    1. Excellent job with 7 cities I really really enjoy it. Alot. (only flaw is a littleerrorifound in the high levels (250+ waves) with the obelisks when you have say twenty or so the damage goes down even if you have only oblesks I'll try and get some pics up)

    2. I'm going to start developing over the summer and hopefully my first app will be a td the reason is because I love the genre. Also lookat desktop towerdefense for a while be made 25k a month in advertising. (pretty sure don't qoutw me though)

    3. Don't want to get flames here or anything but any advise for how to go about developing this thing? Justgeneracly I have to do everything by myself though because I have no money. (getting a job to get a mac lol) and are there hidden costs? Ie lawyer fees etc. Dpi need to get copyrights or are they provided? Thanks for reading my little rant so far (even if you don't respond)
     
  20. Birdsoft

    Birdsoft Well-Known Member

    Oct 16, 2008
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    #20 Birdsoft, Dec 23, 2008
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2008

    Yeah. Down with Indies!! We want 10 to 15 games total a year at inflated prices and none of which actually live up to their hype!! Creativity and Fun is overrated!!

    Who's with me... Down with Indies! Down with Indies!!

    blah... (sorry I shouldnt feed trolling comments)

    (by the way.. loving 7 Cities and I have considered doing a TD too, as genres go they arent at the top of the difficulty list, but like anything take work to get really good)
     

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