How to score a free game legitimately..

Discussion in 'General Game Discussion and Questions' started by RodGreen, Aug 14, 2012.

  1. RodGreen

    RodGreen Well-Known Member

    Mar 1, 2012
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    #1 RodGreen, Aug 14, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2012
    Hey guys this might come off as a little bit of a rant but there's no real animosity here just some friendly advice from a Dev to the players, not sure if this is the right forum (since its addressing players on a Dev topic). If its not I'm sorry please let me know and we can move it?

    We recently had a run in with a user who was representing themselves as a member of the iOS reviewer community. They were requesting a copy of Brainsss for review and would also post about it on forums etc. The person they claimed to be is in fact a legitimate reviewer however we were already in contact with that person and have already given them a early beta of the new update. So this was just someone trying to leverage someone else's rep to save a few bucks and or get access to a game early.

    This isnt totally unheard of, I think Eli has mentioned it a couple times on twitter. Needless to say we didn't give them a copy of the game or any response at all really. We just gave the real guy a heads up and deleted the email.

    However in all honesty if they had of just contacted us directly** and said: "hey I like the look of Brainsss, but I don't want to fork out the 1.99$ can I get a copy?" The chances are we would have had absolutely no problem sending it over - and we have many times already. However pretending to be someone else meant that we weren't prepared to encourage that behavior with a free code - don't feed the pigeons and they won't get in your face when you're trying to eat, right? ;)

    So while they might have some success using this less than ethical method to get a free game, I would be surprised if most devs weren't happy to give you a code if you ask nicely**.

    Personally we're always happy to release codes because being such a small Dev studio (2 ppl) and with limited to no marketing budget we feel the best way to get noticed is to get as many people playing as possible. This also relates to people who say things like "game looks interesting but I ain't paying the $1.99. I'm going to wait till its free". Why not contact** the Dev, give some feedback, tell 'em why you're hesitant to part with your 2 bucks and maybe, like any friendly neighborhood dealer, they'll "hook you up".

    My advice To you if you're one of these guys who likes to pretend you're someone else to try and score a free game or two, or you are unsure about a game but are genuinely interested in it. Try just asking first you might find you get what you're looking for without having to be 'one of those guys'.

    If the devs treat you good and you like the game then make sure you spread the love - we live and die by the word of mouth.


    tl;dr: if you want to try a game for free just ask**! Don't complain or try and scam one.

    **DISCLAIMER: its against TA forum rules to request a code from a Dev "- Don't beg/ask for promo codes, beta testing or gifted apps unless invited by developer. ". My recommended way would be to ask via the devs public channels. I.e. people typically contact us through our support/general contact pages. I'm not at all encouraging people to request codes through TA or other forums.

    Thanks for reading!
     
  2. AnarKitty

    AnarKitty Well-Known Member

    Oct 10, 2010
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    Minneapolis, USA
    Nicely said, and refreshingly open. Thanks! :)
     
  3. Exact-Psience

    Exact-Psience Well-Known Member

    Jan 12, 2012
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    The Work-At-Home Guy
    Philippines
    Yeah.. what that guy did was pretty low. Well said, RodGreen.
     
  4. fooyee

    fooyee Member

    Jan 5, 2012
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    #4 fooyee, Aug 14, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2012
    Yeah it's pretty surprising this stuff goes on.
     
  5. awp69

    awp69 Well-Known Member

    Oct 30, 2009
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    That is pretty sad.

    What you said made sense as far as giving codes to people who ask kindly, but I even frown upon that. If a dev posts codes (or, preferably, asks for PMs for codes), that's one thing. But I get annoyed in main game threads when someone comes along and begs for a code when none were offered to begin with. I know it helps "spread the word" and that's why code giveaways can be a good thing. But people that just openly ask for a code because they're cheap, those usually aren't the kind of people that are going to help out with feedback and/or telling others about it.
     
  6. RodGreen

    RodGreen Well-Known Member

    Mar 1, 2012
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    Yeah that is a risk.

    I don't at all suggest requesting a code indirectly in a forum post or some other public display of pan handling.

    However I would much, much rather someone email me and say: "hey, I heard about your game but I'm not sure it's really going to have the depth I'm looking for - anyway I can try it out?". Rather than going to a forum or discussion thread and saying: "looks cool, but I'll wait till it's free". Or something less ethical as I mentioned.

    I feel like if people really make the effort to get into contact with us directly and want to try the game then there's no real reason why I wouldn't give it to them. I'd rather that then some random twitter give away - higher chance they're interested in the game instead of just trying to get something for free.
     
  7. Darth Ronfar

    Darth Ronfar Well-Known Member

    Nov 20, 2011
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    So can I get a copy of brainss?
     
  8. RodGreen

    RodGreen Well-Known Member

    Mar 1, 2012
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    Duuudee...
     
  9. You have to admit it's bound to happen. You're probably going to get pms as well requesting the game.
     
  10. RodGreen

    RodGreen Well-Known Member

    Mar 1, 2012
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    Yeah I expected the PMs/Emails. I mean my post is pretty much baiting people to email us.

    However I did think I was pretty clear that posting requests in the forums was against TA's "Don't do these or you'll get banned" rules.
     
  11. Eoghann

    Eoghann Well-Known Member

    May 29, 2012
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    IT Guy/Graphic Designer/Gamer
    New York
    I have to admit this is the first time I hear a dev say: "If you ask nicely and provide a valid argument, I can just give you the game for free." It's not a common way of thinking as far as I've noticed. Then again, I've never even thought of approaching a dev and asking for a copy of their game (aside from once or twice that I asked for a promo code before bothering to read the rules first!) I think it's like an unspoken rule, I mean it's a "the dev worked hard on the game, he's not gonna just give it away for free, right?" kinda situation going on.

    What would my odds have been if I asked Activision for a copy of Pitfall? Impulse bought the darn game, played well for a few days, now it just crashes, crashes, crashes no matter what I try....money well spent right there. Pfft.
     
  12. RodGreen

    RodGreen Well-Known Member

    Mar 1, 2012
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    Well we do give it away for free, all the time. Reviewers, friends, random people on twitter. So why not give it to someone who seems genuinely interested? Plenty of devs do weekend sales where the game is free for at least 24hours. While giving the game away when it's not free does have a cost (basically we're paying apple 30%, tax etc) it's not the full price of the store.

    There could be an argument that you're reducing the value of your game. However since it's a 1 on 1 transaction there's no change in the public perception of the value. People aren't mad because they just bought it and now it's free etc. That's a whole other topic - don't get me started on the whole 'no one values games anymore' argument ;)


    It's much easier for a smaller company (i.e. indies) to just give you a copy. Most of the big boys probably feel like there's something not quite right about giving stuff away for free. However you never know if you never try ;)

    BTW have you tried to get a refund?

    For us we were very clear on our support page about how to request a refund from Apple if, for whatever reason, you're having troubles. http://www.brainsss.com/blog/brainsss-support/
     
  13. Eoghann

    Eoghann Well-Known Member

    May 29, 2012
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    IT Guy/Graphic Designer/Gamer
    New York
    Great info. Nice to know there is an alternative to "waiting till it goes free"! xD (just kidding! :p)

    And nah, haven't requested a refund yet. I like to hold on to the idea that Activision will release a fix/patch/update soon. And that they're not a faceless, soulless corporation that ran away snickering with my money, whilst ignoring my woes and directing me to customer service labyrinth.

    Cheers!
     
  14. Darth Ronfar

    Darth Ronfar Well-Known Member

    Nov 20, 2011
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    #14 Darth Ronfar, Aug 15, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2012
    Sorry, I was just joking...if I really wanted a copy I'd have PMed u and what not..

    Also, pretty much everyone that hangs around and posts on these forums will only do good things for spreading the word about your game also leaving reviews Etc.. That makes more sense then just giving them to random people but I guess you can't just give a copy to everyone here and say ok now go get as many people as u can etc...(u probly should though ESP if ur a small time Dev and need some success) if ur Rubicon or EA the games are Already gonna sell)
     
  15. RodGreen

    RodGreen Well-Known Member

    Mar 1, 2012
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    Hah not a bad idea! :D
     

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