blog

Competition isn't real

15/06/2022
indiedev, psychology

There is no competition among indie developers. The more successful indie games there are on Steam the higher your future chances of success as an indiedev. Outsized success creates demand for more games similar to it, and as more of those games are created and each further outsized success happens, a new genre starts to establish itself. As the audience for this new genre increases, more developers are enticed to make games for it, creating a positive feedback loop that only ends when no more outsized successes for it happen. ...

Luck isn't real

14/06/2022
indiedev, psychology, luck

Your body and your mind are you and you are them. Your body speaks to you through instinct, your mind speaks to you through reason. You feel in control of your mind because reason is weak, you don’t feel in control of your body because instinct is strong. Body to mind coercion is the default state. Strong ancient instinct is a natural winner, which is why you eat and play more than you should, and exercise and work less than you should. ...

Why indiedev creativity is stagnant and how to fix it

03/04/2022
indiedev, psychology

April Fool’s Day is a great example of how agreeableness acts as a blocker on creativity. Only on the day where wild and silly things are socially accepted do companies try aggressive changes to their products that might make them a lot better, as the social cost of change becomes lower. For instance, Path of Exile’s battle royale mode started out as an April Fool’s joke. People liked it so much they constantly asked for it to be brought back over 3 years. ...

Thoughts on Super People's test session

14/03/2022
design, super people, skill death spiral, luck

This past weekend Super People’s devs ran a test session aimed at seeing how TTK changes and the removal of crafting would affect the game: In my previous post I went over the game’s design and outlined a few things I’d change to likely improve player counts, and they were mostly focused around removing conscientiousness-oriented mechanics from the game itself and adding them to the metagame that happens between rounds instead. ...

Super People design review

09/03/2022
design, super people

I’ve played Super People’s closed beta for about 300 hours for the past month or so. I have a pretty good understanding of the game by now and I managed to reach a good rank (~#40 global, although if the game was properly populated I’d barely be able to reach top 500 at most, since I’m not that good). The point being that everything I’ll say comes from a place of good and fair experience. ...

The cons of compassion

23/02/2022
psychology

Agreeableness is one of the traits in the big five personality index. This is a statistically derived survey-based personality assessment tool devised by psychologists over the past few decades. It can be divided into two subtraits: compassion and politeness. The compassionate are more likely to empathize with people, to care about their feelings, to be concerned for them, to want to be connected with them and affiliate with them emotionally. Politeness refers to the tendency to avoid aggression, to not exploit people, to not take advantage of them, and to respect things like social rules and norms, as well as authority more generally. ...

Status addicts

28/12/2021
indiedev, psychology

Recently I got in trouble over saying the n-word. Yes, that’s right. More specifically, I said that I had a generally positive view on them, but gamers currently don’t take kindly to folks with these newfangled fancy ideas ‘round these parts, so this kind of pushback isn’t unexpected. What was surprising was that, like in ‘em good ol’ days, I even got called an “n-word lover” by this here boy what calls himself ‘DANDEE L’OREO’: ...

2022

17/12/2021
snkrx, indiedev, ideaguying, crypto

In this post I’ll go over my gamedev plans for 2022. SNKRX # Updated stats: In the end I ended up making about half of net revenue. And even though I haven’t released an update in months it still has a good number of daily players. SNKRX plans for 2022 are finishing the game’s rewrite and releasing more updates. I’ve had a solid idea of what I want the game to be for months now and it’s just a matter of executing faster, which has proven challenging, but I’ll get there eventually. ...

NFTs, status and creativity

29/10/2021
crypto, psychology

I’ve been following crypto since 2012 and I first got interested in it mostly for academic reasons. It was an interesting development in computer science and I followed it somewhat closely for a couple of years. I feel like I have a fairly good understanding of it, but I’ve been really on and off about paying attention to further developments since like 2014-2015, so if anything I say here is wrong, please feel free to correct me and I’ll update the post. ...

Marketing vs. skills

13/09/2021
indiedev

Recently someone sent me an e-mail asking me, roughly, that given my recent posts it seems like I don’t value marketing that much. And given that marketing is such an important part of being an indie developer, what gives? Why do I place such a low amount of value in activities like building wishlists, sending keys to influencers, building a community with a Discord server, and all the other tried and true activities that every indiedev should do if they want to have a chance at success? ...