The book is about 260 pages long, and it’s an in-depth guide to releasing your first game successfully. The audiobook is expected to be around 5–6 hours long (we’re still recording).
The following topics are covered:
- MindsetChances are, you didn’t grow up in a perfect environment where self-confidence, self-growth, and self-discipline were nurtured. I certainly didn’t. Maybe you have a habit of procrastinating, a short attention span, or other habits detrimental to your well-being. All the success I was fortunate to have in my life was the result of building the right mindset. Admittedly, there are other factors, but the right mindset is the foundation upon which the success is built. I consider this the most important chapter in the book.
- PreproductionYou’ll learn about market analysis, scope, marketability, competitive advantage, implications of game’s length and genre, platforms, target audience, engines, other software, creating budget and schedule, price point, various monetization strategies. You’ll also learn how to assemble a team and write a game design document.
- FundingYou want to make a game but have no money. That’s where most indies start. I was one of them. There are many ways of getting your game funded. Apart from partnering up with a publisher or an investor, you’ll learn about numerous alternatives you may not be aware of.
- DevelopmentIn this chapter, I’ll share with you how I learned coding, modeling, texturing, animation, and other skills that you’ll likely need to make your game. You’ll also learn about the iterative nature of development, principles of good game design, accessibility features, good coding practices, the role of sound and music in your game, as well as the importance of prototyping, quality assurance, and optimization.
- Business and LawSince the laws vary from country to country, this chapter aims to make you better equipped to research the relevant topics and ask the right questions when meeting with a professional. You’ll learn how and when to start a company, as well as why you might want to do that in the first place. You’ll learn about copyright, trademarks, patents, as well as how contracts are structured, such as non-disclosure and work-for-hire agreements. Finally, I’ll share with you what other documentation you will need to have in place before releasing your game.
- Marketing and PRAs the market becomes more and more saturated, it’s no longer enough to make a good game. You also have to be able to market it effectively. If you underestimate the importance of marketing and public relations (PR), your game will likely get lost among countless titles released every day. In this chapter, we’ll discuss marketing and PR strategies. Getting this right is crucial to the success of your business. You’ll also learn proven social media guidelines that will grow your following and give your game a shot at going viral. You’ll also learn how to contact the press and increase your chances of getting coverage for your game.
- Publishing and DistributionIn this chapter, we’re going to discuss the pros and cons of signing with a publisher. You’ll learn what to watch out for and how to find the right partner for your business. Whether you go the self-published route or not, you’ll learn about securing financing, localization, content rating, quality assurance, pre-built audiences, business partnerships, the dangers of delegating marketing as an indie studio, ROI of showcasing your game at conventions, porting to consoles, distribution, and other services that a publisher may provide. We’ll also discuss how you can handle all of that by yourself if you choose to.
- Preparing for LaunchThe book primarily focuses on the PC digital market, since it’s the easiest one to start with. You’ll learn how to optimize your Steam page to grow your wishlist numbers organically, as well as other ways to send traffic to it that converts to wishlists. Apart from other storefronts, we’ll talk about Steam algorithms and discuss the factors that come into play when picking the right release date (this one can kill your game if you’re not careful). You’ll learn about the pros and cons of launching your game with a discount, launching in Early Access, and other pre-launch activities.
- LaunchIt will likely be the most exciting day of your life. That’s how it felt to me anyway. There’s still a lot to do, so I’ll help you create a detailed plan of action for your launch day. There’s so much you can do to increase your chances of success.
- What NextThere’s still a lot to discuss here! You’ll learn about picking the right discount strategy, making financial projections, releasing updates and DLC’s, participating in competitions, post-launch marketing campaigns, and various ways of extending the lifespan of your game. Finally, we’ll discuss what factors you should consider when deciding what game you should work on next.
Apart from the 10 chapters that describe the process of making and releasing your first commercial game, the book has a list of resources that will help you learn coding, modeling, texturing, game design, business, and other skills that are essential to this journey. The list contains websites, youtube channels, and books that helped me to make DARQ.