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Old 11 September 2015, 04:40   #76
Code Kitten

Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Montreal/Canadia
Age: 46
Posts: 1,033
Originally Posted by Cammy View Post
And I don't think it's a bad thing, because they're made by guys who wouldn't otherwise be able to make a game due to not knowing how to code. And sure, you can say "Learn to code!" but that's what I started to do back then and I'm still a total amateur!
On that note, although tools simplify content creation, they cannot transform bad games into good ones. They are a multiplier of speed, not of quality.

Finding good gameplay ideas and implementing them iteratively, identifying the elements which work ("the jump control", "the correct inertia", "the proper reaction time", "the type of bonuses which make sense", "the rewards which keep interest growing", etc.) and improving them while re-working or eliminating those which do not work is hard and requires lots of iterations and lots of failures.

Starting from scratch one probably needs to make about 5 crappy games before finally acquiring the reflexes which allow them to identify mistakes and good ideas and correct or amplify them.

You mentioned not being an expert at coding and it's absolutely fine if you do not have time to spend several hours per day coding for several years.
Practice is the only way to get good at something and making good games, or writing good code takes thousands of hours of practice. Literally.

Ask Phx, StingRay, Mrs Beanbag, Photon, etc. how many hours of their life they spent writing code before they became really good at it.

What I want to say is that a market needs demand and supply. Supply cannot increase easily overnight, even with the retro wave it will take years before enough good coders, artists, designers emerge to generate a steady stream of releases. Years to recruit existing good ones, and years for new ones to learn the trade and hone their skills patiently.

This said, I am confident this will happen.

I only recently started looking at the MegaDrive/Genesis scene and although the active good coders are still only a handful they are making steady progress and keep pushing further what is doable within limits of the machine ( [ Show youtube player ], [ Show youtube player ] (can be *much* improved), [ Show youtube player ]), these are all done by the same guy but others are making similar strides.).

It is clear that the retro scenes are brewing on many platforms and that retro-gamers will eventually desire new games strongly enough that markets will be able to support commercial creation provided that piracy is not too easy.

Originally Posted by Adrian Browne View Post
I'm sure if handled correctly you could raise 4,000 + euros, maybe 5,000.
For a new instalment of Mr Beanbag? Yup. For the current one? Nope, because it is competing with its free version. Cf my post on value: you cannot compete with a free version of the same product (unless paying is easier than free downloading).

Update: I mean by this that you would raise much less than possible because of the free version. I would buy it, but like many here I'm atypical.

And I would link this to Cammy's suggestion to bundle a free ADF: this is IMO self defeating because it creates instant competition to the paying offering. Yes, many people will want the physical disk (I'm one of these), but I would say they represent only 1/5th of the available market at best. The other 4/5th of the market will buy only if they have no other choice. Not necessarily because it's cheaper but because it's simpler (cf iTunes: it's more expensive than piracy but actually less practical, so people pay). I would rather opt for a never-expiring offer of exchange of the faulty medium at zero profit (shipping+media).

And this is also why I mentioned cartridges in another post.
They solve both durability and reliability issues while still being affordable. Obviously they can be copied as well, but it's cumbersome enough that if the price is low enough nobody capable of doing it will actually bother.

The A500 has a nice expansion port for them, and the 600/1200 have PCMCIA.
(Of course, expansions can be an issue, but this can be worked around.)

Originally Posted by Cammy
We hope that we can acquire enough DD floppy disks so that all of the commercial games we publish will be on those rather than the HD ones. At the moment we have 80 brand new DD disks, 50 of which are orange and 30 are dark blue. We'd love to theme the colour of the disk with the game and the printed label in a similar manner to how RGCD's C64 cartridges are different colours depending on the game.
Floppies are nice, I like them, but both they and the drives have limited life spans and obviously that's not going to get better.

I think they are fine for small scale production but if you want to operate in a market big enough to sustain many creators then it would become much more difficult to obtain them and with the aging floppy drives they will be enjoyable for less and less time at every new release.

Moreover, they have a high cost per unit, higher than CDs for example so adopting them reduces the amount of money which reaches creators, and they are easily copyable, allowing immediate creation of free competition.

I think the way ahead for retro platforms involves physical media but I would be very hesitant to rely on floppies on the long run (as a start they are ok though).

Originally Posted by Cammy
Does that sound like a better idea than several Amiga developers all having their own separate web pages with their game available from, or just uploading it to Aminet where it sits in the Recent list for a week or two before being forgotten forever.
Yes, it is a much better idea.
But I would make this multi platform to benefit from the synergies of the retro movement: consoles people could want to look at the Amiga if they saw more of it and vice versa.

Last edited by ReadOnlyCat; 11 September 2015 at 04:53. Reason: Added update. Clarified position for floppies. Agreed with store idea.
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