THANK YOU! + First Week Results
Hi! I just wanted to make a quick-ish blog breaking down what happened in the first ten days after we released this dumb game, because this is really interesting to me and I have the day off from work and don't know what to do with myself.
I'm genuinely amazed that people actually came and downloaded our game, and while it hasn't been like, quit-your-job numbers (mainly cos it's free but y'know), it has been a staggering amount of people given how little promo we did, and how small my audience of friends turned out to be.
Some stray thoughts before I dig into that:
None of this would've happened without Rhiannon. I (Ric) did all the coding and "artwork" along with my share of the script, but it was Rhiannon who actually set the overall tone for the entire game. When I first suggested we make a Phoenix Wright game together, I had envisioned something that took itself way more seriously, but when Rhiannon started hammering out the intro I realised her idea was way better and rolled with it.
The game was full of swearing right up until the last minute. Literally as I was going to publish this on itch.io, Rhiannon pointed out that swearing is really just a cheap laugh and that we should cut it. I argued the case for a couple of bits, but agreed that she was right and quickly edited the entire script just before release.
Editing a script in GDocs is a bad idea. Wow yeah don't do this.
OK NUMBERS TIME
Overall: So as of 9am GMT on February 23rd 2018, Phoenix Wright: Turnabout Cuddles! has cleared 40 downloads, coming from 161 views. That means around 25% of the people who clicked on the page actually went ahead and downloaded it - which is actually pretty surprising!
Platforms: The game is out on PC and Mac (I wanted to do Android as well but it looked like Effort), and while the majority (31) of people downloaded on PC, we did get 9 Mac players too. Which is pretty cool! Making it for both platforms is super easy on Ren'py since it just makes both executables at the same time, so if you are a Ren'py developer, you should probably release both (though I'm sure everyone already does this and I'm being dumb.)
Sources: This is where it gets interesting. Our only bit of promo was a couple of tweets I did to my personal account, which got a few quote tweets from friends and some standard RTs, but nothing mind-blowing - not exactly surprising given the niche-ness of the game and the fact my followers aren't big into PW like we are.
In the end, Twitter accounted for just 8 views. The rest of the views came directly from itch.io - 41 came from the "newest Visual Novels" page alone. Second highest was the visual novel page overall - this suggests that the people of itch.io just really love visual novels, which isn't surprising - it's a good platform for this kind of game.
Other tags that did well for us were dating sim and the fact it was free. I threw in a bunch of tags as an experiment, but nothing broke 5 views.
What helps was that when we launched, the visual novel genre was kind of quiet on the release front, so our game hung around the top spots for a while. It's still getting views from the "newest" page though, so people are still scrolling down a ways to find new games to play.
IS IT A SUCCESS?
Yes! Absolutely. Downloads and views began crashing down on the third day after Phoenix Wright: Turnabout Cuddles! launched, which isn't surprising given we were drawing most of our traffic from its newness, and new games are being launched all the time. There was a sudden spike in downloads (which oddly wasn't matched with a spike in views) on February 20th which I can't account for, but other than that it's been a downwards trend.
But honestly, my download target was 5. If just five people had bothered to go through the steps required to get the files to our game, I would've considered that an enormous achievement. The fact we got 40 is ridiculous, and I can't think everyone who downloaded it enough.
And a special thanks to the one commenter so far, who actually liked the game and all, which is even better. If you're reading this and you played the game, please leave a comment! I want to know what your favourite bits were and all sorts of things.
Anyway this went on longer than planned - thanks again to everyone who so much as looked at the page over the last 10 days, and a big thank you to the 40 of you who downloaded the game. It is a tiny, tiny number in reality, but it means the world to us.
Get Phoenix Wright - Turnabout Cuddles!
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