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no more demos

Posted: Wed May 29, 2019 9:28 am
by jack1974
I'll probably do a blog post explaining in details but... I spoke with many people, fellow indies, etc.
Basically in 2019 NOBODY is doing demos anymore.
Not just that, but it's proven that doing them HURTS sales (if you're curious check this video:

Considering the tough indie situation right now, I really don't need extra hurdles to my survival :mrgreen:
(beside doing demos is still an extra effort, there can be bugs appearing only in demo, etc)

I know a few people here wanted demos but, in the end, I need to do what's best for my business and also if 99% of indies don't do a demo there must be A REASON.

Curiously, Corona Borealis didn't have a demo and did extraordinarily well, better than my expectations. So it just confirms all those theories!

Re: no more demos

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 10:25 am
by Troyen
Out of curiosity, what price range are those no-demo indies selling at?

Stumbled across a $25 VN/RPG yesterday from a publisher I'd never heard before. The art was unusual (painted style), but there was a single screenshot of a game system that made this game seem different from other games I'd played. Still, if it hadn't been for the demo hooking me, I'd have passed over the game. (The video...was not so good, but also not representative of the game, as with most VN videos.)

For a game around the $5, $10, maybe even $15 a demo may not matter much. But a $25 game is "expensive" in indie-world and suggests a game you're expecting to spend a lot of time with. And it's much more of a gamble with an unknown developer.

Though I suppose for Steam buyers, the new and simpler thing is to just request a refund if you don't like the game. But that only works if you buy it on Steam and force the dev to take the Steam cut...

Re: no more demos

Posted: Tue Jun 11, 2019 10:54 am
by jack1974
There's a variety of prices, including some at $25, for example my friend and colleague Cliff is selling Production Line for $25 without demo. And he sells A LOT, like 100 times me :lol: Though he makes a lot of videos.

I made a calculation recently, based on Cursed Lands, one of my most successful recent titles (and it's looking to be one of my most successful overall). Even if I accounted for a 20% "conversion rate" (which means that 1 person out of 5 who tried the demo bought it) it would account to LESS than 10% of total sales. And 20% conversion rate is nuts, it's usually between 1-3% :)

And of course what I cannot know, is how many people didn't buy the game after playing the demo. But that's not my concern, if someone doesn't like a game he/she should be entitled to not buy it.

Anyways for now I removed the PS2 demo to focus on working on the full game since it's distracting (the demos might have some bugs not showing at all in the final game so I have to mantain two versions in practice!) but as I wrote in the blog post I can always do it again once the development is complete.