Dmitry, tell us about your team. Many of you are there, where are you from, how
have been working together. The kitchen was only four people. General Director Evgeny romijn (aka project Manager), game designer Ilya Antonov, programmer Anton Baranov and I — marketer.
In addition, some of the projects carried out on a outsource students and graduates of the Perm Polytechnic University. When we started in 2013, we were also ordinary students and took their first steps in game development. TurnOn is your first major project.
No, this was WitchCraft game on the Windows Phone platform. This adventure game, one where the good witch, which is often haunted by failure on the path of mastering magical knowledge, opens up a shop of magical goods and services. We participated in Imagine Cup in 2013 and was ranked second in Russia, received a grant of 300 thousand rubles. We had planned on this money to develop WitchCraft, to do the second part, but encountered difficulties.
The first part was implemented in 2D, and continued, we started to do on the new Unity3D engine. Our team is small, and we were not prepared for such a rapid transition from 2D to 3D, so the project was frozen. And then decided again to participate in Imagine Cup in 2014 and started developing a new game — TurnOn. What is this game.
TurnOn — a platform game where the character travels through the levels, goes from one to another, meets with the bosses and so on. In our game, the hero is an electrical spark named Ternon, which accidentally gets into the city power plant, under strong current discharge comes alive and turns into a sentient being. This spark goes to save the city and return the light to peoples homes when the accident the city remains without electricity. Ternon is faced with different obstacles.
For example, we have to deal with the looters and to repair the wiring in a private house. This is a good and informative game. We came up with the levels of different directions. There is, for example, levels of research and music.
As for the audience — according to the ESRB rating (the rating of video games in the U.S. and Canada), this audience is Everyone. By PEGI (the European rating of the video games), that audience 3+. However, in our opinion, this is a game for all ages. How long have you created a TurnOn.
Our designer Ilya shared the idea of the game after the new year holidays of 2014. The team liked, and we immediately began to develop the idea and make a prototype. Then we learned about the competition Games Jam Kanobu and decided that I would start to check the viability of the toy. For the month remaining before the competition, managed to create a prototype with two levels.
Received not only positive comments but also the 3rd place among 450 games presented in the competition. Most liked the atmosphere of our game and gameplay. Also at the conference DevGAMM Moscow 2014 award we received the “Best indie game”. The participation gave us extra motivation in the process of working on the game.
Have you ever thought about the Foundation of their development studios. Of course.
From the beginning, from the very first designed the game, we thought about how a group of developers to evolve into a successful game Studio. Since 2013 we very carefully considered all the available for students opportunities and various initiatives that could help us in the project development expert, financial and technological assistance. After brief deliberation, decided to participate in the programs of the YouthSpark initiative, which conducts worldwide Microsoft. The decision was unanimous.
Almost all team members were students-partners. Two years in a row we participated in the Imagine Cup competition, in 2013 and 2014. At the second attempt we were very lucky. In April we performed at the Russian final where he won first place, but in July I went to Seattle, where the headquarters of Microsoft and where was held the international final.
We won and received from Microsoft a grant for 50 thousand dollars, which allowed for further development of the game. Were you involved in any other major competitions. Yes, in parallel with the Imagine Cup three times we applied for participation in the program AppCampus.
This program, which in 2012 founded the Microsoft company and Nokia, to promote the development of quality apps for the new Windows Phone OS. Participation in the program gives you the opportunity to receive a grant in the amount of 20, 50 or 70 thousand euros — depending on the level you are creating the application. The first application we submitted back in 2013 with WitchCraft, but then the program did not pass, and didnt really. Then, taking into account all the mistakes of the first attempt, filed for a second time with TurnOn, but again were not included in the program.
The third time we filed the application together with participation in the Imagine Cup finals. In the final there were a few additional categories that could be overcome all participants, among them was AppCampus Awards. And we finally won and received a grant of 20 thousand euros and were included in the program. What was the part in the AppCampus program.
In September 2014 we completed a two-week internship in Finland-based Aalto University. Except us, in the fall collection were 18 teams from Italy, Chile, Spain, Finland, Brazil, Thailand, Vietnam, Hungary, Singapore and Taiwan. The first 4 days we spent in the city of Espoo, where Aalto University, worked pitches with potential investors, have studied a hybrid model Canvas for mobile apps and the principle of Lean Startup and, of course, attended many workshops and trainings on intelligence gathering, support, and featuring applications and so on.
We also participated in the hackathon Game Jam in Tallinn. Commands generated by ibid., represented games, collected over 48 hours. The Grand prize was 1000 Euro, it went to the team of participants from Brazil and Vietnam. Then we spent a week in Helsinki, visited the office of Microsoft in Finland, spoke to the experts about how to market apps in General and games in particular, discussed issues of monetization.
I particularly remember a visit to the Alma mater Angry Birds — Rovio. We with Eugene Reminyl managed to get acquainted with Peter Vesterbacka, the companys cofounder, marketing Director and mastermind behind Angry Birds. By meeting with him we left, full of energy and motivation rather run TurnOn to the mass market.
You will be working with mobile platforms?. We have released a free demo of the game TurnOn for Windows Phone, but then decided to move away from the development of mobile lines. Too much competition. Now we are more interested in digital and console.
In April, the game got the green light on the games Steam service, at the end of June as part of the gaming conference E3 2015 in Los Angeles, was the announcement of the release TurnOn the console, the Xbox One program [email protected], which we are since January of this year. The release of our game on Xbox One and on Steam is planned for 2016. The monetization model well have a simple one-time fee for access to the game. In the gaming segment of the price of the game is usually about $ 20.
A particular amount offered for our game, we can not name, but it is certain that no further payments within the game will not be. What are the forecasts for the project development and monetization. Future revenues from the project now and it is difficult to speak early, however it is possible to evaluate the results of the other studios producing their games on consoles and Steam, which, in fact, passed a similar path.
So, Moon Studios, according to Studio founder Thomas Mahler, releasing Ori and the Blind Forest, a week after the start of sales paid for 5 years of development. And here, for example, about the Journey from the Studio Thatgamecompany is still unknown, paid off or not, but it has become one of the fastest selling games in its genre in 2013. Another game, The Last of Us, 2013 has sold 3.4 million copies in just 3 weeks (given as sales on physical media and digital download). It would be great if we manage to repeat the success of these toys.