I forgot to write my customary “game released” on the blog yesterday, probably because the game went out in a weird Apple-induced flurry in the mid-morning and because it was the first time I’d released a mobile game. So anyway, Snek., the game of using ridiculous physical tics to control a game of snake, is now out there on the app store.
I definitely have mixed feelings about this one. It felt really weird and kind of wrong to make a game that feels like it’s so much harder for people to get access to than my traditional web games, or even standard downloadable games. That along with the fact that the game is just hard to play, too hard for some (or maybe most) people. And I don’t mean hard as in skill, but just hard as in the physical movements aren’t necessarily intuitive at all. I’ve already written about that particular tension of usability/accessibility with the kind of game I was interested in. So anyway, that panned out like you might expect – the only two reviews of the game I’ve seen are basically along the “it doesn’t work” line. Which is kind of fair.
Anyway, the whole thing didn’t make the biggest of impacts on release yesterday and to a certain extent it feels like it’s not going to be one of those things that very many people encounter. So sad for me, wah wah etc. Yeah yeah. Anyway, I’m personally really happy with it as a thing I’ve made and I think the physical comedy it encourages is pretty great. More than 100 people have had a go, and to be honest, it’s not that long ago that I would have been over the moon that that many people had seen one of my games. So, given the lack of promotion and the difficult platform, I think I’ll choose to be happy about this one anyway. The mere fact that a few people around the world have been waggling their iPhone and iPads around to control the snek is a good thing._
I suppose I should probably learn some lessons about promotion and mobile platforms and stuff like that. I probably have learned some things, even. Mostly, I think that you probably really need to actually promote rather than my general strategy of “tweet and hope”. So perhaps I ought to look into how that sort of thing is done. Ultimately, I just want people to play my games, so if I need to get into some amount of promoting to make that happen, I just should.
Definitely super excited about making more mobile things, anyway. I think these phones and tablets with all their different sensors and so on seem like a great space to make fun and funny things in!