I’m an old school gamer and back in the late 90’s early 2000’s I got really big into the modding scene with JK: DF2. None of that is relevant, but maybe it paints a picture of where I come from. These days I see a lot of “Early Access” games, half finished, charging people money to test their games, not knowing if the product will ever be finished (There is no guarantee). And I think just a few bad apples can really ruin Early Access for people that do deserve it. Kickstarter is just as bad (In My Humblest of Opinions).
To make a long story short when UE4 was released I purchased a licenses and got working on a couple ideas. The idea I settled on is a simple concept. I decided it was probably a good idea to keep everything simple if I actually planned to release a game (since I’m a 1 man army). I think this is very important for Indie developers to think about. If you bury yourself it’s likely it will never be completed. With my simple concept I’ve planned all features on a spreadsheet and every night I try to cross something off the list. By doing this, it is helping my motivation. All day while at work I just can’t wait to get home and cross another thing off the list. It’s almost got addicting. Of course not every night is productive and not every night I get to work on it. Personal life is another story, trying to juggle my full time job as an iOS developer, and my home life with my family and 2 babies, but I’m starting to get used to about 5 hours of sleep a night. The game development process just fuels me to keep going. UE4 is awesome for this because you get to see the results of your hard work instantly and is very gratifying.
What I mean by “developing low key” is keeping everything close to my chest until it’s ready for the public. I do not plan to offer Early Access, or even going to kickstarter. I will have a dev blog but I will not make that public until just close to the end. Just nose to the grindstone until it’s complete. I hope the hard work pays off because my plan is this will generate enough revenue for me to quit answering to the man and start my own game studio. And if that doesn’t work, it will be my resume to land a job at Epic Or Valve, or EA (JUST KIDDING!)
What are your guys thoughts on Early Access/Kickstarter vs. just developing and releasing?