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New Developer to Kongregate: Educate Me! :)

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Hello everyone,

I am the founder of the indie studio Frogdice. We’ve been around since 1996 but our focus was online games. Our oldest game is a 17 year old MUD called Threshold RPG

We recently finished our first stand alone game and it was also our first game in Unity3d.

I uploaded a version of it last night here on Kongregate. It is called Tower of Elements and it is a match-3, tower defense, RPG hybrid.

I have never hosted a game on Kongregate before so this is a totally new experience. I am also new to the community so I have no idea what sort of things people expect from games here.

The version I uploaded is the first 10 levels and first boss battle in the game. The full game has 90 levels and can be bought from our site (if anyone wants to do that, here’s a 50% discount code: TOEKONG ). Or if you prefer, you can grab it from a few other portals like Big Fish Games. The one on our site though is 100% DRM free. Download it and install it on as many computers as you want. Share it with family. That’s fine with us.

How does that deal sound to you all? Am I providing enough quality gameplay in the version I uploaded here? Is it lame of me to have a shorter version of the game here but a larger version that you have to buy?

I really don’t know. I’ve read up on Kongregate a lot over the years (as you can tell I made this account in 2009) but I’m still a n00b when it comes to Kongregate.

I’d love to hear your feedback.

Thanks,

-Michael Hartman
Frogdice – http://www.frogdice.com

 
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The Developer Center would certainly be helpful.

 
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Thank you eProdigy. I poked around there a bit before uploading anything and it was very useful.

I actually intend to point one of our programmers there to look into the APIs so we can hopefully get some high scores added and maybe eventually have some achievements in Tower of Elements here as well.

What I was really trying to get a handle on is what players like and what they expect out of a game here.

Is it lame to have a smaller version here and a bigger version elsewhere that has to be bought? Or is that totally ok and understandable.

I don’t want to do something lame and tick people off. I know how easy it can be to stumble into a new internet community and accidentally make terrible mistakes.

 
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Oh, it’s inevitable that any game is going to piss off people, full version or not. I personally have no grudge against the idea of a free trial.

 
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The best known game on here for controversy around that is VVVVV. There were a few mutterings about the free game on here being a demo of a full game, but not many, and it blew over pretty quickly. Quite a lot of people still speak highly of it. Since that was uploaded other ones have been, there was a tower defence. They’ve had badges, they’ve gone down well: the only really important thing is making it clear from the start that it’s not a full game, so that people don’t feel cut off unexpectedly when they can’t go further.

 
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Ok, sounds good. So being clear up front is key? Can you take a look at the game and how I wrote the description and let me know what you think?

Tower of Elements

Very early in the description I write this:

==
Full 90 level version available on our web site. http://toe.frogdice.com
50% off discount code for Kongregate players:

TOEKONG
==

I feel like that makes it clear that the version here is a shorter/trial version. Am I wrong?

Thanks for the feedback.


-Michael

Tower of Elements – match 3, tower defense, rpg
steve@calibratedsolutions.com

 
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Originally posted by Frogdice:

I feel like that makes it clear that the version here is a shorter/trial version. Am I wrong?

Try adding [Demo] to the title of the game or mentioning that the game is in fact a demo version in the description just to make sure there isn’t any confusion. Also, you shouldn’t post your personal information, such as your email on the forums.

 
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Ugh. That was an accident. How do I delete or edit my post?

Also, I was under the impression I can’t change the title at this point, but I will keep that in mind for the future.

Thanks.

 
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Originally posted by Frogdice:

Ugh. That was an accident. How do I delete or edit my post?

Look under your name and post count on the left of the message.

 
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Yeah, you can’t change the game title without emailing Kongregate through the support form.

The main problem I had with your game, which would stop me buying it if I had originally been considering it was that there’s no real progression in the demo, and I feel like the full game is probably 80 more levels of the same thing. Other minor annoyances were the wiggly square by your pointer, and the lack of feedback to combos. Also, the UI is too small for clicking easily in battle (eg the spells), and colelcting coins requires a click when rollover would be much better.

Hope that helps. I really liked the concept for the game, but it needed a ton more polish to keep my attention, and it’s not the sort of game I’d pay for unless it was an app with a ton of awesome content.

 
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You Have Very Good Games Frogdice
I love them
5/5

 
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Personally, I don’t play demo games, and it is nice to see it in the tags or the title.
You can expect people to downgrade it because it is a demo, as most people want full games. Maybe a small extra premium is fine if it does not affect the game too much. But only 10% of the game is not interesting.

It is nice of you to ask though.

 
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I think through Kongregate you can make the content locked until a user pays with kreds, if that would interest you. Putting kreds transactions in your game is going to make you receive lots of flak, even if the game is good and playable without it :(. There was a tower defense/rpg that did this, but the name of it is escaping me right now.

Great game though, I’ll be purchasing the full version as soon as I can get ahold of a parent’s credit card >:D

 
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Originally posted by burrito:

There was a tower defense/rpg that did this, but the name of it is escaping me right now.

Kingdom Rush, GemCraft Labyrinth, and Bloons Tower Defense 5 are three of the TD games that I can think of with microtransactions in them, they seem to be good games for that kind of stuff.


I’ve been feeling a little bored lately, and haven’t had many games to play, so I guess I’ll check it out soon since others are saying good things about it.

 
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No, most people will not take it kindly. The reason is because Kongregate is a free game site. People come to kongregate to play free games, not a free demo. A lot of Kongregators even hate in-game purchases. So your game won’t get the rating it deserves for gameplay, even if you stick “demo” in the tag.

Oh, I created a Threshold account today. Very fun, but a lot of rule reading ;P

EDIT: Sorry for sounding so harsh. Just wanted to make sure what I was saying was clear.

 
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People come to kongregate to play free games, not a free demo.

A demo is a game.

 
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Originally posted by racefan12:

People come to kongregate to play free games, not a free demo.

A demo is a game.

A demo is only a piece of a game, and not a full game. So calling it a game is misleading, and people don’t like to be mislead, and that is why they would down-rate it for only being a demo.

 
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Originally posted by acedragon64:
Originally posted by racefan12:

People come to kongregate to play free games, not a free demo.

A demo is a game.

A demo is only a piece of a game, and not a full game. So calling it a game is misleading, and people don’t like to be mislead, and that is why they would down-rate it for only being a demo.

A piece of a game is a game. And if he states it’s a demo, than he should not be downrated for it if it’s a good one.
 
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Some of the better games are demos: Sarah’s Run (Unity) and VVVVVV. Arguably, with the release of Super Hexagon on Steam, Hexagon is a demo as well.

[Edit: All 3 “demos” are badged, too. ;)]

 
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Originally posted by adv0catus:

Some of the better games are demos: Sarah’s Run (Unity) and VVVVVV. Arguably, with the release of Super Hexagon on Steam, Hexagon is a demo as well.

[Edit: All 3 “demos” are badged, too. ;)]

Let’s not forget Defender’s Quest.

 
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Originally posted by Ericzander:
Originally posted by acedragon64:
Originally posted by racefan12:

People come to kongregate to play free games, not a free demo.

A demo is a game.

A demo is only a piece of a game, and not a full game. So calling it a game is misleading, and people don’t like to be mislead, and that is why they would down-rate it for only being a demo.

A piece of a game is a game. And if he states it’s a demo, than he should not be downrated for it if it’s a good one.

I did not say it should be downrated, I said it would be.