Traffic Race 3D 2 – Windows 8+ Open Beta

We’re super happy to announce that Traffic Race 3D 2 Next Gen is available in the Windows Store as a beta. 

Its still a very early version and we hope to get feedback from you on this game. Let us know what you like and don’t like.

Moving forward we hope to release weekly updates with new content.

Download Traffic Race 3D 2 Next Gen beta from Windows Store

Enjoy!

Traffic Race 3D 2 Open Beta for Windows 8+

Traffic Race 3D 2 Open Beta for Windows 8+

Traffic Race 3D 2 – Celebrating 200 000 downloads

We are happy to announce that we have reached 200 000+ download on Windows Phone.

As a way of saying thanks to all of our fans we have decided to invest time and money into creating a brand new update for Traffic Race 3D 2

Here is a small list of what we are working on
* Brand new racing physics engine that can handle even more seed.
* Better cars with more differences and we’re skipping old crappy cars.
* New and improved graphics.
* Better AI on traffic.
* Improved race courses.
* Improved high score system.
* Improved framerate and less glitches.
* Different input choices: Tilt, touch and keyboard/joystick.
* More settings to control quality of the game.
* Simplified purchase process (There is only 1 In app purchase and it costs 1$ and gives you all content, no ads or delays between levels)

We’ve been at the development for a few weeks and it already looks a lot better compared to Traffic Race 3D 2 for Windows Phone. Hopefully we’ll have a beta ready for Windows in a few weeks!

Traffic Race 3D 2 vs Traffic Race 3D 2 Next Gen

Traffic Race 3D 2 vs Traffic Race 3D 2 Next Gen

Air Merc – Week 1

Focus this week:
– Write basic background story
x Get basic control system for air planes in place
x Create basic water backdrop graphics
x Add very basic island graphics
x Publish first ugly version on GameJolt without proper gameplay :)

Completed this week:
– Starting a new project is challenging and hard, staying motivated is sometimes hard. One thing that I like is taking screenshots how your game looks and changes during the process. That way you can see that you are progressing. To do it easy I’ve added a simple screenshot script.

First screenshot of Air Merc

First screenshot of Air Merc

– Added: xARM Aspect and Resolution Master for Unity
– Added: A tiled Island, wonder if the scale is correct? Should the Island tiles be bigger maybe?

Air Merc Island

Air Merc Island

Added the game to GameJolt!

Cheesy background story
The year is 2020 and the world has dramatically changed due to break down of the economy. All major world powers have collapsed, UN is gone and several small wars have broken out.
You are a member of Air Merc, an elite fighting force of rogued pilots. No mission is unacceptable if you have the money to pay for it.

Air Merc – Hello world

Hi!

This is the first post for the development of Air Merc.

My main target for this game will be mobile devices and I’ve mostly been working with Windows Phone so that is my first target. I will share the progress on Game Jolt too.

I always aim to create a early playable version of the game. Never mind if its ugly or if it just uses boxes as graphics, right now all we want to do is try out the concept and see if its fun enough.

Its better to fail fast, rather than spending days or weeks creating perfect graphics when it turns out the game idea is not fun enough.

As gamedev tools I’ll use Unity3D with NGUI, GIMP, Audacity

I only have about 1h a day to spend on gamedev that means that I need to use my time extremely well. Therefore I use a lot of free or paid for assets.
In this game I’ll use air planes sprites from Mark Simpson http://prinzeugn.deviantart.com/

The game concept is an evolution of Missile Dash

Setting limits and boundaries is good from the start, so here is a major one. The game is designed to run at 480×800, this is the lowest resolution on Windows Phone, most of users use this resolution.

Postmortem – Boiiing!

Beware this is the first postmortem I’m writing!

The idea & concept
Boiiing! was not supposed to be a real game, it was just a fun Ludum Dare 31 #LD48 Jam that I did with my kids. As per usual my #LD48 challenges only last for about 10 hours and are not that serious, I just try to learn new things.  After playing around with the simple physics and 2D world that we created I just fell in love with the concept!

Boiiing Development the start

(This is how it looked after #LD48) 

Making the game – Boiiing!
Boiiing! started as LD48 project that I did with my kids. My kids are 4 and 6 years old so they had some really funny and crazy ideas. Their first order was: Make a game where you drive a hot wheel car and it was really important that you should jump over a purple octopus arm!

As per usual I didn’t have any design specs or similar. I just developed the game and one small feature at a time and performed a lot of play test. Most ideas I had was implemented but some are still left on the todo list. I use Unity3D as a game engine (yes even for 2D games) and making fast proptypes is very easy!

From the start I wanted very basic graphics, most of the initial graphics was actually drawn on paper and then imported into Gimp.

Boiing In Development

On this game I wanted to focus on building or using a nice GUI, most of my previous games have very ugly looking GUI’s. But after several attemts I found that I didn’t have the skills to do it and deiced to use a bough asset from gamedevmarket.net.
I did the same for music and found some great tunes on incompetech.com

I’m a hobby dev so that means working on weekend and evenings, I probably spent around 80 hours on this game so far.

After a few weeks I badly needed some feedback to make sure that I was on the right track.

Getting feedback
This is not the first game that I made and I know how important and dangerous feedback is! Wait, did I just write dangerous? Yes feedback can be dangerous. Before asking for feedback you should ask yourself why are you asking for feedback, is it because you truly want hard honest feedback or is it just because you want a positive boost or a pat on the back?

Getting negative feedback in any game development project can kill the entire project for you if you are not ready for it. However waiting too long to get feedback can be dangerous too, what if you spend a whole year on a game and everyone else thinks its utterly crap?

For my games I’ve found something that works pretty well for me. First I show it to my family to get feedback (I do this very early in the development process), then I step up and show it to a limited set of friends that I trust. Watching how they play my games is interesting and scary at the same time.

When I’m ready and usally this is when I start to feel stuck in the level design I usually upload my games to kongregate.com . Then I ask more people to try and promote it. This is really a really important step but at the same time also the first step where you will get honest feedback, and yes people are really mean some times too. So be sure that you are ready for it and can handle it, stay cool and let people have their opinion. I always reply to feedback but if somebody is rude I just drop it, no point in arguing about something that you cannot win. I use kongregate.com because its my main target and its easily accessible.

My final step is to launch a beta and this time I tried the wpbeta.me service.

(Sorry about this long section but its important and have wrecked some of my early projects before I dared to release any games)

What Went Wrong
Feedback:
The feedback that I got from play tests and the beta didn’t provide enough details to make proper design decisions. So in the end I decided to launch the game with “just” 12 levels. One of the hardest things for me to do is good level design and I quickly get frustrated.
Technology: The technology I used is something that I’m used to but this is my first “platform independent” game which caused and still cause some problems with multiple resolutions.
95%: As per usual (although I’m old I never learn) I feel that I was near the completion of the project and started to prepare, screenshots, icons, marketing texts and all the things you need to release a game. This took 1000% more than I had expected and several parts that I wanted to do is still in progress.
Analytics: By using analytics in the beta process I could determine how many levels each user completed and how long they spent on the game. This very valuable and will be essential for the launch.

I still feel it was the right decision to launch the game when I did but I will add a lot more content before I launch it on IOS or Android.

What Went Right
Concept:
The game concept was simple enough for me to stay very focused and I could envision the whole game from the start. I knew I wanted to make a simple game and get it out to the market fast, my last project I spent 2 months working fulltime and its a failure compared to my other earlier game projects.
Music: I selected the music very early in the process and that made me realize that I should stay with the cartoony style and then a lot of other things fell naturally into place.

Conclusion
Passion and love are both very strong driving forces and in this project I found both of them early in the project. This is the first game ever that I feel that I do not hate once its done, most of the time I release games when I’m sick of them :)
Note to self: doing the final bits of any game project no matter how small always take a lot of time!

What’s next?
I do have some marketing stuff that I want to do, a short trailer, possible a press release and then working on spreading the word a bit more. I have a minor update that I’m working on and lots of plans for things to add. BUT I will actually only do them if this game is successful, and what does that mean for me? I want some confirmation & feedback that I’m on the right track and I want people to play my game, how many well lets wait and see but a few thousand would be nice.

Take the game for a spin on Kongregate.com or try it on Windows Phone

Boiiing_simple
Download Boiiing! from Windows Phone Store

Download Windows Store

Results week 1
So how did the game do after 1 week?

So far I’m pretty happy with the results. Its clearly not a mega hit yet and I didn’t expect that. Most sessions last between 1-3 minutes which is pretty good for a game with just 12 levels. Looking at the numbers of sessions so far users do no appear the play the game on a regular basis.
I’ve noticed that level 5 was way to hard and 72% of users gave up at this point, I shuffled the levels around and did some tweaks which improved the results a bit.

Here are my most important KPI’s right now. Later retention will be a very important factor but its pointless to measure on just a week.

Downloads 1 week
Boiiing downloads 2014-10-10

Number of sessions week 1
Boiiing sessions 2014-10-10
Session length week 1
Boiiing sessions length 2014-10-10

Results 1 month
After one month we have 2 634 downloads which is a nice number and about 19 reviews with an average of 5/5.

I was lucky and got feature by Microsoft in: Antigua and Barbuda, Armenia (English), Bahamas, The, Bosnia and Herzegovina (Serbian (Latin)), Brunei, Cambodia, Dominica, Faroe Islands, Finland, Greece, Greenland, Iraq, Israel, Kenya, Kuwait, Laos, Libya, Luxembourg (Dutch), Montenegro, Nauru, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Senegal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Somalia, Tonga, Uzbekistan, Algeria, Armenia (English), Bahrain, Bhutan, Finland, Gambia, The, Guyana, Ireland, Kiribati, Kyrgyzstan, Macedonia, FYRO (Macedonian), Norway, Oman, Rwanda, Saint Lucia, Suriname, Tajikistan

This was amazing and resulted in a nice bump when it come to daily downloads!

During this period I’ve had about 1 update per week with a few new levels which brings the total level count to 19.

The goal is to add a few levels per week.

On the 1st of November I also published the game on Windows 8.1 Store, that will be interesting as this is my first game on the regular Windows Store.

The KPI’s are the same as before, retention is still a bit early to investigate but its clear that a lot of users only try the game once.

All in all I’m ok with the result but still not truly happy about it, I was hoping that more people would play it more than just once. So to sum it up I need to work on the conversion rates.

Downloads 1 month

Boiiing Downloads 1 month Windows Phone

Boiiing Downloads 1 month Windows Phone

Number of sessions 1 month

Boiiing sessions 1 month Windows Phone

Boiiing sessions 1 month Windows Phone

Session length 1 month

Boiiing sessions length 1 month Windows Phone

Boiiing sessions length 1 month Windows Phone

Traffic Race 3D 2 updated v1.3.2

I’ve done a few updates now without updating this page, sorry about that!

Download the update from the Windows Phone Store

Download Traffic Race 3D 2 from Windows Phone Store


New IAP Backer:

For a while I’ve been inspired by https://www.kickstarter.com/ campaigns and how people really enjoy backing games (I’m currently backing a few myself :) ).

With this update I’ve added the ability for you to back this game if you like it. As a reward you’ll get your name in the credits page and you get all unlocks, cars etc in the games + ads are removed. If your into Vanity this IAP is really something for you, your name will be visible for thousands of players each week. So buy it and I’ll make you famous!

New level “Tricky”:
And I’m happy to include a brand new level for you to try. This level is very different from the previous levels in the game and I’ve been debating if I should include it or not. After seeing how my kids love this level I decided to include it.
The level has very little to do with racing but its more about being able to control your car with precision and also to be able to achieve big jumps :)

This upgrade contains the following:

v1.3.2
* Added traffic to city map
* Tweaked Grand Tourer a bit
* Added mew level Tricky.
* Added more IAP options  (Backer, Medium Cash, Large Cash)
* Added credits page, you can get on that :)