Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Thoughts on EGX




It's easy to get caught up in the excitement of an event like EGX, all those people and all those games, but the question to ask your self as a developer is; Is this the right venue for our game? While we where there we noticed that the games that had a constant stream of people were, generally, a visual spectacle. They also had pick up and play element to them. A game like Black and White Bushido is the quintessential EGX indie game. This game plays a lot like Nidhog or Towerfall, and like those games it's just as much fun to watch people playing as it is to sit there a play it yourself. One of the great things about these types of games and, in my opinion, one of the reasons these games do so well at events like these is that you don't need instruction to play. I can sit down and instantly know what I am playing and how I should be playing. The Dev's of these games know they dont have to reinvent the wheel when it comes to controls. All they have to do is create an interesting hook (in this case the ability to become invisible if your character is against the same background colour as themselves) and good visuals, and that should make people stop and take
interest.



So what if your game isn't a spectacle? What if you have created a slow, methodical game with weird controls? Is EGX still for you? This is a question we have been asking ourselves. Vanishing Point is in many ways a slow, methodical, thinking man's game. There is very little spectacle and it needs a 10 minute tutorial to familiarize yourself with the systems and controls. This is not ideal in a crowded hall when you're surrounded by 20 other dev's all wanting attention. Another aspect of EGX that a small team must take into consideration is the cost. EGX isn't cheap. You're looking at about £1200 just for the booth and a computer and then there's the rest of the stuff you will need (cake! Always a good way to get people in). There isn't a definitive answer to this question. I think it all depends on your momentum and if you have been doing other trade shows. I would definitely say it shouldn't be the first place you show your game. There are smaller shows where you will have the time you need to explain your strange (but wonderful) systems to the people who pass by, but if you're close to launch and you want the mass exposure there is no better place than EGX.

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