Let’s talk numbers!
In making Another Star, I didn’t plan for it to make enough income to live off. I’m not that niave. There are a lot of indie games out there to compete with for attention—not to mention games and entertainment in general—and going into the game’s development, I hadn’t released a game in over ten years. The game was primarily meant to pad my portfolio and generate some freelance work so I could get back on track, both financially and in regards to my career.
To that end, I was hoping for about 1,000 sales in the first three months. I didn’t necessarily expect to get that much, but it was a goal to shoot for. 1,000 sales would earn Vision Riders a little under $9,000 after fees, which I felt would be enough to proceed straight into another six month project.
However, the minimum number of sales I decided I would need was a mere 100 total in the first three months. That would give me enough to pay for a critically-needed upgrade to my aging computer, and maybe even have a little left over on the side for spending money. To reach that, I’d only need about one sale a day for three months straight. That should be easy enough, I thought.
Another Star first went on sale on 20 March, 2014. As of 30 April, it has sold only 24 copies across all retailers, and brought in approximately $217.92 (after initial fees). Here’s the raw numbers:
The gaps, of course, mean that I’m not meeting my one-a-day minimum sales. In order to reach the meager 100 sales, the game really needs to be at about twice the sales numbers that it is right now. As it stands, the game has not yet reached the payout level for any of the three retailers it’s on, which means the company doesn’t even get that money yet.
It’s certainly not the end of the world, but it is more than a little disappointing. It’s also going to make it difficult to go on, unless I start getting some really well-paying freelance stuff in the near future. But that’s another discussion for another day.
Meanwhile, here’s how the game is faring on Steam Greenlight as I write this:
As you can see, it’s not doing too bad for only being on the service for a couple weeks now. However, it’s still lagging significantly behind where the current top 100 were at this point in their lives. The percentage of “no” votes is also a bit discouraging. As you can see, I get a lot of no votes, which I suppose comes with the territory of the game’s art style.
There’s still plenty of time for improvement, though. I’ve been putting money into marketing where I can afford to, and friends are helping me push it through Greenlight as much as they can. Hopefully next month I’ll have better news to report!