Title: GL Golf (Download for Mac :: Buy)
Developer: Nuclear Nova Software
Released: March 2004
Time of Development: 5 months part time as a hobby, plus continued improvement since the release, maybe 1-5 hours a week
Platforms : Mac OS X
I developed GL Golf as a hobby to enter into the uDevGames 2003 contest. It won Editors Choice and received lots of positive feedback. I decided to improve the game and release it as shareware, and I was amazed by the sales. It took about two months to get the sales up to the average rate, but for over two years I have maintained a steady income. This is mostly due to constant updates of the game, at least once a month. I’ve added several new features to every patch, and the version today looks like an entirely different game than the one released in March of 2004.
- Price: US $15
- Sold 641 units
- Total: US $9615
GL Golf Combo
- Price: US $25
- Sold 645 units
- Total: US $16125
GL Golf Expansion
- Price: US $10
- Sold 263 units
- Sales: US $2630
$28360 over two and a half years. Average monthly sales – 43 copies of GL Golf or the Combo pack with a total of $945 a month.
Total Downloads – 85,000 + downloads from sites OTHER than Apple.com.
I don’t how many downloads Apple.com sends me, I actually need to setup a simple counter on my website to count the number of downloads the send me. I am estimating it to be a large number, possibly 25,000-50,000
- Contracted course maker’s commission – $2,640
- Affiliate Sales – $265
- eSellerate and Plimus Commission – $2,836
Tips to other developers.
As told by Jake Leveto:
- The casual game market is perfect for small shareware games. My target audience is adults, most of which aren’t hardcore gamers.
- Update often, adding new features and fixing bugs. Golf is a perfect example of a game that can be improved very easily, and it is much easier to update a game than to make a new game from scratch.
- If possible create an add-on (expansion pack) for an extra cost, the course pack
accounts for around 1/3rd of my revenue.
- Listen to your users, ask for feedback. Most of the features I’ve added to GL Golf have been suggested by owners.
Continue improving GL Golf and my other two games. Due to college I don’t have the time to program a game from scratch, and Its much faster and easier to keep working on GL Golf. I would love to have the game ported to Windows, because all of the sales above are only from Mac users. I may have time to do this in the future but I am considering paying someone to do it for me.
I think GL Golf is an excellent example of a successful indie game: made part time, continously upgrading it, steady sales. Big congratulations to Jake at Nuclear Nova Software for sharing the numbers and tips. Good luck with the sales!