Make It, And Some Idiot Will Buy It

I saw an astrology channel today. I recommended it to my brother too and watched the channel for 5 minutes or so. I must say that it was one of the most interesting experiences I had during this year.

There was some caller (old woman), and the astrology-woman explained how that old lady’s future looks like. I wasn’t exactly sure what they did… but apparently it looked like that the scam artist, I mean the astrologist looked some space map and explained how Jupiter’s transition suggested that there will be changes coming next year. According to Uranus and some moons, the lady’s career will bring something new (to which the lady said that she is retired).

It cost like 1,95 euros per minute, and in the very end of the call, the lady asked if they could also tell the future of her grandchildren. To this, the astrology woman pointed out that “they cannot predict the future of other people, only the people who call them”. That’s quite interesting statement, after taking into account that they just predicted to future career changes of this old retired lady… from positions and transitions of planets.

I don’t think this is the approach to take in game development. Especially indie game development where you have the chance to actually care about your customers.

But maybe this will make somebody to think a bit.

(At least you now have a backup plan: if your game isn’t selling, try astrology instead)

P.S. I’m not suggesting that adorable old lady would be an idiot. She sounded like a nice lady. Nothing against her. This blog post was made in more general sense.

Juuso Hietalahti


  1. whoa, I bet that was working since: I just lost my debit card!

    (In a dream)

    They didn’t get my pin though.

  2. I can tell your future! Just give me all of your bank account numbers and their pins, as they are important for the process.

    …Ok, good. Now close your eyes and jump around three times…I predict…you will become very poor, and it is soon!!

  3. Also, what I’ve also been trying to say is how much you *BELIEVE* in something plays a role in buying a lot of things, if not everything.

  4. You are implying that the astrologists don’t care about their customers. I don’t think that’s true, as sad as it may sound. Some may be scams but 95% of them actually believe in what they say, and they believe strongly that they’re doing their customers a good service.

    This is especially obvious if you consider that Astrology is just another intricate believe system with traditions and rituals, just like any kind of religion.

    My point is: you can sell something to someone that can be entirely disproven and is completely made up, yet both ends of the bargain will BELIEVE that to be a good deal and enjoy the interaction. We’re talking about emotions here, and that the astrologer made the woman feel good, which in turn will make the astrologer feel good a little. To a smaller extend, I think this is also why people turn to chit-chat and gossip so often – it sets their minds to hack away at something.

    What we do with games isn’t so different. Some games try too hard to come off as cool, special, odd, artistic or plain brutal, that’s where it gets obvious. But I think with games you just take for granted that you’re being entertained, otherwise you’ll just ignore it. Yet all these games do is to bring some kind of routine and rewards to your life. From casual games (Farmville) to adult games (Call of Duty) – both have been giving us essentially the same experience in different clothing. And series or games from reknown developers have basically foretold us that we’ll enjoy the experience, so we pre-order the game. Or buy it via Steam, where we couldn’t even get a refund or sell it as used.

    In that sense: we’re all idiots. Once you’ve realized and accepted that, you’ll find that both selling stuff and enjoying life becomes a much easier experience. :)

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