BoomCo Games is a young and dynamic start-up with big goals. We are committed to making fun and original games on any and all platforms. Development on our first game, Apocalypse Neighbors, is well on it's way!

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0 comments by boomcogames on Jul 30th, 2014

So I haven’t posted any blogs in a while, I have been extraordinarily busy with work, and when I do have some time it is spent attending one of the many weddings, stags and birthdays that seem to multiply every year. No post doesn’t mean nothing has been happening though, lots has happened in fact. The biggest event of the month was probably the complete failure of our kickstarter campaign. We had prepared a good Kickstarter page, based on the model of successful video games crowdfunding campaigns. We had lots of graphics, images and some videos. We had spent months building a following on twitter (5k+) and facebook (1k+). We spread the word around friends and family weeks prior to the launch to guarantee a strong start. And we did many of the things we were advised to do by the multitude of blogs, forums and websites with crowdfunding advice. Unfortunately that wasn't enough, all these efforts led to very disappointing results, we did reach 20% of our funding target in the first couple of days, but after that we failed to generate enough interest to continue with the same kind of growth. In fact out of all the funding eventually received (28% of target) I can honestly say I knew most of the pledgers personally. So this is bittersweet, we are amazed by the great generosity of friends and family and we are very disappointed we couldn’t generate enough interest in the game. The hard truth is that thousands of followers do not translate into thousands of backers. That being said we were also terrified of a successful campaign and the associated headache of producing all the rewards, and we would have had lot’s of rewards to fulfill if the campaign had been successful.

I guess the biggest reason the campaign didn’t work is the lack of gameplay, if we had had a game demo available for journalists, bloggers and fans then they might have written pieces on the game and helped us gain momentum, but the game simply wasn’t ready for a demo then and it isn’t now. So we have refocused our efforts on moving the game forward and reduced our marketing. There is no point in contacting people and asking them to write about your game if they can’t play it, a few videos are not enough for them to write a comprehensive piece. So we have retreated from Kickstarter and reduced our media activity, we will focus on getting the game to demo level and then if we need it, we will return to Kickstarter with a more modest campaign, and more specific goals. We may have failed at crowdfunding, but we were still able to raise an additional £15k capital. Some of this money came from an investor increasing their investment and some of it came from a loaner increasing their loan to us. So in short 2 of the most awesome people in our lives became even more awesome than before by allowing us to carry on with our dream; for the while at least. We are not done yet, and we still need some cash, some to finish the game and some to hire a PR agency to help with the launch campaign. It is obvious that the priority for us is getting the game ready at the expected level of awesomeness, but being able to launch it successfully would allow us to hit the ground running and get our backers some swift return on investment.In the last couple of weeks alpha build 2.3 was completed. In this version all backgrounds for the 250 levels had been added. Most were great and a few will need some minor scale adjustments and a few background elements need better placement.We had also added the first version of specials, but these still needed some tuning, some were way too powerful and other too weak. Ammo and special ammo from alpha 2.2 had been tuned for this version, and they are almost all complete. Some minor revisions are still needed on some of them and we will continue tuning them until the game is balanced.The scoring aspect of the game is almost finished now, actions generate Dominance Points and affect Karma Meters. Some tuning is going to be necessary so that the relationship between gameplay, player growth and rewards stays balanced, not too easy and not too hard.The build also included many under-the-hood fixes and improvements, and far fewer bugs. Soon after receiving alpha build 2.3 we received alpha build  2.3.1. This version addresses more of the problems in version 2.2 and a few from 2.3.This version had more tuning to ammo, special ammo and specials, still more to be done, getting a balanced set of ammo when we have so many different ones is no easy feat.Neutral houses have been added and they can become corrupted, this system still needs more tweaking and tuning, but we should be getting there soon.The next iteration of the game should have construction and defences implemented, and more tuning to ammo and specials.

Over the next month  a lot of team members are going to be affected by weddings and holidays, in fact this has already started. But it can’t be all work all the time and as the game nears completion it seems fair to allow some time off, we all need it. Most of the art and animations are complete as is sound, we now need to finish the single player campaign and add/tune all the game functionalities. We hope to get a Lite version of the game at that point. After that we get the multiplayer modes in the game and polish the whole thing ‘till it shines. So close yet still much to do...

 

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