Lunar Flight

Lunar Flight

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sh0v0r  [Entwickler] 30. Mai 2013 um 14:54 Uhr
The Future For Lunar Flight
Hi guys, this post is to give you all an honest perspective on where things are with respect to future content updates and patches and why this may be the end.

I would love to continue to add new stuff to Lunar Flight, but it is not selling well enough for me to continue to invest much more time into it. I will be adding a final update to address some multiplayer bugs found yesterday and then I will be moving onto Oculus Rift integration.

My remaining budget from existing sales will only take me out for several more months, adding the Oculus Rift will hopefully bring it to the attenion of the press as there are not many quality titles that support it yet and I hope to get in early.

I am also taking it to the PAX AU Expo in July where I will have a very small pod to demo the game. I hope there are enough press visitors that notice and come and try it out and ask me a few questions about it.

Lunar Flight has generated approximately $200k in revenue from 50,00 units over the 16 months since it's release, from that I have personally earned about $100k after commisions and taxes. The majority of that income was earned from Sales where it was heavily discounted often at %75 off.

This is a pretty good result considering my original sales estimations and the game has gone on to become something much bigger and better than I had ever hoped I would be able to achieve despite it's niche focus.

When I am not having a sale, the daily sales average around 5 - 10 copies, this generates about $100 out of that I make about $50. $350 a week, $1400 a month. This is much less than I would earn if I had a day job, it would be a nice supplementary income. While there will be future sales, they will be less frequent and be harder and harder to promote. When a sale is not on the front Store page as a Daily, Mid Week etc... it's sales are based on discovery where it is burried among the many Simulation tiltles so despite being on sale the revenue increase can be much the same as the average.

So based on this forecast I have to plan for the future and that future is most likely going to be planning for a new title or getting employment. I won't say that I will never add new updates in future because Lunar Flight is very special to me after spending 3 years on it but I have to face the reality.

I had hoped that the Multiplayer update would generate enough income for another 6+ months but it barely made a blip and most of the press I contacted seemed dissinterested. In total I have made about $4k from it, this will cover me for 2 months.

I hope this post doesn't turn you away, I hope you continue to play and keep some semblance of a community of active players, I will most certainly be keeping a server active and joining others.

I want to say a big thankyou to those that have supported me the most, I am still amazed to see just how passionate some of you are about the game and seeing more than 10 Elite Ranked players tells me the game has struck a chord with many of you!
Zuletzt bearbeitet von sh0v0r; 30. Mai 2013 um 14:56 Uhr
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Beiträge 115 von 113
EyeOfRa 30. Mai 2013 um 15:04 Uhr 
Thankyou for your dedication and commitment to this game.
I personally love it, as a few friends of mine do.
Please , if possible, carry on with patches expansions etc.
I was suprised to find you didnt need to pay any extra for Mars..just a thought.
I have a few good ideas to continue the game forward, but dont understand CODE.
Thankyou, your work and effort have produced an excellent game.
RageMojo 30. Mai 2013 um 15:25 Uhr 
i personally love this game and continue to come back to it, and will for a very long time. You ahve to do what you ahve to do and i think many of us would like to see a new title from you. As mentioned, dont be afriad to charge for some DLC.

One thing i have learned in life is never say never. You could hit the jackpot in your next game or win the lotto; you may want to come back to LF in 2-3 years and give it a polish. You never know where life will take you. I will continue to tell people about LF, and i look forward to your next endevour.

No matter what happens short term or long, you gave me many hours of fun for very little expense and i thank you whole heartedly for it.
ParZival 30. Mai 2013 um 15:49 Uhr 
Sorry to see you're moving on from this great achievement of yours. I've spent many an hour on what you've created and can gladly say i've never played anything that gives as such an experience as unique as this.

As an indie dev myself, I know how hard it is to step away on a project you've poured so much effort into.

There are other things I would like to say but my mind doesn't want to recall such comments, although one comes to mind.

You should be proud of what you've accomplished. Among all the widespread torrents of shooters and driving games, you've managed to pluck out those of us who are proud to say we enjoy not being part of the norms of modern gaming society.

Those who have played this game have had much love from the experience as im sure you have had crafting it and we shall continue to do so for many years more.

And on that note I wish you much luck on your future projects.

P.S. Having a Lunar Rover thrown into the mix would be quite splendid. ;)
I'm sorry that MP didn't give LF the boost that you were hoping for. My guess is many see it as a niche game and overlook it as they pursue the next whiz-bang button-masher. I can't blame you for moving on if you have to. You gotta' put bread on the table somehow and LF doesn't seem to be doing it.

As much as I'd like to see Oculus Rift support (and LF would certainly entice me to get one), I expect your support of OR will do more to help Oculus that it will do to improve sales of LF. But it might put you in a position to better promote your next project or get a better paying job. (Not that I know what I'm talking about - I'm no industry insider; I just play one on TV.) I expect you know what you're doing in that regard.

I'm glad to hear that you don't plan to quit on LF entirely, I can imagine it as a hobby project that you continue to tweak and fine tune when the mood strikes you. I've said to you before and I'll say it here: In spite of all the requests and suggestions I throw out; I'm really pleased with the game as it is and that it's remarkable work for one guy. It makes me wonder what other knds of games you might develop, given the chance. Mars was icing on the cake and MP is sprinkles (or something). It's great to be able to share the moon with such a great (if small) group of pilots.
illectro 30. Mai 2013 um 17:06 Uhr 
It's always been a nice secondary attraction for me, the music and presentation was wonderful and I never miss a chance to pitch it to fans, I hope your next project maintains these high standards.
Lightforce 30. Mai 2013 um 17:55 Uhr 
You made with LF a really awesome and unique game! Many games 30 years ago was unique, today are many clone games that mostly bad, except the highlights in its own genre. To find a unique game with a great idea is hard nowadays.

I hope your next game project will be again a awesome game and make you fu***** rich! Than you rich and do not stop doing your own games, you make a own software company and you do not forget where you come from and your support will be really support and not a support->to twit so the users. Some old companys did forget where they come from...

All the best you gave us fun & You have brought us to dream.
Zuletzt bearbeitet von Lightforce; 30. Mai 2013 um 18:00 Uhr
I hope that your future efforts be at least as sucessful! Good luck!
Just got the game and I'm sorry to hear about the lack of interest in the game. I believe it is a very well done game, looks great graphicly, and is also educational. I had a few suggestions for future updates, however it would seem to be, pointless... I would like to say thank you at minimum, at least I have a copy to call my own :D Just started running a server full time, was hoping to energize the multiplayer crowd, but we'll see where that goes! Thanks again!
NiTE 31. Mai 2013 um 2:31 Uhr 
The support you have already given, with the Mars update and multiplayer has been beyond what I would have expected - thank you. Good luck with your future projects.
All good things come to and end, eventually. Thank you for the game, and if you start working on another title please inform us all, you can be sure of our support!
Herbaceous 31. Mai 2013 um 7:36 Uhr 
Good luck sh0v0r. I wish you the very best for your next chapter in the industry and, wholeheartedly, thank you for the entertainment you have given me with this little gem.

Ledow 31. Mai 2013 um 8:13 Uhr 
Did you think it would generate revenue equivalent to a development wage forever? I don't think any game ever has. I hardly expect many games to ever recoup their development cost in total (i.e. over their entire life), but the big titles and popular indies always seem to. From the sound of it, you made it to overall profit which is hard enough, but to expect it to keep you in food for years after? Not realistic.

Look at it this way: You were self-employed for a year on the back of your own talents. I think that's much more impressive than you might think. And, yes, I've done that too (for nearly a decade). And, yes, I'm a programmer (though that's not what I did when self-employed). And, yes, I have game projects that I'd love to be able to put enough time into in order to sell them, and then to make a profit on the time I invested. But it's a hard road. You've beaten the obstacle that I just could not get close to overcoming in the years gone by - to get the time to get a game out there, sell it, and make money to the point where thousands of people own your game. The next game should be easier for you - hell, many developers are able to sell a second game even if it's total junk just off the back of their own name after a single "big" title.

To be honest, I'm surprised there were ever any updates to Lunar Flight. Put it out, bug-fix it a couple of times, and then it was done. Everything since then probably hasn't been worth it in terms of the money you get back from the extra effort you've put in, people who bought it aren't going to want to pay more, and you've probably reach market saturation as soon as you put the price down - nobody else was going to buy the game JUST because of the changes made at that point.

I was actually hoping that there was some other game in the background that you started work on as soon as Lunar Flight was released, and then we could have another great title from an indie developer ready to go once we got bored of Lunar Flight.

To be honest, I wouldn't waste my time on Oculus Rift support either. Seems like an expense based on a fad and it's unlikely (though possible) that you'll be a class-leader title on that particular device (which has, what, 10,000 customers on a MADLY SUCCESSFUL Kickstarter, and how many of those are going to want your game in particular?). While you have income, and can afford to coast on a part-time job, or a spot of eBaying or whatever you can find, why not just live the developer life and churn out something new in that precious "free" time, rather than hope for things that you've already been over-optimistic in predicting so far?

Start a new game project, garner interest, take pre-orders at the right point and you can trampoline onto a new game rather than try to eek every ounce of cash out of the previous game.

Let's get this straight: Lunar Flight was a GOOD game. I bought it. I was impressed by it. I don't really have the time to invest in playing it, but it was certainly worth my money. But it won't be worth much for much longer. And it's not worth me pushing it to my friends, it's a very niche game.

You've proven you can do the HARDEST part, that few ever reach, and get a year or more's salary on the back of your talent. But talent alone doesn't pay the bills. You have to apply it to create product, and then sell product. While you have the luxury of getting $1400 a month for doing NOTHING (and, honestly, though you've worked on multiplayer / oculus / etc. you'd still be making that amount for doing NOTHING since release), use that to fund time and effort on your next output. Sure, it's a risk - one I *WOULD NOT* give up my job to do, for instance - but you're in the ideal situation. You don't have to "work" at the moment, so code instead and get yourself another product. If it stinks, so what? You're no worse off and you go back to work as before. If it's successful? That's another year of bills paid and another year to work on the game after that, etc.

The post of yours just sounds a little ungrateful for being in a position that most of us would envy (in terms of talent, luck, success, etc.).

Pick a game genre you can program and that you feel is lacking something. Aim for it. When it comes time that you actually run out of money, at the very least you'll have a half-finished game project that could be just as successful as Lunar Flight was.
thank u very much for this amazing game!

this and KSP are by far the best games on steam.

its amazing that u did this all by yourself.. truley amazing.

hope you get a job soon and make a ton of money.. if any one deserves it .. its u.

good luck!
Scorcher24 31. Mai 2013 um 13:55 Uhr 
This is much less than I would earn if I had a day job, it would be a nice supplementary income.
Sorry, but it was/is your decision, yours alone, so don't tell it like it is your customers fault.
Oh what a terrible message to read the same day I bought the game and got terribly addicted to it in just one hour. But I am a game developer as you are and have been hoping to release a game like you did for years (still working on it though, I even have released a game a couple of years ago but then I didn't know Steam existed then and had much worse sales than you), so I really understand what you must be going thru.
You have been working enormously passionately on this (niche) project and when you finally decide to sell it, you see that sales are, well... you say it exceeded your expectations, but let's call it by its name... bad. That's probably because it's such a niche genre that most gamers (let's call them commercialy affected gamers by lack of a better name) won't buy. It's too hard for them and it has no women with big boobs in it.

Well man, you have all my respect, I hope you will continue (coz I was going to list some things that could have been great expansions for this game, I would even pay for all of them when they would be sold as a DLC's priced at 4.99), but I really do understand why you may not do it.

These were the things I wanted to share (and I would gladly pay for). They are only single player features, I haven't played the multiplayer game yet and I'm a single-player kinda guy anyway.
- a new more advanced lander to spend your money and xp on when you have leveled everything out
- more diversity in the missions, why not passing asteroids that need to be scanned, mined, whatever
- why not dangerous asteroids coming too close to the base and must be destroyed, or even: why not alien robot ships that shoot back
- with the advanced lander you could maybe fly from for example the valley into another area
- I would pay for more areas to do missions on (as long as they have something new to offer and are not too easy)
- ... (I can probably think of more, but you know enough by now :-))

Well probably you have already thought of these, and maybe you think they are lame anyway. But if you haven't, I may have given you some energy :-) - receive my hyponotic brain waves... receive them... -

Good luck dude! If I lived in Australia, I would contact you to work on this together :-)
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