Dropleaf - Seattle Indie Gaming with Vikram and Craig

Thursday, October 19th

When you're an indie developer, you're gonna need a way for someone to find your games - introducing dropleaf.io!


Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

I'm rolling now so let's just jump right into this Vikram dragged from droplet thanks for joining me. You know thanks for having us. It's going to be quite the quite the dance for doing here because we have a Skype call three wood eight Vikram a UN Seattle. I am happy and then Craig is an Illinois a merit rather Greg. That's correct in the middle of nowhere were annoyed at the congratulations lots of corn on pistol and harvested by now. I'm sure there's eight if victory is a new highly anticipated. Or as a new highly anticipated game comes out. And the major blogs picked up on the usual press rounds Iona IG and stuff like that we'll talk about destiny to for a month or two okay fine great but. Four also put a new foreign fighters record coming out on it in May be super good but for every giant there's a ton of people hustling to get noticed. So I'm excited about trial please do it's tell us what you've got going here. And help us understand just how crowded the gaming spaces to crumble a two to start just to make this easier. Sounds good so it probably is a subscription service or indeed PC games crank for example is the developer behind war cube which is one of the sort of featured games on our service it's great it's awesome you should play it. And we exist to use sold about your problems and that is and you know when Michael under and I looked at the space around independent games we realized a couple of things one the process of finding the next game that you actually want to late. Really sucks. And it's very easy to find things you won a bite right now my steam library is all look games up like 200 games on steam. But it regularly feels like that experience of opening my refrigerator. And seeing a wall of. Food and going well there's clearly nothing to eat here and then you know going back going and ordering a cheeseburger or whatever else. And that seems to be what a lot of people find their experience with. Which team and with finding new games to play not just to buy it right with humble bundles and all of these other things it's very very easy to get those games. On the flip side of things the process. In talking to developers. Like crank and all of the various other developers we work with we can find out that the process. Getting an indie game out there and getting it noticed is also something that really sucks. Matt and Greg of course can speak to this far better than I can because it's his actual challenge. What we wanted to do then is we wanted to see if we could find something that solves both the problem. Finding the thing that I want to play at work finding something that particularly connects with me. Especially if I'm not somebody you find the sort of realistic warfare shooter particularly compelling right is that seems like that's so much of the AAA industry's output right now well what how to find the stuff that I actually wanna be playing. And you know can I solve that can we solve that problem at the same time we're solving the problem for independent developers getting their games discovered. Indeed that's after all. Don't really have a marketing budget behind them that the studio like EA or blizzard has been an and they can't sink. Fifty a hundred million dollars into marketing budgets and it's telling that when you look at big studio projects. And big studio project spent two thirds of their budget on marketing on average now and that's that's not that's not something a smaller studio even if we're talking about a game that has you know. Five person team and what's a quarter of a million in funding Larry can happen million and funding are million and bumping. They can't really afford to market in that same way so how did they get their games out there and we thank. By creating a subscription service weekend. Where sort of incentivized as the company to make sure that we're getting players in front of the things they want to play not just the things that look bright and shiny is that. That keeps them around for us and then in doing that. We get. We help match indie games with the people who are actually gonna play them instead of sort of the process being more like spitting into a river especially now you happen to think sixteen direct seam is very hard to get your game notice stock and we're hoping. To make it so that. Developers especially those with experience is that there may be a little outside of the mainstream. Get in front of the people who want to play them so they get paid and so those players and well played those games that maybe are outside the mainstream. I realize that was a little long mended but. Notice circuits I give you some really specific examples and some great imagery that you've effectively created a talking refrigerator if I understand correctly. And popular predator like I went out to use that at some points. So I guess on the flip side now as you as you alluded to Vikram what's Craig what's your from you a little bit I understand there is a lot of competition it's a very crowded almost noisy spacing after trying stand out. Among so many things I think I saw an article about drop leaf that there's something like. 400 games a month that are trying to compete for that's based on ball on steam for instance what's. Like as a developer and how has the partnership then gone when you hear something like drop leaf. Making out the idea to to help you push or things out to find people to customize it that way. Yes it certainly daunting at relating like he's you know he's invested time and money into creating this this really game the unions are some you know you're close to anyone or people to play it I'm. Seriously drop leaf is appealing a couple couple ways first president's curator at so. It is somebody human looking at and saying like you know this is a particularly fun game this is something that other people would probably like. I'm it's not just aggregated through data whereas you can a lot of possibly low quality games and a lot of people are. Trying out for playing an excuse data usually. Output sharply fiscally carried it which is one thing that's definitely killing is that people are gonna play it are gonna want to play it just spend you know prep which comes summer this is for them this is a game that they're going to enjoy. End Aaron and so that's certainly killing. And then that's an Indy you know it is it is hard to get the word out on your game. Usually you can and I between two different groups of people and one is like yeah we very quickly we we're in these period a lot quicker than triple A games. Which means that we don't have to announce a big title necessarily every three or four years or something like that you know we can read literally put up a couple of gifts are perfectly made and if it goes viral or anybody is into it. Then that's what we tend to work on so. What you get is he's huge influx is of earth PO her you don't spiral you know what our morality and people who'll look at it not like it. And will be gone so with a service like droplets it effectively fatigues who would usually be a big spike in PR. And spreads out seeking get a lot of people liking and playing your game and an adult community which is really what it's all about. That's just five years ago Craig that like making an apple is the thing you have to have a not gonna have lap wreck monitor on and on it was a hugely congested market to put. Here's more and more and more and I guess public technology that's helping about indie gaming as an option. What is the appetite like right now for the indie gaming housed the world changed. For the indie gaming environment. So it. We're vicious people are really wanting indie games in the thing is Barack is mourning one every three months like it would Tripoli games they weren't. Five indie games in a month to play increased one trial out of amount to talk about what their friends that would be the 19 encoded shall we can. Just like planning agree you know good grander good song you know you UC first and you and your friends. And that's exactly what games are moving towards which is exciting because if you have something. That that does play well it does look at it people want people want to take it shared mail and it would be the first one at all different. We could tell by your enthusiasm to Peter excited about it and there's some that there is an appetite to be met their fantastic now. Two months then now for drop plea if you I think you first started making the data available two months ago about now what's the response been like that from the rest. Huntsman really positive in general you know we aren't we're certainly not huge yet and we're just sort of starting are under our core advertising efforts and starting to work on you know all of the various. Rather boring technical stuff that goes in you getting a product out there and getting a product into its audience so I. You know I spent a lot of time right now worrying about things like ask sales law organization and all about stuff Saadat and where we are in terms. Advertising and really starting to scale but the response that we've got has been great we walked in seat you know we've gone you a couple of conventions now we Ret. The Seattle Indies expo recently we read you girl come our course going to be a GT this weekend. And in general anyone we really talk to about this product has been pretty excited about it it's been really great seeing units as somebody who sort of in eating sleeping and breathing this for about a year now it's also very much the case bats. That's seeing that response has been just the best motivation to keep machine keep working on things and you know. Go through all of that the tedious and issues that go with running a business so it sadden. It's been really exciting I think one of the really cool things that happened is when we are at the Seattle in these expo we sort of track this and roughly. 50% of the people we talked to were willing to sign up on this spots and you know we have. That requires a credit cards are these are people lavish show walking by willing to type of credit card into like it might tablet basically I'm not birthday and you know seeing that bad percentage of people we talked to were willing to do that was amazing and we have very similar attraction that geek girl con as well. In fact the big thing we took away from Matt is we're gonna be probably pushing our. Efforts on Mack a little further up the timeline. Just because we did keep hearing. Do you have a Mac client solos so many times I think that was from us army question we got. And you know as much as the gaming space exists primarily on PCs are more so than it does on Mac or Linux or anything else. It does seem like we have sort of a pretty good appeal. With me we are very strong appeal it may be more nontraditional gamers with families. Parents absolutely love us as we saved them a whole hell of a lot of oh yeah. And so you know we're going to I think we might be our next big feature coaches might be on the you know some more family friendly start making that the entire experience a little bit more like family friendly things like. You know kick kids say motor whatever you call that and you know working on a Mac client as well those are relatively high priority for a. Snow very despite also Catholic serious business words in there that I don't pretend to understand sorry group Nomura tied because it's important that to my point like. Craig is a developer who's making a game. What a relief does that give you that someone else can worry about that stuff you can work on being creative and and technical. Oh it's great and because it essentially what Vikram as he deals with the front end of you know trying to find people play the game and what color does really is that the gives me like a kind of gives me community Qatar meanings are making the game as you don't wanna make it vacuuming you wanna be. Having people play it and then have nobody to talk to you so essentially what gives me is that. Some thing lasts forever so he gives me you'll play the game and then in turn I'm able to create a community and and in kind of kind of take care of that community so as a move on to another game are all those people literature I found me on track leafed through his form. Based equipment mystic with you and an extremely bad old and it's really fantastic Zacks hardest thing bill. Yeah you can and the essential like decorum saying with with Tripoli advertisement. Can you can really pay money to make people play your game like this totally paying special and noble and anywhere else but. The hardest thing to do is to get people stay can be part of a community and naturally the beautiful part. Not a fantastic idea again it's called the drop leaf. Working in a bit environment right now would love for you to come check it out Vikram I guess you'll be on hand at Craig I don't think we're I don't think of flying in for the events but out of it and move you to come out at GE two this weekend come by and learn more about indie games are gonna have a bunch of people that that represent that community which if I understand correctly Beckham is pretty huge. In Seattle right now. It is we have we have agreed in DC united here there aren't you know there are tons of developers working on mobs of cool things and more excited. You know we're excited to be able to support those ads as they as they go their products announced they go to market and we're actually going to be dabbling some of the games on our service on that GQ's tax stage. On Sunday acts. Market sent me the time for this on Sunday at 240. And that we will be onstage and you can check out war cube. Add you know on the Celeste Steele opens which is genuinely be cutest thing I've ever seen path and the few other the great games on my service. To go to pick you for your time today that your.