A Big Step: Posting Your Game?

Cythera

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So, I've been on the fence about posting a demo of my game for a long while now. I've put a lot into it, and I would love some people to play it, and would really appreciate feedback on it. However, the idea of putting my work out there is...daunting to say the least. I've always been anxious interacting with people - seriously, I read over my posts here on the forums an average of 5 times before posting them. I'm positive I'm not the only one.
For anyone who put their game out into the big, wide world, how was that? What finally got you off the fence, if you were on it at all, and what 'steps' did you take? Also, aren't you ever worried it will get stolen?
Did you ever regret posting your game?
And for anyone who hasn't posted their game yet, where do you currently stand on the matter?
 

Marsigne

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I haven't posted a game as I've participate in make-a-game-in-a-few-days challenges at best. If I were to post a bigger game, I'd make sure it has the appropriate amount of details.
 

SeaPhoenix

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I shared my first (completed) game only with my family and friends, a few years back. Not everyone played it, but I got good feedback and encouragement from those who did, and managed to iron out some bugs too. My first public release of a game was during a game jam (IGMC 2017) - I'm not sure if I would have ever done that without the impetus of a jam. But that gave me more confidence to release subsequent games, and I was happy that my game made at least a few other people happy! So I think it helped me to start small, and grow from there.

I think one also has to be prepared to face criticism (though in general I find the RPG Maker community very supportive - the negative reviews I've had were very useful in letting me know what worked and what didn't), and just take it in stride and view everything as a learning experience rather than as a personal blow (easier said than done, of course).

I didn't initially worry about my game(s) getting stolen, but then one of them did get stolen and was posted elsewhere! (It was several members of this community who alerted me and other developers to it.) It was annoying and definitely felt like a violation; I filed DMCA takedown notices through the websites that the stolen copies were posted to (and complained about it to other people to let off steam).

So if you want to post your game publicly, I would suggest doing so in such a way that makes it very clear that you are the creator of the game and the game was first released on a particular date, and I'd recommend creating a post or devblog somewhere even before releasing it to establish your ownership.

Hope this helps and good luck!
 

MrNybbles

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Also, aren't you ever worried it will get stolen?

It was annoying and definitely felt like a violation; I filed DMCA takedown notices through the websites that the stolen copies were posted to (and complained about it to other people to let off steam).
While you can file a DMCA, if the alleged infringer then files a counterclaim then the infringing work may go back up at the Hosting Site's discretion. At that time a Copyright Lawsuit would need to be filed. However, the US Supreme Court has now ruled that being granted a Copyright Registration is required for filing a Copyright Lawsuit.

Note: for some works you can submit an anthology (like a library of plug-ins) which can be continually added to. I'm not sure if that can work with a game series, but might be worth a look.

While you are probably not thinking about registering your copyright, it is good to know what doing so gets you.

Video:
When can you file:

And for anyone who hasn't posted their game yet, where do you currently stand on the matter?
Due to the nature of needing to be decoded (regardless of encryption, encoding, compression), it is impossible to 100% prevent people from stealing/altering/ripping from your game, but there are a few things you can do.

Use the standard Encryption, and you can also compress the database files to save a little space and prevent players from altering them. You might also want to disable the play-test mode to prevent people from play-testing the deployed version via plug-in or just remove the code from the deployed data/rpg_*.js files.

Due to some of these concerns I have already made a plug-in for myself that compresses the data/ database files.
 

rue669

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It becomes more and more likely these days that your game will get stolen in some capacity. It sucks and is one of the reasons I hesitate to post my game (as well as it’s just not ready yet).

I would also recommend that whatever you create and want to sell commercially should have a registered copyright. Here in Canada it’s very easy and very affordable.

I think I would do DCMAs or file for copyright infringement if the infringement was really bad or the person was selling the product themselves. But whenever you involve the law you need to remember that lawyers cost money. But having a copyright can be so so helpful. and just provides you with some peace of mind.

I’m not worried about criticism. Generally, if it’s constructive and useful, great. You can’t and shouldn’t expect that you’ll please everyone.
 

TheoAllen

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For anyone who put their game out into the big, wide world, how was that? What finally got you off the fence, if you were on it at all, and what 'steps' did you take?
I guarded myself that my first complete game was to show off the battle system I make. So I put a disclaimer that my game wasn't that "serious", it's just about showing the system. However, I was pretty confident that my system was much better than what people did. Before I put it in public though, I made sure that there was no game-breaking bug and the balance is fine by letting my friends play the game.

Also, aren't you ever worried it will get stolen?
I'm the opposite. If people are trying hard to protect their game, I don't. I don't encrypt my game. You're free to look inside, change the database, and such. Even I'm curious about how people "steal" my game (so far, I only knew the one that uses my game as the base and it wasn't half bad).

Did you ever regret posting your game?
One thing I regretted is when I wasn't sure if I wanted my game to be this way and I posted it anyway. But the later time I had to pull it out because I changed everything.
 

Vassim74

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I made a small Facebook group which served as my personal devblog and invited only select friends and family whom were interested in my project pitch. When I released my first demo I made it only available to them for testing. Some praised it for being lengthy on average for a demo and being decent overall, while others criticized how difficult regular how combat was.

I had initially thought of posting it here at one time, but considered against it because I ended up not wanting to use rtp tiles and the character generated portraits.

While I do kind of regret posting the demo since it no longer represents my vision for the game, I figured it's not so bad because devs probably do this all the time. It also helped me realize where my weaknesses are, what I should focus on more, and how I should steer my project to get it to where I want it to go.
 

BK-tdm

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I've never posted/released a demo or full project on any maker as i use them as a hobby rather than having commercial goals.

I make projects for my own amusement and i dont really think people would like to play my games, starting with the fact that i actually like the rtp art style and most people despise it, then that they're catered for what i want and like, all the way to my not-that-awe-inspiring writing so i keep them private. There are some rare cases when i let close friends playtest things (for bughunting and research purposes).

Adding that like you i get a lot of anxiety from people rating my work so i never release incomplete stuff (or even complete things) be it rpgmaker projects or my art/drawings.
 

Ninjakillzu

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I've never posted/released a demo or full project on any maker as i use them as a hobby rather than having commercial goals.

I make projects for my own amusement and i dont really think people would like to play my games, starting with the fact that i actually like the rtp art style and most people despise it, then that they're catered for what i want and like, all the way to my not-that-awe-inspiring writing so i keep them private. There are some rare cases when i let close friends playtest things (for bughunting and research purposes).

Adding that like you i get a lot of anxiety from people rating my work so i never release incomplete stuff (or even complete things) be it rpgmaker projects or my art/drawings.
I make all my games as a hobby as well, and refuse to dump money into them for that reason.

I like the RTP style as well, but I feel like there might be a bit of gatekeeping going on regarding projects without custom art. I tend to wonder if anyone will like my projects because they do use a lot of default assets from the futuristic and zombie VX ACE resource packs.

I had a friend playtest some of my projects early in development, and he seemed to enjoy them a lot. Of course, I don't expect everyone else to enjoy them.
 

TheoAllen

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As someone who dev game out of a hobby, I personally put my game out there for my own amusement as well.

Why amusement? The first thing I want to know is how people interact with my game especially the stranger (which is why I appreciate LP video a lot). Friends are great, but I can just back seat playing by telling them what to do and how to do it. Strangers? nah, they play blindly and that is amusing. I don't expect people to like my game, but I hope one or two could give feedback so I know what went wrong and how things should be designed.

Who knows if I designed a boss that for me is easy enough but people find it hard. Who knows if people didn't read the tooltip I put clearly in the menu interface how to do this and that and they just ignored, and wondered why they died.

In conclusion, I put my game on the public is actually for my own benefit. I could see how people my game, that was the first goal. And frankly, people enjoying my game comes as the second goal. While at it, I put my game unencrypted so people could see how I do stuff. I guess that is a win-win solution.
 

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