How much do titles effect the sale/success of RPG Maker Games?

KingKraken

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A day or two ago, a dev was sharing some of their work and one of the comments was particular interested in the name they chose. Their criticism was that it was too generic and would impact the results the author was looking for.

In one instance, I get that idea. If you're game is just called like "The Chosen Prince" or something, right of the bat, it sounds like a fantasy game.... in line with thousands of other fantasy games. But the one thing I'm curious about, is how something as niche as RPG Maker games, are effected by that.

I feel like the community in all it's variety, have a much different outlook and approach to this genre, then something more mainstream. For people that play and purchase games made in the engine, are they more willing to look past things that sound like "generic fantasy" on name alone, or because of how many fantasy games saturate the market, are people actually attracted to titles like that?

For me personally, I'm super picky and only have so much time, so I generally am turned off by names that aren't "colorful". I used to work in a bookstore and fantasy titles just had a quality they all shared that made them hard to differentiate from one another. So if I'm only seeing a title, my first assumption is that a boring title might also speak for the games as well. But that's just me.

How does everyone else approach game titles on first glance? Anyone have any first hand experience in titles effecting reach?
 

??????

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a good means of determining this is to look into things like: google search engine optimisation techniques. There are many ways to format your website to drive more traffic to them.

lets assume that your game is released properly, with its own dedicated website.. the seo that has been done would dramatically affect how well that title performs and the reach it has. The name is a small part of this.

I would say that the name, as long as it is relevant to the content, is fine ~ AS LONG AS GOOGLE DOESNT SPIT UP OTHER GAMES OR CONTENT WHEN ITS SEARCHED FOR!! < this is the most important thing imo. :)
 

CraneSoft

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Personally I don't think players care much about the title when it comes into the context in RPGMaker, as most of the time, it's either too simple/straightforward (protagonist/antagonist name title) or makes absolutely no sense to someone who have yet to play your game. With that said, generic titles are bad for exposure if they don't have a unique feel to it (as in, you use common keywords and you can slap that title on another game and it wouldn't feel wrong) or is vague in nature, which is why title is something that likes to have a sweet logo (tentative) slapped at the end until the later stages of development.

They are however, very important for the developer as a good title choice is more or less mandatory if you want to get players to notice your game in a saturated market, this is less apparent if you already have a dedicated following, but crucial if you want increased exposure as most people will not spend more than a minute to do a google search for your game and it's just as easy for them to stumble upon someone else's game and call it a day.
 

Archeia

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Titles have been known to make or break a game. Here's one from Prey.:
and there is another game where the title change saved it and turned it into a success, but I cannot for the life of me remember it right now.

I don't think of things as rm games per se since for me they're just games. So you can take it as a personal opinion.
 

QuietPenguin

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Along with every other aspect of the game, I think it matters a great deal. Personally I click on games in Steam that have titles that grab my attention all the time. Obviously it only gets you that initial click, though -- the game still needs to be compelling once people get to the screenshots / features. But am I going to ignore a game called "Busty Princess Quest" out of hand, without reading the description? Probably. (Then again, a title like that might be good to get clicks from a certain niche...)
 

KingKraken

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I don't think of things as rm games per se since for me they're just games. So you can take it as a personal opinion.
That's true! I think I've encountered a heck of a lot of people who mostly play rm games, that it almost feels like an entirely different industry of it's own sometimes.

I would say that the name, as long as it is relevant to the content, is fine ~ AS LONG AS GOOGLE DOESNT SPIT UP OTHER GAMES OR CONTENT WHEN ITS SEARCHED FOR!! < this is the most important thing imo. :)
This is actually my biggest peeve with OFF, haha. I love the game to pieces, but it can be really annoying find information and fan content about the game, as searches will generally pull up other stuff, even with "rpg" or "game" added to the search.
 

??????

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honestly... proper seo is a complete pain..

I have literally been fighting with google for months now to get a particular site of mine to rank #1 on google search. The main issue I had was that other domains were pointing to the same ip address that my vps gave me when I rented the server space from them. This was something 100% out of my control, yet it has affected the performance of that site dramatically.

Its a bit better now, but its been a total nightmare.

For a game its a little different than a website, but the main principle is the same ~ you want your game to be #1 whenever someone searches for it, and ideally it would also rank fairly high when other similar phrases are searched for.as long as you can achieve that, the reach of your game would be greater. Ofc there are other things such as marketing, backlinks, other various promotional materials etc, those all contribute.

although, I wouldnt worry too much unless you expect to have more than 10 people actually playing the game and searching for things relating to it :D
 
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A title choice is indicative of a game's writing (as well as spelling and grammar in a number of cases).

The title is the very first clue that a customer has for the quality and aesthetic of a game, and whether it fits with their personal, subjective view of what a good game should have.

The title is a brand name, so if chosen unwisely could invite lawsuits over trademark.

The title contains the words used every time that a person talks about the game, so something offensive or overly complicated could turn people off from spreading word of mouth about the game.

Names matter.
The power of a name can make or break the success of a game.
 

JosephSeraph

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Personally, analyzing my own cognition and experience as a player, not a developer, I think game names have more potential to destroy than to do good. Or rather: A good name won't make a good game, but a bad name can definitely sour your first impression and make you resilient to positives in the game(page) in question.

it's superficial in that sense but it probably matters quite a bit. Besides the several other aspects already mentioned here.

There are some game titles that caught my attention but they're usually the weird wordy or gimmicky ones. No, I don't remember a single one of them.
 

Dezue

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For me, game names are definitely important (and also a lot of fun to experiment with).
I can't say all my game names are on point, but generally I try to make them as indicative of the game feel as possible, while also being easy to understand (preferably in more than one language), easy to pronounce and fun to design as a logo.
I'd still say your key artwork is much more important than your game name ;)
 

jkweath

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This is probably a topic I should've put more research into beforehand. I've received quite a few emails from folks not knowing which of my games to start with/what order to play them in since I've done a pretty bad job titling them appropriately.

There's the obvious search engine optimization factor in creating a title, but I'm not sure how much SEO matters on Steam. I would assume it'd be more worth it to have a catchy title than anything.

But I will say that SEO *definitely* matter for the Google Play Store. One of my games was originally called Finding Light. When I ported it over to Google Play, guess what happened when you tried searching for it?

Yeah, you guessed it. Pages and pages of flashlight apps. Not cool!

I renamed it to Knight of Heaven RPG, which seems to have helped. I did something similar with my first game, Mari and the Black Tower. Typing "Mari" into Google Play gets you a full list of Mario games, so I had to rename that as well.

There are some game titles that caught my attention but they're usually the weird wordy or gimmicky ones. No, I don't remember a single one of them.
I'll never forget Jimmy and the Pulsating Mass. Then again, I'll probably never play it...
 

KingKraken

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@jkweath I'm sure the storefront also makes a big difference! Releasing on anything phone adjacent sounds like a nightmare as far as exposure goes!

I also have not played Jimmy and the Pulsating Mass, mostly due to a limit of time investment. But that is a sheer winner for having a name that sticks! I've been able to recommend it to people super easy, just because it's something I don't forget exists.
 

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