is the secret to success making 18+ content?

Discussion in 'Commercial Games Discussion' started by hero_buddy, Oct 14, 2019.

  1. metronome

    metronome Veteran Veteran

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    Agreed to this.
    And if you want to succeed in that industry, you need significantly bigger "budget"* than the normal one.

    *"Budget" could come in many shapes, it's not just about the money. It could come in terms of time, effort, law problems (depending on your country's law), and much much more.
     
    #21
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  2. Dezue

    Dezue patreon.com/peninja Veteran

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    I agree with the three last posts, too.
    Adult games are no 'easy-win' situation and require as much effort to have success as any other game in any other field.

    That said, OP, it's still worth trying in my humble opinion.
    My advice would be to start with something small and test the waters this way - changes are you'll find an audience and then you can continue from there :)
     
    #22
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  3. Parallax Panda

    Parallax Panda Got into VxAce ~2014 and never stopped... Veteran

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    I'm interested in this as well. Well, to be fair, I'm interested in making commercial games and earn some money, and I don't care if my content is SFW or not as long as I have control over the creative process. As for adult content, I've always seen it as something that's both much more difficult and easy (at the same time) to monetize.

    On one hand, it's easier to attract people who look for adult stuff in general since the interest for "anime tiddies" comes from a deep biological urge called the human sex drive. I've some personal experience in making R18+ illustrations in the past, and when posted on different art communities I always got 10-100 times as much engagement on the "naughty" pictures as I got on my SFW content. I think this is because the "naughty" things draws people in when they come across it. It attract eyeballs of even those that might not be interested per say, and this is all because of that biological urge mentioned above. "Sex sells", and have been used in marketing just about every product you can think of because of the effect it has on the human psyche.

    So yeah. R18+ content certainly has an edge in this regard.

    But on the other hand, very few platforms seem to endorse or even allow adult content to be shared. As far as I understand, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Patreon, STEAM, RMW and most sites in general don't want to be associated with R18+ content so even if the product itself has the potential to attract more people, it seems difficult to reach out to a larger audience. And to make things even harder, payment processors like PayPal have been known to freeze assets and close accounts because they've been used to "sell" adult content (not illegal stuff mind you, just "immoral stuff").

    So in this regard it seems really tough as you can have your account (on any site) banned the next day and find yourself without a way to sell or market your product properly. This have been the reason I've never really tried to make an adult game before. Between all the Tumbler and Patreon purges, I've always thought of it as too risky.

    But hey, if anyone has useful information, I'm always happy to learn more. Just shot me a PM if what you want to say is not appropriate for these boards, since this site is PG13 and that should be respected.
     
    #23
  4. Liandra Aura

    Liandra Aura Game Director Veteran

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    All these comments about 18+ going for naughty.... you can make a good 18+ rated M game without that stuff.

    Think of Rated M as Rated R. A significant amount of swearing, gore and other dark themes can easily move your game into the rated mature category. Keeping that in mind, you can make a game with a lot less restrictions and target an older audience (which I think most indie game players come from since we’re more likely to enjoy games in a retro style).
     
    #24
  5. Parallax Panda

    Parallax Panda Got into VxAce ~2014 and never stopped... Veteran

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    @Barchetta3223
    Yeah, well it's true that something labeled 18+ doesn't have to include something "naughty". But if you're looking to enhance your sales, I believe it certainly should. Other "grown-up" themes such as gore or swearing does not add as much "magic sauce" or "Ompf" to your product as sex appeal could. You only need to look around yourself in our society to see that adding some sex appeal tends to work very well if done right.

    Besides, if making money is a primary focus for a project, I'd never intentionally make a product that'll suffer the censorship of the web (being put behind "mature" filters, removed from trending, banned from certain websites etc) if the product in question does not have proper tools to counter this.

    Sex appeal or straight up "naughty" content could very well balance the scale, simply adding swearing, gore or other "adult" themes I fear would not be enough. So making a game like you're suggesting will most likely just hamper your sales.

    (and even though the topic says 18+, which is a bit ambiguous, I'm pretty sure the OP meant "games with naughty stuff in it")
     
    #25
  6. BlueMage

    BlueMage Slime Lv99 Veteran

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    @Parallax Panda you know that actually Steam does allow adult content?
     
    #26
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  7. Parallax Panda

    Parallax Panda Got into VxAce ~2014 and never stopped... Veteran

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    @BlueMage
    No I did not. Since when? I'm fairly sure this was not the case a few years ago?

    What about other social network platforms though? I know for a fact that Patreon went on a crusade not that long ago. And tumbler had it's own "holy war" shortly after.
     
    #27
  8. sura_tc

    sura_tc Loner Veteran

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    Steam does allow full adult games.

    It's been that day since they began to allow indie games.
     
    #28
  9. Liandra Aura

    Liandra Aura Game Director Veteran

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    @Parallax Panda
    Not true at all. Sex appeal doesn’t need to be a focal point. Not making it one does not hamper sales at all. Look at Dragon Age Inquisition. Game did great and only offered that stuff on the side. It wasn’t a focal point at all.
     
    #29
  10. CraneSoft

    CraneSoft Filthy Degenerate Veteran

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    @Barchetta3223 If you think an indie developer can create something with the quality level of Dragon Age and achieve the same level of exposure then sure, but that is not something realistically possible, hence people make things naughty. There are also entirely different audiences - majority of R18 RPGMaker players' PC specs are also not capable of playing graphical demanding games and they don't care for things other than sex appeal.
     
    #30
  11. Parallax Panda

    Parallax Panda Got into VxAce ~2014 and never stopped... Veteran

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    @sura_tc
    Oh? I thought it must have been a pretty new thing? I've not seen many X-rated games on STEAM and those I've seen have been more "softcore" games with official off-site patches for uncensoring them?

    @Barchetta3223
    If the game is not censored (again, removed from trending, not reviewed or allowed on popular websites, put behind filters), then it's just another game and it'll sell depending on the quality of what you're offering as well as your marketing efforts.

    What I'm talking about is if you add stuff that results in your game being censored, and that something does not include at least some sex appeal, then I think that's a mistake. It's just my opinion though. But if you're going to risk sales by putting yourself in that category you need some "X-factor" to help it along. And out of all the adult themes there is, sex appeal is the best spice you could add.
     
    #31
  12. sura_tc

    sura_tc Loner Veteran

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    It's not that new. Just that Steam does not actively advertise them.

    Censoring an adult game is a way to have far more exposure on Steam. That's why some do it and offer uncensor patch afterwards.
     
    #32
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  13. Dezue

    Dezue patreon.com/peninja Veteran

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    Yeah, Steam has become quite important for adult game devs. :rock-right:
     
    #33
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  14. Liandra Aura

    Liandra Aura Game Director Veteran

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    I feel like there’s a “can’t do” mentality here that makes almost no sense to me. Advertising is not difficult. It takes very little effort. Some of the biggest games here did kickstarters or were shown at large conventions such as Pax. It’s all about what you’re willing to put in. Look at “She Dreams Elsewhere.” Made it into The NY Times. Lorenze is proof that what you’re saying can’t be done in fact can be.
     
    #34
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  15. bgillisp

    bgillisp Global Moderators Global Mod

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    @BlueMage and @sura_tc : That is not 100% accurate. They do allow games with some nudity in them, but you still have to censor certain body parts, and there are other restrictions I cannot post here.

    Now whether they check is another issue altogether.

    And yes, you can always add unofficial patches to uncensor the game, but you can't post where to get them in your store page.
     
    #35
  16. sura_tc

    sura_tc Loner Veteran

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    No, Steam does have fully uncensored adult games with full nudity.
     
    #36
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  17. CraneSoft

    CraneSoft Filthy Degenerate Veteran

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    Adult games are still a very gray zone on Steam as there is no clear guideline what is/isn't allowed, and the community just had a controversy last month about a certain famous game being pulled off for some rather, "fun" reasons.

    For games that can be legitimate great games without the adult content (and without things Valve decides its illegal) they can be great additions on Steam or any other platform, but there is still no foolproof formula and it's still a risk the dev have to take.
     
    #37
  18. rue669

    rue669 Veteran Veteran

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    You are not alone in thinking this.

    I couldn’t agree more.

    And congrats to Lorenze. It’s obvious he’s put a ton of work into his project. Will I buy it? Hell yes.
     
    #38
  19. bgillisp

    bgillisp Global Moderators Global Mod

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    @sura_tc have and allowed are two different things. They just might not know about it
     
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  20. sura_tc

    sura_tc Loner Veteran

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    Could be. Given how many I've seen though, I am inclined to believe that it is allowed.

    Additionally, during Steam product review progress, there is no wording that an adult game is not allowed. It simply says, if your game has adult content, rate it properly and let them know.
     
    #40

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