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Q: Why did you decide to use the Acknex engine for your projects?
A: Acknex was the engine which offered the most value for our money at the time when we began and it was relatively easy to work with for beginners. There were also some prefab scripts which allowed a quick start.
Q: How many games did you create and sell using Acknex?
A: We created 5 commercial games during the last year that were published or should have been published. One of these games we have sold directly to a publisher. We sold all these games at our website as well. Apart from that there were some freeware games and presentations.
Q: I know that you had some good and some bad experiences with your publishers. Can you give us a few details?
A: There were lots of problems. In two cases the publisher has given the agreed sum of money in advance, but never put the game into the shops and we still wait for a scheduled publishing. We assume that this won’t happen as long as the contract will hold which will be for the next 2 years. In another case the games were sold but mostly with special cheap offers, so we did only get a small fraction of the „normal“ fee. And when you realize that this fee is only about 8 to 10% of the price, there didn’t come much out of it for us. And one time the publisher sold the game for a different price than planned.
Q: What types of games have the chance to become best sellers in your opinion?
A: Shooters, Adventures and Simulations are still very popular. But these games are the most difficult to create because you need good AI, graphics and sound. The time to develop such a game is very long and can only be tackled with a large team. A game like Quake1 won’t sell anymore nowadays. However any kind of game can be a TOP-seller. It has to be a good idea for a game with a great realization that is much fun to play. Good examples for this are the Yeti Sports games. Another important point are the controls. If you have to read a thick manual and have to learn lots of keyboard commands most people won’t play your game.
Q: I hear that you have become an online publisher too. What advantages will we have if we decide to sell our games through your channel?
A: After our experiences with publishers we always tried to keep the right to publish our games via the Internet. There are publishers who make that kind of contracts, even if they have the right to sell the game on CD. Now we have some experience of selling games via the web, including press contacts and other publishers. We also have an URL with unlimited traffic and enough web space plus we have a well tried system of accounting installed. We would like to give other authors of games the chance to sell their work without having to invest too much time and energy into the details – we would see to those. In addition we think that the creators of a game should get a fair share of the proceeds and not only a few %. Only this way will they be able to continue creating good games – they won’t if they give up because they are frustrated.
If enough authors use our offer I am convinced that it will be a success. And that will be good for the customer, who can buy good games for a fair price. And our support will answer his questions.
Q: Are you using some good quality freeware or low cost programs for game development? Please give us a few examples.
A: In the beginning we had some freeware tools, like a caustic generator, the Wally Texture Tool and some graphic tools. We also used the QME. Now we only use professional tools.
Q: What would you need to see implemented in the engine in the near future?
A: A tool for shader design would be great.
Q: Please give us a few tips for beginners.
A: You should not make the mistake of trying to create a huge game if you’re just starting. That won’t work for sure. Start small, one or two levels. Think about plot, storyline and the goal to reach.
And most of all, finish it – with all panels, sounds, start and end screen. A real game, not only one level. Even with a small project you might despair at times. You have to keep up the work. I think that many games with potential just do not get finished, because another idea comes up and the old one is forgotten. Look at other games. Especially ones from „professionals“. How did they do it? Why is it good or perhaps bad? What can I learn from it? It is not easy, but the farther you get, the better you will become.
Thank you a lot, Peter Langendorf.