And we have lift off

I have finally put the blog live for the world to see – you should be reading this from the Save Gloop domain (savegloop.com) rather than savegloop.wordpress.com.

If this is the first post on the Save Gloop blog you read, let me introduce you to to the site. From the 5th of May 2012, I have been posting to this blog around once or twice a month detailing everything about my experience in iPhone game development from design sketches to screenshots to marketing (which is the latest few posts).  I’ve kept the blog to keep a record of my story and also share my story with the world; I’m hoping people can learn from my experience in app development, or maybe even find it interesting to find out what this distinctly different teenager gets up to in his spare time.

The main page is the blog, but there’s also an About Me page and a page about the game in development – Save Gloop.

I hope you enjoy the blog, please like Save Gloop on Facebook, follow on Twitter or Follow this blog (see the weird black “Follow” in the bottom right of the site) to receive the latest updates on my game. Or check out the promo video I put on the site yesterday:

JA

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The video is here

I’ve finally finished the promo video for Save Gloop. You can see it at http://youtu.be/7XReXDmcc8c?a  or check it out below:

JA

Official screenshots

Before I finish & upload the video promo – here are the four official screenshots that I’m going to be using (the fifth is the home screen). These are the iPhone 4/4S screenshots, however the game does run native on iPhone 5 and iPad!

What do you think?

   2- guide gloop      

Pre-launch marketing is phenomenally harder than I expected…

Well I think it’s safe to say the “I’m 15 and looking for some help” approach isn’t working the same way I imagined it would. For some bizarre reason, I had in my mind that if I mentioned my age, how brilliant my game is and how much I loved the site I was emailing I would almost certainly get a reply.

Well here’s my reality check.

I’ve emailed Touch Arcade with an email similar to above (one week ago) and had no reply from anyone despite emailing their “exclusives” email address and the guy who runs it, Mr Kim. I suppose this is just the first site and I was never guaranteed to get a reply, but I at least imagined someone would say “I’m sorry, no.” rather than just nothing. #letdown. Nevertheless, with this complete rejection, I began to take a look around other blogs to see what I should do. I found this fantastic 4 part blog post that details everything you would want to know about releasing an app and how to market it. See the link.

One thing it did teach me, is that I have to go in fully prepared. I need to have all my marketing materials at hand (including a promo video), a fantastic website (I should put this site live soon) and proper detailed screenshots. So, over the next few weeks I’m going to do just that – before I send another email, I’m going to create all my marketing materials, post them on this site and then put the site live (I haven’t got it live at the moment on advice from family that someone might poach my idea so at the moment it’s just chilling at savegloop.wordpress.com).

Be back soon.

JA

Bug free and ready to market

Well that’s it. It’s finished. My game is finished! Wahooo… but now it’s time for some pre-launch marketing.

Being 15 and having just spent £1500 having the app developed, you can imagine how skint I am. Yeah you guessed it.. very. I’ve thought long and hard about what I can do, and I’ve drawn together a “marketing plan” as such for my app.

To begin with, I’m going to go around emailing app review sites. First stop is TouchArcade (the biggest gaming app review site). I’m going to offer them an exclusive look at the iPhone game before launch. I’ll get back soon with an update of what they said.

JA

Bugs.. the bane of my life.

This is it. It’s ready for testing.. my plan is to test the app on my phone to begin with and get rid of any bugs I can that way, then get the help of some school friends to download the game and bug test it.

Needless to say, as I’m sure all games have at the beginning, there are lots (I mean LOTS) of bugs, so I may be in this stage for a while. Groan.

This part is something I didn’t originally think about, if I’m perfectly honest. I mean.. I knew I would have to spend some time going through the app and just making sure that everything works as it should, but I never imagined how long it is going to take to get rid of all the bugs. But it’s just a fact of life, and I’m going to have to embrace it to

Over the summer, I read the Steve Jobs authorised biography by Walter Isaacson. If there’s one thing it taught me, it’s the fact that you can’t launch anything without it being completely finished. Software has moved on from the era where you launch a piece of software to the world and debug it from there (#windowsvista). This really reiterated the fact that I have to comb my app with a toothpick to make sure that the game is perfect for launch.

Here goes another couple of weeks…

JA

An update on the development

It’s been a while… well actually it’s been a summer… but I’m back.

Save Gloop is taking a bit longer than expected to develop, probably because I keep thinking of new ways to improve the game and begging Fan Studio to implement them… but it’s still approaching couple of months over the expected time. Nevertheless, it’s getting good, the game, I’m quite excited.

On another front, guess what I’ve just received in an email? The app’s icon 😀

Take a look:

Doesn’t it look great? I think it’s perfect – it’s got the 3D effect with Gloop overlapping onto the boarder, and it definitely looks like a professional top quality game, yet a casual and cute one at the same time.

JA

A little competition to help my Facebook likes

There’s nothing like a good give-away. Especially when it’s iTunes vouchers – everyone loves iTunes vouchers!

Which is why I’ve come up with a competition to help rake in the likes for the Facebook page. Every person that likes the Facebook page has an equal chance of winning the £20 iTunes voucher I have. Not a bad idea even if I do say so myself 😉

[Edit: They can now enter again by sharing a Facebook post/image advertising the competition to their friends. I’m hoping this will attract them to share the post, which will result in more likes on the page. Here it is: www.facebook.com/photo]

[Edit 2: 250 likes on the Facebook page. Told you it would pay off… ;)]

JA

Facebook and Twitter

After reading many a blog about what to do to drum up the interest for your app, many have said you need to create a Facebook page and Twitter account.

So that’s exactly what I’ve done.

facebook.com/savegloop

twitter.com/savegloop

[Edit: this has quite possibly got to be the most helpful blog post I will ever read – check it out: www.thegamebakers.com/moneyandtheappstore]

JA

Well.. it’s getting there!

I almost forgot about the blog lately, just been doing school exams and revision etc. Yawn.

I’ve received quite a few versions, and it’s improved dramatically. Obviously it’s taking time (the development), but I’ve got a packed summer ahead of me – France to meet a pen pal, Yorkshire (Northern England) to visit cousins, and of course the Olympics, London 2012, wouldn’t miss it for the world… so yeah I might just have to take a back seat for the summer and let Fan Studio get on and develop it.

Hopefully I’ll be back with some more posts before then, but in the meantime here’s another screenshot:

JA

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