One month of ChronoBob
Here's a story, with some questions at the end.
ChronoBob is my first game, and it's my baby.
Knowing that there is much competition and the golden age was in the past, I didn't expect my game would be a hit, but I also didn't expect it to be nothing at all. Although I did everything all marketeers preach all over the internet (except paying them loads of money to do it for me)...
I published ChronoBob to the App Store, did like 5 press releases (paid for a couple of them) and reached out to almost 100 game-reviewers (who cover iOS games) to review ChronoBob. As far as I know only TouchArcade reviewed the game, quote: "Wow this looks really good. I like how it's original. I've never seen this type of game before personally. First 12 levels free the rest you can buy. Premium game with a preview."
I don't have to explain that I couldn't be more happy with comments like that. I couldn't wait to see more game-reviews. But... it appeared like nobody else looked at my game.
The stressful waiting for download results began. Starting off with a pretty disappointing 150-300 downloads per day.
The first 12 days it was freemium. First 12 levels free to play then in-app purchase to buy the full game for 2$
In 10 days I got almost 2000 downloads. I never saw the game on the first screen in the App Store. In those 10 days I got 7 in-app purchases.
So I panicked. Why didn't it sell? Is the in-app purchase too far into the game? Is 2$ too much for this game? I get no negative reactions, but also no positive. What is going on?
I decided to take action and take out the in-app purchase and make it a 1$ game. What I feared for happened, downloads dropped to zero and the next two weeks it sold 11 copies. Average, less than one a day.
I had this romantic idea that when you put your heart and soul in it, it will shine enough to get noticed when you show it to the world. But when everything is shiny and free the market is ruthless, high supply and low demand, not on the first page, you're dead.
I'm disappointed, but I refuse to accept that ChronoBob is dead in the water. I still believe there must be a way to drag my game out of the shadow, and make more than half a buck a day of it.
What is the next thing I should try? Make it free to raise downloads a bit and put in ads, with an in-app to remove them?
Do you guys have ideas on what's the next best thing I could try out, (without investing too much time in it)?