A Room Beyond was exhibited at Respawn and Gamescom 2017 in August and it was exhausting, but amazing. 🙂
The teams of Respawn Indie Game Expo and Indie Arena Booth did a fantastic job to make the exhibitions possible. Without their help it would be hardly possible for small indie studios or even solo devs like me to participate in world leading conferences and showcase like the ones in Cologne. Thank you very much!
More than 80 devs showed their awesome work on over 1000 m² – and that is just the indie sections! It was a great opportunity for me to not only connect to other devs, but also show my work to a huge audience. I was asked a couple of times if it was worth it. Well, it depends on how you measure worth, but I would definitely say yes. The participation gave me a big push in visibility for me and my project. I had a lot of business requests before and after the event, and it brought some new options for possible future cooperations. Also I am very happy that I managed to give away about 2000 flyers and to have some sales at the booth.
I was a little bit surprised that so many projects exhibited at Indie Arena Booth are still under development. I expected that most would be published already, just like A Room Beyond. But maybe that is good to know for future projects. Actually it makes perfect sense to use the exhibition as a chance to find publishers or other business partners. However, I had meetings with business partners for a future project for which I already have a (imho good) prototype ready and I came to the conclusion that it works best if you have a pretty much finished game for companies just to “buy”. Seems that they are mainly not willing to invest in dev today, but just hook themselves into the pay chain of a finished product. Probably another bad consequence of today’s enormous number of new software releases.
Feedback on A Room Beyond was pretty good in general. The things discussed follow the same patterns as the discussions that raised during the project’s past. My approach to mimic the look and feel of 2D pixel art using realtime 3D technologies was called innovative and never seen before by many visitors. Especially the very atmospheric light based scenes of the later episodes in the game, i.e. the ghost house, were perceived as very appealing. A lot of adventure gamers came by and some played right at the booth for about an hour! 🙂 However, there is still another characteristic of the project which accompanies the project from the start till today: It has a good fanbase who likes it very much, but A Room Beyond is not a mainstream product, which is difficult from an economic point of view.
There was also something completely new, which is the discussion of bringing it to consoles. In general I think it is an interesting idea, but implementing a solid controller support and connecting to the consoles’ infrastructures means that all essential parts of the game would need to be reworked. Additionally potential business partners for consoles seemed not very optimistic, so that this will probably not happen soon.
Publishing a DRM free version however is still on discussion. Let’s see what future brings.
Thanks again for the many people supporting this project! It would have been never possible without you.