Announcing: DUNKYPUNG

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Hello fellow hu-mans! I’m thrilled to finally announce my next game, DUNKYPUNG, which will be launching on iOS in January 2019! Want to give the game a try right now? Help me Beta test [info below]!

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Where I Disappeared to in 2018

headshot*Taps the mic* Helloooo! Is this thing on? Right. It’s been a while since I’ve dusted off ye old blog. It’s been a crazy year for me in a lot of ways. Since I haven’t been spending nearly as much time being active on the Internets of late, I figured I’d drop a quick update on where I’ve been and what’s coming up.

Here’s what’s up:

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On the Hunt for New Freelance Gigs (Games/Tech) UPDATED 2018 Edition!

newnmeunierpicNeed a seasoned writing pro with 15 years of experience in the games, tech, and media industry? Someone who specializes in creating compelling articles, content marketing, and editing services for a broad range of games and tech clients? Great! I might be the (vaguely human-shaped) droid you’re looking for. Please read on!

[Updated 11/20/2018!]

Normally, I use this blog space for updates on my assorted gamedev projects and creative work, but it’s been [another] challenging year of shifting workloads and mounting bills. To avoid hitting critical mass during a rather turbulent period of personal change, I’m ramping up my efforts to lock down some fresh steady freelance work. I don’t always take on new clients, and I’m selective about the work I take on, but I’m officially putting the “open for business” sign out.

MY EXPERIENCE AND PAST WORK

You can find my full resume here.

The TL:DR version. I’m a former games and tech journalist with 15 years of professional writing experience for major publications like IGN, GameSpot, Nintendo Power, GamePro, etc.

That comes in very handy with my current freelance focus: providing B2B content marketing, branded articles, and consulting services for games, tech, and media clients. I’ve shifted away from writing for traditional trade publications to focus more on working with companies directly to showcase how their clients put their products and brand to creative use, among other things.

Recent clients include: Google, Unreal Engine, ASUS, The Foundry, Vungle, NewsCred, and more.

WHAT I CAN DO FOR YOU

I’ve been at this for a long time, and I’ve written an exhaustive range of content for a wide variety of clients. I also have a wealth of games industry experience and insight I can put to use for your project or brand. Here’s an incomplete list of some of the freelance writing services I provide.

Content Marketing

  • Thought leadership articles
  • Blog posts / branded blog content
  • Customer case studies and success stories
  • Whitepapers
  • Branded ebooks
  • Interviews
  • Copywriting and copyediting
  • Email and web campaigns
  • PR and marketing copy
  • Website copy
  • And more

Games Consulting

  • Pre-launch analysis + private critique
  • Strengths and weaknesses analysis
  • Market research and marketing assistance
  • And more

I’m also open to other unique opportunities, as well.

RATES AND SPECIFICS

Have a project or ongoing freelance gig you’d be interesting in hiring me for? Email me at: thenathanmeunier at gmail dot com to discuss specifics, rates, and opportunities for working together. Thanks a bunch!

-Nathan

 

 

Return of The Quest To Break Even (and the Importance of Setting Goals)

For me, setting goals has always been vital to measuring success and having something to constantly work towards. Having massive long-term bigger picture goals on the horizon is always useful, but it’s also critical to set smaller short-term goals that are closer within reach.

Nothing I’ve ever done or created has been a 100% runaway success out of the starting gates. But by amassing small wins and building momentum over time, I’ve always been able to eventually get to where I wanted to be, both professionally and creatively, through hard work and sheer determination. Now that my latest game Missile Cards is out on iOS and seems to be doing pretty well-er-ish, it’s a good time to bring back my original goal for this project: The Quest To Break Even

salesupdate1

LOOK I made a janky info-graphic! Wheee! It’s not the prettiest thing (actually it’s kind of awful looking, hah).

THE QUEST TO BREAK EVEN (PART II)

I’ve blogged at length about how Missile Cards was originally designed to be a short project to minimize risk and hit the finish line quickly while making something neat I could be proud of. My original goal with the Steam launch was to sell 5000 copies, which (at the $4.99 Steam price) would have basically paid for the six months of time it took to develop and launch the game.

That, as you may also recall, didn’t happen. I sold less than 300 copies in the first month (though we’re now closer to almost 500 copies sold on Steam several months out, so…woo?!)

The newly launched iOS version of Missile Cards, on the other hand, has been doing PRETTY DARN WELL. So far, at least. In roughly four days, I’ve sold over 2,000 copies. Now we’re talking, right? WOO!

Sort of.

Getting positive review coverage and landing a much-coveted slot in the App Store feature lineup has been GREAT. Checking the numbers today (sales data is a day behind in the store backend), I’m starting to see the positive impact of Friday’s feature, and I’m REALLY hoping this continues into next week.

Things are going great, but I’m not out of the frying pan just yet.

BY THE SKIN OF MY TEETH (or 8,000 sales)

My quest to “break even” on development, if I’m being honest, is really only the first hurdle to reaching my long-term goals. Missile Cards may not ever earn enough to let me shift gears and make my next few games on a paid FT basis (that’d be ideal), but I’m hoping that it can at least pay me back for the time I took to make it.

So now that the game is actually selling on iOS, I’m back on the saddle of my quest to pay for the game’s six month dev cycle (not including an added month or so to port the iOS version and orchestrate this launch craziness).

At the lower $2.99 price point, I need to hit 8,000 sales to break even.

That sounds like a lot of sales (and a lot of money if you do the math), but in reality — I get $2 per copy sold, roughly, and after taxes (33 ish percent), my actual take home put-it-in-the-bank from 8,000 copies sold technically wouldn’t even knock out the smallest chunk of debt I’ve got right now, much less allow me to work on Missile Cards updates or my next games on a paid basis.

But it’d make a good dent in it, so that’s what I’m aiming for right now.

To REALLY start to be in a good spot where I can knock out some serious bills, get caught up, and finally be able to carve out paid time making games, I’d have to sell closer to 20-30,000 copies. Which…is possible, but going to be a challenge even with this good initial momentum.

WHY SETTING GOALS IS KEY

Why am I sharing all of this with you? Why should you care? I’m not sure, other than it gives me something tangible, a target to shoot for. Whether you’re interested in cheering me on and helping me succeed or are just curious to grab some popcorn, pull up a chair, and see what happens next, this puts some visibility (and a nice reality check) to what this process is REALLY like for a small indie developer struggling to get traction in the industry while juggling debt, a day job, and the ups and downs of the creative life.

So. That’s where I’m at! Optimistic, but still anxious, determined, and in need of any support I can get. I realize that’s asking a lot, but folks who know me, know that I’m more than happy to pay it forward and help others as I’m able to. That’s been a core part of my professional career over the past 15 years and something I genuinely enjoy doing. It’s also why I’ve been so transparent throughout this messy, challenging process.

And hey, I got to make an info-graphic, right? Wasn’t that fun?

Top 3 ways to help me out right now if you want to (the TL:DR version):

  1. Buy the game
  2. If you dig it, please leave an App Store review
  3. Tell your peeps and maybe spread the link around on social media if you can!

Here’s the link, BTW:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/missile-cards/id1240790443?mt=8

Thanks again! Appreciate everyone’s support and encouragement this past week (and going forward). It’s been a wild, exciting, and challenging month, and there’s still a lot of work to do ahead.

Cheers and have a great (and safe) July 4 holidays!
-Nathan

So…Uh. THAT happened! (Missile Cards iOS Update)

Yesterday started off with a lot of questions about how the rest of this iOS launch for Missile Cards was going to go. I wrote up a lengthy post about failure, how it’s a normal part of the creative process (it absolutely is), and why you shouldn’t give up easily. Then, later in the day, a bunch of things all exploded at once–driving that point home in some powerful ways.

First…THIS happened.

appstorefeature

*****AAAAAAAaaaaaaAAAAaaaaAAAAaAA!*****

Getting featured on the main page of the App Store is HUGE. I thought Missile Cards didn’t make the cut when the store shifted over on Thursday, but then last night a bunch of new games were added…including my own. This will make a big difference in launch momentum. To be honest, I’m not sure exactly WHAT this is going to do to my sales, as the data is still a day behind and the changeover happened later in the day yesterday.

But DAMN. This is…good. Very good. V GOOD BOY.

Other good things that are good!

Getting featured is A BIG DEAL, considering it’s my first solo iOS game, I’m not working with a publisher, and I’m doing all of the marketing and launch hustle on my own. But it was also actually was a perfect surprise ending to a day that started “meh” and gradually ramped-up with cool things piling on top of the “meh.” Turning that “meh” into a “YEEAAAAHHH!” (Sorry, I haven’t slept much).

TouchArcade named Missile Cards it’s GAME OF THE WEEK, which is SUPER COOL!

gameoftheweek.png

That was another really nice surprise.

On top of that, a bunch of press coverage and reviews for Missile Cards dropped yesterday, and reviewers seemed to really dig the game on the whole! Here’s a few of the reviews I’ve found so far:

9.6 / 10 – AppAdvice Review 

4 / 5 – Gamezebo Review

4/5 – 148Apps Review

PocketTactics Write-Up

PocketGamer’s App Army Roundup 

So far this is also all super encouraging. The extra coverage is great, and the fact folks are pretty positive about the game is awesome. I feel pretty good about it.

So now what? More hustle.

Getting featured is great, and all of the positive press and coverage is killer. Missile Cards is at the top of charts in both Card and Board Game categories, and is gradually climbing its way into the top 100 paid charts for the entire app store.

I won’t know what impact this has for a few more days when I’ve got more data and things have settled in a bit. Right now, I’ve sold over 1350 copies in the first 3 days or so, but I won’t really know what effect the featuring has until I get through the weekend.

So, even with this great news, I still need to keep my head down and keep on hustling this week to maintain positive momentum and push higher.

Everyone’s support has been so very appreciated, and if you feel like keeping up the love into next week until I REALLY know where things are at, that’ll continue to be a big help. If you’ve bought the game, don’t forget to leave a review, and tell your peeps!

Thanks so much! I’m a bit more optimistic about the path ahead! Let’s do this!

Cheers,
-Nathan