We’ve got an announcement to make!
For some time now at Flippfly, we’ve been thinking about our company: what our values are, what business models we want to pursue, and how to build a community of fans. These are all really important things to us.
If you’ve been watching the game industry lately, you know that things are going through some radical changes. In the mobile app marketplace (and increasingly on every platform,) “Free-To-Play” (f2p) is becoming a dominant business model. Some “industry prophets” are predicting that f2p will be the only way to survive in the future. Most of the top-grossing apps on any given day in the App Store use this model now.
And we’ve also decided that Free-to-Play isn’t for us.
- We don’t like the idea that our games will constantly ask you for money – even after you’ve already paid.
- We don’t like the idea that only 3% or so of our players will see any value in our games, and the other 97% will be having an inferior experience, diluted by monetization attempts and pay walls.
- We don’t like the idea that we need to spend a significant portion of our time working on the “monetization flow” of our in-app-purchases. We’d rather work on the games themselves.
- We don’t like the idea that we’d be making most of our money from so-called “whales” – addicted players who are spending large (often unhealthy) amounts of money on our “free” games
To be clear – we’re not saying that we think all f2p games are evil, or that there’s no better way to do f2p than the methods that dominate the market right now.
We’ve just decided that we want to go a different direction.
The first part of that direction is that we’re now focused on the PC platform first.
We believe it’s easier to build a community here, and that PC players are more likely to see value in our games. We’ll port our games to Mobile whenever it makes sense.
The second part of that direction is what we’re announcing today.
Today we’re revealing a voting system for our games, right here on Flippfly.com.
We have a lot of games we’d like to make, and for every game, there are a lot of ideas we’d love to be able to implement. But we want to give our fans – especially those who support us – a unique way to give their input.
Here’s how it works:
You can buy any of our games for a low price. For instance, Race The Sun can be purchased for $5 during this alpha period, and $10 will get you the game and soundtrack. You’ll get the complete game, and all future updates.
However, if you want to have more input in what we work on next (and to help us work at Flippfly full-time) you can buy a $25 version – this will get you one Flippfly Vote.
This vote is yours to spend on anything on our Voting page – you can re-assign it to a different item, and it will never go away.
[Update: Based on community feedback, we decided to make it so any game purchase will get you at least one vote – the “Vote Pack” is now the “Extra Vote Pack”, and it’s $20 instead of $25. One of the cool things about being indie is how quickly you can adapt ;)]
At the moment, we have two Race The Sun features open for voting: a unique form of cooperative multiplayer, and in-game mod tools. We’d honestly love to do both of them, but we want input from our fans on what they’d like to see first. Once we finish one of these features – we’ll add another one to the list, so there are always at least two choices. Going forward, we plan to add entire games as votables, and let the community decide which one they’d like to see made, with input at every stage of development.
If you want to help us out even more and have more input, a $50 contribution will get you
2 3 votes, and also your name in the credits of the game. You get the idea – more contribution gets you more Flippfly Votes and swag – and helps us work at Flippfly full-time.
It also helps us keep the games themselves pure, free of in-game monetization. And importantly, it lets us involve our community in our decision-making process at an unprecedented level.
This leads to the second part of the announcement:
Flippfly Founder’s Club
The way this works is simple: If you’re a Founder’s Club member, you will get a copy of every game we make for all PC platforms – for as long as Flippfly is making games.
Additionally, you’ll get a total of 10 Flippfly Votes, your name in the credits of all of our games, and a bunch of other rewards.
If you want to really help us out- we’re also offering a very limited number of “Gold” memberships. A Gold membership will get you all the previous tiers, a few additional Flippfly Votes, a Flippfly Founder’s Club T-shirt, and a copy of anything we ever port to Mobile platforms.
Crowd Funding, Flippfly Style
This plan is our method of crowd-funding, and to be honest it’s kind of scary for us. As of the time of writing, we’re getting low on funds and we’ve had to take on some other work to help pay the bills – which means less time to make games.
But we believe that the funds we raise from Flippfly Voting and Founder’s Club memberships will not only allow us to focus on making awesome games (that won’t nickel ‘n dime you,) but we’re excited that it will also involve the community in our process in a way that’s totally new.
Will you join us?