debula sketch female p for pistol

Can you make money while making your first game?

TLDR: How do I build a game and earn money?

People buy games they like. So your game must be complete and fun. Stay focused.

  • Stay Employed
  • Invest your free time
  • Get your product to market asap

So you want to make a game but reality is setting in that somehow you have to deal with your daily life, paying for food, shelter and the occasional tiddy game on steam.

You ask yourself, How the hell do indie developers do it? Fear not, Pistol Taeja is here to give you some guidance.

This article will be assuming you are broke as heck and the chances of you getting funding from the government or an investor is 0.

Keep your full-time job

Unless you are living off your families good will; Paying for your daily life is going to be critical in keeping your mind stable, fresh and able to complete the task of making your game to make money.

You will also need an initial starting fund for your game without having to go a bank for a loan.

So no matter what your going through, keep your day job at all costs. You'll need to do some work on your part here by finding a job that has a few perks.

While learning how to make your game in Godot/Unity, its important to decide whether or not you will be going the Free 2 Play route or the Paid Product route.

[There may be an advertisement here, thanks for your support]

Stability is key

While on the hunt for your stable job, what you're looking for is a job that preferably doesn't require you to 'take work home' and your weekends are 100% your free time.

Your game plan is to spend your free time learning the craft of game development, and spending the weekends when possible on making your game and getting it ready to market and sell.

Every month that you are able to sustain your full time job and work on your game is a month you have successfully invested hundreds of dollars into your game through raw manpower.

During this process you'll need to come up with a marketing strategy to prevent you from the common failure many experience.

They've completed their game then upload it to the Google Play Store or Steam and expect it to make thousands of dollars.

Those days are over. While you are making your game it's critical to get the word out there where possible.

Use, Reddit, Twitter, Discord, whatever makes the most sense to you and share your project while you are making it or learning new features for Unity/Unreal/Godot.

This is how you build a following and confidence.

Marketing is key to selling your product (and a little luck)

It's been a few months, you took my previous advice and finished your game within 90 days or so. At this point you should have a small following on reddit/twitter/discord and used it to flush out the good or bad ideas in your game.

Now armed with this information you can curate those posts you've been making for months and repost them on those same social media platforms in the same week that you release your game.

If the game makes millions or has a huge monthly daily active users as a free to play then your dream has come true! The more likely scenario is that your first game will receive mixed reviews or worse case be a total flop.

But as a developer, this is a 100% success. You've done what most aspiring game developers rarely achieve when they want to make money while making a game. You released a game!

If it turns out the market just does not like your idea, someone already released something similar that was even better? This is a huge blow to your ego and self esteem but fear not.

You kept your full time job the whole time and so your bank account was at least stable during the whole period. You can now use the experience of that failed game to make another game that is better suited for the world going forward with your new creative neurons.

I do not advice doing the "I Quit My Six Figure Job At Moogle To Make Games", It's unrealistic and financially stupid. Quite frankly I think most of those stories are lies to begin with but we can talk about that in another article

Good Luck!

- Pistol Taeja

Why should indie developers care about SEO?

concept sketch for an unreleased project

There are many SEO strategies out there but what are the specific ones game developers should be focused on?

Don't get scammed when releasing your indie game

Chicken Wants To be A Dinosaur

Game scams are an incredibly common issue in the world of indie game development. If you fall prey to the Steam Key Scam or Influencer Scam don't worry, here are some ways to handle it.

How to make a game and stay motivated

The Pistol Running Sketch - PForPistol

To make a game is very similar to running a marathon, its difficult but there is a path forward.