Nyamyam held a post-mortem for their atmospheric point-and-click adventure game Tengami at this year’s Develop conference in Brighton.
Within, the independent developer shared that 90 percent of their total revenue came from the iOS versions, their chosen launch platform, which saw release in February 2014.
That saw them sell around 196,000 copies, which they have been unable to match with Wii U and PC versions that were released later on in November 2014 and January 2015 respectively.
These versions have each sold more than 11,000 copies, that is attributed to the remaining 10 percent.
“It’s not surprising as we heavily targeted the Apple platform,” Nyamyam co-founder Jennifer Schneidereit had shared.
These sales figures cover up until June 1st, which means that they haven’t taken into account an additional 48,000 copies that were sold in recent Humble Bundle sales on PC. Schneidereit also indicated that the iOS version had been sold at $5, whereas Wii U and PC were priced higher at $10.
The developer was pleased with their storefront promotion on iOS and Wii U, with Schneidereit adding: “I think this was the most important aspect for our financial success.”
But there was some challenges over generating more press coverage beyond their chosen launch platform.
“If you’re a small studio like ours, you’re probably able to get good enough press coverage for your launch platform – because your game is news, and everybody’s excited to see how it’s going,” she explained.
“We got really great press coverage when we released Tengami on iOS. But when we released on the Wii U, we only got a decent amount of coverage, and on Steam, we hardly got any coverage.
“If you look at the critics’ reviews, there’s only six reviews for the PC version on Metacritic, but about 20 for Wii U. It’s really, really hard to generate interest for your game beyond your launch platform.”
Schneidereit was still pleased that they had released Tengami on Wii U despite sales numbers being far lower than with the iOS versions.
“A lot of developers ask me about the Wii U, whether it’s a good platform for independent developers,” she explained. “To be honest, I don’t know if it’s a good platform for independent developers, but I don’t regret releasing on the Wii U.
“We decided we’re going to do a Wii U version, I worked under the assumption it would sell 10,000 copies – it sold a little bit more by now, so that’s okay.
“Speaking to other independent developers, there seems to be a consensus that the average indie game on the eShop has sold 10,000 copies in its lifetime – we’ve sold 11,000 now, and I think there’s more room to grow. I think our lifetime sales will be closer to 20,000 in the end.”
Schneidereit also warned that even if launch sales disappoint, developers shouldn’t underestimate lifetime sales.
“There was a spike on each platform when released, but sales didn’t drop off as much as anticipated,” she added. “We’re still selling 50 to 100 copies on the App Store every day, and get a steady pay cheque from Apple, Nintendo, Steam and the Humble Bundle.”
Ultimately Nyamyam achieved their pre-launch goals, made their investment back and achieved $1.1 million in gross revenue, although this was reduced to around $650,000 after Apple and Nintendo took their respective cut.
We enjoyed Tengami, concluding in our review: “For those that value clear artistry, you won’t find better representation on the Nintendo eShop than in Tengami. It’s just a shame that the enchanting visual design isn’t made all the more memorable by a gameplay experience to match.”[Thanks Digital Spy]