During his talk entitled ‘Your Game Isn't Going to Sell. Let's See What We Can Do About That’ at Develop:Brighton, No More Robots’ founder Mike Rose discussed what indies can do to boost their game before, during and after launch.
And setting a Discord server is the tool all indie publishers should be using, he explained throughout the talk.
“Twitch was the thing years ago, and YouTube before that, there’s always a thing, and the thing right now is Discord,” Rose said. “Firstly, Discord has now over 100m registered users and ten of millions of active users and them being on Discord mean they like video games in some kind of form. So we’re talking about this platform with ten of millions of people using it every day who all want to buy video games. That, to me, sounds kind of useful. So I keep shouting at people: get on this, just learn it quick, there’s really not that much to it.”
Boosted Steam wishlists, boosted Day One sales, more positive reviews: the benefits of using Discord are numerous, he continued.
“All the things I’ve listed here are things that I’ve found come directly from me having a Discord server. It’s amazing. Within the first 24 hours of having Descenders out we had hundreds of positive reviews, we had like a 93 per cent score. I mean the game is great, I’m not saying it’s not, but [Discord users] were all very quickly just hammering positive reviews because they’re all such die hard Descenders fans now because of the Discord server. There’s lots of good stuff that come out of making a Discord server. If you want to set one up yourself, I would say that you do before your announcement, you can set a server, you can get in touch with Discord and they will verify it,” he explained.
“The big problem with Discord is you never know how to make people go in. The way I get to make people come into my Discord servers is by telling them that it’s the only way for them to get my game for free in the beta form. Essentially, at the announcement, I tell them ‘Hey, if you join this Discord server then in a couple of months you’ll get the beta’ and I think we had like 5,000 join the Descenders Discord, 4,000 people join the Not Tonight one, the Hypnospace one has 2,500 people. People just keep coming and I now have access, I can literally @ everybody on this server and it pings 5,000 people’s phones, they all see it right there and they all jump on and start interacting with the thing I pinged at them. It’s amazing to get directly in touch with people who signed up because they like the look of your game. We never really had something like that before, we got to get someone watch your trailer and then where do they go? They just disappear and you hope they will remember your game in the future. Now you can tell them in the trailer: go and sign up for the beta.”
Once the beta is out, once again Discord proves to be very useful as a marketing tool, Rose continued, as it allows “ you to collect info about your community” and to “cement people’s interest.”
When the game is out is “where the Discord really shines,” he added, as you can “keep your Discord active with challenge, meta games, whatever works for you.”
He concluded, talking about Hypnospace Outlaw: “I know for a fact that there are thousands of people in that server who are going to buy the game now. Because they’re telling me. We’ve created a space where they’ve already got hours of enjoyment out of this thing and it’s not even out yet.”