was released three months ago, following an extended development period and a challenging soft-launch phase, which I'll delve into in an upcoming post. This marks the first game we've self-published in over five years. Despite a difficult launch due to limited resources, we've already surpassed the 300,000-player
mark—a very promising start!
We chose to release Boom on Thursday, May 25th, as it was a quieter week ahead of the traditional big studio announcements in June. The game itself was ready to launch, but we still had to prepare all the marketing materials: images, store descriptions, keywords, press releases, videos... All of these tasks are time-consuming, and it wasn't until the final stages that we started using AI to help us draft and translate some of the text.
During the launch period, we reached out to every website and YouTuber who might be interested in covering the game. We prioritized those who had previously discussed our games and were somewhat familiar with us. Some Mr Bullet videos have even amassed several million views!To our great surprise, hardly anyone talked about Boom!
This has been a setback that we're still trying to understand. The impact of an article on TouchArcade or PocketGamer is negligible in terms of downloads. However, for us, this media coverage carries great symbolic weight: it's a form of recognition and validation from specialized journalists we respect. Being snubbed in this way was a bit of a blow to our morale...
Was it due to the game itself not impressing them? Were our emails poorly written? Did they end up in spam? Or perhaps the timing was off for the game's release? Has the mobile gaming market evolved to the point where it's no longer feasible for a small studio to gain visibility? If you have any thoughts or insights on this, we'd love to hear them.
Fortunately, Apple's editors saw Boom's potential and pulled out all the stops to feature it on the App Store: "Best New Games," "Hidden Gems," "New Game We Love," "New & Noteworthy," "What We're Playing," "Multiplayer Fun for Everyone"... The game has been showcased in various lists and across numerous countries throughout the summer.
Apple eventually reached out to request images, videos, and texts in anticipation of a very significant feature: "Game of The Day
." This is a front-page article on the App Store that highlights a game for an entire day.
This increased visibility on the App Store has been immensely helpful. On top of that, word of mouth has worked its magic, boosted by our referral code system, which encourages players to talk about the game to their friends in exchange for in-game gifts.
We've also amassed a 2,400-member community on the game's Discord server
. This direct line to our players is crucial, especially for a multiplayer game. Issues are flagged immediately, allowing us to make quick fixes. We greatly appreciate being able to interact with our players and feel their support.
In summary, the first three months since Boom's launch have been a mixed bag: we can't complain, but not everything went as planned. Boom has yet to achieve the resounding success we believe it's destined for. In the coming weeks, we will try other avenues to increase downloads, but more on that later!