Tuesday, April 24

Well, That Was Unexpected

What a weekend! Friday night I decided to write a Geeklist on BoardGameGeek about my experiences self-publishing Border Reivers. I hoped that it would get a few thumbs and draw a few people to look into Border Reivers. I might even get a sale from it, if I was lucky.

Saturday morning I added a couple of items, posted it, and packed myself off to Beyond Monopoly! for only the second time this year. BM was great - I'd not been since early January, it was nice to catch up with everyone, and get to play a few games that were new to me. Thurn and Taxis in particular shone. Another worthy winner of Spiel des Jahres, the German Game of the Year.

I staggered back late in the afternoon, all gamed out, and checked out BGG to see what had become of my Geeklist. I was expecting the usual: a couple of thumbs up and dropped into obscurity. Instead it had all kicked off. I'd got over fifty thumbs, a bunch of GeekGold (BGG's currency), and a couple of orders from the States despite the truly awful exchange rate at the moment. It had been a slow news day, so my Geeklist had remained at the top of the list on the front page all day, gaining thumbs up (which keep it at the top) and getting read a lot.

It kept going, it was top all weekend and Monday. It's now got over 165 thumbs. Border Reivers entered the 'Hot Games' sidebar on the front page (today it was the eigth hottest game!). I got six orders over four days, and a bunch more interest. It totally blew me away. I've burnt through my finished stock, which is great, but I'm getting interviewed by the Yorkshire Post this week and I hoped to have some stock ready for that too. D'oh!

I also got a few more It's Alive! pre-orders, and I've nearly got enough capital now to publish It's Alive!, I should certainly be able to get the rest in time now, even assuming that none of the outstanding enquires turn into sales, and the Yorkshire Post interview doesn't generate any more. Yeay! Now I just need to get the rest of the artwork, finish the graphic design, blind-playtest it, send it to the printers and construct a few copies in the next five and a half weeks. Gulp!

Bizarrely, two of the recent Border Reivers orders were from the BBC MindGames magazine review in January. I'd given up on that as a slightly wasted effort as it had only generated a single sale. Turns out it might be three!


hmocc said...

Truly and well deserved!


Jack said...

Thanks Hugo! I'm frantically cutting out tiles at the moment - trying to get more stock finished! It's been a great few days, but now I'm behind again.


Phil said...

Good work Jack!
Very encouraging to hear that BoardGameGeek can actually generate some interest in self-published games!

Jack said...

It really can. I think it's a fine line to walk - you don't want to just keep pimping your game left, right and centre, but you want get some coverage. Too much and you'll just irritate people and put them off, not enough and no-one will know your game even exists.

I'm still learning how to do this - some attempts work better than ever.



Allen Holman said...

Congrats on the publicity working out for you guys.

Found this site coming from Yehuda's - seems that there is a nice buzz going on about It's Alive - Wish I could make it to York from Taneytown, MD USA :-p

Jack said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jack said...

Hiya Allen,

Welcome to Creation and Play. Thanks for good wishes, but I'm dissappointed that you're not flying over especially for the playtesting ;-p