OK after careful consideration and some discussions with my family I have decided to actively pursue PureSim commercial development again. I have officially flunked retirement :)
It was nice to slow down and the break certainly helped me recharge my batteries, but I really started to miss working on the game regularly. Of course I have been doing some work on the "PureSim Community Edition" since "retiring", but there were no real plans to move the series forward and do any new commercial releases. My family and I are comfortable that as long as I don't go back to being totally obsessed, then this can work out. I know they'll keep me honest.
I have to say, recently (this week), I really dove back into the code and it dawned on me that this game really does still have a bright future. I found myself having a LOT of fun again, something that was not the case in January when I walked away. Some of the work I did with Gary on Total Pro Golf 2 was a great boost too. This is just in my blood.
I still want to talk to Matrix about whether they'll be interested in publishing the next commercial version of PureSim, but regardless I will be releasing a new version of the game. One possibility is to clean up the CE releases, polish up some things, do some more feature work and release a reasonably priced ($19.99?), fully supported, PureSim 2007 Expansion pack this summer. Another option is to get a little more aggressive with new features and release PureSim 2008 next spring. I also intend to continue to support the open access to PureSim's database, addins, and the PureSim SDK. My dream is to get a really cool developer ecosystem to sprout up around the game. Maybe a bit of a lofty goal given the niche genre, but people have already built some pretty cool add-ins to date!
One thing I have been giving a LOT of thought to is that I need to get better at charging for new features. I look back over all the free updates I do...I add hundreds of features in patches, then wonder why I don't have enough "new" features to warrant a release when spring rolls around The flip side is I really like to work that way, the game stays very stable and improves incementally. The only other option here would be to charge some sort of annual subscription fee and release constant micro updates (I played with this idea in the past).
I'd LOVE to get your feedback on what approach you think would be ideal. A big new PureSim 2008 next year, or an expansion pack this summer, or a shift to an annual subscription model (not sure how that would work yet -- maybe some sort of page you can access for one year that has all the year's free updates?)
Maybe it's the Red Sox great season, maybe it's in my blood, regardless it feels great to be back! I missed it.
I feel great about this decision.
P.S. I just re-read my post and it sounds a bit dramatic, apologies for that, I know I'm not solving world hunger here :)
< Message edited by puresimmer -- 6/23/2007 8:19:05 PM >
Developer, PureSim Baseball