Pricing policy

How the games are priced and why

I wrote this as an answer to all the questions regarding pricing of my games. It applies to all the games released so far (Stellar Monarch and Amberland series). I do not exclude the possibility of another pricing policy for some future titles, but that’s not very likely and overall premise should be universal among all titles.

People ask me various questions, especially frequently “will the be a discount for owners of previous game” or “will those be bundled”. Some of those are not possible to make, like when I have no real information who purchased the previous one, and no tools provided by the platform holder. But, there is a more fundamental reason why those games are priced the way those are priced.

The real and the most important reason is that I make niche games. Those can not and will not sell in high quantities, never. So, those need to be priced higher. Also, it’s crucial to sell as many copies as possible at the full price, otherwise there would be no future sequels. That’s why I try to not discount to too deeply, especially at the beginning and that’s also I do not offer special discount to the most loyal fans. The thing is, we all face a choice, to get it very heap or assure the sequel of a given series (and I know you love those sequels and expansions and so on). That’s the most prosaic reason why it’s priced the way it’s priced.

That being said, it’s perfectly understandable that some have more money and they would not mind at all to pay the full price and some have less many and can not afford it. That’s why there are discounts!

My policy on discounts is pretty simple and standardized. I try to participate in all seasonal discounts and all special theme discounts which are made available by the platform holder. I try to increase the discount gradually over time as the game becomes older, typically and usually (but that’s not a hard rule) for up to 50%.

So, the premise here is that if you are more price sensitive you can still get the game, a bit later, but at a lower price.

My policy on bundles is somewhat less organized. I try to put things that fit together but I avoid putting a new title in a bundle (to assure full price purchases, as mentioned above). It’s again somewhat platform specific since, for example Steam allows to display only 3 bundles at once, so it’s sometimes tricky to include all the combinations that there should be. I don’t have that much flexibility in that regard to be honest.

Regional pricing
Sometimes people ask me why the price in their country has changed (typically when it increases). Well, the truth is I have no clue. In big corporations they have people who observe all the currencies and make pricing policy per region or country. For me, I just try to keep up with the base USD pricing and then keep the rest identical to the recommendation of the platform holder (a small exception is pricing in PLN which I can actually understand since it’s my local currency and I alter it sometimes). That being said if I even have the saying on this. For example recently Steam notified me that they stop taking local currency in some countries and they would charge clients there in USD. Overall, I do not touch those and usually platform holders do not even ask me about regional pricing and do it by their own policy.

Buy the game at full price if you are rich because then there are chances I can make a sequel of your favorite game. If you are very rich, buy all my games, even those you don’t intend to play. If you have less money, wait for discount and/or bundle, I try to put those on discounts frequently and regularly. As for the rest, I’m usually innocent.

Oh yes, also after you played the game, leave a review (reviews are important) and make a post on Reddit or some other social network thing and wishlist all my games, especially upcoming ones. Overall, those are more valuable to me than raw income, since those have a scaling effect.

Thank you for playing the games and for all the support you show me!