We’ve made it into July! I for one was hoping to be announcing a release around this time but sadly as we know that’s not the case. A couple of interesting things to discuss today before I release some brand-new design visuals in Wednesdays podcast. I’ll discuss publishing and marketing the boxing promoter as well as discuss yesterday’s O2 show and matchmaking in general, when I discuss real boxing I will always try and look at things from a promoter’s point of view (to the best of my understanding).
Let’s start with publishing and marketing The Boxing Promoter, I must have been told over a dozen times how important marketing an app is… “A good app with poor marketing will fail whereas a poor app with good marketing may succeed” … Seems crazy but that’s just the
way it is. To break it down simply there are only two main ways of marketing this game the first is through a publisher, I’ve spoken with about a dozen game publishers including EA, some of which have tested the game in its beta version however all the publishers that responded did so in the same way… “The graphics would need to be improved and at the very least 3d before they would consider publishing the game”. A publishing deal would have been great but it looks highly unlikely now, often how the deals work is the publisher will agree to pay for the development work and market the game themselves in return they will receive (x)% of the app store revenues. This means from my point of view although I’m disappointed that these companies did not see the potential in my app it does mean I will continue to hold 100% of the revenue gained through app stores.
I will however defend the game when it comes to graphics, I understand they may be simple and I feel most of that is focused towards the actual fight simulation, anyone who plays sports management games understands that graphics is really not that important, take Football Manager as an example, for years it was just a load of dots moving around on a green surface but the game was still outstanding… Ok that’s my rant over now… So, I’ve looked into the 2nd side of advertising which is paid & free promotion through social media and other networks, what makes The Boxing Promoter easier to market than other apps is the target market is very obvious and therefore easier to reach… Through my social media channels, I can target boxing fans from all around the world as well as mobile gamers and fans of football manager for example. Forums give me a good chance to speak directly to more “hardcore” boxing fans and members of the indie game community. I would say so far, my social media has been moderately successful, I currently have just over 800 followers on Twitter, 60 on Facebook and 100 on Instagram. There is still more work to be done on that, hopefully when we have a release date we can build some real buzz around the game heading towards that… Not to put too much pressure on my fans but every time someone tweets, retweets, likes, shares, etc about the game makes a massive difference with gathering interest and buzz. I’ll also consider paid advertising with Facebook and Twitter to help with release.
(Apologies to any of my non UK fans, when I’m referencing boxing fights I will often discuss UK based boxing as I simply follow it closer)
The second and third points kind of merge into one, discussing matchmaking I will also reference last night’s “Summertime Brawl”. Before designing The Boxing Promoter, I spoke with Steve Goodwin (Goodwin Boxing) during a short phone call I asked the question of just how do you “matchmake” fights and what are you looking for in an opponent? The number 1 thing for Steve and I’m sure for almost every promoter is simply look for a fight your boxer can win, a good example of this was when Goodwin promoted Rakeem Noble fought Tommy Coyle back in Feb, the fight ended in a bad KO loss for Noble but during the first round he was able to break Tommy Coyle’s jaw and looked every bit the better fighter until one shot changed the fight…. Therefore, Steve’s decision to take the fight was spot on as a win against Tommy Coyle could have spring boarded Noble to bigger things. The 2nd most important thing when matchmaking (particularly early on) is to have an opponent who will add something/improve your fighter, there isn’t any point in having your fighter against someone who isn’t going to test them in anyway. Let’s review the matchmaking from yesterday’s show on Sky Sports, I’m not going to discuss the strength of the card and the fact it was at the O2, it’s fairly obvious that Matchroom lost money on the night as there was about 4,000 tickets sold according to Hearn but I doubt it was as high as that. There was one competitive fight on the night which as a mandatory British title defence for Frank Buglioni, it ended up being a much tougher test than I expected for him, massive credit to Ricky Summers for his performance. Other than that we saw what were supposed to be step ups for Cheeseman and Bellotti who both performed outstanding, I think both were for titles so the matchmaking made sense, I expected the Cheeseman vs Ryan fight to be the best of the night but I was stunned with the contrasting performances. Onto the new guys (Okolie, Benn & Buatsi), I felt Buatsi’s opponent was ideal for him and very well selected, he was tough, game and really gave it a go, making Buatsi’s performance all the more impressive. Hearn is saying it’s becoming hard to find opponents for Okolie, the simple answer to that is he needs to be pushed up towards domestic titles soon, I don’t think he is gaining a lot from beating up these journeymen. Onto the funniest fight of the night Connor Benn vs Mike Cole, Cole was brought in the night before as a last-minute replacement, he looked out of shape and lacking some power and yet seemed to cause Connor Benn plenty of problems. Connor’s speed and athleticism brought him through the fight in the end but in my opinion, he looked terrible, not sure how you can choose opponents for Connor Benn, he’s got no amateur experience and it shows, personally I feel he would benefit from fighting about 10 times in the next 12 months on small hall shows away from the tv cameras. In my opinion matchmaking is a balancing act, you need a competitive enough fight to keep the fans happy but not so competitive that your fighter can lose, I was disappointed in the fights for Ball, Chamberlain, Jones, Richards etc who should be at the stage where they are looking to be progressed, this was at the O2 so the big fights should be on this card surely? To credit matchroom they do offer great exposure to their Olympic fighters and I’m happy to watch one or two non-competitive fights a night but any more than that and I think the audience has been undersold. There is plenty more that I could discuss about last night’s boxing but I don’t want to bore people too much. Let’s move onto a couple of questions that came in.
Pauloltai - Are you going to be looking to follow boxing rules quite closely throughout the game? There are a few boxing rules that I would love to implement within the game, things like rounds, knockdowns, drugs tests, subjective judging etc I will be looking to bring in. Within the fight itself I’ll probably not look to add specific boxing rules however.
Boxingsim - Will you give fans deep options like being able to choose rules that have existed throughout history? At this moment, I’m not looking at adding in any customisable or editable features however I would like to allow players to select the number of rounds for each bout and maybe other regulations that need to be sorted before scheduling a fight.
Thanks for reading… I would love to hear your feedback on this blog, if you would rather me just stick to discussing the game rather than current boxing I’m happy to do that. Or if you would like me to review more boxing shows I’m game! Please be sure to listen to Wednesdays podcast, as mentioned earlier I’ve got some interesting designs to share with everyone.