Please note that the story is written from the perspective of @dotpng, so “I” in the story means himself
– story continued from Part I –
So, let’s continue with public day.
Public day allows public audience to enter the hall and is the day that Japanese gamers will centralize at this event. Sure thing, there’re a lot of people, a lot.
Firstly, take a look at the crowd at the train station. This was around half an hour before the event actually started.
When we enter the entrance area, we’re a little of exciting and shock as there’s a pretty long queue of people waiting in line to enter the hall. Anyway, we really feel like real developers, a somewhat VIP access, thus we were walking through
Photo above didn’t represent the head of the line, see below for continuity.
When the event started, stream of people kept flowing in. Notable and big booths had pack of crowd people, some of them even has actors coming to interview, made a press release about their new game. People flush in to look, really exploded.
When the event kicked off, we got some tidbits knowledge : although public day had ton of people, they usually didn’t visit small booth with the reason as follows …
- They have limited time. The event kicked off at 10 am until 5 pm. So there’s a quite limited time to visit ton of booths, everything has to be made in time.
- For a demo booth, one game took around 10 minutes in estimation for play-time combining with limited number of devices or consoles and load of people’s desire to play the game, it took time to stand in a queue waiting to play the game. For some games, at least 3 hours was needed.
- There’re several sub-event inside the hall including actors, celebrities which came to announce new games, as well as interviewing notable developers, all of them on stage. There’s a very little gap of time to breathe.
- Each of big booths has several souvenirs especially a nice big bag whose policy is to play the game first then you will get one. So people have to make haste in queuing, not much time left to look around for detail like smaller booths.
Some companies which already had experience in Tokyo Game Show won’t attend public day. They just showed up only in business day to get contact, and that was a job done for them as they knew there won’t be much to expect from this rage day for small booths.
In the very first period, we were frightened, small number of people came to check our game out at the booth compared to the number we expected …. but when times goes by people actually came to visit us, and that was a great feeling!
… then the number of people was growing, and we started to being lifted by the air with pride. Anyway and at any rate, our small booth has such a reasonable high number of visitors as the event coordinator also told us that “your booth is famous, you know”, and also acknowledged by the booths around us.
One of the things that we really liked was that lot of visitors came in as a family, then parent would teach their own child on how to play the game, or at least just went along with them. It’s nice and cute time.
His son really wanted to play the game, and spent long time standing in front of the booth holding an iPad mini to experience the zombie rage. His father was still calm and flexibly waiting for his son to finish the game.
For the last day (or 2nd day of public day), there’s a ton of children checking out our booth. One of reasons behind was that day was actually a family day and also a special holiday in Japan. What a nice combination of things happen to make our day exhibiting the game.
It turned out that our game made children really excited and interested. If children saw the game (even if they just walked by the booth, skimmed their eyes passing the somewhat large screen showing off game trailer and caught us in the sight), they turned their head and moved towards devices immediately. The result? Yeah, it’s a queue :_)
Look at the photo below, even the girl that was very young, but she really wanted to play (Not to mention that the game’s rate shouldn’t be applied to her).
This chubby boy really paid attention to the game. He stood there and played the game for around half an hour. He failed, died and repeated the game several times. His father was cute as he waited until his son can finish the game.
This another boy also really liked the game. He came back to the booth 3 times. The last time he did come was around the closing of the event and our booth on the last day. At last, we gave him a business card. Sure thing he might contact us to be one of our developers some time when he grow enough.
Some visitors came in as a couple, some came in as a group.
For instance, the man below is a student in university and is currently studying game development. He seemed to be really impressed with the game and surprised that there’s actually a small people making this game. It’s like an inspirational moment for him.
Including this companion in which the woman on the right is a new voice actor coming in with her own manager to try the game, then they offered us about their service. In short, if we need cute Japanese voices to use in the game, just contact them.
Although it’s Tokyo Game Show, how comes it won’t include European guys like this. Truthfully, there’s a ton of them coming around.
Anyway, this guy, although he didn’t play our game but he did a Kamehameha (かめはめ波) around here.
This guy just played the game 2 times, one for iPod Gen 5, and another for iPad mini. It’s like play testing both screen resolution real estate.
This man was our friend from the booth near us in the far side as seen in the photo. He really liked the game, he played and excited.
For public day, there’s around 60 visitors came to play the game each day. Actually, it’s a high number for us as if someone never play this game before it would take time around 8-10 minutes to finish the demo (but some can’t finish and some finish but take longer time). So it means that in 1 hour, we can cycle around 12 players (2 devices available) thus we can accept incoming visitors in upper limit to around 84 people. In number, we’re at ~70% output from what we can hold on in maximum. We’re pleased at the number actually.
What we got from public day was Feedback with also players’ emotions and expressions. We notice them from relaxed and not too aggressive circumstance while they were playing the game. Truthfully, this point is really important. It’s not that easy to find 120 real gamers to try our game to find out that some of them really liked, some of them feel impassive and not to mention of information we collected throughout the days like bugs, flaws to fix, and things to improve the game.
We also got featured in Game business related website in Japan (while the press was interviewing us at the booth, I’m else where taking pretties photo). Check this link out http://gamebiz.jp/?p=120776.
Part III will be coming in a few days, so stay tune!!