'Being online is a smarter way to make games,' says GarageGames

'Being online is a smarter way to make games,' says GarageGames

By Ed Fear

May 7th 2008 at 11:24AM

Releasing early and continually evolving is the way for new concepts to grow

Speaking in the second part of their interview with Develop, published today, GarageGames CEO Josh Williams and GG Networks general manager Andy Yang have told us how developing games for immediate online communities can lead to a more organic, iterative production process.

"It's about taking a more web development type mentality to game development, which is about getting it out there," explained Yang. "The biggest successes on the web - Yahoo, Google - all started with something really simple and expanded it over time, they let their users tell them what was and wasn't working."

This concept is applicable to games, says Yang, if developers focus on the core experience first, "make it really compelling and then just grow it along the way. It lowers risk, it leads to more innovative things."

GarageGames has structured InstantAction from the developer perspective to provide the metrics required to assess what aspects of a game are and aren't working, to help the product organically grow into a premium-quality product.

"We do a lot of metrics and analysis on the back-end so we can show you things like 'this is how many people are playing this level, this is the percentage of people who are completing it, and they're being turned on or off by this level'," said Williams.

"That means you can really tune your game over time too. When you start thinking about it and adding all that stuff up it's a great opportunity for developers."

For more on how targeting online communities can change game development, check out part two of our interview here. Part one, which discusses how the site aims to target the left-behind core gamer, can be read here.