Game Progress Update #84

Game Progress Update #84

Hello world! And welcome to the eighty fourth Dev with Dave Game Progress update!

I must admit to being a little tired of doing marketing stuff, planning emails (which I really need to get done), and creating even more social media content than usual.

So on top of everything else which needed doing, I wanted to get the bug with the currency purchasing fixed.

I also had some personal stuff going on this weekend, which kept me away from the computers and made this post a couple of days late, sadly.

But, lets not dwell on that, let me tell you about all the stuff I did manage to get done this update 🙂


Email sequence

The main focus again this update has been planning and executing promotional stuff. Predominantly the email sequence for when people sign up to the website after being directed there by adverts.

I think I have decided to use Breva (Previously Send In Blue) to send the emails with. I already use their service to send transactional emails from various websites.

I have also decided that it would be better to use two sequences. One which is initiated when the player signs up to the list. The other which starts a week or two before the game is released.

Social Media Leveraging

I’ve also been maintaining a presence on a small selection of FB groups which I am planning on leveraging to gain some free organic awareness of my game.

This has so far just been mostly liking and commenting on other peoples posts. I am planning a few posts which will keep within the niche of the group. I had planned on starting these posts sooner than this. As I said previously, a large part of me not doing so has to do with the fact that I cannot schedule a post to a group.

I will manage to sort this out though. I will probably end up writing all the posts and copy on OneNote (Which I can easily access from my phone) and then set up alarms on my phone’s calendar to tell me which post to share and into which group.

Bug fixing

I was hoping to spend Thursday afternoon working on fixing the bugs, but the forces which govern my life decided otherwise. Instead I managed to squeeze in a few hours of doing so on Friday afternoon (When I was supposed to be writing this blog!)

Because of changes made by Google to the way purchasing consumables works, I now need to reset the purchase every time it is successfully purchased. That is not happening now. Currently it lets you buy the pack (success), then the next attempted purchase fails, and it’s not until the 2nd attempt at this that it works.

//	void = BuyCoinPack(ui ref as tUI, player ref as tPlayer, coinPackID as integer)
//	This function will handle all the buying coins with IAP stuff.  I will need to
//	sort out the IAP on the Google Play page before I can do too much more with
//	this aspect of the game.

Function BuyCoinPack(player ref as tPlayer, coinPackAmounts ref as integer[], iapCoinPackID as integer)
	//	Local
	Local iapStatus as integer
	Local finished as integer
	Local token as string
	//	Do the IAP stuff to buy coin pack
	`	If IAP fails then just exit the function

	//	Starts the buying process

		iapStatus = GetInAppPurchaseAvailable2(iapCoinPackID)
		Select iapStatus
			//	Cancelled?  The IAP was cancelled by the user
			Case 0:
				//	Break out of loop
				finished = true
			//	IAP Queued
			Case 1:
				Print("IAP in progress..")
			//	IAP In progress
			Case 2:
				Print("IAP in progress..")
			//	IAP Pending
			Case 3:
				Print("IAP in progress..")
			//	IAP Completed
			Case 4:
				//	Award the IAP

				//	Add the relevant amount of coins to the player total
				Inc player.coinTotal, coinPackAmounts[iapCoinPackID - 1]
				//	Break out of loop
				finished = true
				//	Resets the purchase
				token = GetInAppPurchaseToken(iapCoinPackID)
	Until finished = true

	//	Moved to lower down the code,  This allows for an extra sync.  If this doesn't work, then I will put this in a repeat/until look
	`	which checks for the status of the iapCoinPackID


As the eagle eyed of you have probably noticed, I have moved the InAppPurchaseReset() command to after the sync() and out of the Repeat/Until loop.

If this does not work, then I will add another Repeat/Until loop which exits when the InAppPurchaseReset value has successfully been changed.

Sadly, I was unable to upload a new test build to the Google Play Store.

New Build Issues

I thought things were going quite well earlier. It wasn’t until I uploaded a new build of Flappy-vaders to the Google Play Store, and received the following error..

I am unsure if this is a recent change that Google has made, or if it’s an oversite with the current build of AGK Studio (It was updated recently).

>Edit<. I have been in contact with the AGK Studio developers and it’s an oversight with the last update of AGK Studio, it will be fixed in the next update. But until then, I cannot update the Flappy-vaders test version available to the play testers.

That’s all for now

It’s now Sunday afternoon, and I am sat inside with the laptop, finishing off this post. I’m hoping that the next update will go smoother than this one has.

I will be back in two weeks with the next progress update.

Until then.

Game Progress Update #83

Game Progress Update #83

Hello world, and welcome to the eighty third Dev with Dave game progress update.

It’s been a glorious few weeks here in the UK, which means that I’ve been able to go out at the weekends and make a start on sorting out the garden. It’s looking a little over grown after the rain, then glorious sunshine.

It also means it’s time to get a few new plants…

I’m not a huge fan of dragging round shops, especially when I could have been working on my game and getting ready to promote it, but what can you do?

We’ve also started buying things ready to redecorate the kitchen & watching tutorials on YouTube about laying vinyl flooring. The redecorating is long overdue if I’m being honest, but this has also kept (and will keep) me away from the PC.

Despite these extra drains on my time, I have managed to get some work done on the game.

Preparing the emails

Because I have been planning the email sequence in Word, I have been able to work on it on my phone. This has allowed me to squeeze in a couple of extra hours at least which would otherwise have been wasted.

I’ve changed my mind about the details I published last week about the email sequence.

Instead of the previous list, I have decided to use a more story based approach. Explaining things like my love of gaming from a young age, etc.

I’ve narrowed the choice of providers down to two, Brevo (previously SendInBlue) or Mail Chimp. I already use Brevo for the transactional emails for a few other websites I administer.

Both offer email marketing, as well as transactional emails, and support. Brevo doesn’t offer A/B testing on the lower tier packages, where as Mail Chimp does.

I will no doubt make a choice once I have confirmed to content of the emails, and am ready to start getting signups on the website.

Social Media Leveraging

I have continued to build a presence on the groups chosen for this. I am regularly interacting with posts, and liking and commenting on them.

I am very glad that this is only a small scale test of social media leveraging. I don’t feel I would have time to dedicate to a larger scale operation.

Despite having taken photos and planning several posts, I haven’t had chance to post them yet. A big part of this is because I am unable to schedule posts in other peoples groups through Facebook. I should ensure that the assets and copy are available from my phone so I can post with more ease.


I have also been spending a great deal of time reading and watching tutorials to try and hone my advertising and copywriting skills.

As I have said numerous times throughout this project, I am a programmer usually. I am more than a little out of my comfort zone doing jobs like marketing.

I do have some experience, but it is certainly not my area of expertise.

And that’s all for this week

I’m definitely starting to feel a little out of my depth having spent the last 4 weeks now working on nothing but marketing. I need to get back behind the keyboard and start coding again.

It doesn’t help that other work things have been leaning towards administration and web development rather than coding as well.

But that’s just how it goes sometimes.

I will be back as always next fortnight. With, if nothing else, photo’s of my freshly decorated kitchen! 😂

Until next time.

Game Progress Update #82

Game Progress Update #82

Hello World! And welcome to the eighty second Dev with Dave Game Progress Update.

It’s been a funny old couple of weeks. Things have been absolutely frantic here, trying to push out an update for one of my apps which is long overdue, but has been constantly delayed by one thing and another.

I thought the troubles were over when the newest version of AGK Studio was released, addressing an SDK version issue which had caused a warning on the last few builds. But sadly this was not the case.

It turned out my Mac Mini, With which I have had a love/hate relationship with, was outdated and no longer able to run the latest version of XCode. Which meant that if I wanted to continue to publish on the App store, I was going to have to reach into my wallet.

Since my HP Windows laptop was also quite old and in need of an upgrade, I decided to pay the extra and get a Macbook Air instead of another (but newer) Mac Mini.

Anyway, when I haven’t been playing with my new toy, I have been busy working on building an audience for Flappy-vaders.

Social media leveraging

I’ve just been doing more of the same as the previous few weeks. One of the groups I joined as part of this does do Screenshot Saturday. So I will try and make a post or two about that. It is unfortunate that I can’t schedule posts in other peoples groups.

I also took a few photo’s of some older games and hardware I own, relating to the main topic of the groups.

I’ve included the mug with the branding in all of the photo’s, and I might take a few more varied ones as well. But I won’t necessarily mention DwD or the game just yet.

Paid advertising

I’m going to look into using paid ads to get visitors to the Flappy-vaders website.

My marketing plan has been somewhat scuppered is has to be said, due to some unexpected financial misfortune I suffered a few months back. Because of this I have had to scale down what I had originally planned.

Originally I was hoping to do a comparison between Google and Facebook ads to drive traffic to the.

I’m currently reading up on both platforms, and trying to decide if it’s worth splitting what little prelaunch advertising budget I have, or if it would be better to concentrate it all on a single platform.

Email Sequence

Once an advert or Social Media link has sent a potential player to the landing page, and they sign up, they will automatically start on an automatic email sequence.

Each email in the sequence will have a specific purpose with it’s own call to action.

Here are the purposes of the emails.

  • Welcome aboard! We’ll award you some free coins for being an early supported.
  • Follow Flappy-vaders on Social media
  • Won’t be long now! A bit of the history of Flappy-vaders
  • Download it today + code for free coins

I have not yet decided on which provider to be handling the emailing. I’m looking for one which can easily integrate into the WordPress website to make automation simpler. I have used Mail Chimp and Send-In-Blue before, but I need to look at what they are currently offering.

New bugs

I’m happy to say that the testers have been awfully quiet this last couple of weeks. I’m not sure if this is a good thing or not, but at least there have been no more bugs which have been spotted.

I did however notice that the Flappy-vaders website does not have a privacy policy, which is obviously quite a serious oversight on my part.

I’m going to attempt to fix that next, once I have finished this post and shared it online.

And that’s all for now.

And that’s all I have had chance to do this time round.

Trying to reorganise my marketing plans around the reduced budget is proving to be a lot of work, with little to show for it. I will try and include a revised marketing plan with the next blog post. The next progress update goes live on the 10th of May.

See you in the next update. 🙂

Keeping your Audience safe

Keeping your Audience safe

There is nothing worse than spending months cultivating a relationship with your ideal game audience, only to have it taken away in seconds by hackers. This happened to a friend of mine the other day. The hacker spammed every discord server they were a member of. This caused the servers to ban my friends account. Fortunately, after regaining control of the account, they were able to explain to the Admins of the groups what had happen, and were unbanned from most if not all of the servers. Not all such stories have a happy ending however. Let me show you some effective ways of keeping your audience safe.

The best ways of keeping your audience safe online include using strong passwords and not sharing your password with people. Get to know which admin tools your chosen platforms use to help maintain your audience. Things like 2FA, Questions on joining, and moderation tools. It is also important to be careful about clicking links in emails and other messages.

Online Safety 101

It’s best to start from the basics. I know most of you will already be aware of most of these, but I am listing them for two reasons. Firstly, for the few out there who aren’t aware of these important safety tips. And secondly, because you can never be reminded too many times! 🙂

Being aware of the risks which are present while engaging in online activity, especially on social media, is a big step in keeping yourself safe. Knowing what to look out for is important.


Whenever you create a new social media account, always remember to use a unique and strong password for it. Regardless of how easy it is to just use one password for everything, from a remembering point of view. If you your password is compromised, then you risk hackers gaining access to everything you use that email/password combination.

A three panel comic about a man choosing an obvious password

My favourite is Strong Password Generator, which I have been using for a good few years. I keep a file of the generated passwords for safe keeping, as well using the Save Username and Passwords option in my browser.

A good strong password should be between 10 to 16 characters long, and consist of a random string of upper and lower case letters, numbers, and characters.

Do not share your passwords with anyone.

Two Factor Authentication

Two Factor Authentication (Or TFA) is a system where you are asked for a second set of user verification data. This is usually a code which is sent via email or text message, or using a third party authenticator application like Facebook and Google do, or sometimes a specific hardware key like a USB stick or a Card/Pin card verifier.

I’m not sure if favourite is the right word to describe 2FA methods, but the one which feels like it balances security with ease of access is when the platform you are logging into texts a code to your mobile phone.

Two-factor Authentication – It’s a pain, but it really helps.

Admin tools for keeping your audience safe

Wherever you are trying to build your audience, there are usually some security methods you can put into place to help keep your audience safe, and to help weed out the undesirables who may try to infiltrate your audience.

As your audience grows, as does the risk of bots or spammers gaining access and using your platform to spread their message. This could expose your audience to links to malware or unrelated content. As well as tarnish you or your brands reputation.

If you are growing your audience as members on a WordPress site or Forum or something similar, then you can usually implement some form of Two Factor Authentication and email verification as well.

You can ensure new members to a Facebook Group answer a set of questions before being allowed to join. And Facebook has a reasonable suite of tools to allow you to block unwanted users and delete comments.

Some platforms offer Post moderation. Which is where users posts have to be cleared by an administrator. This allows you to keep an eye on what new members particularly are posting.

A set of community rules is an often overlooked but surprisingly useful tool. The rules should be clearly posted for all to read, and they should be enforced.


Possibly the single biggest risk to your passwords and social media accounts these days.

For those who don’t know, phishing is the practice of sending emails or messages which claim to be from an official or reputable company in order to extract information from a person which can be used to compromise the security of online accounts.

Sometimes these phishing emails are obviously fake. Littered with spelling mistakes, or using an older logo or that sort of thing. But occasionally, the quality is much better.

The best way I have found to check the validity of emails is to check any links included in the text.

On a phone (Both Android and Apple) long pressing on a link will open up a dialogue which shows you where the link goes.

On a PC, you can hover the mouse over a link. This will display the actual destination on screen.

If this is different to the where the button or link suggests this is a huge red flag.

If in doubt – DO NOT CLICK!

Other tips for keeping safe

More than one admin/moderator

It’s usually a good idea to find at least one other trusted person to be a moderator for your audience. Especially if you tend to fall foul of the rules, and end up serving 30 days in FB jail.

But be wary, a rogue moderator can be as damaging as a hacker or spammer.

A while back now, one of the groups I am a member of on Facebook had an admin have a bit of a break down. They went and deleted over half of the groups members before someone else on the admin team noticed.

Check your email address!

All the work you have put in keeping your audience safe could be in vain if the email address you are using has been already compromised by hackers. It’s always a good idea to check any email addresses associated with the project. You can do this for free at


Hopefully that covers just about everything. Creating an audience is a labour of love. To lose it in seconds thanks to a hacker does not bear thinking about.

I’ve covered all the main areas dealing with audience security

That is just about everything I can think of for now. It should give you a thorough grounding in how to keep your audience safe. If you have any further questions then feel free to get in touch.

Game Progress Update #81

Game Progress Update #81

Hello world! And welcome to the eighty first Dev with Dave Game Progress Update!

It hardly seems five minutes since I was writing the last one of these. I guess it’s true what they say about time flying when your having fun. 🙂

Carrying on from the last update, this update feels

That’s not to say there haven’t been the usual distractions. I had a dentist appointment this week, and a tooth taken out.😞 This left me feeling a bit meh (And a lot like I’d had a stroke) for the rest of the day and I just vegged in front of the TV instead of working on the game as I had planned.

Dave after having a tooth out.  I am not having a stroke, honest.

The next day I also took a day away from the PC to watch Amazon’s amazing new Fallout TV show. I am a huge fan of dystopia in general, but Fallout has a special place in my heart. The Show is very true to the look and feel of the game. If you haven’t already watched it, you should!

Anyway, let me tell you about what I have managed to get done this time round.

Social Media Leveraging

I think I’m currently on week 3 of the small scale social media leveraging plan for promoting Flappy-vaders organically on social media.

So far I have just been interacting with other peoples posts. Things like liking and commenting on posts. The first of my posts are planned for next week.

Email list capturing

With thoughts turning towards starting to getting prospective players emails onto the list. It was time I had a refresher on using Facebook ads to direct people to the website. I downloaded a copy of the Meta traffic playbook. This is a step-by-step guide for when you create a new traffic campaign in Ads Manager

It’s more than likely I will probably use the same promotional video that I have used previously for these ads, as well as a few carefully chosen words of copy.

I have also given some thought to the email sequence which will be run once a user signs up.

Once a user signs up, a welcome aboard email is sent out. This will provide a brief rundown over what will happen over the next few months. Also mention free coin pack.

Once I have a content plan in place for the Flappy-vaders Facebook page, I will send out another email asking people to follow us on Facebook.

It’s been a while since I created an HTML email, but I am hoping that emails sent by this sequence will have the same appearence and style as the Flappy-vaders website.

I still need to decide which provider I will use for sending out the email sequences.

Security Blog

I’ve not forgotten about the blog I promised a while back about keeping your audience safe. I am trying to get it finished, but every time I think I have a few minutes to work on it, something unexpected pops up.

I just wanted to reassure anyone who might be waiting for it! Thank you for your patience.

As soon as it’s finished I will share a link to it on social media.

In App Purchase Bug

I also had a quick look at the in app purchase code. If you remember, I noticed a pretty serious bug with the purchasing of coin packs the other week.

I was hoping it was something obvious, but sadly I couldn’t see anything.

I have a few ideas however as to how to approach this, and I will be uploading some new test builds over the next few weeks to try and address this.

That’s all for now.

It’s officially late. In an ideal world, I get the Progress update finished and shared on social media by 4:30pm on Friday afternoon. It’s currently 10pm on Friday Evening, and I still have to finish the blog, let alone write the social media posts for it.

I was hoping to be playing with Fortnite on the PlayStation with my buddy by this time. Oh well, lol.

I will be back as always in two weeks with the next thrilling instalment of the Flappy-vaders Game Progress Update!

See you all then 🙂

Game Progress Update #80

Game Progress Update #80

Hello world! Welcome to the eightieth Dev with Dave Game Progress Update.

After I finished all the outstanding tasks on the Trello last update, this update is mostly about promotion. This has made a nice change tbh. As much as I enjoy coding, it’s nice to take a break from it every once and a while*

Dave sat in McDonalds eating lunch

I even managed to get out for lunch, where I enjoyed a Double Quarter Pounder with Cheese, large fries and a cup of tea courtesy of the local McDonalds.

Anyway, let me tell you what I have been up to this update.

*I should point out that I still code almost every day. I meant in my spare time, lol.

New bugs found

So straight out the starting gates today, I found two new bugs. Not an ideal start. But I guess I’m happy I found them rather than them making it to production.

Menu notification bug

The first one was obvious as soon as I started the game. Where I had completed the first daily mission the last time I had played the game, I had not looked at the menu page. As a result, it was still showing the red exclamation notification even though the daily missions had been refreshed.

Coin Pack purchasing bug

The second, and rather more important bug relates to purchasing the coin packs. Google recently changed the way consumable purchases work. I think the bug is caused by either me coding it badly, or misunderstanding how the new procedures work.

The error shown in the game with every other purchase of a coin pack.

When you purchase a coin pack once, everything works fine. When you purchase it a second time, it tells you that you already own the product. However, the third time you purchase the coin pack, it works fine again.

Since this bug relates to IAP I am rating this one as top priority to get fixed.


Since I am soon going to be directing people to the website ( if you’ve not already seen it), I decided to give it a quick once over and make sure it was as good as I could get it.

I’ve received positive feedback overall on the site design and layout, but there were a couple of things I couldn’t decide upon, so I am using A/B testing to determine which option works best.

There are two things I am testing for. The first is whether the first line of text appears above or below the video. On a desktop this brings the game blurb above the crease, so that the user doesn’t have to scroll to read it.

The second is the header text on the email collection form.

I will use the data from these tests to optimise the website, once I have determined which variants work better.

Social Media Accounts

I created a Facebook page for the Game today. I may tweak the graphics used a little, but I am fairly happy with how it looks so far.

It was an added bonus that the game blurb which I copied from the website is exactly the right length for the page blurb also.

Unfortunately I need 25 followers before I can get a custom URL for the page. Hopefully I will get this soon, but for now you can view the page >here<. (Feel free to like it 🙏 lol).

Social Media Leveraging

I have started on my Social media group leveraging plan also.

The first few weeks of the 12 week plan are simply interacting with other peoples posts for now. Liking and commenting and just getting to know the feel of the groups.

I have a list of the groups I selected, and have been checking each one every few days, and going over the posts since my last visit.

Whenever I find a post which appeals to me, I like it or drop a comment. The goal of this is to build a sense of familiarity with the group users, so interacting with users and their posts is important.

I am not likely to mention anything directly about Flappy-vaders for a while yet. I may make references in passing, but there won’t be any promoting of the game just yet.

Paid promotion

This is what a lot of my AFK time has been spent planning.

My current thinking is that I am going to initially split the advertising efforts two ways. Firstly, I am going to advertise the Website itself, and getting interested people to leave their email address. Secondly, I am going to promote the Facebook page, which in turn will also guide people towards the website/email list.

Both email list and Facebook group will announce the release of the game. Simultaneously, a Google Universal App Campaign will start promoting the game as well.

Since I have a much smaller budget for this than I planned on, I’m going to have a chat with a couple of more knowledgeable people before setting anything in stone.

That’s all for now

That’s the end of this update. I will be back in another two weeks with the next one. In which I will hopefully have set up an email sequence to welcome people to the email list, as well as hopefully some results from our A/B testing.

See you all next time 🙂

Game Progress Update #79

Game Progress Update #79

Hello world! And welcome to the seventy ninth Dev with Dave Game Progress Update!

Being British, my natural instinct is to talk about the weather. This is because we have such an incredible amount of it here in the UK.

A screen grab of the weather app on my phone showing this weeks weather.

Only this morning, it was only just above freezing when I woke up. So I wore my coat when I went to town to run errands. However, by the time I left the house, it was actually a lot warmer outside, with blue skies and sunshine. I was regretting taking my coat, right up to the bit where the heavens opened and a slightly early April shower drenched me.

Other than the weather keeping me on my toes, I’ve been busy fixing the last few remaining bugs. I’ve also been busy with the marketing plan, which I would like to have got finished by now, but sadly I haven’t.

Anyway, let’s look at what I have managed to get done this week.

Tasks remaining

On Monday I moved all the cards from the known bugs and issues list, to the In Progress list of the Trello. I also took ownership of them. These are the six remaining cards.

  • Scratch card prizes
  • Issue with collect prize daily mission
  • Match 3 texts on scratchers
  • Tap to try again
  • AA Turret fire sound
  • Intro problem

As they are all bug fixes rather than bits which need new systems creating. So I am hoping that I can get all of them finished in time.

Bug fixing

The big task of the week was to get the last few bugs fixed, leaving us (hopefully) a completed game!

Match 3 text on scratchers.

This was the first card I chose off the list. It was a simple case of editing the four scratch card images to change the text. I had put match 3 on all of them, but you can get a prize from only matching two.

Image of a Flappy-vaders Scratch card

I had the project files for the images, so it was a straight forward task to edit out the text, and replace it with the correct value.

The biggest issue was that I couldn’t remember which font I had used, only that the name started with an ‘m’. I do have it written down in the documentation, but I didn’t need to look it up in the end.

Tap to try again text.

I noticed that the “Tap to try again” text didn’t really mesh with the way the other controls worked, so I have decided to change it to a button instead.

After my first attempt, the button placement was ok, but needs to be higher up. I also noticed that the text colour needs changing from white to black, but that is handled by a different function.

The second attempt sees the position perfect, and the text is now black.

For simplicities sake, even though there is now a button, I am leaving the code in place which just checks for a screen tap once the speed has decreased sufficiently.

Issue with Collect prize daily mission

This issue relates to the text on the Daily Missions screen. When it is the Collect Daily prize mission, the text remains the same, where as the number of daily prizes to collect increases each time.

This was a fairly straight forward issue to fix, I added a conditional to the line where it created the mission text. If there is more than 1 prizes to collect, it now uses the target value in the text string.

I could not verify this card worked though. So it is still in the list, but I believe it’s working.

AA Turret fire sound

During playtesting, it felt like the the sound of the aa cannons didn’t follow the fading of the other zone elements as the scrolled off screen.

I fixed this by adding some code to reduce the volume of the effect once the cannon has scrolled off the screen.

Scratchcard prizes

The card suggested that winning two strawberries didn’t award the player the prize. Instead the player got 10 coins and a “sorry, you did not win” message.

I could not replicate this issue. I played over 40 scratch cards in flappy-vaders, and ended up only getting 3 strawberry wins. Two maximum prizes of 950 coins, and a 2 strawberry win of 95 coins.

About scroller issues

I noticed that the about scroller would render zone sprites on the scrolling text sprite.

I fixed this by hiding all the zone sprites in the same way that i do with the CRT overlay when rendering the text, and then restoring them straight afterwards.

A new build

Having completed all the cards in the Trello, the next thing I did was to compile a new build and get that uploaded to the store.

This reminded me that I still have to create the store page for Flappy-vaders. This also gives me a reason to write a guide on ASO, which is important for increasing organic reach of your game’s store page.

I’m hoping that the testers don’t find too many more bugs in this build 🤞

The competition

There’s still time to enter the competition. I’m giving away a Dev with Dave mug, like the one I’m always drinking tea out of.

The link below takes you to a Facebook post on the Dev with Dave, where you find out how to enter.

The closing date for the competition is the 31st of March, so there’s still time for you to enter.

Marketing plan

Now the game is approaching completion, I need to get the marketing plan finished so that I can move up to the next level of marketing.

I already have created a 12 week plan to leverage social media, but I am also looking at running paid adverts. As I explained in the last update, due to real life stuff, I don’t think I quite have the budget spare that I wanted to spend promoting my game. But I am still planning how the ads will look, even if I can only use a few of the channels I want to use.

Once I am a little more decided on what I am doing, promotion wise, I will write about it. I don’t think I can really right now. Please stay tuned however.

That’s all for now

Now that all the Trello cards are done, the next update will be entirely devoted to marketing.

I am going to try and have at least all aspects of the marketing strategy outlined roughly, even if the details will still need working out.

Anyway, I hope you all have an enjoyable couple of weeks, and I’ll be back in a fortnight with the next Dev with Dave Game Progress Update 😊

Game Progress Update #78

Game Progress Update #78

Hello world! And welcome to the seventy eighth Dev with Dave Game Progress Update!

This is a monumental update, as it marks three years of work on the game. I know that Dev with Dave originally started in June, but I have taken a fair amount of time off for things like Christmas.

I regret not using an app to track how many hours I have put into working on this game. That certainly would have provided an interesting statistic.

However, Since the game is so very close to completion, I felt like celebrating. I have been trying to organise a few prizes for a competition for you all! More news on that later!

Also I have not forgotten about the blog regarding keeping your audience safe. It’s taken a little longer than expected, but I am still working on it whenever I can.

Anyway, time is short today. I really want to get this post finished by the deadline if possible, as I’d like to do other things later. So on with the update!

What’s on the cards?

Just like the last update, at the start of this fortnight, there was only one card remaining on the Trello “In progress” list. That was the level difficulty one.

The Flappy-vaders trello board.

The goal of this card was to try and find a way to balance the game play a little, as the player got faster.

There are also five cards in the “Known bugs/issues” list, but I do not expect they will take a lot of work to do (Famous last words…)

Level Difficulty

After considering the pros and cons of adjusting the spacing of the existing zones depending on the players speed, or limiting zones so they only appear when a specific speed is reached.

After some experimentation (read as many many many hours of playing the game) I found that the existing system worked better over a greater range of speeds that any changes I made. With perhaps the exception of one or two of the zones.

I also added a few new zones. These were sketched out on paper first, and were then created in game. To save time I didn’t create a level editor for Flappy-vaders. Instead, each zone is stored in a string where the length of the zone, and then the coordinates and image used for each sprite.

It was a little frustrating creating the new zones by hand, especially with this week feeling so busy. But I didn’t think it was really worth the effort. Especially considering how small the individual zones are.

I am going to mark this task off as done, and that leaves nothing but bug fixes and little tweaks to be done.

Bug fixes

I even managed to fix the first of the bugs! (Despite adding two more to the list during testing)

The bug was related to the games CRT overlay disappearing when the about scroller was called. After some code following, I found the issue was from when I was last recording footage for promo stuff.

When I am making game play videos of the game, I remove the CRT border scanlines from the game when I record footage. These are then reapplied in post production as the video is edited. I had commented out all the lines where the CRT border was toggled to on for this. However, once I had finished recording, I had missed uncommenting a line.

Leveraging Social Media

The rest of my time was taken up with finalising plans for the social media side of my marketing plan for the game.

During the creation of the game, I have occasionally dropped a mention of the game in various Facebook groups etc. Now the game is almost finished, I am getting ready to step up my organic marketing plan. I just need to decide on the last couple of aspects.

My goal was to create an eight to twelve week social media plan for the related groups. When I was explaining this to my buddy the other day, he asked if I was going to upload these plans and share them like I have everything else. The answer is maybe.

I have actually planned it all out on paper (as is my way I have created a daily check list to help maintain group activity as well. I am aiming at checking each group 3x a day, those times being 10am, 2pm, and 8pm. Then commenting on other peoples posts, especially if it is particularly relevant to the game. These times are arbitrary, and are just convenient for me. I will review them after a week or two. Depending on how often the groups receive posts.

For those familiar with Pareto’s Principle, I am using an 80/20 approach with sharing about my game. Meaning, that out of 10 weekly posts, a maximum of 2 of them will be about my game.

Other marketing channels

I as hoping to be at least best part done with the plan for paid ads by now. Sadly events in the real world have severely limited my options with this. My car broke down recently, and sadly it is beyond economic repair. Because of this, I am not sure if I can still spare the budget I was hoping to allocate to this.

I will probably plan for all methods I was planning to implement. But only put into action those which I have budget to do effectively, if the budget is indeed limited.

That’s all for now!

I haven’t had time to release a new test build as yet. I will probably hold off on that until the last half a dozen remaining bugs are fixed.

But I expect to have fixed a whole lot of the bugs by the next update. I expect the next test build will be the final one unless we discover any more bugs in the next few weeks.

Stay tuned to Dev with Dave on social media for news of the competition.

Until next time 🙂