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Jason Yarber
09-17-2013, 02:26 PM
Having a special place on the forums to talk about new games is awesome, but not everyone who purchased an Ouya is going to want to check the forums to see what new games are available on the system.

Please add a section in the game store that will show all the games that are new on the system. It needs to show all the games that were added to the system for the last 30 rolling days with the newest games at the front. I would suggest placing this new section just above the "Trending" section.

I ask for this because there currently is no means of knowing what the newest games are while on the Ouya.

Cave Four
09-17-2013, 02:29 PM
I think they do that purposely so that games are not judged by their release date, same reason why nothing has a price tag on it.

best bet is to check websites like OUYAlytics and TotalOUYA, etc.

sahoskins12
09-17-2013, 02:52 PM
The idea is that on release they enter the sandbox. Once they are popular enough to leave the sandbox they go to the "new from sandbox" section for a little while and then after that they are on their own and treated the same as any other game on the system. It may be annoying that there can potentially be a quick turn around of some titles but think of it this way, it gives the older titles the same chance to be discovered as newer ones. If there was a new section for the last 30 rolling days then that is the only section people would bother to look at so older titles would find sales dry up to near zero.

Hydrus
09-17-2013, 03:22 PM
Yeah, it's called the Sandbox. Problem with the Sandbox is that the category itself is not organized. You just have a bunch of games thrown together in a single-file line.

RiotingSpectre
09-17-2013, 03:25 PM
Yeah, it's called the Sandbox. Problem with the Sandbox is that the category itself is not organized. You just have a bunch of games thrown together in a single-file line.

It really all comes down to how the Discover Menu is instead of the workings of the Sandbox idea itself. Everything(or most) would fall in place if they'd redo the Discover Menu from scratch as it's blatantly obvious that nobody likes it for its versatility and usefulness.

Hydrus
09-17-2013, 03:38 PM
True. They need to think of something else. Some sections are getting crowded, like the genres section, and it doesn't look very clean. Sometimes the tiles take too long to load and me having to wait 3 minutes just to see the tiles kills it. I do like what they did with the main menu though. How it shows the most recent game played and all the other stuff. Discover needs a bit of work. Not that easy to discover.

James Andrew Coote
09-17-2013, 08:10 PM
Was debating about this with someone on the OUYA dev forums today.

The trouble with having a straight up "New" section is that it distorts the market. It means for most games, they'll get only "one shot" at being in that high-visibility slot. That means they have to front-load all their marketing effort, with more naive /newer devs missing out on the chance and not able to do anything to fix it. Plus if a game has the misfortune to come out on a day when a big release is also coming out, or when a lot of other games by chance happen to come out on the same day, you end up with all your carefully laid plans being undone by something entirely not your fault

A better system would have dynamic categories and tiles that change (say every 5 seconds, one game tile is randomly flipped to show a different game). To decide which games get displayed on flip, you can factor things in like newness and o-rank / popularity, while still giving a small but very real chance to games that have slipped down in rankings. And also mix things up, so you're not always just looking at your favourite category but sometimes "discover" something really cool you wouldn't normally have sought out

boxtropica
09-17-2013, 10:11 PM
A better system would have dynamic categories and tiles that change (say every 5 seconds, one game tile is randomly flipped to show a different game)
OK, I LOVE that idea.
Maybe 7-10 seconds though? It might seem a little distracting with all the motion, don't you think?
And a RANDOM section might seem like a solution.

arcticdog
09-17-2013, 10:15 PM
I used to be a big proponent of democratizing the whole "discovery" process.

But in the end, I think pushing it simply goes against the grain too much, and you end up with a process that seems inherently broken and/or foreign to the people who use it most (or fall victim to it. Take your pick.)

Every media-based product has a "new release" window. It doesn't matter if it's television programming, music, movies or video games. Building hype and awareness around this particular event is pretty important to the marketing aspect, and always has been part of that process.

If you make every game (or whatever) seem as though they're entering the market at the same time, you pose a problem for the less "new/naive". You're basically making it a gamble for those that take it seriously from being discovered and you make it more difficult for users to find the new titles they want.

Here's what I say to the "naive/new" developers: You need to learn how the self promotion/marketing aspects of the process works. It's just as important (if not more so) than knowing how to program, draw, 3D model, create music, or any number of the aggregate skills that are required to make something creative like a game and market it successfully. If you don't, it's as much of a mistake as releasing something that's buggy, or poorly done. Simple as that.

Trying to dumb down the discovery process isn't helping anyone. In fact, I think it's doing more damage than good. If anything is guilty of "market distortion", it's the idea that you can level the playfield of discovery by some sort of socialistic approach to how important each title is. Some are simply more worthy of the fanfare of a release event. Anyone can promote their game for that particular day if they bother to. So arguably, taking these tools away from developers/publishers/marketers weaken the system.

The game list on the website gets it right (or at least better). There are various ways to sort the list. This is clearly what people want. They don't want to be herded into some chaotic random tile flipped world or forced to navigate some pre-sorted list based on some unpublished algorithm. The simple fact is.. Some people just want to see what's new. In my retail days this was the case as well. And if you create too much friction, people just go somewhere else for their information (as XXX suggested). Or when competitors emerge, they just go there.

The sandbox was an experiment. At some point you need to call an experiment a success or failure. To this day, most don't even know what the sandbox is. I've seen every interpretation from "new releases" to "open world genre". The latter gives the impression of mis-categorization on a massive scale. I've defended it in the past. But it's window of proving ground has passed and it has stepped into the territory of "deliberately annoying" to many people. It needs to go. :)

@Jason/OP: I think you might be looking for this: https://www.ouya.tv/games/ It's the website version I was referring to. From here, you can sort by release/o-rank/etc.

xAD
09-18-2013, 02:01 AM
Browse by alphabet.
OK, maybe I'm a weirdo and everybody hates that, because nobody ever seems to want to implement it, but for me looking through the A's, then looking through the B's, etc. is the easiest way to find things.

Wolverine-_-_-
09-18-2013, 02:54 AM
On many occasions I have seen games that were deep down the list in sandbox also in the genre folder for arcade/pinball which is just an enormous mess.

Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk 4

James Andrew Coote
09-18-2013, 10:27 AM
I used to be a big proponent of democratizing the whole "discovery" process.

But in the end, I think pushing it simply goes against the grain too much, and you end up with a process that seems inherently broken and/or foreign to the people who use it most (or fall victim to it. Take your pick.)

Every media-based product has a "new release" window. It doesn't matter if it's television programming, music, movies or video games. Building hype and awareness around this particular event is pretty important to the marketing aspect, and always has been part of that process.

If you make every game (or whatever) seem as though they're entering the market at the same time, you pose a problem for the less "new/naive". You're basically making it a gamble for those that take it seriously from being discovered and you make it more difficult for users to find the new titles they want.

Here's what I say to the "naive/new" developers: You need to learn how the self promotion/marketing aspects of the process works. It's just as important (if not more so) than knowing how to program, draw, 3D model, create music, or any number of the aggregate skills that are required to make something creative like a game and market it successfully. If you don't, it's as much of a mistake as releasing something that's buggy, or poorly done. Simple as that.

Trying to dumb down the discovery process isn't helping anyone. In fact, I think it's doing more damage than good. If anything is guilty of "market distortion", it's the idea that you can level the playfield of discovery by some sort of socialistic approach to how important each title is. Some are simply more worthy of the fanfare of a release event. Anyone can promote their game for that particular day if they bother to. So arguably, taking these tools away from developers/publishers/marketers weaken the system.

The game list on the website gets it right (or at least better). There are various ways to sort the list. This is clearly what people want. They don't want to be herded into some chaotic random tile flipped world or forced to navigate some pre-sorted list based on some unpublished algorithm. The simple fact is.. Some people just want to see what's new. In my retail days this was the case as well. And if you create too much friction, people just go somewhere else for their information (as XXX suggested). Or when competitors emerge, they just go there.

The sandbox was an experiment. At some point you need to call an experiment a success or failure. To this day, most don't even know what the sandbox is. I've seen every interpretation from "new releases" to "open world genre". The latter gives the impression of mis-categorization on a massive scale. I've defended it in the past. But it's window of proving ground has passed and it has stepped into the territory of "deliberately annoying" to many people. It needs to go. :)

@Jason/OP: I think you might be looking for this: https://www.ouya.tv/games/ It's the website version I was referring to. From here, you can sort by release/o-rank/etc.

Yes, sandbox is failing. Partly because once you exit the sandbox, you just end up in the backwaters of the "genre" categories (the Escape Artists category just delays the disappearing act the escape artists do once they drop out of the category). But we also know a straight up "New" category has failed on other app-stores:

I am most certainly not arguing for developers to shift responsibility for their marketing onto the platform holder. They absolutely have to be able to do the hard work of marketing themselves if they want to succeed. But if OUYA is pitching itself as a place where developers can make and publish their first game, then having an unremittingly harsh, unforgiving marketplace simply does not fit with that.

There's another issue around those wanting to do alpha and beta releases on the system. If the MAKE section of the store gets fleshed out to allow public and private betas, or be like a secondary store where you can go play the half-finished games or those who are just experimenting with games rather than building commercial products, or wanting to interact with developers at a deeper level than just playing and buying the games.

But that's not what MAKE is at the moment, and I get the impression that it's quite some way down OUYA's priority list at the moment. So with a "New" category, developers are left with a dilemma of whether to release, get feedback, but lose their best chance to get visibility, or whether to hold back, create the game in isolation, and hope they've got it spot on

And all this still doesn't address some of the other issues, such as if you have the bad luck to come out on the same day as a whole bunch of others. Or on the same day as someone who simply has a bigger marketing budget and can flood all the channels you might have been hoping to use yourself. The rich having an advantage simply by virtue of having more resources, rather than being able to properly use those resources to best effect, simply due to the setup of the store, just represents another hidden barrier to entry. That's what OUYA is trying to get rid of

With the flipping tiles idea, I'm not saying all games should have an equal chance of being displayed. Far from it, and the featured games, or games higher up in the o-rank, should be weighted such that they appear more often, stick around for longer, and have a higher chance of appearing in the most prominent slots.

____

Here's another idea: turn the MAKE category into a secondary store where there is absolutely no IAP/purchase options in the games. Since one of the biggest complaints about the store has been the lack of prices and not knowing when you might get whacked with a paywall, having a separate store with games that, by design, are free, means people can have some certainty that here lies the freeware, demos and betas. Whereas Discover is all the stuff that is "finished" to the point where the developers feel happy to ask you for money

It puts games using the donation model in a slightly awkward position, because they fall half way between the two. But otherwise, it solves most of the above issues

arcticdog
09-18-2013, 07:02 PM
Yes, sandbox is failing. Partly because once you exit the sandbox, you just end up in the backwaters of the "genre" categories (the Escape Artists category just delays the disappearing act the escape artists do once they drop out of the category). But we also know a straight up "New" category has failed on other app-stores:

I am most certainly not arguing for developers to shift responsibility for their marketing onto the platform holder. They absolutely have to be able to do the hard work of marketing themselves if they want to succeed. But if OUYA is pitching itself as a place where developers can make and publish their first game, then having an unremittingly harsh, unforgiving marketplace simply does not fit with that.

There's another issue around those wanting to do alpha and beta releases on the system. If the MAKE section of the store gets fleshed out to allow public and private betas, or be like a secondary store where you can go play the half-finished games or those who are just experimenting with games rather than building commercial products, or wanting to interact with developers at a deeper level than just playing and buying the games.

But that's not what MAKE is at the moment, and I get the impression that it's quite some way down OUYA's priority list at the moment. So with a "New" category, developers are left with a dilemma of whether to release, get feedback, but lose their best chance to get visibility, or whether to hold back, create the game in isolation, and hope they've got it spot on

And all this still doesn't address some of the other issues, such as if you have the bad luck to come out on the same day as a whole bunch of others. Or on the same day as someone who simply has a bigger marketing budget and can flood all the channels you might have been hoping to use yourself. The rich having an advantage simply by virtue of having more resources, rather than being able to properly use those resources to best effect, simply due to the setup of the store, just represents another hidden barrier to entry. That's what OUYA is trying to get rid of

With the flipping tiles idea, I'm not saying all games should have an equal chance of being displayed. Far from it, and the featured games, or games higher up in the o-rank, should be weighted such that they appear more often, stick around for longer, and have a higher chance of appearing in the most prominent slots.

____

Here's another idea: turn the MAKE category into a secondary store where there is absolutely no IAP/purchase options in the games. Since one of the biggest complaints about the store has been the lack of prices and not knowing when you might get whacked with a paywall, having a separate store with games that, by design, are free, means people can have some certainty that here lies the freeware, demos and betas. Whereas Discover is all the stuff that is "finished" to the point where the developers feel happy to ask you for money

It puts games using the donation model in a slightly awkward position, because they fall half way between the two. But otherwise, it solves most of the above issues

If other larger/well established companies haven't been able to solve the "issues" of new releases (I'm still not sure what those issues you're speaking of are), then I have serious doubts OUYA will be able to solve that problem.

Rather than crippling the store and search capabilities for everyone in order to make the system more accessible to "new" developers, they should add some portal for marketing education in the dev site. It does a new dev NO favors making the experience shallow from start to finish if they intend to eventually jump into the deep end of larger markets (which OUYA obviously has aspirations of becoming at some point). They need to learn to swim.

OUYA could mitigate the whole "rich advantage" thing (which, again, I'm not sure why that's a problem. These big events help promote the platform as a whole, which benefits the low budget games as well) by coordinating with a dev and making suggestions for and control over WHEN something should be released. Like movie studios do. If you're a small independent film studio, and you see that your release is going up against "Avengers 2", you're probably going to want to change your release date to something less risky. Huge releases don't occur every day, and even the huge releases don't necessarily want to compete for the spotlight on the same day. But if you launch along side one, and it's your choice to, then you're naive or truly believe your title will stand on it's own. Like it or not, the big titles, and their fanfare bring much needed attention to the platform. So it seems disingenuous to mute their efforts and complain about a larger title getting greater attention when it brings the opportunity of sales by being displayed along side it.


I have actually suggested that Beta apps should not be allowed IAP. A "completely free" category would probably be helpful to many. You could lump donation-ware into that as well since a purchase isn't mandatory.

But Beta's should also be completely free and have a section separate from that. Some people just don't want to be bothered with half completed games. If they're free and separate, it'll encourage good feedback (i.e. from those who actually know it's in progress).


Browse by alphabet.
OK, maybe I'm a weirdo and everybody hates that, because nobody ever seems to want to implement it, but for me looking through the A's, then looking through the B's, etc. is the easiest way to find things.

Note to self.. make sure every game I create starts with A..... :)

spinal
09-19-2013, 09:44 AM
Browse by alphabet.
OK, maybe I'm a weirdo and everybody hates that, because nobody ever seems to want to implement it, but for me looking through the A's, then looking through the B's, etc. is the easiest way to find things.

The problem then would be that (like I used to do with folder names in windows) people will start naming their games !!!_GameName to ensure that they are at the top of the list.

xAD
09-20-2013, 02:31 AM
Not really looking for a full alphabetical list, just a page for each letter. Who says I'm going through the alphabet in order? :)
Yes, it did cause a bit of jockeying on XBLIG (before M$ canned the alphabet list in favor of the HORRID HORRID Kinect-friendly menus), but nothing major.

Hydrus
09-20-2013, 07:09 AM
Not really looking for a full alphabetical list, just a page for each letter. Who says I'm going through the alphabet in order? :)

I can agree to that. Like on Xbox Live, where they have a tile for each letter. If you want to look for a game that starts with the letter B, you go to the B tile. I like that idea.

James Andrew Coote
09-20-2013, 05:56 PM
The problem with other app stores is it isn't really in their interest to solve discoverability. It doesn't make them any more money versus the current situation, where a small number of mediocre apps rake in most of the money because the companies that made them have the most money to pump into marketing.

OUYA's remit is different, and the system should ultimately aim to help the best apps rise to the top