The Prices of Elena Temple
Devlog

Hello, lovely people!

I thought I'd try something new in this crazy, sales driven industry of ours! New at least to my knowledge and definitely new for my games. Have you ever just bought a game only to find it at a huge discount just days after? Wish you could've known in advance that a sale was coming? Well, I want to try an experiment. How about I tell you the plans I have in terms of discounts for The Adventures of Elena Temple? Check it out:

Nintendo Switch™

  • 40% off Encore Sale at the end of January, 2.99$/ - dates differ between territories.
  • 50% off Spring Sale in the second half of March, 2.49$/€
  • 80% off One Year Anniversary Sale on May 15th, 0.99$/€
  • 50% off Summer Sale in mid July, 2.49$/€
  • 40% off Autumn Sale in mid September, 2.99$/€
  • 60% off Winter Sale in the second half of December, 2.49$/€
Please note that The Adventures of Elena Temple will never sell for less than 1.99$/€ except for its One Year Anniversary Sale. If getting the game for the price of just one cup of coffee (or less?) is important to you, please wait until May 15th. This super low price will be a one time only event, with the game to never (never say never?) be discounted this much again. Don't miss this out!

Steam

  • 80% off Weeklong Deal in mid March, celebrating its One Year Anniversary on Steam, 0.99$/€
  • 60% off Steam seasonal events, like the Summer Sale or Winter sale, 1.99$/€
Please note that The Adventures of Elena Temple will be on sale for 0.99$/€ only in mid March to celebrate its One Year Anniversary on Steam. The only other times when the game will be discounted will be during seasonal sales events, for 1.99$/€.

Why these prices?

After almost an year of selling The Adventures of Elena Temple, I've formed some opinions and came to some conclusions regarding the pricing of my game. First of all, the game sells nearly nothing outside of sale events. Not because its price is too high, but because it has zero visibility. So, like it or not, most indie devs must rely on discounts to move their games in the Discounted Games short list of each respective store. Some devs tend to dive straight ahead to near zero prices, just to get some attention to their games - 1 cent, really guys? Anyway, everyone does business as they see fit, but to me one dollar for my game is the absolute minimum I can go. And I'm only willing to go that low for a truly special occasion, to celebrate the game's One Year Anniversary. You know, one year one dollar, sounds catchy! Other than that one time exception, it's going to be a minimum of two dollars. Why? Because selling for less than that adds almost no value to me. I get a bit more than half of what you pay for it. This isn't a game for anyone, so my target audience isn't millions. I can't rely on the line of thought "but if I get 10 cents from a hundred thousand people, that's ten thousand dollars for me, I'm rich!" No, I sell hundreds of units, maybe thousands if I'm lucky during a sale. One dollar per copy, my share, is the minimum I hope you can agree to give me. If not, maybe it's not the kind of game you'd enjoy anyway, if you think its value is so low. So, no, I'm not going to sell my game for less. I'm happy with what it did so far, maybe it will continue to sell a bit more in the next year. If not, that's fine. But I'm not going to give it away for free just for the sake of it. It has way too much value to me. I hope you understand.

Second of all (yeah, that was a pretty long first of all, I know): I had the game sell for one dollar on Steam during this Winter Sale. Sure, there were more units sold. But not as many as to make this huge discount worth it. The only real benefit is that more people got to try the game. But at that price, did they really? Or was it yet another game they bought for nearly nothing only to rot in their library? I don't want that. There are many devs who don't care if you play their game or not, as long as you pay for it. But I do and for one dollar, your motivation to try it is almost zero. If you think you like the game, I'm pretty sure you'd happily pay two dollars to play it. If you're just fishing for bargains, where's the value we give each other? You give me about 50 cents, my share, and I give you a list item in your library. Not the most mutual beneficial trade in my opinion.

Lastly, I want to touch on something else I've tried and left me pretty convinced it's not a good idea. I took part in a bundle a few months ago. It was the first time I had a game in a bundle, I wanted to try it out, even if I knew I was going to get a ridiculous small amount per copy. But I figured maybe all the extra players will help through word of mouth, maybe there will be more Steam review at least, even if they wouldn't count towards the overall score - only purchases made directly through Steam are taken into account for that. There were about 2200 keys redeemed. Those are a lot of keys. Extra sales? I can safely say somewhere between one and zero. New Steam reviews? Two. Is it worth it doing bundles? Nope. Just like I was saying before, most people that get the game through a bundle will never play it or if they do, chances are it's not the kind of people who would be into your kind of game anyway. So why devalue your game so much? My conclusion: I'm never taking part in a bundle again. Unless it's a Humble Bundle. Those guys can probably push a hundred thousand copies. At 10 cents per copy, I'm rich! Yay!

Long story short: The Adventures of Elena Temple can be bought for as low as 1.99$/€, with just a one time exception. It will never go lower than that. It will never be a part of a bundle again. It will reach a point (probably soon) when its sales will go down to zero. I am fine with that. More than I'd be if I'd give it away for a few cents. If you want to support me and 5$/€ doesn't break the house, please consider getting the game at full price. But I'm happy if you get it at any price, as long as you get to play it and find some enjoyment in it!

Thank you!