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Simon Carless

Simon Carless is expert on the upcoming Medien.NRW webinar on game discoverability. He’s known for being publisher and editor-in-chief at both Gamasutra and Game Developer magazine. Earlier in his career, he designed PC and console games in the UK and Bay Area. Register now via Medien.NRW.App for a new Medien.NRW-webinar with Simon Carless – in english language.

Mediennetzwerk.NRW: Thank you for hosting our webinar with the topic “discoverability of games”. For you this seems to be so much more than a webinar’s topic – it’s kind of a mission of your entire work, right?

Simon Carless: Yes, I’m very passionate about what I called ‘game discoverability’, which can be explained as ‘why people decide to buy games’. Which is, as you note, a ridiculously broad subject.

It spans everything from devising a ‘hook’-filled game concept, to community interactions, to marketing, to the best strategy to get games onto the most suitable platforms. So that’s a lot to get through! But I’m trying to get it down to just a brief talk and then Q&A, because it matters.

In general – what can Indie devs learn from you, your agency, your newsletters?

The discovery elements I tend to talk about in my newsletters are related to game platforms (like Steam and Epic Game Store, or console platforms) and the best way to get noticed in those. So some of that is related to using demo versions or Steam Festivals, or getting platform support.

„I’m very passionate about what I called ‘game discoverability’“

Simon Carless

But a lot of it is related to whether you’re working on or picking the right games in terms of genre, ‘hook’, focus, and marketability. The success of your game can be decided very early if you’re in the right subgenre, have an interesting gameplay mashup angle on your title, or have the right graphical hook to make a difference. We can’t make that happen, but we can talk to you about what you think it’s important.

Do you see more differences or similarities in the individual markets – for example in the EU compared to the US market?

There are definitely certain types of games that are somewhat more popular in certain geographies across Europe and North America. For example, Germany is sometimes a bigger fan of the deeper strategy games like Anno 1800! But in general, outside of Asia, many types of games can do equally well across much of the world. So that’s why it’s important to get the concept, community, marketing and discoverability right early on!

Register now via Medien.NRW.App for a new Medien.NRW-webinar with Simon Carless – in english language.

Das Mediennetzwerk.NRW wird finanziert durch das Land Nordrhein-Westfalen sowie mit Mitteln aus dem Europäischen Fonds für regionale Entwicklung (EFRE).

Der Ministerpräsident des Landes Nordrhein-Westfalen EUROPÄISCHE UNION Investition in unsere Zukunft Europäischer Fonds für regionale Entwicklung EFRE.NRW Investition in Wachstum und Beschäftigung