Changed on November 19th 2010.
This is the continuation of the previous news article. If you just landed on this page expecting to read about how bad Minecraft is, start by reading the previous article.
Why was the acceptance on TIGsource forum so important for me? This requires a bit of background information of my state of mind at a time.
I was under a lot of pressure, I still am. Anti-communists in Serbia don't have social security, jobs or any ability to get a job as everything is highly controlled and is only there to leave the impression to other countries that its a normal country as well. The ruling elite of privileged people is controlling everything. So, being an outsider, my only income is from remote work over the Internet, work for people from other countries, mostly developed countries like US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, etc. If there were no such countries or the ability to work from home, I'd be dead already.
So, the pressure was and is very large for me, and it all depended on how well I'd be able to reach the fans of shoot them ups. And it was the only way out for me, as the number of projects, due to world economy changes, has diminished significantly. So, I needed the extra cash. I had no other choice, actually. Serbia is a country where I'm unemployed from the start. Someone unprivileged like me will never get a job. Like I said, police and military, secret services, they all control everything. There are people here who are born privileged, they don't even have to go to school. They do go to school so that the country would seem like a normal country to outside people, but its all a theater. In Serbia, they get diplomas regardless of performance and they always get employed immediately. But, since none of them do anything useful, the country is in constant economy collapse. The ruling elite doesn't want to change anything and everything they do is just a smoke-screen, a hoax. They don't want to change anything because they fear of losing the ruling position. And this has been going on for more than 70 years, probably much much longer.
So, for someone like me, its very hard. No future, constant pressure, fear, etc. I'm quite sane giving the circumstances, right? So, I joined the TIGsource forum back then to try reaching players, spreading the word about my game, because although my site had few visitors, few downloads and few sales, it just was not good enough and SEO would take long time. People do search for games over search engines, but if you read my article about Alexa and SEO, you understand that it not only takes a lot of time, but its also in favor of other sites, leaders, privileged site. When you search games for Windows, Microsoft will always be #1, no matter how good and white-hat is your SEO.
So by trashing my game, my site and me as a developer, after putting so much effort into the game, they reduced my chances of ever reaching the gamers that want to play my game. There is no other way to reach the players than to spread the word about games through forums and sites. And while TIGsource declares itself as an independent community helping out indies I assumed it was a good place to spread the word. But it did not turn out that well.
While other independent game developers received almost none of the feedback on their forum or mostly positive, my game and my site received a lot of "constructive criticism". I wonder why that was the case. Why did they bother to trash my game so much? Why were they so eager to "help" me out? I worked on Invader Attack for 7-8 months and before that 3-4 months on the game engine. All the people who I know that played said all good words and the game was a result of what different people of different ages wanted. I released the game, had few downloads and few sales. At that point I joined TIGsource forum and asked for a feedback. So, I already had few downloads and few sales. Of course, it takes time for people to find out about my site and those guys on TIGsource knew that. So, instead of giving me a little support, since I'm new, they trashed the game that already had downloads and sales. Many months later, my game, that same game (Invader Attack), received a 89% rating at GameVortex.
It was painfully obvious to me that they did it deliberately, I lost it and decided to get back at them. I know its childish and a bit psychotic, but that's all I could do at a time. Also, it seemed like a good way to prevent them doing what they did to me, to someone else, in the future. We'll see if I was successful.
Markus Persson (Notch), the creator of Minecraft
has impressive coding skills, innovative mind, and amazing creativity pushing independent game development boundaries, getting ahead of all the rest of us indies. I wish him all the best and hope that he'll forgive me, for I have sinned! I just wasn't strong enough to bear the pressure, the problems and to sustain all the cruelty of TIGsource idiots.