2009 was an… interesting time to start up. The economy was in a wreck, investors were more interested in multiplayer Facebook games than single player PC stories, and the industry was just beginning to shift in some unexpected ways, with Steam accepting its first indies, engines like Unity on the way, and a sudden, if small, exodus out of the AAA space. We got in at the right time, and came out swinging the moment we walked up to bat, with 3 games in our first year, and an announcement for a game that had social media and Boston gamers alike excited.
But all in all, there was so much we could have done better. We could have built smaller games to support for an extended period, rather than put them online and call it a day. We could have approached more publishers early on for Children of Liberty and found the right fit, rather than getting bummed after one bad meeting. We could have asked family and friends for more assistance, and actually focused on a business model that would work for us, rather than only focusing on building a product without a long-term vision for the studio.
Sadly, we weren’t exactly business people at the time. We were artists and designers looking to just make a game. In 2009, you could kind of get away with that. The technology was young, no indie had really struck it big yet, and all in all we just wanted to play around and see what was fun. Ten years later, there have been so many massive changes in gaming that time isn’t money, time WAS money, and it just flew out the window.
Going back, knowing what we know now, I think we would have held off on Children of Liberty and instead continued our focus on web games, likely getting into mobile development earlier on. Instead, we aimed high, and though we garnered a lot of attention and had a working game, it wasn’t as exciting or dramatic as it could be. It had the potential to be something bigger, something better, something truly… revolutionary.