Novy News | Summer 2014 | Vol 1 No 2 | Novy Unlimited

Novy Unlimited (site)
Welcome to the second edition of Novy News!

This is the most recent quarterly update from your groovy friends at Novy. As always, this little newsletter will provide us with an opportunity to . . . 
  • provide more background on who we are and what we do (and why you're reading this)
  • brag (ad nauseum) about recent projects from our clients
  • let you in on a few game industry secrets
  • share some brutally honest advice
  • update you on what's been going on over here during the past three months -- and give you a preview (or just a whiff) of what's on the horizon
Hope you enjoy the news!

- Jeannie Novak & Luis Levy (Co-Conspirators)
Novy PR (web site)
New Services . . . and a Newer Look!
Our cool looking Novy PR site now has even more to offer -- with more client pages, services, blog posts, and even a new home page image! In addition to PR services, Novy offers extended marketing and even product development consulting services. We're working on more features and updates -- including more client pages, extensive company descriptions and bios, and eventually some fun back-end thrills for our clients. (Note: Throughout this newsletter, we've included links to pages on our new site when appropriate. Check them out!) In other news, we already mentioned our handy Novy PR presentation on SlideShare; we also created one for Novy Unlimited -- and we'll be updating them both soon to incorporate our new logos and services.

Surviving in a Post-Apocalyptic, Dieselpunk Universe

Our most recent project is a Kickstarter campaign for InSomnia -- a dieselpunk RPG set in a post-apocalyptic world. The campaign officially launched on June 25, 2014 (less than a week ago as of the release of this newsletter) -- and the game's developer (Studio MONO) is already approaching $30,000 of a $70,000 funding goal. There's more: The game was greenlit by the Steam community in a matter of days! Assuming the funding will come through, InSomnia will be released in 2015 on PC. Already, the impressive Kickstarter campaign has resulted in a hefty amount of coverage -- including features, news items, and Kickstarter roundups in, Indie Haven, Death by Beta, Eight and a Half Bit, Strategy Informer, and The Koalition. Read more about Studio MONO and InSomnia (PC) here.
Warfare Nations
Choose a Side . . .
We were thrilled to work with our first developer from China, VOLV Interactive, on the launch of Warfare Nations. With comparisons to turn-based strategy and run 'n' gun favorites Advance Wars and Metal Slug (respectively), this mobile wargame game received 7 out of 10 stars in 
Android Rundown and was covered in outlets such as Nine Over Ten and Inside Mobile Apps. Marketing manager Jack He was featured in an in-depth Pocket Gamer interview discussing the importance of the game industry's global marketplace. Read more about VOLV Interactive and Warfare Nations (iOS/Android) here.
Ascent: The Space Game
"Billions and Billions . . ."
We were blown away by the efforts of James Hicks, an ambitious Australian indie developer who created a vast 200 billion star systems without any outside help! In Ascent: The Space Game's trading mode, players transport characters between planets, help salvage materials, conduct rescue operations on far-off planets, and engage in resource trading and farming. In the PvE mode, the player's ship transforms into a tool for battle. Developer James Hicks was interviewed by both Massively and Stratics about the process of developing his "massive" game -- along with issues faced by indie PC developers. Ascent was also featured in a number of publications -- including AusGamers, Leviathyn, and in an in-depth five-part Let's Play series from Sinstrite. Read more about Fluffy Kitten Studios and Ascent: The Space Game (PC) here.
Ekon The Cyborg
Cyborg Nostalgia
Garnering 5 out of 5 stars from Cult of Mac and 8 out of 10 from Arcade Sushi, Ekon the Cyborg--a frenetic twin-stick shooter for iOS developed by Singapore's Wicked Dog Studios--won the hearts of the press. Attracted by the game's style (which is reminiscent of gorgeous, early PlayStation 3D arenas), players enjoyed ridding Neutron City of the evil Octoids by inhabiting the pint-sized, yet powerful, Ekon.
In a GamerFitNation interview, producer Jeffrey Lim discussed the nostalgic vision behind the game. Read more about Wicked Dog Studios and Ekon The Cyborg (iOS) here.
The Breakout
A New Great Escape?
The second quarter of the year began with The Breakout -- a point-and-click homage to The Great Escape (game and movie). The game centers around Guy Kassel -- an Air Force captain who is shot down and captured across enemy lines. With the help of a ragtag group of escapees, Guy must survive the brutal POW camp and regain his freedom. Intrigued by the Picasso-esque art style and loyalty to classic P&C adventures, the press took notice -- and the project was featured in Kickstarter roundups and pages curated by The Koalition and even the IGDA! Adam Jeffcoat, the visionary and lead designer behind the game, was interviewed in Eurogamer, Gamers Sphere, and GameSauce -- the official magazine for Casual Connect. Read more about Pixel Trip Studios and The Breakout (PC) here.
Pixel Press Floors
Draw Your Own Platform!
Pixel Press, which was successfully funded in excess of $100,000 on Kickstarter in 2013, went on to release Pixel Press Floors -- the first app that allows iOS users to draw their own platformers! Floors allows anyone to draw and share their games with other users—with no coding required. The Pixel Press sketch guide, a pencil, and the Floors app are all that is needed to unlock the creative potential of game enthusiasts of all ages. Unique games are created and played through a simple four-step process: draw, capture & test, design, play & share. Not only can the app turn the drawings from paper into playable, shareable video games—but creators can also start building games right away using the Draw-In-App feature. Read more about Pixel Press Floors (iOS) here.
Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3)
"Show Floor Sprint: Go!"
Our one-day odyssey at E3 2014 came and went with a bang! Like GDC, it was a marathon of meetings and mayhem. We met with several clients and new business prospects -- primarily at the Compass Cafe (near the South Hall) at a table near Groundworks. (Yes - we were lucky to find that table!) We also ran into several colleagues we hadn't seen in a while, which always gives us a warm and fuzzy feeling :) Finally, we did indeed sprint through the show floors -- right after our meetings. Our ears were still ringing long after we returned to Santa Monica. Those of you who took the time to meet with us: Thank you for showing off your cool projects; we look forward to sharing them with the world!
Novy PR (blog)
Reality Check for Indie Mobile Developers
The Novy blog is heating up! We've posted links to a two-part series about indie mobile game PR from AppsZoom writer Janel Torkington featuring an interview with Novy Co-Conspirator Luis Levy. Part 1 (which also appears in Medium) gives indie developers a "crash course" in mobile game PR:
  • Make the best possible game, period
  • Start marketing at least two months prior to launch
  • Make sure you've created pages and accounts for both your studio and your game on all major social networks (including Twitter, Google+, and even LinkedIn)
  • Create a Reddit account and learn how to use it
  • Respond to press emails within 24 hours
  • Allocate money for PR (at least a few thousand dollars)
  • Create high-quality assets (including trailers and screenshots)
Part 2 includes advice and corrective steps for developers who have launched their games without any PR or marketing support. 

Drew Utterback has also posted Part 2 of a series on how to build your own game marketing plan. In this installment, Drew discusses how to research the environment, complete a SWOT analysis, and develop your objectives.

Check out the Novy blog for other tasty treats!
What's Next? We have some very cool console (yes - console!) projects on the horizon that you'll be able to sink your teeth into -- along with some inventive (dare we say adorable) and incredibly addictive mobile games. Stay tuned for more juicy news from Novy. Have a great summer . . . and we shall meet again in Fall 2014!
Novy Unlimited, Inc. and its divisions (including Novy PR) is a product of Jeannie NOvak and Luis leVY, its co-conspirators. Launched in 2011, Novy PR is the first marketing and public relations firm to focus exclusively on indie game projects. Novy News is edited and written by Jeannie Novak. Thanks for reading :)

Oh -- and in case you missed it: Our Spring 2014 issue (featuring GDC, Atomic Fusion, Kid Aviator, The Great Martian War, Astro Mined, and Words & Cards) is available for your perusal here!
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