Why I haven’t responded to you!
Thanks to a recent ad campaign, Forumwarz recently passed the 150,000th registered account mark.
When we launched Forumwarz nearly a year and a half ago, we had no idea if people would enjoy it or not, so hitting this milestone is quite meaningful.
Attracting that many eyeballs doesn’t come without a cost, though. When Forumwarz had 150 users, I would personally respond to every piece of correspondence I received, whether it was a bug report, game feedback or just people saying ‘hi!’
I remember a couple of people remarking on the fact that they’d received a reply, saying they never thought a bug report on a web site would incite a reply, from a site founder no less! It was flattering.
However, as the site grew, the amount of feedback grew with it, and it became far too much for me to stay on top of. Have you ever tried to email someone from a popular web site? Did you receive a reply? Probably not!
The thing is, is our business has changed. We used to sit around thinking “well, what next?” Now it’s more like “OMG, HOW LONG UNTIL THAT IS DONE?” We struggle with the complex issue of prioritizing.
Recently, in our chat room, someone told me they were surprised how nice I was, because he’d heard that I didn’t care much about the game. This is a site that I’ve invested thousands of hours working on and one that I spent countless hours of my day thinking about. I have even taken a huge pay cut to work on it full time. And why? Because I love it.
At one point, Forumwarz was just an idea in my head. Now it’s something that many people have enjoyed. That accomplishment is incredibly meaningful to me.
The one thing I want to convey above all else is that a lack of a reply does not mean we don’t care about your issue. Nothing could be further from the truth. We want Forumwarz to be an awesome game too!
Our current solution is a spreadsheet that lists upcoming features we want to deliver (currently about 50). We have a column for estimated development time (which is often wrong!) and a column for our best guess at the value that feature would deliver to our product. Then we came up with a formula that spits out a “score” based on those two factors. If something can be developped quickly and adds a lot of value, we do it first.
Unfortunately, as a player of our game, this might mean the feature you enjoy the most tends to not get upgraded or looked into for a while. I know, it sucks, but it’s a bad side effect of having limited resources. Larger companies than ours can afford to hire more employees to work on more features in parallel, but ours is a simple web game, and we have to make do within the limits of our current revenue steams.
Having said all that, we still appreciate all the feedback we receive even if we don’t act on it right away. Every ticket and email that falls into my inbox gets read, and ultimately prioritized.