An open letter to Kotaku
Subject: Publishers and Panties: An appeal to review my game, Forumwarz.
Dear Brian Crecente,
My name is Robin Ward, I go by the alias Evil Trout. (this is an open letter, also published on the Forumwarz blog.)
I’m the creator of a web-based RPG game called Forumwarz. It parodies the Internet. Instead of traditional RPG games where you might play a thief in a dungeon battling orcs, you play an Internet user, pwning message boards. We currently have about 100k accounts, and a small (yet awesome) community. It’s an indie effort. It was self-financed and made over the period of several years by a team of people working for very little money. To say it’s a labor of love is a huge understatement.
I have personally emailed you and members of your team several times about the game, hoping you’d mention us on your blog or to see if you’d want a review copy. Every single time it has fallen on deaf ears.
I’m not sure if you know this or not, but for an Indie Game, getting one mention on a mainstream blog such as your own can make a huge difference.It might not seem like it, but a single link to our game can generate thousands of dollars in revenue, which can mean we can keep working on improving the game and making it better. It costs you nothing to do this.
You’re not alone in ignoring us. We have tried to contact pretty much every major online gaming publication, including your competitors and large review sites. People just aren’t interested in what we have to say because we don’t have the backing of a major publisher.
I understand that as the editor, the content of your site is completely at your discretion. Maybe you think our game is immature or not fit for your audience. It’s your right to publish whatever you want. However, when I see articles published in the Pantsu tag featuring the panty shots of Nintendo characters, while our hard work goes ignored, it does sting a bit.
This letter is an appeal to you: please consider the small games like my own alongside the games from major publishers. Yes, Gears of War 2 and Smash Brothers Melee are awesome games, but they get dozens of mentions on your blog while most indie games get none. I’m aware Braid got coverage, but that game is the exception and not the rule. Obviously I’m biased, but I think a lot of your users would appreciate my game and would be glad you mentioned it.
Recently you posted a blog entry asking people for review ideas. Besides my own, there are tons of other indie games that could use reviews. If you’re looking for examples, check out the Indie Games Festival entries. There are literally hundreds of submissions, many of which are playable right now if you click on the game profiles.
Thank you very much,
Robin “Evil Trout” Ward