As you may have noticed, Tap Galaxy – Deep Space Mine from our Tiny Games label is out in the stores and we’re very happy about the game. Developed by our inside staff (3 people, 1 designer, 1 visual artist and 1 Unity developer) in 4 months, the title is our new clicker game, and you know we’re the masters of clicker games ;), with a more step on the throttle of management simulation games. But today we’re not here to talk about why this game is a must have and why you should play it. We’re pretty sure you have downloaded it yourself already after seeing the trailer above.
The subject of today is our thought process when we created and developed all the marketing materials on Tap Galaxy. Some people may think that marketing is all about numbers and boring stuff, but often this is far from true. I will show how enjoyable and creative a marketer’s work can be in the gaming industry.
Everything started with the name: Tap Galaxy – Deep Space Mine. Do you remember Star Trek: Deep Space Nine? Of course you don’t, you’re too young. 🙂 It’s one of the Star Trek series aired in 1993. Pixel art is often used to do “parodies” or “altered” version of something. There are several memes on the web and also in the real word, where pixels are used to picture something in a funny and different way. We’re thinking about the cover (or videos) of new video games reproduced with pixel art.
That said, it was simply natural for us to drive the marketing aspects of Tap Galaxy in that direction, even if in the game itself we couldn’t do that much: of course, beside the title that is an explicit parody of Star Trek as you can clearly see.
The visual artist behind everything in the game (Francesco Segala, we’re going to get an interview with him ASAP) is a big film fan and so we decided to drive our marketing campaign with this idea in mind. It was easy to choose some movies, old ones and new ones, about far away galaxies or something like that after we settled on the core idea…
Our first work was this GIF.
Yeah, we know, it’s awesome and it’s Gravity, something not quite in the spirit of Tap Galaxy, but when we released this first GIF, no one ever saw any pixel of the real game and we really liked to joke on the fact that the continuously tapping on the screen could go with the movie claim “don’t let go”. One thing we didn’t like was using a movie that was not quite recent. After that we began to reveal something about our game and we used a movie that was in theatres when we published our game.
The astonishing work of Matt Damon in The Martian inspired our second GIF for the game. In this one we revealed one of the characters, the chimp, and we used a actual sprite from the game for the drawing of the martian himself while he is trying to water the planet. We prefer not to use the “bring him home” claim of the film because that was really the opposite of what we’d like to communicate. In the game you have to mine galaxy after galaxy, and you don’t want to come back home for any reason: you’re trying to expand your possessions. Anyway, the mining topic is respected: the player has got to mine the planet for resources, and The Martian has got to make some resources grow in his planet too. Personally I think this work from Francesco is the best one but we’d like to know what you think in the comments after seeing the next one…
Guess the date in which this GIF went public? Yes, you guessed right, the 18th of December, the date of the release of the new Star Wars movie, The Force Awakens. We don’t think is useful to describe the saga by which this GIF is inspired. If you don’t know any of the Star Wars movies, it’s time to exit the cavern and begin to live. That said, you will notice that we used an old sentence from an old episode of the saga and not the claim from the last one. The point is that we got “droids” in the game and we would like to show something about the game this time too. We didn’t reproduce the parody version of R2D2 and C1P8, we used our own machines in the GIF to make the people begin to think about what they are going to find in the game. There’s some sort of a Jedi in the distance that we don’t have in the game, but… maybe it’s just a guy with a fake laser sword, can it be? 🙂
Let’s go to the next GIF, the latest one.
We came back to an “old” movie here because the release of the game was very near and the sentence was perfect, PERFECT, for marketing reasons. “Everybody ready to say goodbye to our solar system?”, and so be it, take the game and fly with your imagination to another galaxy. Thanks to Interstellar for the quote and for the beautiful poster. In this one we were not able to show something we didn’t show before, we just summed up everything (the protagonist chimp and the machines) and tried to be as more “teasy” as possible. This aired just one day prior to the release of the game.
Besides these GIF material we created a gameplay trailer, that is the one in the beginning of this post and 2 teaser-trailers. We didn’t release them yet on YouTube, so you can see them on our Facebook Page or Twitter Account. Anyway, they not so beautiful as the pixel art GIFs were even if they received an huge success between you, our fans and maybe, as usual, with a video you can do something that a thousand words cannot do.
We hope you enjoyed the reading and stay tuned: the interview with Francesco is coming very soon. While you wait, just play Tap Galaxy, it is free!