Average Demo Word Count?

Hello! I have a quick question. I’m planning on creating an eventual demo of my game sometime in the future, although I was curious on the word count of demos. Is there an average/common goal of words? Obviously it has to at least be substantial but how many words is that?

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Not sure if there is a set average I’ve seen tiny ones to massive ones on initial posting of demos and they grow with time as a game develops. Though I’m sure there somebody around who might have a better idea lol some games end up being only a hundred thousand + words all the way to over a million for myself I wouldn’t focus to much on word count but instead quality of said words.

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Thanks! This was super helpful. You’re completely right. Quality over quantity. With this info, I’ll probably take more time in the process of building the demo, less focused on the overall word count.

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It varies a lot! I would suggest including enough to show what kind of game it is and at least a hint of the story to come, and show some decisions the player is making. It doesn’t have to be as big as the free demo that many games have available on the app, but it’s helpful to establish what players can expect from the rest of the game.

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Thanks! Seeing as how many choices I have and how long the coding will most likely end up, I plan on at the very least doing a full chapter, which I hope will be a good introductory to the game and story. May do more chapters and release it as a longer demo but it definitely depends/varies.

Also, include enough of a demo to provide readers/testers the material needed to provide the feedback you are seeking.

For example: if you ask: “Which character did you like the most, and why?” for feedback, make sure your demo has content for each character included.

Speaking in generalities, the minimum I’d suggest is for 20,000 per play through.

Just in case you do not know how to get an average play through:

Open randomtest in your browser.

Change iterations to 1 and leave seed at 0 and tick the first and third option then run it.

It gives the word count at the end.

Repeat but change seed to 1, 2, 3 etc until you’ve done seeds 0-9 and you’ll have 10 play throughs to guess an average.

(Credit goes to @hustlertwo for explaining this originally)

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!!! Thanks! This helps a ton. I’ll be sure to do this.

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It’s typically the first 3 or 4 chapters. How long those chapters are is entirely variable. In my opinion, by the end of chapter 3 or 4 (and the end of the demo) you should have established:

  1. who your character is, their core personality, pronouns, romantic/sexual preferences, etc.
  2. what the major conflict, mystery, or problem is in the story
  3. what your character’s stake is in the problem. Personal? Professional? Existential?
  4. what, in general, or even as an inkling, will be needed to overcome the problem

preferably, you’ll also have established:

  1. any major npcs, villains, rivals, friends, and especially romantic options
  2. a general idea of the setting, its rules and major relevant features
  3. all the stats and how they work
  4. some immediate problem or jam your character’s in, in the course of attaining the solution to the larger problem, that the player will need to purchase the game in order to finish (otherwise known as a cliffhanger)

My general philosophy for a “fun” interactive narrative is the same as for pulp fiction: get the MC in trouble and let them find a way out of it. Then get them in trouble again. Philosophies may vary based on genre.

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Thanks! This will greatly help me guaranteed. I’ll be sure to use this checklist in the process of creating my demo