Writing a game to advertise

As I am getting closer to completing Zombien I have been giving advertising a little thought. I came up with an idea that I wouldn’t mind some opinions on.

My idea is to write a short game about writing COG games. It would be relatively simple. You get a year to try and write a game. You get to pick what sort of game. How long, and how complicated you want to make it. Then you decide your actions each day, and see if you can avoid the many distractions of life and actually get it finished and submitted. After completion you get scored, and most importantly you get recommended to try Zombien. with links back to other COG titles.

The advertising part comes with releasing the game as a freebie. (well advertising revenue only). As I am sure everyone is well aware games that are free tend to do much better on the apple and android markets. But although the income would be small in effect the advertisers would be paying me a small amount to advertise Zombien and COG in general.

While the game would be short and at least codewise fairly repetitive I am hopeful I could kick it out fairly quickly and still make it fun. If not overly long.

I am aware I would need permission to use the COG brand in a story, but before I go through the process of creating a sample and asking I thought I would ask for other peoples opinions on the idea.

Quite simply, I would say, no. Finish your game, get it submitted and THEN use that one to advertise future games, if you start working on another all you’re doing is just giving yourself an excuse to not complete the former (I’ve been there, done that etc).


Sorry if I wasn’t clear. I have no intention of starting anything else before I finish the first one. I have met myself and know that it would likely result in 0 completed books. My plan was to start the second immediately after submission. I know that generating immediate buzz is preferable, but I can’t really see a way I can do that without investing large amounts of cash. So better some a couple of weeks in than none at all was my thought.

Because of a breakdown of relations with the advertisers, CoG don’t release free games anymore…

I think if you want to do this, and it’s fun for you then you should. Do you have much experience of making games? Will it be about your own experiences? Do you think it will be fun for people to play?

As for releasing it as a free game ask yourself. Is this freebie going to be more fun than playing the first part of Zombien? Is this short and repetitive game an accurate representation of my writing? Is it worthwhile spending this time on creating a free game? Time is money. Time is time taken away from your next paid for game. Time is time you could spend promoting your current project.

There are ways of promoting your game that don’t involve spending any cash at all. There’s also advertising networks that will let you promote your game extremely cheaply. Have you read JimD’s article?