OCD is a single player platformer that records your best stage times, has a casual mode that gives the player infinite lives per level and hardcore mode with only three lives per stage. You play as a stickman (or the everyman) who has volunteered to undertake a test program at a science facility gathering information on a newly discovered illness called ‘Obsessive Collecting Disorder’.
There are 7 stages consisting of 10 test chambers each, you’re tasked with collecting every coin in each test chamber in order to advance whilst also avoiding death from the many traps that litter each room. Every stage a new trap or hazard is added into the mix creating more and more challenging test chambers making sure you’re tested to your collecting limits. Thematically it’s a jab at the achievement culture and the obsession modern games seem to have with forcing players to track down useless collectables so they can get that elusive 100% complete status.
Obsessive Collecting Disorder Xbox Live Indie Games Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VGn_UtdrI64OCD's
release wasn’t without its issues, not least an unforeseen ‘code 4’ that crashed the game for some players after pressing start to enter the main menu. Graham was away for a few weeks and thus couldn’t get the fix done as quickly as we would have liked. We we’re also concerned that the nature of the ‘code 4’ would adversely affect initial sales and reviews; although we’ll never know if sales were affected thankfully reviews weren’t.
Another developer also contacted us about the use of ‘OCD’ on our box art as it infringed on the name of his already released game, the dev in question was absolutely fine about it and we simply altered the box to the full title rather than the 'OCD' acronym.
The Old Box Art/ The New Box Art
As OCD was our first ever release we had very low expectations for how it would be received in the press. However, we we’re both proud of our efforts in producing what we believed was a ‘complete’ experience with all the facets expected in a full game. Reaction thus far has been well beyond anything we had hoped for with some excellent reviews and average ratings of 7 or 8 out of 10.
Most reviewers enjoyed the hardcore yet doable punishing platform elements and our sense of humour, Indie Gamer Chick placed us on her leader board while we’ve also been featured in a few magazines & been interviewed by Xbox Ramble. All OCD reviews can found on our Tumblr page: http://supersmithbros.tumblr.com/
The difficulty was always going to be a problem for some as the game is inherently a punishment platformer but the added casual mode and fair level design was reflected in most of the reviews we received. The Portal references have been commented upon a fair bit and at times with negativity although they only serve as entrance and exit from each level.
Other references such as the title screen Mario level and Fallout esque loading screens were certainly not as overt in the press reaction. The game’s art style is another area that has been somewhat criticised; some reviewers enjoyed the simplicity and felt that it fitted the concept while others thought it was a touch bland.
Simple in Design or Just Bland?
Neither Graham nor I had created much game art before and although I’d done some small aspects for previous tech demos Graham essentially had to code the entire game and produce its visual assets.
OCD is also currently 24% of the way to the top 100 on Steam Greenlight (hasn't changed for a while) http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=93484181 which we’ve found a very different experience. Our game has had a bit of a marmite effect with some Steam gamers loving the concept and the influence of N+, Super Meat Boy, Manic Miner and Mario.
Others have made the immediate but incorrect assumption from screenshots that it’s a Flash game so on that particular platform our simple, clean and uncluttered aesthetic hasn’t entirely worked to convince gamers to vote Yes. There have also been a number of Review and Let’s Play YouTube videos which are just amazing to watch, obviously with our game type raging commentaries are quite the norm.
Sales for OCD on Xbox (XBLIG)
As for sales so far we’ve broken 1300 copies sold which I think can be considered a success, the revenue will be nowhere near life changing but it’s a start and of course as our first game we’ve exceeded any expectations we had. We're currently around 40th in the UK's top user rated chart and around 200th most downloaded for the period which is all very cool stuff and has inspired us to continue with this whole game development malarkey.
Our Sales Broken Down by Region
Update: The XBLIG version now has 8000 trial downloads & 1500 sales. We released the redesigned & FREE (revenue via in game ads) Windows Phone version at the very start of January 2013 with 123,000 confirmed downloads in just over 3 weeks (accurate as of 29/1/13).
OCD Windows Phone Sales Passing the 100,000 Mark
Super Smith Bros XNA Game Development Progress: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G3ebMGe1hBQ