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Video: Getting your indie game noticed by the press
September 30, 2013 | By Staff

"You need something that is going to make your game more interesting than everybody else's."
At GDC Europe 2013, Gamasutra UK editor Mike Rose shares the results of over 100 journalists surveyed, who said "an interesting developer story" is the most important element for getting coverage for a new studio and game.

In this free GDC Europe 2013 talk titled 'Getting Your Independent Game Noticed in 2013' (courtesy of GDC Vault), Rose blueprints the perfect 20-second pitch for press, with tips such as providing a link to the game or a high-quality video of it in action, all in an email written with a believable, personal touch.

Mike Rose goes into more depth about his study in this Gamasutra article.

About the GDC Vault

In addition to this presentation, the GDC Vault offers numerous other free videos, audio recordings, and slides from many of the recent GDC events, and the service offers even more members-only content for GDC Vault subscribers. Those who purchased All Access passes to events like GDC, GDC Europe, and GDC China already have full access to GDC Vault, and interested parties can apply for the individual subscriptions via a GDC Vault inquiry form.

Group subscriptions are also available: game-related schools and development studios who sign up for GDC Vault Studio Subscriptions can receive access for their entire office or company. More information on this option is available via an online demonstration, and interested parties can find out more here. In addition, current subscribers with access issues can contact GDC Vault admins.

Be sure to keep an eye on GDC Vault for even more new content, as GDC organizers will also archive videos, audio, and slides from other events like GDC China and GDC 2013. To stay abreast of all the latest updates to GDC Vault, be sure to check out the news feed on the official GDC website, or subscribe to updates via Twitter, Facebook, or RSS.

Gamasutra and GDC are sibling organizations under parent UBM Tech.

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David Rico
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Very helpful presentation, thank you for sharing it!

David Klingler
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I appreciate this video, but some of this seems kind of strange if the point is to cover video games. Do journalists even care about what they do if this is how they go through e-mails?

Sjors Jansen
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Yeah the same thing came up in the mentioned Gamasutra article. I asked Mike about it but never got a reply. I wish I had better insight into modern games journalism. It feels a bit like the situation where a workaholic's reason for working being his/her family, yet never spending time with them.
It's interesting why people respond to that with "that's life" or "it's fundamentally wrong".

For the games press articles in general I get the feeling that PR-minded people respond to it with positivity and "Great!" (because m.o.: that's how you make friends and business contacts), and development-minded people respond with "thx but wait what?" and criticism (because m.o.: being critical results in better games). Just a feeling though.. and there's a lot more that factors in of course.

Bob Fox
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"but some of this seems kind of strange if the point is to cover video games"

Most videogames are crap, the games that do get covered still have huge quality issues. Just because you make games doesn't mean they are worth paying attention to.

It's no different from the NES era onward, 90% of the games suck. Hence 90% of the games developers would like to get press coverage aren't.

There's just too much crap out there. Also when videogames journalists look at games they consider pretty much AAA and maybe "indie" (aka something that reaches the quality bar of old NES/SNES games). Anything outside of that doesn't really deserve to be looked at.

The nature of videogames is such that it doesn't take long to determine whether a game sucks or not, despite how developers feel about their game and how long it took to make.

David Klingler
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Hey Bob,

Yea, I know most games are bad, but what I meant was that a lot of what Mike was talking about seemed to have nothing to do with the games really.

David Rico
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I agree. Honestly I get pretty sick of articles who go on and on about the dev's personal life and only briefly mention the game in question. Perhaps I'm wrong, but unless the game is an autobiography, most people don't really care about your "origin story".

We're not superheroes folks, the fact that you fell into a vat of acid does not make your game any better or more interesting. Focus on what matters, the games.

Brett M
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The thing that seems strange to me is that a solo/small indie developer has to send some incredible, glorious email that catches the eye and is filled with tons of personal details that form a "story" to even be considered to grace their pages, yet Diablo 3's patch number 75.33c (fixes a spelling mistake) gets an instant news article on every site on the planet because it's more relevant to their readers.

They don't want to be used as a news wire, apart from when they do.

Covering video games seems to be in the category of "great job", but they make it sound like it's tough to read through 100's of emails a day. If I had that job, I would be doing my best to help, even if I had 5000 emails per day to go through.

This is nothing to do with Pocket Gamer (Mike Rose works there, and they are possibly the fastest responders out there), it's just some general thoughts. At the end of the day, you just have to make a great game, which we all generally fail at.

Joe Saputo
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This was Great,it has a ton of great information. This will be a huge help once my game is ready for that level of events, thanks Mike and Gamasutra.

George Williams
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useful info, especially as I will be launching my first app on December 1st and just putting together press releases now. So check your inbox ;)

Stephen Ip
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Awesome talk! Really enjoyed this.