DanTDM and AVG

The whole point of publishing a game is to get people to play it. With Beat Stickman: Infinity Clones, I didn’t have any marketing plan and barely did any marketing stuff. But I was lucky though. The early players were showing me the love for the game, they appreciated my small updates made to the game and gave suggestions for things that I should improve or add to. That was all I need to keep on going. And among all of the players supporting the game, there are two names that I wish to send special thanks to.

DanTDM gave me a surprise in Feb 2019 (it was the 3rd day of the Vietnamese lunar new year), he made a video of himself playing Beat Stickman: Infinity Clones, and until today, it has attracted over 5 million views.

AVG is one of the earliest players of Beat Stickman: Infinity Clones (BSI) on Steam, you probably still can see him on the leaderboards. And he recently made a YouTube series on climbing BSI’s leaderboards. He is very passionate about video games in general and he’s also growing his own YouTube channel that is dedicated to interesting games with a small player base. I collab with him to bring Beat Stickman to the audience on YouTube. Our first collaboration is Beat Stickman’s Discord channels on AVG’s server, let’s go discuss some or just say “Hi”! There will definitely be more in the future so don’t forget to subscribe to his channel to stay tuned.

Google’s suspension, Apple’s rejection, and some thoughts on mobile

Google’s suspension

The original Beat Stickman game was only lucky enough to live on Google Play Store for a few hours and in Beta state. Google suspended the game because it was showing violent abuse of the figure (the Stickman). I submitted an appeal telling them about the story (the Stickman likes to be beaten, the red thing wasn’t blood but ketchup) but they just replied like they didn’t consider my appeal and the story of the game at all. Felt pretty frustrated, thought to myself that the only abuse I saw was a giant corp abused a tiny dev like me. The original Beat Stickman game with the silhouette art style and a story is nowhere near the level of “abusing violence” like other beating games on their platforms at the time, those games even got featured or Editorial choice.

Luckily, more than a year later, when the game started to get some recognition on other platforms (Apple’s App Store and Steam), they seem to finally accept the game, I don’t know exactly why, but for now, it’s still there.

Apple’s rejection

Before I submitted the original Beat Stickman to any platform, I thought the level of sensitivity that Google had with the game was only of Apple that I would have to worry about. Well, and it turned out I was wrong, Apple never had any problem with violence in the game. But they did have another problem though! The original Beat Stickman game had a weapon name after Samsung’s Galaxy S7, which was famous at the time for its explosive battery. In the game, its name was Galaxy S7. And Apple didn’t like it, they don’t want the name of their competitor to appear in any way. To get the game live, it took just a quick fix, but from the creative perspective I really didn’t feel comfortable doing that, felt like a loss for nothing.

Mobile games

I started by making mobile games. Mobile games have their own unique value that no other platforms can offer. Even with Beat Stickman, from the pure technical perspective, the game should be able to play on mobile with a great experience. But with my current situation and the current landscape of the platform’s policies, I decided to put all my love on big screen devices first. Hope someday I can publish my work to mobile again.

How It Started

Back in November 2017, when I was having a walk around Hoan Kiem Lake thinking of what game I would create next and the idea about Beat Stickman came up.

The idea hadn’t come up from nowhere though. The idea was to mix 2 genres (that were trending on mobile at the time, and I played quite a lot): idler and beater (I’ve just made up the latter, but keep on reading).

The idler

Voodoo’s Idle Ball is the idler game that the original Beat Stickman was inspired. You can easily see the similarity in the UIs.

The beater

There were many beater games I played at the times, here are some of them:

Kick the Buddy by Playgendary
Despicable Bear also by Playgendary
Beat the Boss by Game Hive Corporation

My Take

The continuous Beating

I love the energy of Beat Stickman (that’s why I created it that way). Always feel not satisfied by all the control, UI navigations,…of the other beater games. I can understand, the other games were based on a different philosophy, as I see it, they are like a sandbox or game levels/missions. And I wanted to make Beat Stickman like an engine that just works, and the player’s job is to upgrade that engine, add more things to it, make it stronger, look better and enjoy looking at the system operating.

In Beat Stickman, weapons work continuously and tirelessly for you.

The stories

Since when I was a kid, I love imagining a different world (luckily, I just loved that, didn’t have anything to escape from), and I went deep into that, think of plots, characters,…and all. As a gamer, I only play story-rich single-player games. So, naturally, I had the urge to created a universe for Beat Stickman. Not all of what I had in mind made it into the game though. But they will be.

Beat Stickman: Infinity Clones’s story had only a humble place in the game. But things are gonna change in Beat Stickman: Beyond.

Other elements on-top

This feels more like “game design’s chores”, but I do have fun figuring out what small things to add to the game to make it playable and enjoyable. And there came things like Weapon’s corruption, Hat collection, Star rain, Lucky wheel… Really had fun making those 😁

Beat Stickman: Beyond and even after that

Beat Stickman: Infinity Clones was originally designed for mobile and later ported to PC. Beat Stickman: Beyond is a console-first game (also plays very well with mouse and keyboard, too). Beat Stickman: Beyond (BSB) will have a bigger screen experience, deeper and richer stories, better visuals, and better-designed game features.

And still, BSB won’t have all that I have in mind for the franchise. Good things take time, let’s see how the will perform financially and there will be more of it, I’m always excited when thinking about all the ideas I have will be realized one day.

Hello World!

Beat Stickman’s dev is here, in case you wonder, we consist of only 1 person. I’m FVS, I’m mostly known by people as a programmer but in Beat Stickman, I do all jobs, from coming up with the idea, designing, coding, “graphics making”,…and marketing to bring the game to you. And I love it.

Here’s where I’ll share with you all about the development of the game, from when it all started to the latest thing that I’m into (related to the game, of course 😁 ), piece by piece.