Indie Developer Studio
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How did your team come together and who does what for the company?
Teagmore is a one-woman company, I do the game design, programming, art, marketing, etc. The only thing I don’t do is the audio design (the audio for Cracked was created by the very talented Jesse Holt).
My programming chops come from my undergrad degree in Computer Science. After college, I joined GameHouse Studios creating casual games for desktop, web, and mobile. During my time at GameHouse, I worked in customer service, QA, engineering and eventually became a producer.
At 31, I earned my MBA because I wanted to understand more about the business side of the game industry. After grad school I started Teagmore, but put it on hold because I had an opportunity to join DoubleDown Interactive, which makes DoubleDown Casino. At DDI, I was our slots producer. After DDI, I did a couple of other things and finally decided to take the plunge and start up Teagmore again.
How many games have you worked on so far? Who is your target audience?
Independently, I’ve worked on two games: Cracked and another title that’s in-progress. All together though, I’ve worked on close to 100 casual and casino games. The target audience for Teagmore are people on iPhone and iPads that like puzzle-y, non-twitchy casual games.
Tell us a little about the projects you are most proud of.
For sure I am most proud of my game Cracked. I’ve wanted to make and publish my own game for over 10 years, so releasing Cracked was the realization of a long time goal. But, I’m proud of all the games that I’ve worked on.
What inspired the art and story direction for your current project and/or previous projects? What indie games are you playing now, have you found inspiration from, or do you simply admire?
Cracked has a flat 2D art style and a very limited palette, about eight colors. While I do love simple, colorful art styles, the real reason I chose this style was out of necessity–I had no skills in creating art! I really haven’t drawn since I was a kid and I certainly didn’t have any modern design skills when I started the project. Part of wanting to make my own game was teaching myself to create the art and art assets. Thanks to lots of experience working with amazing artists on the games I produced at GameHouse and DoubleDown, I had a good idea of what I needed to do, but I had to work to my limitations, which were VERY limited! I call myself a baby artist. Maybe after my next game I’ll call myself a toddler artist.
The indie games I most admire are polished, made by a solo or small team, and have broad appeal and commercial success. For me, part of the fun of creating games is making something that will be enjoyed by many people. A few examples of the these games are Tiny Wings, Threes, and I Love Hue. Currently, I’m playing PDTA and play testing my in-progress title.
What inspired you to become indie game developers?
My love of building things, technology, creativity, and seeing my games enjoyed by lots of people. While my work at larger companies also scratches this itch, I wanted to go solo to have the experience of creating something completely on my own. I also wanted to create art. As a game producer, I was often jealous of the artists and wished I could make art, too.
What is the most rewarding aspect of being an indie developer? What challenges do you have to face? Do you have any tips for new indie developers?
The most rewarding aspect is end-to-end creative control, growing as a game creator and seeing a player enjoy my game. Being solo allows me to work odd-hours and have lots of flexibility, which is really important now because I just became a mom. The challenges I face are improving my art skills and my marketing skills.
My advice for indie developers is to pay attention to distribution and marketing. This is not new advice, but I can’t stress it enough. I have to remind myself that part of making my game is working on the business side of things. Distribution can be very challenging, especially if you have a tiny budget. There are lots of good resources on the internet for indies on how to market games.
Which game development tools are you using?
For development: Sublime Text, Corona SDK, and SourceTree and online tutorials. For design: Sketch App and online tutorials
What’s next for your company? What’s the name of your current game project and what is it about?
The next for my company is my new game called Endless Knot. It’s a geometric puzzle with a twist ;)
Check out some of Teagmore Studios work
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