How To Make Money Making Video Games

From premium pricing to in-app purchases and beyond, there are many ways to monetize your game. Today, we'll talk about how to make money making video games.

So, you have a video game. Or even a video game idea. And you think it'll be commercially successful. Congratulations! Today, we'll go over some ways in which you can make money making video games. Hopefully, these tips will help you turn your game into a commercial success! Let's dive right in.

Decide Before You Start

One of the most important things about making money from your games is deciding which revenue model to follow. This cannot be an afterthought after the game is half-way or fully done. It needs to be part of your game design document from the start. You cannot start thinking about how to make money making video games a few days before the game is done.

The way you will monetize your game should (and will) inform many decisions in the way you make your game. So be sure to sit down, think hard and implement your revenue model of choice as early as possible in the development process.

The Premium Game Model: Just Sell the Game

This is perhaps the oldest trick in the book, but it works well for many games to this day. The premium model is what we're all familiar with from the good old days: you go in a store (physical or digital) and pay to get a game.

This has many advantages, including the fact that hopefully nobody who's not paid you is playing your game. But for indies in particular, it can be difficult to convince people to spend money on a little-known game from a new developer.

Steam is a popular storefront for PC Games.

There's safety in a known model, of course, but you'll have to do a lot of legwork in promoting the game in order to sell copies.

The good news is, any game you make with GDevelop is yours to distribute as you wish! So, you have the right to sell your game wherever you want, however you want, for however much you'd like, without ever giving GDevelop a single penny. Neat, huh?

In-App Purchases: Mobile's New (Old) Norm

In the world of mobile gaming, in-app purchases reign supreme. In very basic terms, in this model you get the base game for free, say, from the Google Play Store or iOS App Store. You can play for free, too. But in-game items which might make it easier or more enjoyable for you to play the game are locked behind a paywall: if you want them, you have to pay with real money.

In-app Purchases Are An Ever-Growing Presence in Mobile Games.

The trend at the moment is to exclude upgrades which affect the balancing of the game, and focus on aesthetic items or timers instead. Nobody wants to feel like they're playing a game against people who have just paid to win. So, if you're going for an in-app purchase model, be sure to focus on items that do not affect the balancing of your game. Incorporate this mechanic as early in the game development process as possible.

GDevelop has a community extension which makes in-app purchases possible. It still in its development stage, but you can already try it out in your own games.

In-Game Ads: Sitting Through Commercials

This is another staple of mobile gaming, and it consists of displaying advertisments to the player in key UI locations or moments in the game. Every time a player watches an ad, you get paid.

The biggest hurdle with this model is that you need a lot of users to make any significant money from ads. But that shouldn't stop you from trying, because it's one of the most flexible revenue models and it has a long tail. You can just leave it on and wait for people to watch enough videos on enough of your games to make a difference.

AdMob is a great way to get ads into your game.

GDevelop can incorporate AdMob ads into your games very easily. With this, you can display ads and get paid every time someone watches an ad on your game. You can follow the instructions to add AdMob to your GDevelop game by clicking here.

How To Make Money Making Games - More Options

These aren't the only revenue options out there, but they are the most common. You can also make a game on-demand, from a client. Licensed video games are a great way of getting into the industry and making a name for yourself. And they pay you up front in a lot of cases!

You can also sell game templates and other assets on digital storefronts. But we'll touch more on that later.

For now, just know that if you're thinking about how to make money making games, GDevelop has you covered regardless of which revenue model you choose.

So, start making your games with GDevelop today! Click here to open the editor and use one of more than 170 examples and templates as a first step to turn your great idea into a great, financially viable game.