Indie Gems

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Clone clone clone, it's an easy or probably the first word that out from your mouth(s) while we're seeing a similar game pop out on the app store/ play store. Ironically, not few of us also knows more about the clone itself more than we know the original one. I'm a gamer who enjoy to play games on mobile, so I'm bit annoyed while in fact, most of my friends more know and play the clone version of the game rather than play the original one.

Alright... so what's actually a clone is?

Clone definition is a new thing that was made identically with the original one without even put some improvement inside it. Easy example, let's just take Flappy Bird game. Well, most of us know how the IronPants clones Flappy Bird, just few weeks after its released. Basically the first version of that game just a re-skin without effort to put anything else inside the game. It just turning the bird into superman alike..

Other examples are Timberman clones, Shredd clones, Wave Wave clones, On The Line Clones, Blek clones, Threes clones, and many more. It's not like that I'm not honoring their efforts to clone the game, sure, it's not an easy work to develop a game. However, well... they cheat, they 'steal' others's work and in my opinion they don't deserve any medal for this kind of work.

On The Line by Kevin Choteau (012414)


VS


 The Line by Ketchapp (052914)

Threes by Sirvo (012314)


VS


 2048 by Ketchapp (031914)

Okay? by Phillip Stollenmayer (022215)

 VS 


Okay2015 (073015)

Bouncy Bit by Dead Serious Media (022114)

 VS 

Bouncy Ninja (072014)

Unpossible by Acceleroto (041614)

VS

Impossibly Unpossible by Sunanda (122214)

People said that the idea is free, yes that's definitely right. We can't trademark the feeling when we're playing a specific game, even the gameplay. If we put copyright to them, said endless runner game... Right now, we won't see any endless runner game after canabalt on mobile. Well.. or may be there's another runner game on mobile that older than Canabalt which is probably I don't know. However, how we develop the idea, from a bare mind, doodling on the paper, and turn it into a solid game, that's ain't an easy nor short progress. Our effort after several months even years got copied-ripped off, just few months after we released the game even worst.

I'm not hating clone, sometimes it's even better than the original one if we make it right. Actually, clone isn't that bad if you turn the term of 'clone' into 'inspiration'. Clone is definitely an inspiration, but inspiration isn't always end up as a clone. Said Monument Valley vs Miika. Both of them kinda have similar vibes. However, they have different goals, different levels, also different design. The overall gameplay may look similar at glance, but in fact Miika isn't a clone of Monument Valley nor the opposite.


Other example is Crossy Road vs Frogger, people said Crossy Road copied Frogger, yes the idea is same. Because idea is free, but you can't say such of cheap thing easily like that. If you said that Hipster Whale's successful isn't deserved, then why there're so many similar games out after that? Following the popular way, by copying other.. huh? You just wish you have execute the idea before Hipster Whale did, don't you? Probably, you'll make big hit if you doing that before Hipster Whale did... who knows ;]

Crossy Road is definitely highly inspired by Frogger, but the game itself is kinda different. That's not a game where Hipster Whale doesn't put any effort into it. First, Crossy Road has 3D objects for the game, it means that the creator should turn all the objects inside 'frogger' into 3D objects. Second, Crossy Road has so many characters not just a frog, and third it has ads (no, I'm kidding :p). Okay third, Frogger is a level based game while Crossy Road is an endless game. Those are different things, and we can't say if that's a clone, it ain't cheap too for made all of those 3D assets duh!

Frogger

What I hate nowadays is a fact that some developers clone a game without even put more effort into it. Worst thing, they just change the objects color and brave enough to put 'Original word' on their game's description. Da heck!

Few days ago, I also found out if there's a developer cloned Okay? game by Kamibox bluntly. Well, it doesn't really bother me to be honest, but the fact that it's listed under paid game section at first that made me mad. Why? I don't know, you can say me as a naive person, but the fact that the original one cost free, while the clone one is a paid game is ridiculous. Seriously, how can? or in rough said, you can say that the actual developer will eat once a day, meanwhile the 'thief' can eat twice a day.

The worst thing is sometimes I'm wondering the credibility of AppStore, when I'm really admiring AppStore I'm also wondering how can the review team can let so many clones passed while other one, such as... said a parody game named Kill The Plumber got rejected by the App Store. Pretty ridiculous, does the 'actual' review team were sleeping when the clones games get submitted into App store review?

Kill The Plumber got rejected by App Store

In the end, for the developer itself, if their game got cloned, sometimes it can bring an advantage meaning too. Well, it's pretty clear, if that means your game was worthy enough and people love your game, that's why your game got copied. If not, why they should clones/ copy your game?

Another one, still it's a fact that you're the first one who develop the idea, and at the same time I believe that you'll also have the 'B' plan to improve your work. Try to reach back to the surface by proving out that you're still the original one, not them.

FAQ:


- Don't you think if clones are same with McDonald and KFC selling chickens or Domino and Pizza Hut selling the pizza? Does it mean if KFC clones McD too or the opposite? Who's fault here?

Good question. In general, I can say yes. Both of them still game from different sellers. However, both of them also have similar 'tastes' which was built by 'seasoning' that got 'stolen'. If KFC and McD has similar taste- (look) by using different seasoning. Why games should have same- exact seasoning inside while in fact you can develop the 'taste' to the different new level, said to 'sweet','bitter','sour', or 'salty'. Why the one who clones the game isn't confident enough to put more/ different seasonings for bringing a new 'level-taste' of their game?

Said Blek, it had a 'clone-highly influence game' that I respected named 'Echo Glass'. At glance, the game definitely looks same. However the developer invert the gameplay to something that bring the 'new taste' into the game which can't be found it on Blek.

Echo Glass (042414)


Blek (120213)

We need to make money, use the ideas that's currently popular is easier for us. Why we need more effort to make a design from scratch ? Do you know if it'll consume too much time and money.

Well, let me give you my analogy here. If you eat a piece of chocolate for the first time, you'll treasure, eat and feel the taste of truly chocolate slowly, you want to make sure if you 'touch' every side of the chocolate.
Then someone gives you the same chocolate to taste, you still taste it gladly and feel if it's great to have more. Then more people come and serve you the same chocolate at the same day (short time period) ask you to taste it. What will you do?

If I were you, I feel sick of them all of sudden. I won't to taste them anymore, 1 is great, 2 are okay, 3 are not bad, but more than 5 is suck. Why don't that person try to put strawberry jam or peanut inside that chocolate, I believe it'll be taste better than using the same 'flavor' over and over..

App Store and Google Play has bunch of same games released everyday. Without put something different, your game definitely won't last for a long time there. It's like you dropping rice inside rice mountain but when you drop a diamond, whenever someone found it, it'll be still ended up as diamond.

Conclusion:


Clone isn't a bad thing, but at least try to turn it into inspiration. Put something new, something different that you can't found on the original one. Bring it to be more perfect by using your touch, not just make it same without any difference or it'll be ended up as nothing without meaning

Before I start, let's take a look on my upcoming mobile game wishlist. Checked, and as you can see, there's Seashine on the list. I'm pretty lucky can try the game first before its officially released. Right now, it's on beta session and planned to be released on August 23, 2015 for free on Android and Amazon. It'll be released on September 3, 2015 for the iOS version.

So, what is Seashine?


If you're too lazy, just skip this 'boring' text and watch my preview video below instead. However, if you want to read more intense paragraphs, just promise me, you won't missed any single word inside this post :p haha

When I found out about this game last year, I'm pretty excited to play this game... since it has glowing effect inside... no just kidding. The game definitely looks pretty interesting with that jellyfish swimming around and try escaping from that creepy ugly fish. At first, I think it'll be a level based game since I'm pretty tired with endless game. However, I might went wrong this time, after played few times yesterday I found out that if this endless game not as bad as I might think.

Seashine has non-linear progress, I mean, it's not just like you run and passed from one environment to other one, or jump to the up side and face those similar obstacles over and over. Here on Seashine, you'll control the jellyfish by swiping your finger on the screen. The jellyfish can face different things everytime you play. You can meet anglerfish, piranha, puffer fish, and many more. Sometimes if you're lucky enough you can grab chest which has star inside. What's star? Star is kind 'extra life' here, or I can say kinda used for cheating if you don't eat enough little fishes to support your lifetime here. 



Everytime you move the jellyfish, it'll consume energy that can be seen on the top of the screen. You need to stay alive by eating smaller fishes around. Pity fishes :(! The darker and the deeper of abyss that you explored, the easier of your light to decrease, and you'll die once your light fades out. It's pretty interesting since you also can 'teleport'- got sucked by hole and go to another part of abyss. If you're lucky enough you might find more glowing fishes on there, but it's not always as smooth as you wish. Sometimes, you'll face hungry fishes and you need to swim faster, escaping from that fishes or you'll die miserably.

Seashine world feels very huge until sometime I feel lost inside, it's not just once I trapped on the dead-end way. I wish I have enough time to draw the map about Seashine world. The game requires quick thinking since your energy will be drained every time you moving. I also curious to trick the piranha someday, wanting to meet the carnivorous plant, and find the submarine too. 

Let me find you someday, friend!
Run!... I mean swim!
Seashine was planned to be released on August 23, 2015 for the Android version. It'll be a freemium game... Boo! Oh, come on.. Don't get me wrong. Freemium aspect isn't that bad at all, at least here. No timer, no energy system. The only kind IAP inside the game just for buying stars. Pretty consumptive kind of IAP, but not really necessary to be bought. However, you might buy the IAP just for support the dev :). The only ads that implemented here is video ads (at least I only found them so far). The video ads used for gaining 3-5 stars for free.

TL; DR, Seashine is a game with calming soundtrack which is actually doesn't feel like an usual endless game. It's more like an unlimited journey with different 'story' everytime you play. It's same like you woke up in the morning, finished same activities but at the same time you'll also faced different persons, different problems on that day too. That's what Seashine do... Brings different feeling for every journey we make.


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