October Challenge 2013

Posted by (twitter: @mikekasprzak)
September 27th, 2013 2:46 pm

Well it looks like September is nearly gone, so it’s time to kick off for October Challenge 2013!

The October Challenge is a special Ludum Dare event I started three years ago. More and more people are making games today thanks to Game Jams and events like Ludum Dare. And more and more people talk about selling games, but don’t do it. Well, it’s time to start doing it. Put simply:

Finish a game — Take it to market — Earn $1

That is your goal. That is the October Challenge.

Disregard all the usual Ludum Dare rules (no restrictions). Finish any game you previously made during a game jam, something else you’ve been working on, or heck, something entirely new. Your goal, if you choose to accept it, is to not only make something, but to finish it and do everything necessary to start earning money from it. That’s all. No specific rules or platforms. Make good on that goal or promise to start selling games.

Finish your game before November 1st, and submit it to your respected market. That is the challenge. And once you earn your $1, you’ve won! Easy as that. You’re now a pro.

I’d like to invite everyone to share resources and discuss markets, business models, advertising, and anything related to making that $1. I’ve collected a list of marketplaces, vendor services, and even some opportunities you can take advantage of over here:

October 2013 Resources and Opportunities

If you need a place to start, you can check out this guide I wrote for our first event. Selling games isn’t just finishing it, but there is often paperwork and fees to take care of, and those take time. Do them early to make the most of your time.

Also, do share your progress on your upcoming game with us here on the site. I’ll be opening a submission form soon to collect a list of completed games as they happen.

I’ve posted a few FAQ answers in the comments, so look below. Good luck everyone!


28 Responses to “October Challenge 2013”

  1. PoV says:

    * * * * * FAQ * * * * *

    Q: Do I need to earn my $1 in the month of October?
    A: Nope! The goal of the challenge is to take all the steps necessary to finally earn money from a game. And when you earn your $1, whenever that is, you win.

    Q: Does my game have to be a Ludum Dare or Gamejam game?
    A: Nope! It can be something you’ve been working on outside of Gamejams. Like Ludum Dare, we run the challenge in hope that having a shared deadline encourages more of us to finish.

    Q: Can I earn more than $1?
    A: Yes, we hope you do! Rather than aiming for “Minecraft Money”, we recommend starting small. Because $1 comes before $10 comes before $100 comes before $1000 and so on.

    Q: I’ve been working on a game for weeks or months prior to the Challenge. Can I participate too?
    A: Absolutely! The more the merrier.

    Q: Can I work in a team?
    A: Yes, absolutely! Work with as many people (or as few) as you like.

    Q: Do I need to release source code?
    A: Nope! :)

  2. It just so happens I’m releasing my LD 27 entry on Google Play this weekend!

  3. dbro says:

    Hope to finish my current project. Shouldn’t be too terribly hard.

    Will sell a limited 1-copy physical release for 5 bucks.

  4. GaTechGrad says:

    Is that $1 in sales or actually getting paid $1? For example, I had a game last year that sold 80 copies on XBLIG, so it had $80 in sales but I didn’t actually get paid anything because Microsoft sets a minimum of $150 for a payout, after their 30% cut.

    Does ad revenue sharing sites like GameJolt count? That would seem to be the easiest approach, but you still need a few thousand impressions just to get to $1.

  5. Uhfgood says:

    I almost feel like the October Challenge should include either stipulation that A) You start your Oct Chlg game now in order to sell it by the next october, or, the deadline be october 31st. I’m not really sure what October has to do with this “challenge” other than you announcing it in October.

    I could start a game in December and make a buck by next February, and by these guidelines I will have “won”.

  6. jefery5678 says:

    Hey, I don’t know if anyone here has ever heard of Game Jolt, but I’m going to tell you. They give your 1/3 the profits that they make of people visting your page our downloading your games or whatever. It’s pretty awesome! (I have two reallly suck games up that I made and i already have $0.88)



  7. Blinked says:

    Awesome! I thought about this one last year, but I wasn’t too confident in my skills back then. But I’ve improved so much since then I’m certain I can do this, bring it on >:D

  8. euske says:

    Question: Does donation count as sales?

  9. 7Soul says:

    Already did it in June :3

    http://www.desura.com/games/everlasting-tower This was the game I made for the Charity Game Jam (it was a miniLD)

    I’ll be releasing an update soon, so I might get a sales boost for the October challenge

  10. Been a long time lurker, but never got up the nerve to sign up, or enter any of the previous compo’s. But this one has inspired me, simply because it will give me the kick up the butt I need to get my first game completed.

    The (self imposed) deadline for this first game was August, then I pushed it to September, and by the time I launched my website/setup twitter/facebook etc. it had moved to October and I was considering slipping it back to November, as I’m being a bit lazy :)

    However, the LD October challenge has now (hopefully) given me the ass kicking I need to actually get it finished, and launched this month.

    More info on the game, and where I’m up to with it at : http://www.spookyfishgames.com

    Hopefully in Play Store, iOS App Store & OUYA discover in October :)

  11. Rxanadu says:

    Is it OK if I work with others on their jobs without pay (i.e. as a volunteer)? I want to use this competition to improve my skills with Unity3D and Blender via helping others with their projects.

    Here is one of my prototypes of a game I’m currently working on: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/165884704/wip/Shift/Shift.html

    It’s an old build from a few months ago, but I made it within a day (models and all), if that’s worth anything.

  12. deathray says:

    I think Chrome web store could be added to the marketplace list. This may one of the few options for HTML5 game developers like myself.

    Also, is it legit if we give away a game for free and ask for paypal donations? That can be a successful strategy too.

  13. Pickens Inc. says:

    I really want to try this out!

    …but, I think I’m a little young :( being 15 without a credit card and all doesn’t help!

    Ah well, guess I’ll wait till the next LD.

  14. chunkyguy says:

    This entire year I failed to 1GAM every month, but finally my game is almost done. I’m really looking forward to October challenge.

    The is the devblog of the game I’m working on: http://www.develteam.com/Game/Sea-Mutants/

  15. Photon says:

    Am I the only one who’s seeing a subliminal picture at about 8 seconds? 😮

  16. FireZenk says:

    I think I will join and see if I can bring my LD27 to Google Play :)

  17. superfrog says:

    Can I sell my game in my personal website?

  18. jay griffin says:

    I’ve got a cute little mini-game I’m building over early October that I’ll be releasing in time for the spooky season, might as well make it an October challenge game : ). Good luck to everyone taking part!

  19. robc says:

    Was planning to enhance the game I worked on for LD26 in April (http://www.ludumdare.com/compo/ludum-dare-26/?action=preview&uid=15363) – but after a bit of a hurdle in finding the fun, I think I can turn it into a complete game by the end of the month.

    If you want to check out progress – you can do that on http://www.pivotusgame.com, or by following @Pivotus on Twitter :)

  20. tibone says:

    This is the chance i was awaiting to finish off my html5 project. :)
    I’ll do my best to make the deadline.

  21. MarcinW says:

    Do it guys, it really can be done. If we could – you all can :)

    In September we’ve released our first game, Train Driver for android. We did minimum viable game in one week (me and my girlfriend), with aim to show people how it is to drive a train and let them do that whenever they have several minutes to spare. If you are curious, here is the link:

    We were honest in our Play Store description that there is not much content yet. It worked, people that bought it have been giving good comments since start :) Money is not big, but we’ve been slowly adding more stuff to our game, with every update we get more sales, so it kinda works. And joy with having people willing to pay for what we did is priceless :)

    Next step is learning how to market, we have no idea about that… Maybe another step in Ludum Dare events should be something like ‘Increase your revenue by the end of November’, with tips from veterans how to do that? :)

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