In the flash games industry, there are plenty of game licensing options to go around. With all these different licenses, it can be tough for beginners and veterans alike to choose between them and negotiate their way to a great deal with sponsors. I’ve been talking a bit with my fellow blogger Vlad of VortixGames, and I came up with my own take on the ideal flash game sponsorship.
The first part of my ideal sponsorship is securing yourself a primary sponsorship. Termed by the makers of Flash Game License, the primary sponsorship is when a sponsor purchases the primary branding in your game. This will include any sort of splash screen, logos, or other branding that you negotiate into your game with the sponsor. This branding will appear on all viral versions of your game, with one exception.
A primary license allows you to sell the second part of my ideal sponsorship; site-locked versions of your game. Site-locked versions, also called non-exclusives, can be appealing to both developers and sponsors.
Developers, you are given another revenue option for your game. You can sell multiple versions of your game, branded with different logos and APIs that each will net you a decent sum of cash. You’ll also gain exposure and game views from these big portals that can afford to purchase non-exclusives.
Sponsors benefit from a primary license because most of the portals that purchase non-exclusives won’t accept your game without sponsor branding removed. This means that the sponsor who buys an exclusive sponsorship won’t gain that many more views than if they had simply purchased a primary license. With exclusive sponsorships coming in at a higher cost than primary licenses, it is more efficient and cost-effective for a sponsor to just purchase a primary license.
The last part of my ideal flash game sponsorship has more to do with what you must be allowed to include in your game. Your game should be allowed the option of (1) having microtransactions, and (2) including in-game ads. It’s not necessary to have these bits worked into the contract if you don’t wish to utilize them, but they should always be an option.
Microtransactions are one of the brightest looking revenue options for developers right now. Many developers have been learning that players are willing to pay if you can offer them a great experience for buying your content.
The good thing is, if you’ve built a game around microtransactions sponsors aren’t really going to have a choice in the matter. Once a game is designed with the microtransactions concept in mind, it’s going to be tough to take it out. But with most of the microtransactions systems coming built with sponsors in mind, by allowing sponsors to take a certain percentage of the microtransactions, most sponsors are realizing that they’re going to have to go along with it.
In-game ads are a bit of a different story. They can be added and removed with ease. If you think your game might go big, in-game ads could be a great option. The more people that play your game, the more money you’ll make.
The thing is, in-game ads don’t really benefit most game sponsors. Sure, there are some ad systems that allow developers and sponsors to split the ad revenue, but earnings are most likely minimal compared to the amount the sponsor will earn on their portal. Plus, in-game ad’s can annoy players and cause damage to a sponsors reputation or brand. Sponsors want to be associated with happiness and fun. When was the last time you thought an ad on tv was fun?
If you do want to include in-game ads, most sponsors will be just fine with it. But, you may want to expect a little bit of a drop in your sponsorship amount.
So take my idea for an ideal sponsorship and start negotiating away with your favorite sponsors. Or, develop your own set of points your looking for in a sponsorship, and you’re sure to come out of it on top.