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How to make me write about “Yet another farming game”

By on September 24, 2010
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On Wednesday, I got a press release entitled “Hey look, a new farming game”.

The initial paragraph read:

“Dear Team at Games Brief,

We know what you’re thinking, “Sweet baby Jesus in heaven, not another farming game!”

But before you hit the delete button, hold up a second and let us share with you a new game we’ve developed for Facebook.”

That made me smile, so I read the rest of the press release, installed the game on Facebook and wrote about it.

image

It’s from a team of just two people, they are trying to make the farming sim genre more sophisticated and I like their style.

I’m not commenting on the game here, but I like their PR approach. Top marks.

Full email below.

* * *

Dear Team at Games Brief,

We know what you’re thinking, “Sweet baby Jesus in heaven, not another farming game!”

But before you hit the delete button, hold up a second and let us share with you a new game we’ve developed for Facebook.

Bumper Crop (http://www.bumpercropgame.com) is new, it’s different and it makes those other farming games look like baby’s pablum. Bumper Crop starts you out easy but boldly goes where other games fail to go to keep your interest.

Here are just a handful of features:

  • Seeds and Trees: Bumper Crop offers rare crops and trees that are randomly given to only a select group of players. These players become their guardians. The players may decide to generously share them with everyone or guard them closely.
  • Weeds: While other farming games foster a mindless clicking to grow vast monocultures, Bumper Crop encourages players to think strategically. In level 11, weeds start growing randomly. Some weeds grow slowly. Other weeds take over neighboring fields rapidly. The player has to decide between planting high profit crops or crops naturally resistant to weeds. Players can use trees as barriers to prevent weeds from spreading over the whole farm. Smart plant layouts can save the harvest.
  • Seed Saving: Seed saving is the time-honored measure to retain part of the harvest to derive seeds for the next season. In advanced levels, players can seed save part of the crop to avoid paying the wholesaler for new seeds.

And that’s just an itty-bitty part of what this game has in store. At this point in our soft launch, we’ve got 11 levels with another 19 levels in development!

Right! We’re tired!

And of course, now’s the fun part. We’d like to you check out our game, write about it, write about us (we’re only two people after all , and that in and of itself is super noteworthy!) and tell the world what a one-of-a kind, super fun game this is. We realize that the face of Facebook games is changing and we’re at the forefront of that movement to make games that are more than just point and click – games that are more socially responsible, with a message that encourages learning and fun – all at the same time!

Now, let’s recap:

Game name: Bumper Crop

Game URL: http://www.bumpercropgame.com

Makes other farming game look like: Baby’s pablum

Oh, and be sure and read our News Release at pitchengine: http://pitch.pe/90033

If you’d like more information or would like to speak to someone on the “Bumper Crop Team”, we’d be happy to oblige.

  • Thomas Fischer (developer and big brain behind the game). If you speak with Thomas, don’t let the German accent fool you, he’s actually from Detroit.
  • Laura Greenwald (designer and illustrator of Farmer Bob and friends)

[They gave me their contact details. I’ve omitted them here]

About Nicholas Lovell

Nicholas is the founder of Gamesbrief, a blog dedicated to the business of games. It aims to be informative, authoritative and above all helpful to developers grappling with business strategy. He is the author of a growing list of books about making money in the games industry and other digital media, including How to Publish a Game and Design Rules for Free-to-Play Games, and Penguin-published title The Curve: thecurveonline.com