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Service providers

By on October 8, 2010
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The (very) eagle-eyed amongst you will have noticed that I have added a new category to GAMESbrief.

Service providers.

I am transitioning GAMESbrief to be more of a resource for anyone who makes games. I’ll be doing the blogging and the analysis that you know and (I hope) love, but will also be adding a range of features to provide you with the information and tools you need to work better in the new era of games making.

I already have a resources page, although that will be going through further refinement over the rest of the year. Today I am announcing the Service Providers section.

It’ll cover payment providers like fatfoogoo, LiveGamer and PlaySpan. Monetisation businesses like Tapjoy, Offerpal and SuperRewards. Mobile businesses like Scoreloop and Openfeint. Hosting providers like Dreamhost and

I’ll describe what they do so that you can find the service provider you need for your business.

But I really need your help.

I need you to comment on them. To let me know your experiences of these services. To help turn GAMESbrief into a source of knowledge of which service providers are best, which are easiest to work with and so on.

I’m going to start with collaboration software provider Huddle. Partly because they were a client so I know what they do really well, but largely because I think that tools that make collaboration and sharing over multiple locations are going to be ever more important in our fractured, online world.

And I love what they do.

So please, help me out. If you read about a service provider and have experience with them, please share it with others in the comments.

And together we make an incredibly useful resource for game makers.

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:
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  • Love GamesBrief!!! I’ll make a donation of information, if nothing more than to try to get you, Nick, to start paying less attention to companies blowing through $40 Million worh of VC money and more to those of us true self-funded indies on the front lines, trying to change the world.

    In terms of transactions. We created our on transaction system with Bank of America’s CyberSource for credit cards, and PayPal. We spoke to OfferPal, PlaySpan, RockU, and a bunch of other transaction providers. Non of them offered any eStore support for Virtual Goods. None offered customer accounts with credit balances. At the end of the day, all the press-hyped game-related transaction comanies have no more features or benefits over the services already offered by the established banks.

    One more comment on PlaySpan, their card business creates game cards with no prior contact to the game publisher. So we started getting customers who had bought game cards branded with Minions of Mirth with no way for us to honor the funds. Makes you wonder how many of their card/game relationships are just made up.

    Dedicated server hosting. As one of the only live 3D MMORPGs, we entertain over 2,000 users/day for an average of 90 minutes each (some for as long as 17 horus). Each one uses about 4Kb/sec worth of bandwidth. We found our dedicated server provider, LayeredTech out of Texas completely oblivious to the networking needs of long-lived TCP-sessions (being biased to the ever growing web based business) applications. We made contact with a number of Counter-Strike server leasing businesses and got great recommendations for hosting services that avoid packet buffering, load balancing, hop-reduction, etc. We’re very happy with Colo-Crossing with a number of coast-to-coast datacenters.

    Remember to check out one of the top 10 live 3D MMORPGs, Minions of Mirth for PC, Mac & Netbooks,’s #33 overall world-wide MMO even against 2D MMOs overseas!

    Randel Reiss
    Prairie Games, Inc.