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Books you should read
This book is designed as a reference for all game creators – whether you’re a veteran of the industry trying to get up to speed with the free-to-play business model, a newcomer learning the ropes, or even an experienced free-to-play creator seeking to polish your knowledge and challenge your perceptions. It’s also a perfect read for anyone – game creator or not – who wants to understand how the free-to-play model works, and what the future of the games business looks like.
Chris Anderson’s The Long Tail kick-started a revolution in Internet business.
The editor-in-chief of Wired predicted a revolution in content as the limitations imposed by scarce shelf space evaporated in the face on unlimited online inventory. It was hailed as the saviour of content creators and the beginning of the end of publishers.
While it is no longer so revered as it once was (partially because Anderson’s future still hasn’t arrived), it’s still a valuable read for any Internet entrepreneur.
Seth Godin is the leading proponent of a new type of marketing: permission marketing.
In essence, Seth believes that the old style of “interruptive” advertising isn’t cost-effective. Worse than that, it doesn’t work at all.
He believes that you need to make remarkable products that people want to talk about. That you win the marketing battle not by spending, but by giving people something they want and love.
For developers making great games, this is a powerful opportunity.
In Free, Chris Anderson argues that, in a world where the Internet has reduced distribution costs to close to zero, free is the logical price point.
In fact, he goes further than that. He shows, with numerous examples, how businesses have harnessed the power of free to create new businesses and disrupt old ones.
With Facebook, iPhone and massively-multiplayer online games all trending towards free as the initial price, understanding how to make money from “free” is more important than it has ever been.
If you make games, you need to read this book.
Web usability at its most simple (and powerful). Krug focuses on the premise that every time you make a user think, you expend a little bit of goodwill or cognitive energy.
Use too much and you’ve lost that user.
And it’s usually unnecessary – a little bit of usability thinking can go a very long way.
I’m on my third copy of this book. It keeps being borrowed and never returned – a very good sign of its importance.
Cognitive dissonance. That is the heart of what makes us human. Or perhaps, it’s the avoidance of dissonance that is so key.
We hate holding two contrasting positions. We have therefore become incredibly proficient at convincing ourselves that, for example, buying an expensive car is really justified because we read that it will increase our earning power.
This book explains everything from political scandals to why you make decisions you know to be foolish.
Everyone should read this book.