Kickstarting Progress

Its been a few days since we kicked off our Kickstarter for Boozebots, our automated cocktail dispensing machine! It started off with an unbelievable high of one of our top bots sold within 30 minutes and a number of small support bids. We launched at 5pm on the Monday and I remember struggling to sleep that night, buzzing from the excitement, we were on to something!

Tuesday morning wasn’t as good, our bid for the top model had been removed so we were left with a handful of bids for general support of the project. I went to bed Monday thinking we were going to be amazing and smash our kick starter goals, the reality of Tuesday took a while to sink in.

Facts

We have 3 main competitors, all of which have kickstarted.

Bartendro – A success in raising $197,464 on kickstarter back in April 2013. Using a similar dispensing approach to us, however the overall product packaging, I believe, isn’t as nice and complete as ours. They are also more expensive that a BoozeBot.

Monsieur – A success in raising $140,105 on kickstarter in November. These guys have an amazing looking product, sharing a lot of similar features as the BoozeBot but in a really nice finished package, however the price is a lot more.

Barobot – This was the most recent launch, falling short of their funding target very recently. The Barobot however still lives on via external negotiations, it uses an entirely different set-up that a BoozeBot and costs more too.

Looking at the simple facts we have a machine that is as capable as a all the others, as fast as the best, as easy to use as the best, costing a lot less too. The pure economics of this are simple, however there is one thing missing, traffic. Having the best product counts for nothing if people don’t see it, so now our focus changes.

We’ve created something amazing, its time people got to see it!

Writing my first iPhone App

I’ve had a few days off recently so I decided to wrap up an iPhone app that I have been playing around with lately.

I first stumbled on an application called SpriteBuilder about a month ago, before I go any further, just check this out:

I was hooked, graphically creating the glue code then finishing things up in Xcode seemed like a great approach to creating simple games. So I decided a few weeks back to start creating a flappy birds type game.

Firstly I know this formula has been used time and time again, but as a first step into creating a game it seemed like a good way to go. Armed with this tool and some reading from this great site I was able to piece this game together in what turned out to be a week or so overall, including creating all the artwork, the app store screenshots, logos, etc. Apple really ask for a lot!

I wanted my first game to have quite a few features, so I really made an effort to get quite a bit of code in, my 1.0 version has:

  • Physics
  • Particle Effects
  • Sounds (background and SFX)
  • Analytics
  • Admob (those adverts at the bottom of the screen)
  • In App Purchases
  • In game currency

I figured if I was going to make an effort to create a game, I would really go for it and try to make it a complete game!

After the hassle of setting up my certificates, building for the correct iOS version, the 32 bit chips only and other such fun (in reality its not that difficult, its just knowing what you need to do!) I have managed to submit the game to apple and its pending review.

I’m going to be quite public about this app, I’ve gone from nothing to a full app in around 4 weeks from start to end, with probably about a weeks worth of development time in all. I think it will be an interesting experiment in which people can understand what is possible in the app store in reality, I don’t know what it will do, if people will play it, if no one will bother, but it’s going to be fun to see!