Admit it, we devs are not fan of people, even less talking to a lot of them criticizing your almost finished indie game that you have put your heart and soul to it. Before we sign up to a game convention and request a stand, we tried to search the web about what to do, but we found nothing. Thanks to other experiences, including graphic design, something become clear about what to do and how to prepare. Here’s some tips:
Hygiene, very important.
Crowded places always come with excess of body heat, so, always check your body odors and breath, always have water, alcohol and some mints, even you can put some as gift for visitor to your stand.
How to talk to strangers
If you don’t want to become statue, talk to people. Period. Never stay standing in a place, you will start to feel weird, and people won’t come to your stand, because no one likes to walk towards a still stranger looking at them. Try to move all the time, even arranging the stand, checking the connections, whatever you like, but look busy.
After you started moving, you will feel more confident, so, if no one approaches to the stand, ask politely to passing people if they want to play a game. Remember, you want people to play it. So, this was the best ice breaker we have. After that, people start coming closer and talking to us.
How to handle rejection or critics
This one is easy, remember that once a game is out in the wild, it’s no more yours. It belongs to the players. They have to feel comfortable talking about your master creation, so always listen first, always!
Always take something to give to the visitors of your stand, some small designed piece of printed paper is always a good solution. You don’t want to give them your recently printed business card, business cards are for business, and giveaways card should be for visitors, for them to remember you and your game at the end of the day.
Make it easy to get your game if it’s ready or beta testing
QR codes are always handy. Print a big one so people can scan it even if they don’t want to talk to you
If you provide your own equipment, be sure to prepare some method of security, sometime you will find yourself away from the stand, with a lot of people walking, so, a good thing to do is get a strap to your mobile equipment.
So far, we covered the basics things to do to avoid headaches at the end of the day, a make the people comfortable around you and your stand. These lessons were learned the hard way, we hope they come handy to you.