In Finding A Niche
I wanted to ask for some advice. In many game development advice sites, such as the WhatGamesAre.com blog, it’s highly recommended to seek out and join niches (or tribes) that you are interested in. The theory is simple: not only do you get to make the game you want to make, you’ve also got an audience that will want to play it, and may even volunteer to market it. It’s worth noting that this strategy doesn’t work for all niches (arguably, most) — which the article above does a wonderful job at identifying which ones wouldn’t work — but I’m pretty confident that the niche I’m in search of are pretty faithful. I just don’t know where to start.
See, most game genres — and consequently, niches — are defined by gameplay (platformer, first-person shooter, survival horror, need I say more?). My interest, however, lies not in how the game is played, but rather, how the game feels like when playing. I’m a huge fan of surrealism. While I like my fair-share of platformers and first-person shooters, I like it even better when something about feels a little off. Like how Portalis kind-of, sort-of, not-really first-person shooter, Pikmin is kind-of, sort-of, not-really real-time strategy, Stanley Parable is kind-of, sort-of, not-really not-game, and Katamari Damacy is…Katamari Damacy. I find those games very appealing, enjoyable, and most importantly, memorable (especially the Stanley Parable). I’m seeking for a niche that takes interests in those kinds of games.
The only “genre” I can think of that might fit into this definition is WJG: Weird Japanese Games. Obviously, there’s a niche for anything Japanese, but I’m debating if there might be a similar niche that appreciates weird games made outside of Japan.
Anyway, the first important question is, do you think there is a passionate and large enough niche for these kind of games (i.e. is it worth developing for)? Second, if there is, where might be a good source to find them (online and offline)?
Thanks in advance for all the help!