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Ray Jiang

Game Developer

Windows Phone Platform





How I made $40,000 in the past year developing for the Windows Phone Platform


I am an indie developer for Windows Phone Platform. I’ve only started some two years ago, but for me, developing for the Windows Phone platform has been hugely rewarding. Two years is a short time, but I've come a long way from downloading sample code online to having 10+ apps in the Store, with over a million downloads and making 40,000NZD$ in the past year, with all the apps being developed while having a daytime job. Here I just want to share my little story hoping that it can shed some light for those who have just started developing for Windows Phone and those who are about to start.

So a little background about myself. I was an Electronic Engineering graduate a few years ago. During my tertiary life, I did a couple of papers in software programming, mainly focusing on C and C++. The grades were nothing spectacular, but I did find myself interested in programming.

After the Windows Phone came out, I decided to fill up my spare time with writing apps for the platform, with the hope that I would be able to make some pocket money by selling them through the Windows Phone Store. My first game was released in March 2011, selling for 0.99USD with free trial. It carried my laughable dream of becoming a millionaire overnight but turned out to be an astounding failure - not a single paid download in the first month. It was really depressing, but I realized I was dreaming too big. Then I followed the strategy of "throw enough mud at the wall and some of it will stick." I quickly developed 3 small games hoping that one of them would be a hit. I found numerous Windows Phone devs claiming they had much better revenue with putting advertisements in apps than with the Trial/Paid model, so I implemented Microsoft Pubcenter Ads in my games and listed them free. Finally I was getting some revenue - around 1 dollar a day from ads. What a milestone! I would probably have given up developing for Windows Phone if I never came across Elbert Perez and a few other great blog posts. These people posted their success stories that kept the Windows Phone dev community inspired.

The rest of the story is pretty sweet. After developing a few games I was getting pretty comfortable with the job. I had also improved my Adobe Photoshop skills considerably so I felt I was in a good position to develop a good quality game. My next game "Zombie Madness" finally achieved the success I had been longing for.

Check out two of my biggest apps below!

  

2150 A.D. is now available on Windows 8 too!

I think in my dev experience I am most grateful of those who shared their success stories with the dev community. They kept me encouraged and looking forward to the bright future when I was only making 1 dollar a day from ad revenue. So today I write this short story of myself with the hope that it too can inspire and help others in the same way in which others have helped me. Feel free to email me if you have any further questions.

Till next time,

Ray Jiang

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