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Session Name: 'Cultist Simulator': Designing an Experimental Game for Commercial Success
Speaker(s): Alexis Kennedy
Company Name(s): Weather Factory
Track / Format: Design

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Overview: 'Cultist Simulator' was an experimental project which used consciously unusual design decisions to create an unconventional and even divisive game. It hit #1 on Steam and sold more than 50K copies in the first month - a lot of that was luck, a lot of it was marketing, but some of it was also the result of conscious design decisions. Furthermore, 'Cultist Simulator' was a relatively low-budget game with its total production costs being less than $200K USD, and total production time was less than a year. This imposed specific challenges and constrained the design in fundamental ways. This talk will discuss the challenges and the advantages of the decisions the Weather Factory team made, how they steered a straight course, and what they'd do differently next time.

GDC 2019

Alexis Kennedy

Weather Factory

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