How and why to review on Steam

Steam reviews are important.

They are really, important.

As a small independent games developer - Steam reviews are basically everything. Did you know 90% of all consumers will look at reviews before they purchase something online? Did you also know that Steam uses review numbers as a way to determine what games to promote?

The mystic art

So here is another interesting question: how many reviews have you ever left on Steam?

We are often so enamoured, or enthralled by a game that we often forget to pop over and give it a thumbs up and leave a comment saying how much we liked it. But the question is why don’t we?

If you are anything like the author (who is planning on leaving a lot more reviews after doing this research!) it’s often because you have never done it before and so a handy guide on how to would be helpful… and wouldn’t you know it… we have exactly that here!

The fool-proof guide to leaving a review on Steam (with photos)

Step 1: Log into Steam and find a game to review

  We could pick anyone of these great titles…

We could pick anyone of these great titles…

Step 2: Click on Store Page and scroll down till you see the review box

  I will not apologise for my love of Black Dynamite

I will not apologise for my love of Black Dynamite

Step 3: Type in your review into the box and then select a thumbs up (we hope!) or thumbs down.

As a developer we would love to know what you particularly loved about the game and/or thoughts about what might be added in the future.

  Perks of the job...

Perks of the job...

Step 4: Move the mouse down to “Post review” click the button.

Step 5: Sit back, relax and embrace the joyous feeling of helping an indie developer make more awesome games.

This gif will be you after you’ve done.

In all seriousness, it is that easy and it is really helpful. So if you have bought one of our games (or any game from a developer you like) pop on Steam and leave a review. We’ll be super grateful for it!

Matt Davies

Marketing and Community Manager for Auroch Digital in Bristol, UK.

Find me on Twitter: @mattlosvert, on Stream Mixer.com/AurochDigital or more regularly on @AurochDigital

We need your help to make a game

Robots are cool. The multitude of types and examples makes it a treasure trove of opportunity. The idea of controlling a giant, gun-totting, cyber badass is high on everyone's to do list (or the people I hang out with at least).

With that in mind we’ve made a short survey that looks at a number of different topics related to mechs. We want to know what mechs are your favourite, what kind of story and setting you prefer in mech games, and the importance of things like single player, multiplayer, and mod support.

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So if you’re a fan of things like MechWarrior, Steel Battalion, Chromehounds,  Armored Core, World of Warships, Silent Hunter, Cold Waters, Gundam or any other robot-related thing (Day the Earth Stood Still anyone?? No?… just me?!) we’d love to hear from you. And if you know anyone you think would love it, please send it across to them as well, as we want as many people as possible to weigh in!

Fancy some Auroch and Chill…?

While we’ve got you here… you might not know, but we are now streaming weekly!

You can join us on Mondays 16:00  - 18:00 (UK Time) for Auroch Plays. Kick back and watch us as we play a number of classic games from big strategy to some of the coolest indie tactics titles.

Then on Thursdays 16:00 - 18:00 (UK Time) join us for Auroch and Chill. In this show we get under the bonnet of some of the titles we’ve been working on, giving you an exclusive look at new content as well as revisiting a few of our older games.

Thank you from us

We just wanted to also say a massive thank you to everyone who has bought, reviewed, and shared our latest game Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics. We really hope you‘re enjoying it, and hugely appreciate your support

Until next time!

Matt Davies

Marketing and Community Manager for Auroch Digital in Bristol, UK.

Find me on Twitter: @mattlosvert, on Stream Mixer.com/AurochDigital or more regularly on @AurochDigital

Out now: Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics

You read that right, our new strategy game is available to purchase for PC via Steam right now.

As you’ll know, it’s a turn-based, squad-level tactics game in which you control a group of Allied specialists at the height of World War II, attempting to thwart a Cthulhu-tinged Nazi menace that’s hell-bent on bringing the free world to its knees.

It’s a fusion of deep strategy and fast play, set in a unique alternative history universe we think you’re going to love.

Grab the game now and let us know how you’re getting on through any of the usual social channels.


Matt Davies

Marketing and Community Manager for Auroch Digital in Bristol, UK.

Find me on Twitter: @mattlosvert, on Stream Mixer.com/AurochDigital or more regularly on @AurochDigital

Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics, more Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics, and also... Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics

Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics is almost here...

The studio is laser-focused on our new Weird World War strategy game right now, as development begins to wrap up and we start to think about release dates. It's been in production for a good long while, but the end is sight and we're eager to get it into your hands, whether that be on PC or console.

With that in mind, we've been revealing more and more about our turn-based tactics title, such as in articles over on our Steam Community page detailing various aspects of the game, including The Shroud a.k.a “Fog of War 2.0”, and we’ve been introducing the world to two of our four main characters - Ariane Dubois and Captain Eric 'Badger' Harris.

Episode 2 of the podcast is also now out in the wild, available through all good podcasting platforms and it’s well worth a listen for a behind-the-scenes look (or should that be “listen”?) at some of our thinking during development.

And if you like all of that stuff then you’ll be pleased to know there’s even more where that came from - expect to see much more of the game over the coming weeks.

Developer commentary trailer now out

Yup! This video’s got more gameplay of Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics than you can shake a moderately-sized stick at.

Plus studio owner Tom steps you through how to play the game, talks about the game’s systems, and much more.

Media coverage is starting to roll in

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Since our last blog post, we’ve taken the game to both Gamescom and PAX West - two huge games industry events - and the response from press has been really encouraging.

Lots of coverage has been generated from these events, as well as the release of our developer commentary trailer, including articles from our media pals in Japan, Russia, Greece, Hungary, Serbia, Netherlands, Germany, France, Italy, Belgium, and many more besides.

But for the English speakers out there, you can see a selection of what the media is saying about the game over on sites like Trusted Reviews, Ready Up, PCGamesN, Operation Rainfall, TrueAchievements, and Hooked Gamers.

Matt Davies

Marketing and Community Manager for Auroch Digital in Bristol, UK.

Find me on Twitter: @mattlosvert, on Stream Mixer.com/AurochDigital or more regularly on @AurochDigital

Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics takes formation with a brand new trailer, goodies from Modiphius, studio press day and new Dark Future content!

Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics update

If you follow Auroch Digital on our various platforms, you will definitely have heard about Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics. It's a tactical, squad-based shooter with RPG elements based on the wildly successful tabletop RPG Achtung! Cthulhu, by Modiphius Entertainment, scheduled for release on Steam, Playstation 4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch. The game pits you, a crack team of elite allies from across the globe, against two rival Nazi factions that have taken their fixation with the occult to a dangerous extreme, utilising technology and allying themselves with otherworldy horrors from the Cthulhu Mythos.

The game has come on fantastically, as you can see in the comparison screenshots (pre-alpha) below;

Our publishers at Ripstone Games have also just released a brand new teaser trailer for the game too featuring all-new artwork, setting the tone for the game with its light vs dark theme. The trailer was launched just ahead of the Steam page for the game going live, where you can wishlist the game now! 

We LOVE the style and how it will fit into the game with the new 'Shroud' system, which we'll talk about below; 

And if that STILL doesn't scratch the itch for Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics, you can literally watch it being played by lead designer Adam Carter-Groves. It doesn't get much more horse's mouth than that! Adam talks through the gameplay and UI, future plans, the new Shroud system and much more in this short stream. You can follow us on Twitch to keep up to date with our live broadcasts, which will be picking up as we get closer to releasing Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics, Mars Horizon and Dark Future: Blood Red States.

You may have been following our How to Make a Game with Auroch Digital podcast series about how we're making Mars Horizon, implementing real science and engineering principles and talking through the challenges and results over the course of development. If you haven't yet, you can check it out here. It's been an interesting way of looking at our own processes and strategy when making a game, and it made total sense to us to do the same for Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics! You can check out episode 0 and episode 1 on the Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics game page, and be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Podbean, Castbox, Mixcloud, Podchaser, Acast, and/or Stitcher (aaaand breathe).

One final thing on Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics before we move onto what else we've been up to this month; Modiphius, the creators of the original tabletop game, have given away a FREE PDF copy of their Achtung! Cthulhu Combat rule set, which is a simplified version of the Achtung! Cthulhu Skirmish rules, designed to allow you to play faster and larger games with multiple players. Also included in this free package are force guides for four major factions in the game; Section M, Majestic, Nachtwolfe and Black Sun, allowing you to build up a typical army from scratch!
 

Bristol Games Hub Press Day

Bristol Games Hub, where we are based alongside a multitude of other fantastic indie developers, held an event last week to exhibit all the exciting stuff we're working on. The response was fantastic, with the producer on Mars Horizon, Mike Daw, sitting down with Bristol 24/7 to discuss the game and Hub in general. Jupiter Hadley of IndieGameJams.com was very impressed with Dark Future: Blood Red States.

Speaking of Dark Future... 

We've also just released a brand new screenshot from Dark Future, which can be found below. We'll be sharing more and more Dark Future: Blood Red States over the coming months as we gear up for the early 2019 release.

Matt Davies

Marketing and Community Manager for Auroch Digital in Bristol, UK.

Find me on Twitter: @mattlosvert, on Stream Mixer.com/AurochDigital or more regularly on @AurochDigital

Mars Horizon rockets onward, a look back on GameTheNews, the Steampocalypse, and more...

More about Mars Horizon
We’ve had a lot of interest in Mars Horizon since we first announced it, so we put together an article on Medium that goes into an area of it that we’re most proud of: its links with real science.

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As you’ll have heard on the studio’s podcast about the game’s development, as well as read about on here, Mars Horizon is tied closely with the real-world realities of managing a space agency. We’ve worked with people in the field who have guided the direction of our thinking and ultimately the game’s design, by giving us their insight into, for example, why certain agencies specialise in certain kinds of missions into space, or why public interest is so important to science.

A GameTheNews retrospective
A lot of people will have first heard of Auroch Digital through its work during the GameTheNews initiative, where we were part of the vanguard leading the charge into the (then quite new) world of newsgames.

Tom wrote an article about our experiences creating works in that field, talking about the huge positives of making them, as well as some of the downsides. If you’re interested at all in “serious games” or “games with purpose”, it’s well worth a read.

Asset flips and the Steampocalypse

There has long been a debate about the subject of “asset flips”. This is a term given to games that primarily feature pre-made assets, usually with the subtext that they are of poor quality and created for nefarious reasons.

It’s lead to a rise in poor quality content on Steam, the primary channel for PC games distribution, which many have linked with the “Steampocalypse” - the idea that at some point making money on that platform for most studios will be next to impossible.

Tom weighed in on both of these topics across a variety of high profile media channels recently, including VentureBeat, GamesIndustry.biz, and MCV, and spoke about how developers can best prepare for the Steampocalypse at Develop.

And everything else...
As noted above, we were at Develop, with both Tom and Nina giving talks.

And we’re proud to report that podcasting is doing surprisingly well for us as a studio. Our go-to audio expert Matthew Walker has been producing them and walks through his process in this great article that you should totally read if you’ve ever thought about dipping your toe in the warm waters of branded podcasts.

Matt Davies

Marketing and Community Manager for Auroch Digital in Bristol, UK.

Find me on Twitter: @mattlosvert, on Stream Mixer.com/AurochDigital or more regularly on @AurochDigital

A selection of the best submissions to our Ogre Screenshot Contest

We recently ran a screenshot submission contest for Ogre to celebrate Origins Game Fair 2018. 

Fans submitted a fantastic set of screenshots which really encapsulated the nature of the game, the brutal mechanical warfare it is centred around and the futility of standing up against the might of the Ogre itself. 

 PZMCGWIRE's Invasion of San Diego scenario

PZMCGWIRE's Invasion of San Diego scenario

 This is pulled from Google Maps. The similarity is incredible!

This is pulled from Google Maps. The similarity is incredible!

Huge congratulations to our winner, PZMCGWIRE, who utilised the power of our built-in Scenario Creator to recreate Coronado Island in their Invasion of San Diego scenario! They recently received their prizes, signed copies of the Ogre Reinforcements expansion for Sixth Edition and the paper insert 40 Years of Ogre by Steve Jackson himself! The paper insert contains the unique scenario Bad Timing and a full game map, cut-out unit counters and rules. 

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As well as our great winning submission, we received a bunch of other fantastic screenshots over the course of the contest, which we really wanted to share, as thanks for the time taken by our wonderful Ogre community!

Matt Davies

Marketing and Community Manager for Auroch Digital in Bristol, UK.

Find me on Twitter: @mattlosvert, on Stream Mixer.com/AurochDigital or more regularly on @AurochDigital

Update on Mars Horizon, an award nomination, bargains to be had, and more...

An update on Mars Horizon
Mars Horizon has been making steady progress throughout development and you can learn all sorts about that development - as well as how the team is incorporating real space science in to the gameplay - in Episode 2 and Episode 3 of the podcast. You can download or stream the podcast on its official Auroch Digital game page.

We’re also thrilled to have been interviewed by BBC’s Sky at Night Magazine. We talked with them about our aspirations for the game, the iconic vehicles you’ll get to play with, and even revealed a little more about our aspirations for a tabletop version of the game, so it’s well worth a read if you’re keeping a close eye on that upcoming title of ours.

Head of studio nominated for lifetime achievement award
Our Tomas Rawlings has been nominated for the Lifetime Achievement Award category at the 2018 SPARKies tech and digital awards. He joins a prestigious list of talented individuals, from CEOs to mentors, at everything from gigantic corporations to wildly successful non-profit organisations.

A huge congratulations to all of the nominees, the full list of which you can check out right here.

Things on sale and things on sale
Our Pledge Manager for Achtung! Cthulhu will be drawing to a close soon, so if you want in on that, best get in quick. Players who support the game early will be given all sorts of sweet rewards and extras, details for which are on PledgeManager.

You’ve just missed the Skulls for the Skull Throne II sale, featuring a load of great Games Workshop games, including our titles Chainsaw Warrior and Chainsaw Warrior: Lords of the Night, but you’re still in time to nab yourself a copy of Steve Jackson’s Ogre at a whopping 40% off before entering our screenshot competition in celebration of Origins.

And everything else...
Oh gosh, what else?

Well, there was an Unreal fashion faux pas in the studio, a highly informative day of marketing and branding with our pal Nat, a new screen of Dark Future: Blood Red States, and another one too, just for luck.

Quite the busy month. We’ll see you here for another round up in, oh, let’s say another 30 days time...

Matt Davies

Marketing and Community Manager for Auroch Digital in Bristol, UK.

Find me on Twitter: @mattlosvert, on Stream Mixer.com/AurochDigital or more regularly on @AurochDigital

Mars Horizon announced for PC and consoles, Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics late backing now available, speaking at Develop, and lots more besides

Mars Horizon asks you to help make humanity a multi-planetary species

Gosh it’s been a struggle trying to not talk about this project of ours!

We’ve been quietly working on Mars Horizon for quite a while now and on Friday the 11th of May we were able to finally unveil it to the world.

As you’ll see on our blog post, the piece on the official PlayStation Blog, or any number of the sites that covered the announcement, we’ve worked closely with real scientists and scientific organisations to ensure a strong amount of authenticity makes it into our game about running your own space agency from the dawn of space flight to putting boots onto the eponymous red planet.

We also took our first steps into the wild world of podcasting, with an audio series about the game and the studio kicking off as part of the announcement. You can find the first episode on the Mars Horizon game page, if you like what you hear then make sure to subscribe for more episodes as they’re released.

We’ll have much more to show you very shortly, in the meantime here’s our announcement trailer.

PledgeManager now open for Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics

Many of you got in touch to ask about whether you could back Achtung! Cthulhu Tactics even though the Kickstarter has now ended.

And the answer is a resounding “absolutely”.

Pop over to our PledgeManager page to get started.

We’re speaking at Develop

We’ve been to events a fair bit this year, but we’ve always got time for more public speaking and we’ve been fortunate enough to be asked to talk at this year’s Develop.

Both Tom and Nina will be taking to the stage for two separate presentations, How to Make People Love You, Or at Least Love Working With You, and The Steampocalypse - A Survival Guide.

We’re absolutely thrilled to be taking part, we’ll no doubt let you know how it all goes in a future update.

Dark Future: Blood Red States store page gets GIFs

Sometimes it’s the small things that make your day.

Like a particularly well-made cup of tea. Or re-discovering a song you forgot you used to love. Or putting some sweet GIFs on your Steam store page or on your Twitter.

Ogre update brings a number of requested fixes

Version 1.5.14.0 of Ogre has deployed to Steam and brings with it priority fixes and improvements that the community has requested.

There’s a full breakdown of what’s new in the accompanying Steam Community post. A huge thank you from our team to our players for getting involved in the process.

Making humanity a multiplanetary species in upcoming game, Mars Horizon, developed with support from the UK Space Agency

Introducing a space agency management and mission simulator inspired by real science and engineering.

We're SUPER excited to announce that we have combined rocket building, mission control and space agency management together in the upcoming strategy game Mars Horizon. Early in development, the game received support from the UK Space Agency as it focuses on the reality of space exploration. The game is in development now and is due for release in Q4 this year to PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Nintendo Switch.

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Mars Horizon is a strategy game in which players control a government space agency. Picking between the space agencies of either Europe, Russia, or the United States, the players then control the agency to collaborate or compete in a decades-spanning campaign to expand humanity’s reach further into space. With each game an alternate history begins to be shaped and guided by the player’s actions, building iconic rockets, probes, and satellites that transmit crucial scientific data back to your customisable Earth HQ, all the while researching, investing in, and bolstering your space flight capabilities. During the player’s version of the space race, perhaps Europe works with Russia, sending satellites into orbit? Could it be that the US get this first satellite into space but that Russia achieves the first moon landing? Who will be best poised to venture to Mars because of learnings from earlier missions? Players will research new tech, expand their agency base, build rockets, send satellites into orbit, and launch a variety of missions throughout the Solar System. The game culminates in the first crewed mission to Mars, setting the stage for humanity to become a multiplanetary species.

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The UK Space Agency provided support in the form of a grant plus advice and information on space exploration and the running of an actual space agency for Mars Horizon. We are staunch advocates for video games both as entertainment but also as a medium with the power to explore real world issues and ideas. Speaking about the game, our Design Director, Dr. Tomas Rawlings said...

“We wanted to distil the wonder, drama, and the galaxies of possibility that space offers us as a species, into game form. Mars Horizon is our love-letter to the race into space and the challenges and triumphs of humanity on the way to becoming a multiplanetary species”.

Together with research into real science and engineering in the space industry, the support shown by the UK Space Agency to assist in Mars Horizon’s production has elevated and further inspired our development team.

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Episode 1 of a 3 part podcast series is also available, detailing the games’ production. You can listen and subscribe to the Auroch Digital podcast HERE - get to know the team, the process, and learn about how space engineering has been translated for the video game medium in Mars Horizon.

Matt Davies

Marketing and Community Manager for Auroch Digital in Bristol, UK.

Find me on Twitter: @mattlosvert, on Stream Mixer.com/AurochDigital or more regularly on @AurochDigital