Little Sim World Introduction

Little Sim World is an open-world 2D, life simulator game that has been in development since March 2019 for the PC and Mac. The global video game market size was valued at USD 151.06 billion in 2019 and is expected to grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 12.9% from 2020 to 2027.

With this rapid growth creates new opportunities that are currently very lacking in certain genres. There are currently only two high-quality life-sim IPs released and have generated substantial profits over the past few years in the excess of $5 Billion USD with a female majority audience. Female gamers represent the majority of a new audience who are interested in gaming and it is unfortunate that there are not many high-quality IPs dedicated to this demographic.

This article, therefore, is written as a motivation for the PC and Mobile versions of our upcoming life-sim, Little Sim World.

Pitch Deck: Link Here

Terry's CV:
Game Build 0.31y15: Onedrive Download Link (Windows/Mac)
Game Build 0.31y15: pCloud Download Link (Windows)

Website: (for screenshots)

The Little Sim World logo with London in the background skyline.

Full Title: Terry Jin's Little Sim World
Tags: 2D, Life-Simulation, RPG, Open-World, Lifestyle, Cozy.
Base Price (PC): ~ $25.
Pricing Model (PC): Single time payment with future DLCs. Subscription payment for dedicated servers for multiplayer and Patreon support will continue.
Pricing Model (Mobile): F2P with microtransactions for certain furniture/outfits/pets/food and to slightly speed up player progression.
Planned Release Date: Early Access Q4 2022 (Steam/Epic)
Engine: C#, 2D Unity 2020.
Team Location: Terry is based in Cambridge, UK (other members are working remotely). Registered in HMRC Companies House, UK.

Little Sim World is designed and self-funded by Terry Jin with the help of a few friends who have a passion for the Sims genre. We started the project in March of 2019. LSW is unique in design but also takes much inspiration from the likes of The Sims, Animal Crossing, Stardew Valley and Pokemon.

Terry has a PhD in Astrophysics from the University of Cambridge and started his first startup in 2012 working on Arbitrage software. 6 years later he exited with around $5m in net profit. In March 2019 Terry started Little Sim World and self-funded the project. Team LSW has expanded from around 3 people to 8 people today (all full time). We are looking to eventually expand the team to around 11 for the PC team and around 6 additional members for the mobile release.

At the time of writing, the team consists of (with CVs attached):

  1. Founder/Designer: Terry Jin
  2. Lead Programmer: Jack Young
  3. Programmer: Arthur Sousa
  4. Programmer: Lucas
  5. Lead Artist: Michel Saito
  6. Artist: Ronnel Infante
  7. Animator: Pedro Teixeira
  8. Lead QA/Recruiting: Djordje Stanisavljevic

Team strengths: we are heavily focused on efficient and clean workflows. Everything related to design, art and more are entirely documented in full clarity. We are also very focused on hiring and reaching out to the best talents such that we have a very steady development process.

Steam wishlist progress since the beginning of our Steam page. This is done with minimal/no advertising which is very promising progress for an indie game.

In this section, we will briefly discuss the life sim genre. At the moment there are not many with most being tangentially related to LSW so we will instead discuss our most relevant competitors.

1. Animal Crossing (Switch), is a close competitor of ours and is now the best selling game in Japan of all time (across all consoles, not just the Switch), surpassing Pokemon Red/Blue which is unprecedented for a casual game with primarily a female audience. AC is now a monolithic game, standing above almost every other premium game in existence. We are very excited to compete against AC as we believe this is a challenge we can take on.

It is useful to keep in mind AC is bound to the Nintendo Switch with a very high price tag of $60 on release. The public revenue data is not entirely clear on AC as of today but looking at sales revenue of the first year we are estimating in the order of → $2B or so not including its other related IPs.

2. Animal Crossing (Mobile), averages between $5-10 Million (USD) per month in revenue (not including China or third party android stores) reaching $50M revenue in approximately 290 days of release.

This is steady, with no loss in the player base over the period of the last few years, which is a strong sign. This revenue is relatively small, but it is useful to note that Nintendo has purposely made the game very superficial on Mobile to encourage players to purchase the Switch and is a strategy they have employed for a long time for their mobile games.

3. Paralives, (Patreon), is an upcoming indie sim game that is a 3D competitor to Little Sim World. They are currently averaging around $40-45k per month on Patreon of support for an unreleased game with no MvP build. We have some information on their most up to date build, and the game is years away from an early access Steam build (5+, we estimate). The issue with Paralives is that it cannot be converted to mobile very easily (or at all) in addition to an extremely high cost of development. Specific details are better discussed offline.

LSW on the other hand has no direct competitor on console or mobile except for AC and the Sims 4. We strongly believe that Little Sim World can outcompete the existing competition and they have fundamentally limited themselves on many levels.

For example, AC requires a Switch and is a very expensive premium title that most of the world does not have access to. The Sims 4 has an even worse issue, as it requires quite a powerful PC to play smoothly (as well as very outdated gameplay mechanics dating back to the late 1990s). Yet, with all these shortcomings, life sim games have been highly successful with little to no competition. LSW on the other hand has no limitations and can be played on any device without compromising on graphical fidelity.

There are other games that are tangentially related to LSW but would not count as direct competitors given the difference in gameplay. Examples include Stardew Valley, Everafter Falls, My Time at Portia, Littlewood and BitLife. These types of games in our opinion would be very easy for our team to make, but 'Farming Simulators' (which these games are, except BitLife) while a very promising genre, lacks the vast appeal that a generalised 'Life Sim' has like Little Sim World. In summary, we believe there is fundamentally no limit to LSW's growth potential and there is a strong chance that we can create the greatest game of all time given sufficient funding.

The monthly PNL of LSW is currently developed via bootstrap and has a very low burn rate. This is not without downsides as it slows down productivity along with other caveats. The team as of now is very strong but with more funding, we can work faster with significantly better talent in the long term.

Monthly PNL → Speadsheet Link

  • LSW (Premium PC) early access is estimated to be ready in a maximum of 15 months.
  • LSW (F2P PC conversion) early access is estimated to be ready in a maximum of 21 months.
  • Mobile LSW is estimated to be ready in a maximum of 24 months.
  • An extra 10-15% should be added to the numbers to account for burn after release, as we plan to update the game.
  • After early access/release, we plan to continually update the game for the foreseeable future. This allows us to grow the IP and accumulate more users for our future titles which we are very keen on developing.

It is highly beneficial to work on a mobile version of LSW as a lot of the assets and work can be shared across both projects. In our opinion, however, it is not optimal to convert the premium version of LSW into F2P but has nevertheless been included in the PNL for completeness.

The costs presented are under a range of conditions. It is certainly possible to work with less funding but this would come at the expense of quality. We believe we can absolutely compete with the likes of Fortnite and Minecraft given sufficient funding.

We have some data on Patreon and our current progress with our fans. Please keep in mind that Patreon supporters are supporting us on the promise of a good game and is a monthly subscription service. It is useful to note that our current following was achieved with almost zero advertising budget.

Here are our current statistics:

  • Patreon first started in 2020 July.
  • Current total Patreons: ~ 1200
  • Monthly Revenue post all fees (VAT, Patreon and Paypal): ~ $6000
  • Total Patreons to date: 2650. This gives us approximately a retention of 48% of users (in reality it is much higher, as most Patreons subscribe for 3-6 months minimum).
  • Average Patreon contribution per month pre-fees: ~ $6.

Some other interesting statistics:

  • Twitter followers: 20.4k.
  • Steam wishlist: 25k. This gives us a predicted sales revenue of around ~ $1M in the first 2 months of release. I believe we can achieve this without any funding assistance. With a Kickstarter and potential funding, we strongly believe we can do $10M sales within the first year of release with sustained growth in the following years with continuous updates.
  • Discord: 4.5k users. Our Discord is far more active than many successful indie games, very nice!
  • vc.txt
  • Last modified: 05:58 27/09/2021
  • by Terry Jin