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Thomas Was Alone shifts “over 700,000 copies”

Monday, 19th August 2013 23:58 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Mike Bithell’s terrific, BAFTA Award-winning platformer Thomas Was Alone has achieved an impressive number of sales.

Bithell confirmed a ballpark sales figure of “over 700,000″ while speaking with Joystiq.

The total includes copies sold on all platforms – Linux, Mac, PC, PlayStation 3 and Vita – and presumably includes Humble Bundle sales, but does not include those given out through PlayStation Plus. That’s interesting, because PS Plus was the best-selling platform – at least before the latest Humble Weekly Sale.

Thomas Was Alone is notable because its characters are simple, coloured quadrangles, but it boasts quite an interesting story, charmingly narrated as the player progresses through the level. The smooth gameplay is satisfying, too. Narrator Danny Wallace won a BAFTA for it, and allowed Bithell to quite his day job and go totally indie.

Bithell’s new game, Volume, will allow players to create their own stories.

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4 Comments

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  1. Pytox

    gratz !

    #1 11 months ago
  2. TheWulf

    I liked Thomas Was Alone, but I have to say that I feel the developer really didn’t do much to try and sell it to people on the PC. It’s only been on a scant few sites, and it really didn’t reach enough Youtube review channels (where a lot of stuff is highlighted).

    This is compounded by the Steam picture being a dot atop a line of coloured blocks, which shows nothing in the way of talent or aesthetics at all. It screams ‘cheapo puzzle game’ to people browsing the store. I know that’s not the case, but I’m saying that with the lack of saturation combined with the Steam icon? It’s hardly surprising.

    Of course, probably everything on PS Plus ‘sells well’ on the merit of it being free. It’s a risk-free system. You can spam-download everything on the store without it costing anything. When something costs as much as $10 though and looks like it was thrown together by a bored guy in ten minutes? That’s going to have people passing it over for more interesting looking indies — and that’s on the developer.

    If the developer had had a more compelling advertisement on Steam, a decent trailer (the existing trailer has lovely voice acting but tells you next to nothing about the game itself), and proper saturation across the Internet by actually telling people about it? Then it would have sold oodles on Steam, as indies usually do.

    #2 11 months ago
  3. DrDamn

    @2
    Kind of agree. Though the reverse is also true, have a flashy icon as a front piece and then internally you see a game which is simply blocks and you feel deceived that way. I got it on PS+ and quite enjoyed it. The voice over and story is what makes it. I found the puzzles could have done with some work in terms of pacing and introduction of concepts in the early stages. 700k + money from PS+ is good for the dev though, and deserved.

    #3 11 months ago
  4. Lloytron

    Lovely game, I bought it twice! Everyone should at least try it.

    #4 11 months ago