Dave goes to NY, Pocket God update is delayed, We hire a PR firm
So Dave took a small vacation and also got the opportunity to visit the Howard Stern show (we are both fans, so I was super jealous). In the mean time, we needed to create a new demo video for Pocket God in order to enter a mobile game competition. Now I HATE video taping me playing the game because I am a fumble fingers and if I'm taping it, it gets even worse. Dave and I then brainstormed the idea of borrowing clips from miscellaneous fan/review videos on YouTube. I spent last weekend and this week creating it while Dave was gone. Then, we decided to hire a PR firm, Triple Point, because we felt we were doing a really bad job of getting mainstream media attention. It was then decided to take the demo and shorten it down for a media release. More details on that later....
Apple Surprises us with Approval then the Crash reports
Once Apple told us that it was a simple fix on our app description that was holding up our approval, instead of taking their time, they approve it right away. Soon after, we are bombarded with reports of our app crashing! Oh, the humanity! Dave is in NY with no way to look into the issue so we are forced to hold tight. Dave returns on Thursday and busts his butt trying to reproduce the crash. He jailbreaks it, adds random stuff to it, microwaves it, throws it in a mud puddle, puts a voodoo hex on it and still it won't crash. He then does some coder thingy and is able to reproduce it and then solve it. The update was submitted this morning. And yes...the T-Rex is coming!
>> Read Dave's State of the Island here <<
And finally, the Controversy!
Then, we start reading on the internet about how Pocket God is being called degrading and racist. Read iPhone Savior's article about it here. Now we have a slightly evil sense humor and watch too much South Park, but this accusation did not thrill us. This is so far from our reality and all we were trying to do was set up a funny fantasy scenario in a tropical environment and didn't think people would read any more into it than that. But we were probably being naive since we live in San Francisco, one of the most tolerant multi-cultural cities there is...other places, not so much. It turns out we made two really big blunders...first was the stone statue, also known as Moai. This is sacred to certain Pacific Island cultures. The second was calling them "Islanders" which we thought was generic enough, but was too similar to "Pacific Islanders".
Dave engaged Elaine Howard, one of the people that wrote up the controversy and discussed some fixes. They asked to to implement some pretty major (and costly) changes that Dave discusses in the thread above. However, together, we came up with some easier alternatives. First, we stop calling them Islanders or Pygmies and use a new fictional name: Oogs with the addition of a backstory. Then we remove the Moai and replace it with a fictional octopus (or qudrapus) god statue to be used in a future story. I eagerly await the stream of comments by people who hate these ideas...but I think we ended up creating new and interesting concepts to explore! We welcome an open discussion.