The company was founded on June 28th 2020 by two friends Marek Polačik and Jozef Baxa.
As friends who were neighbors and former classmates at high school where we studied Engineering and Transportation, we played games together for several hours a day and went through various game titles.
How did it all come about?
Until one evening when we were at Marek’s place and we opened a bottle and were going to play League of Legends together. While Marek was playing, Twitch was on and the streamer was just playing Jump King and we had a pretty good time watching him losing his temper with the game, then we got to a similar game Getting Over It. We started watching various videos on YouTube how players were exploding from losing their patience while playing. Marek said what if we make such a simple nerve game for the players, it would be 2D and Joseph agreed to try, it should not be anything hard. And so the idea of two drunken friends began, we started searching on the internet how to make games right away.
What kind of engines exist, what we need to know and of course how to do it when neither of us know how to program, and we had no idea how to make graphics, animations, principles and mechanics of the game, the only thing we knew was that we wanted to make a game. Finally, it ended up not knowing how to start, and most importantly, we were waiting for each other to make a first step, which resulted in talking less about it and forgetting about the idea. Only sometimes when we met or agreed to play a computer game together, we would nag each other: so, have you made the game yet?
And that's how the year passed, and suddenly one day Marek came up with the idea of finding Construct 3 and things started moving around the game.
Our first project, our first game called Rage Jump
When Marek found Construct 3, we became more interested in it. How it all works but mostly it was great for us beginners that Engine works on the principle of drag and drop. Marek started spending hours at Construct watching videos of how it works, but the easiest way was to try and push something and see what it would do and possibly take a step back. He was looking for courses, trainings, something that could help us move on and come to the very completion of the game. We talked more and more intensively about how we wanted to make the game and kept learning new things.
The decision that this will be a game similar to Jump King, or Getting Over It. We would also make a game to test the player's patience and nerves. Then, the question arouse, how we would name our game. We couldn't solve this question for a long time, and then we came with the name Rage Jump. After all, that title is a glimpse of our idea in the game. We were absolutely excited about the idea watching videos of players losing their patience while playing our game.
Jozef helped Marek with ideas on what to add and what pitfalls, traps to make into the game for the players, since we couldn't do both of them in one engine at a time. Then the idea came that Josef could meanwhile make a graphic into the game. But the only thing we could do was a sketchbook from Windows, so the first graphic assets for the game were processed through paint. First it was supposed to be a simple game, so the visual side wouldn't matter. As we continued with the project, we learned to do new things, talked about them with our acquaintances who gladly gave us few ideas. Of course, our demands on the game have started to grow. So we found Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop, and Josef began to draw and learn. There was another problem - how to make animations, and we resolved it the easiest way – a picture changed and saved, so a series of pictures inserted into the program made us an animation, so in this way, animations were created in the game. Later we were joined by Jozef’s colleague Ivan who helped us in his spare time to draw some assets, for which we are thankful.
As time went by, Rage Jump was getting closer and closer to a successful end. We just still had a lot of unresolved things: Game sounds, Background music, how to end a game. We knew we wanted to release the game through the Steam platform but again the classic problem - we didn't know how to do it.
We knew we couldn't handle music and sounds on our own so we helped ourselves through different websites where they were available to help us finish the game and we also found a lot of things that made us complete the game. It was the end of the game that we couldn't make up and then we came with a very simple idea. If you want to know more, you need to try to finish the game. At that time, our friends opened a business in gastronomy called Airstream guys. So we decided to support them and put their perfect burgers and their unique American style Auto with airstream in the game.
The time has come for the game to be released and all of a sudden we figured that we actually needed a company, so we took action right away. We were already determined to release it as soon as we could. We've started to deal with paperwork and everything we needed, and the question arose how we should be called? So we used the abbreviations JO – Jozef, MA – Marek and Rage which matched the name of our first game. The name was born: JOMA RAGE s.r.o. and we just struggled with the terms of Steam, how to release the game, possible communication with support in order to avoid any mistakes. It was the date September 23<sup>rd</sup> 2020 and we were looking forward to the day of Rage Jump release and by coincidence it is also Joseph's birthday, so we saw it as a sign. Rage Jump was released and we expected the players to go crazy about our game so they could play something similar to the previous titles we mentioned. However, the contrary was the case, sales were minimal and only our acquaintances supported us and bought the game. We were a little disappointed.
We started talking about what the problem might be, the game may not be the worst after all. So we decided to try the way of advertising. We made fan pages on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter. We paid for ads via Facebook, Instagram and Google. But it didn't really bear much fruit to get our game among the players; we tried to continue the way of writing emails to streamers. We wrote hundreds of emails and nobody wrote anything back. In the end, we managed to agree with Slovak streamers who we gave free keys per game to play the game live. We picked up a little bit of sales but mainly the game started to sell when we put a discount on it via Steam. We also tried to reach websites focused on games but only one wrote an article about the game and even played it on their stream on Twitch.com.
After all the effort, the mood dropped a little bit when we saw that we couldn't get among the players’ awareness, so we told ourselves we’ll give it a time and we'll figure something out over time but we're definitely not going to give up on our dream!
We want to have our own development studio focused on games creation, creating better games for players and from players who have spent hours playing games since childhood. Creating a big studio in Slovakia that will offer people jobs, so people can have fun working on games. Having our own hardware for everything and not having to deal with anything and being independent from others, so that we can create big projects we have invented, we just do not have enough funds, knowledge, people and accessories.
Our first goal was to have our own office. Since we were working from home, either we met at each other’s house or we worked together via the internet and called each other via Discord. It was very annoying, because we have families at home and we worked long at night. In addition, we go to our jobs and live our private lives. We're trying to put everything into it.
The next chapter started and we said that we wouldn't give up after our first game Rage Jump and we're going to keep working it. Since we could have done better in Construct 3, we managed this game a lot faster and, most importantly, we knew how to start this time. This time it is also a game of 2D but this will be rather logical game but also a bouncer. We came up with a short story about an angry Japanese Fugu fish that got out of the aquarium and is trying to get back into the sea with its inflatable ability to stick on things. The only change in this game was that the whole thing was drawn this time on two tablets in Adobe by Joseph and Ivan. Once again, Marek had to put it all together in the engine, so we put our heads together and invented the Angry Fugu game. The game was released on Steam on November 24<sup>th</sup> 2020. Yes, we managed to make the game in two months, for what we were very happy. Also, no one registered the game until after a few discount periods on Steam it is slowly being sold.
This time we decided, after two games, that it's probably a very atypical genre of the game that has its own audience but we'll give the games more time to get it among players. Once again, we have not stopped with our determination and with our goals for the future. We know what we want and what we're after.
This time, Marek decided to try the new Unity 3D Engine. It was much more demanding than the aforementioned Construct 3, but we are not afraid of anything, everything can be learned.
So we decided to aim this game among people who also like some action and battles and killing enemies but also it's a 2D game all done in Unity 3D Engine. In this game there are 10 levels, at the end of each level Boss is waiting for each player. There are over 10,000 ways to create your own hero into the game. We managed to release the game on March 12<sup>th</sup> 2021.
The same scenario with the game is happening again. No one is going crazy about the game. Although in this game, during the discount period enough players were interested in the game and some percentage of them even purchased the game and in a shorter period more copies were sold than copies of Rage Jump and Angry Fugu.
We finally succeeded in our first goal. In March 2021, we rented our first office for the company in our town of Pezinok, where we moved our PCs and arranged it to make us feel at home. All of a sudden we didn't have to worry about where we were going to do it? What to take. Even though that we've increased the cost of a company that's not that profitable. But for that comfort and place where we can work on our projects and dreams is worth it!
Our next stop is the expansion of Joma Rage's work team. Getting new hardware and software for the company and pushing our projects up to another level to finally get to the gaming scene from where we're going to do everything we can for a better future and game entertainment.
Our fourth project, after a long contemplating and hesitation, we decided to try working in Unreal Engine 4, and finally try to make a 3D game. We started watching various training sessions, lectures, videos again and started trying out the options and buttons in the editor, what functions they have. We created the first Landscape and it wouldn't be us if we didn't immediately create the biggest we could set up and after a few days we found out what we actually committed, but we agreed not to change it. First of all, when we found out that this was going to be the way we wanted to move forward. So the question was what genre of the game to do and what to invent. It didn't take us long and we said we both love survival games. Then why not make our own? So we made up a casual story, a period of play, which will be the point of the game. We agreed not to do this project at the expense of speed, but we will take care of the quality so that we do not blame anything, as well as with previous projects, what we could have done differently and, above all, better. We want it graphically perfect, and also the mechanics in the game redesigned, while most similar games emphasizes only one of these. This is a huge challenge for us and we realize it is and will be a challenging project. We try to work on it every single free moment. While working on the project in the office, we talk about what we put into play, our ideas of how we solve individual problems. Sometimes when one of us comes with an idea we call each other immediately and communicate and write it down to PC so we don't forget.
We managed to find one teacher from the university who teaches UE, we asked him if he could help us with learning how to work in UE, we also gave him financial offer for working for us. The teacher was interested, so he wanted more information from us about the game. However, when we told him everything we imagined and what we already had done, he refused and said - such projects are done by trained people in teams of 10 or more people, and still they do not complete such project. We are reportedly doomed to fail and to not complete this project, and we should start with something smaller. And what did we do? We just smiled and said he didn't know us, and we're going to do it anyway, and no one and nothing's going to stop us! But on the other hand, yes, he is right. We decided to invest part of our savings in our project and approached external companies with things we know that will be a big problem for us, so we have established cooperation with externalists. We gradually add their work to our things in the project. The game is constantly growing and evolving. As we improve, so does the game. It's constantly changing, remaking. But one thing we know is that we're definitely going to be proud of this game.
If you're interested, and you want to help us a little bit on our journey, then hit the follow, like or subscribe button on our social networks. We will certainly be grateful for that and you will at least see our next progression at the company and games and maybe even in our private lives.
If you have any ideas, tweaks or improvements that could help the business or games, we would like welcome them in our email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for reading about us and our company Joma Rage s.r.o.