We’re excited to announce how game developers and artists can easily monetize their dream games in The Mirror and further, how we support Godot through it.
Games are the next frontier of content creation. Every other medium is saturated and well-supported by their respective platforms: from text (X/Twitter) to pictures (Instagram) to music (Spotify) and to video (Youtube, TikTok).
The most-used game engine, Unity, recently announced an egregious price increase on a per-install basis while keeping subscription fees. This model doubly penalizes the creator: first with a penalty by choosing to build with Unity (subscription fees) and second, for success when someone installs your game - even if you didn’t make money from it.
Should Spotify charge a creator more once they hit 1 million streams? Shouldn't creators be rewarded for creating something great?
We believe in rewarding creators when they succeed.
Cost to Creators: $0.00
As a creator, you have the full power of The Mirror at no cost to you. Our creator "pool" model helps all creators get paid when someone plays their game.
Spaces created in The Mirror are free for both creators and players. - no cost for networked physics, server scaling, authentication, databases, asset storage, out-of-the-box REST APIs, and more.*
As a player, we offer a Mirror Premium subscription, granting premium enjoyment of playing games in The Mirror.
How does it work?
When making a game, part of the pain is the upfront cost of buying assets: 3D models, textures, effects, sounds, and more. It’s common in the industry to find an artist to partner with, agree to a revenue share, and get to work.
This is streamlined for you in The Mirror.
As an artist, all you have to do is upload your assets and mark them as RevShare.
As a game developer, you can use RevShare assets at no cost to you.
As a player, to use a RevShare asset, you must be a Mirror Premium subscriber to use it: such as equipping a gun, opening a door, or playing a level.
Then, when a Mirror Premium player plays someone's game, both game developers and artists get paid out of the pool.
Of the pool for each Mirror Space, our plan is an 80-20 split between game developers and artists.
Game Dev Grant and Game Dev Gloria create a Space. They use 2 audio assets from Audio Allie and 4 3D models from Modeler Mark (all assets are marked as RevShare).
The total pool size for creator payouts for the month is $1,000 and the only Space is Grant & Gloria's game. The 80-20 Dev vs. Artist split is calculated, resulting in $800 for the game developers and $200 for the artists. Since there were 2 game developers equally splitting the RevShare, Grant and Gloria both receive $400.
The 20% artist cut is divided by how much of each person's assets were used. Since Allie's assets were 33.33% of the Space's assets and Mark's were 66.67%, they receive $66.67 and $133.33, respectively, derived from the $200 artist slice of the pool.*
The rough size of the pool is 30% of Mirror Premium subscription fees. We'll have substantial costs with managing the infrastructure and shipping great features to you and we want to ensure we can sustainably do so. The beautiful part is that you can simply build without worrying about deployments, infrastructure, authentication, databases, monetization, and more: it's all there for you when you build in The Mirror.
Godot Imports/Exports & OMI Extensions
The Mirror is built with first-class support for GLB/GLTF files. Since the underlying foundation of The Mirror is Godot, you can export select Godot nodes from the Godot editor into The Mirror, such as a Light3D node.
In The Mirror, your creations will be able to be statically exported to Godot. The static export won’t include features that The Mirror offers, such as out-of-the-box monetization, multiplayer, networked physics, authentication, databases, REST APIs, server management, analytics, and more, but you’ll truly be able to own your data and we want you to build with confidence. We envision this in the same way that you'd choose a free database (e.g. MongoDB) over a proprietary solution so that you can take it with you.
Our aim is to build trust with you. We've seen the pain of game studios having their business models completely upended by changes from the vendor they're locked-in to, and we want you to build with confidence knowing that you own your data and can take it with you.
Donating to Godot
We chose Godot not only because it’s open-source, but because it’s a great engine. Our aim is to make The Mirror the stellar choice for whether you want to start or end with either The Mirror or Godot. Building games is hard enough itself: building multiplayer games with physics is 10x harder, and The Mirror does the hard things for you out-of-the-box.
Since we believe in all creators getting paid, we'll donate a slice of the creator pool to the recently-announced Godot Development Fund. We wouldn't be able to implement the Creator Pool model if it weren't for the hours upon hours of freely-contributed work from Godot contributors. We can't thank you all enough. We specifically want to thank Juan Linietsky and Ariel Manzur, who co-founded the engine and released it to the public nearly 10 years ago. We greatly appreciate the technical guidance of Ariel Manzur, who's on our team as an advisor.
We Want to Hear Your Thoughts!
We’d love your feedback: here's our form. We recognize that this model will need some polish, so tell us what you think! The future of The Mirror is heavily influenced by you.
Q: Is the player's Mirror Premium subscription a single, global subscription to The Mirror or is it per-game?
A: One subscription, just like similar models: Spotify, Youtube, etc.
Q: As an artist, if I upload many assets and mark them as RevShare, do I need to do anything more to earn payouts?
A: All that has to happen next is a developer uses the asset(s) in their Space and a Mirror Premium player spends time in that Space.
Q: As a developer, how does it work when I have a game with both free and premium RevShare assets?
A: Similar to premium in-game items elsewhere: For example, you can equip all 10 free guns but to use the 5 premium guns, you must be a subscriber. Players can still play the game with free features.
Q: Do premium RevShare assets have different stats or are they purely cosmetic?
A: This is decided by the Space creator. The most popular games today use models where stats are not affected, but we want the creator to be able to choose.
Q: If a game developer uses RevShare assets in-game, does this reduce the payout that the game developer receives? In the example, what if Game Devs Grant and Gloria didn't use any RevShare assets? Would they receive more payout?
A: No, game developers get paid the same amount regardless of whether RevShare assets are used. If game devs received less of a payout, then that would disincentivize game developers from using RevShare assets. We want developers to think "Well, I'm not losing any money by using RevShare assets, so I may as well!" This helps artists by creating incentives for developers to use their assets.
Q: For artist payouts, is the "percent of assets used" a good way to calculate each person's respective payout?
A: We're open to ideas here. Our only concern is that it could be gamed, which we wish to avoid. We may simply split the artist payout equally, regardless of how many assets are used.
Q: What determines how much a Space's creators earn out of the whole pool?
A: This is calculated via time spent by Mirror Premium players in their Space vs. all other Spaces.
Q: Can I still sell assets as a one-time purchase?
A: Yes! We'll be implementing a Mirror Credits model in the future. You will have the choice of either marking an asset as RevShare, for sale for x credits, or both!
Q: How do the terms differ with RevShare assets vs. one-time purchases?
A: Revshare assets can't be downloaded. Since these are "shared" and not full asset sales, the asset is kept in The Mirror's ecosystem. This simultaneously protects artists while giving developers the full benefits of using the assets in their games. When an asset is fully purchased via a one-time purchase, this follows a more "standard" model where the buyer gets access to the raw files.
Q: Will you be able to pay out internationally?
A: Yes! We're based in the US and will be using Stripe for cross-border payouts. Check if your country is listed here on Stripe's site. There will be a KYC (Know Your Customer) flow as required by law for payouts and we will comply with all applicable regulations. You will be responsible for taxes, laws, and regulations in your country of residence.
Q: When will RevShare be available?
A: Q3 2023 or Q1 2024.
Q: Are there caps or limits for using features in The Mirror?
A: We'll add reasonable, generous caps on some of these in the future. But for our alpha, enjoy! We do reserve the right to implement limits at our discretion.
Q: Is there a difference between a "Space" and a game?
A: No, they mean the same thing. We use the general term "Space" to signify that any experience can be created, in the same way how Godot itself can be used to make not only games, but also apps.
Q: How do I provide feedback, thoughts, or suggestions for this model?
A: Head here! Our constant aim is to listen to our users to build the game development platform of the future. We're looking forward to hearing what you think.