The most recent game from the Company I work for (VRMonkey) is about to be launched, we have finished all the preparations and sent the build to be approved on the Store. The review process was amazingly fast! It took less than a week to get a very good response, but them I received an email saying that my app will be put on Gallery Apps.
Our game is pretty much done, we will release new levels as updates, but it is not an EARLY ACCESS or anything like that, I do now want my game to be view as such, and several games from the Gallery Apps section look like that.
Is there anyway I can avoid that? Should I delete my app and send it to be reviewed again?
I know that they are not serious when they say: "The Content Review Team continues to monitor user metrics for our Gallery Apps, and any titles that show outstanding user adoption, game play time, etc. are reviewed regularly for conversion into the main section of the Oculus Store.", since there are apps on the TOP SELLING list that still branded as Gallery App... and this concerns me a lot.
Unfortunately my own game "Keep Defending" went straight into the gallery apps section just two days after passing review (mid-August).
From Oculus' own words:
Gallery Apps—innovative new experiments and tech demos. This is a home for non-commercial apps that push the bounds of VR.
Keep Defending has been available on Steam as a complete (commercial) app since June (after a 6 month early access incubation) so why it was listed under Gallery Apps in relation to the above description is a mystery.
Unfortunately attempts to remedy this have failed. 😕
As a new indie dev (Keep Defending is my first title) I was mightily unimpressed by the apparent lack of effort Oculus have made regarding promotion of new titles on their store, particularly those that are listed under the gallery apps section.
Contrast that to the opportunities that the Steam platform provides for indie developers (new releases list, price managing, wishlists, self discounting, frequent sales, etc) and Oculus have a long, long, way to go before they become "Indie friendly" in my eyes.
I accept that my first title is not AAA standard and the nature of the Oculus store's curation is not going to push my game to the top of the front page, however there was no opportunity to determine how to avoid the "gallery app" label (which I can see in hindsight is extremely detrimental for a game's exposure on the store).
More Oculus words from the site:
"Once your app submission meets this criteria, it undergoes Content Review where we evaluate the app for its ability to delight an audience. Throughout this process, we’re your partners and will provide you with helpful guidelines all along the way."
Guidelines for "how not to be a gallery app" would have been great!
I do hope Oculus improve their content review team such that future developers can better prepare their apps to avoid the gallery apps section in turn.
Thanks for your comments, I really appreciate it. I am really concerned about this, since the company I work has gotten games published in both ways: Gallery and not Gallery Apps, with the last being much better in terms of download, visibility and of course, revenue.
Don't get me wrong, I understand the need of a Gallery App, but I just would like to get a clear feedback of why, even if it is "Your game does not meet our graphical requirements" or anything like that.
@InnerExodus Again, thank you for the support, I am sure that you guys are doing your best to flourish the VR ecosystem as best as it is possible. Anyway, just would like to update that no clear answer was given until this time.
Just to update anyone, I asked to not publish my game under Gallery App and I am waiting to get a feedback and launch it in the Store as a main game. I have sent several mails and I will be waiting to get a review.
We have the same problem with our game. We created a good game (called Metro 2: Project Kollie) for GearVR, we asked many people during the development to test it and their feedbacks were positive. Then we tried to release it in the Oculus store but in the last moment (and it was pure luck) we found out they want to publish it under the Gallery section. We asked the Store Team don't publish it and share us why they made that decision but they didn't help us and now they do not even reply to our emails.
We want some kind of explanation because our game not worse than most of the other in the main section of the store. If it necessary we can rework some parts of the game but we need to know what was their problems with it. We don't want our game in the Gallery Section we think since the recent store changes the Gallery apps has no chance to success because they don't appear in the new releases section and the Gallery section is sorted by popularity on default settings.
Please help us what we can do beacuse we have invested a lot of work into this game and we don't want to waste it.
"Gallery apps has no chance to success because they don't appear in the new releases section and the Gallery section is sorted by popularity on default settings." - I have exactly the same problem. My hard work dropped to trash as considering the fact, that gallery apps have no chance even in their publishing date because of wrong default order settings and missing menu from gear vr store.
Just want to give an update about the situation. I understand that as around 280 plp has looked into this Thread it can be important for several studios.
It has been around a month since my last build has been uploaded. I was waiting for any kind of feedback or proposals of launching date or even if we got out of the "Gallery Apps". This update was mainly to solve a bad a problem that UE4.15 was having with some S7 Edges where was impossible to play the game (glitches and other bugs), we worked hard and updated it to the 4.17 and the problem was fixed.
As we understood, we were pointed to the Gallery App mainly for missing the compatibility with S7 Edge, but we got no direct feedback, just interpretations.
After this one month of updating the app I started to get tired of waiting a review, but after enter in contact with the submission review I got a reply that they were just waiting for me to speak with them again.
But, as I understand now, they will not review the app again, they just want to release it as Gallery App again.
I am stressing out that our team is ready to make any adjustments they ask us, to improve or change the game, but without any direction we really cannot go as a horse to a direction.
Anyway, if anyone wants to try out the game, let me know so I can include in the Beta tests, so I can get at least review from you guys to try to make a better game!
I'm curious, though, because there are plenty of apps in the Gallery that are charging similar prices to the other categories. But after surfing Gallery vs non-Gallery I can see *some* low-quality experiences in the Gallery but there are also ones of equal or better quality than those that are properly categorized. I *am* only making these distinctions from the trailer videos, so there could be all kinds of things about the Gallery apps that I'm missing, stuff that wouldn't be shown in the trailers.
But if I had to guess, it's almost as though apps are being classified based on the mood of the reviewer or which reviewer's lap they are falling into at Oculus. The reason I say this is because coming at it from a consumer's point of view the Gallery section just makes it harder to navigate all of the experiences to find what you're looking for. If I'm looking for a specific kind of experience and it's not in the category I'm looking in then I may just walk away empty handed - even if it's already in the Gallery category.
I think that there is no massive difference between being published to the Gallery vs the main Store. Judging by the number of ratings (I do realise that this is not a very reliable way to measure downloads) it looks to me that the Store apps do not get insanely more downloads than Gallery apps. Maybe 2-3 times more. My app, which ended up in Gallery, was downloaded 40 times (that number hasn't changed for at least a week now) and it has 8 ratings. 40/8 = 5. This is my ratings to downloads ratio. I see The Well which was released a couple of weeks after my app has got 28 ratings, that's 3.5 times more than my app. Assuming it has the same ratings/downloads ratio it was downloaded approximately 140 times. And that's an app that is not only in the main Store it is also on the first page (or has been for a while). Oh and my app requires gamepad, so if your's doesn't you may even get more downloads in the Gallery.
The difference between say $50 in profits and say $150 is nothing to write home about. So don't worry you are not missing much.
But to be fair the whole Gallery idea seems weird. AFAIK no one else has that so this is some Oculus invention (correct me if I'm wrong). I know that they are trying to filter out the low quality experiences from the store to not end up being like Google Play. But I don't think that the Gallery is the answer here because the people who decide which apps make it to the Store, are they some successful game producers or at least life long hardcore gamers? Or are they coming from say... CX background? Unless you have people who actually can tell a good game from a bad one the whole Gallery idea is useless. Just IMHO.