May 6th 2017 by Johndev__ • 16 Questions • 2094 Points
My short bio: I am riding the favorite, Classic Empire, in the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 6, at Churchill Downs. Since starting my riding career in 2005 after coming to the U.S. from France, I have won more than 2,300 races and $139-million in purses but never the Kentucky Derby. I will answer questions at noon ET (9a PT) on Tuesday, May 2!
PinchBetter: Carina Mia is supposed to run her first race back since Breeders' Cup. I'm also in the Kentucky Oaks with Daddy's Lil Darling -JL
Other than Classic Empire in the Derby, who else are you excited about riding this weekend?
Tiordalol: You're part of a team, and everyone on the team wants Classic Empire to be 100% for the race. Accidents happen. Anything can happen between now and when we get in the gate -JL
how do you balance the excitement of having a known Kentucky Derby mount but also know something unfortunate could happen at any moment leaving you without a ride in America's most historic race?
Has creating this game been profitable? Like can this be your sole job?
Would you care to share the metrics on time spent, and earnings?
Rather not share earnings metrics. But as far as hours invested it's been too many. I work around 60-80 hours a week on it for the last 3 years.
It's profitable from ads and full game purchases and I'm full time working on it.
From yesterday: "I ride since I'm 6, currently 19. I've never had a scary experience with horses, but I'm so afraid of speed that I don't ride horses that aren't "safe". It's really difficult for me to have trust in a horse, and obviously it shouldn't. Have you got any advice on how to manage speed when something bad happens, or when the horse is scared?"
The main thing is to trust your horse and have faith in him, and you'll lose the fear naturally. Trust your horse to gain his trust. -JL
What's your advice to someone who is trying to make their own mobile game?
For Reddit, use /u/ instead of an @ symbol. For example, /u/RichardBachman
I would say start small and be unique for the platform and work from there with updates. Lots of mobile games are the same style. Small, simple and pay to win.
sixfourthree: We are handicapping to win the race--see what we need to do to beat the favorite. Put the horse in best spot to win the race. -JL
What exactly do jockeys look for when handicapping a race they're about to run in?
Yeah the female one. Will be adding more characters in the next update
downeastkid: Classic Empire first, State of Honor, and Irish War Cry
What horse would you pick in your trifecta?
Hey there, being self employed, do you ever worry about job security? What happens to you when this game fades from popularity?
Hmm was thinking tossing State of Honor, but I at least have to try this bet!
Yes, it motivates me to work harder and keep the game fresh.
MostlyH20: I've been fortunate to be on a lot of good fillies. Classic Empire we find the perfect exercise rider for him that gets along good. They respect each other, and it's been going good since then. We're a team. -JL
Thanks for doing this! I've always appreciated your thoughtful, kind hand with your mounts- do you think that has been a significant factor in your success with fillies & mares? Similarly, Classic Empire is reputed to be a bit... erm... strong minded. Have you & Casse come up with any unique methods to get him running when you need him to and not just when he wants to?
I've always loved playing games. Runescape took up most of my childhood. I've always liked messing with code and mods too. So it was just natural thing to do. I decided to quit my job one day and decided to fully focus on a new game
kocomma: Top 10 jockeys get best opportunities to ride better horses, but it's also the top jockeys make less mistakes on big day racing -JL
What makes the difference between the top jockeys (e.g. top 10 money earners) and the rest? What do you do differently in a race that sets you apart from the others?
What's your game about? I've personally never have heard of it! I am very interested in survival though! Looking forward to hear back from you!
Are TBs your favorite breed? Are there any other breeds you particularly like?
It's a beta mobile survival stranded type of game focused on survival and exploration. Aimed to be more realistic rather than zombie type of games.
moaia66: My passion for it. I group up around horse racing. I always loved it and always wanted to be a jockey. Obviously I'm lucky with my size, too. -JL
Was it your physical attributes that lead you to the sport? A love of riding? A combination of some sort?
Haven't heard of the game, but will check it out!
What makes your game better than others of the same genre?
What's the best advice you have for someone starting the game?
I decided to focus on this game as more of a realistic survival sim rather than zombies and pc. I felt when I started and still to this game that there are no great survival open world games on mobile other than Minecraft so I decided to try my best to bring that to mobile.
For advice I'd say build a bed asap to get your spawn sorted
How did you learn how to code? If self taught, how would you recommend that someone else do the same? What languages and frameworks did you use, do you recommen them and why?
That's all, keep up the good work man! People like you are an inspiration to us all!
Self taught and most of my learning was just messing with code and modelling programs. YouTube has videos on anything and everything you could need to know.
I chose and recommend Unity because the learning curve is not steep, there's huge amount of resource information and documentation online and is also able to publish on tons of platforms.
I stumbled on your game awhile ago. It's fun and definitely unique. But, do you have any plans to make it more stable? It crashes constantly on iOS. Particularly when I am navigating between the map and such.
Yes. The new update has a whole new optimised and designed world. Also all code has been optimised. I have tested it on low end devices which couldn't run the game at all previously and now they can run it with good FPS.
Will I be able to play this game offline? My data charges are already through the roof and I'd like to be able to play this when I don't have access to WiFi.
Currently the game is single player and will always be an option to play. Online will be optional
What's you're favourite mobile game and why mobile game development?
My favorite mobile game I've played is probably a game called Warspear. It's like a pixel style mmo. It's been a while since I've played but it's a cool game.
I chose mobile because I feel alot of mobile games are the same. Freemium pay to win games and feel there is alot of potential to create unique games. Mobile is still in early days
I would pitch the game as a realistic survival game for on the go
Not yet. Will be releasing after online update
Mr. Wright do you you ever ask questions to other people in there AMA'S?
I read alot of AMAs
I'm assuming you initially developed this for Android. How much extra work was it to port it to iOS? For beginners, would you recommend only sticking to one platform? If yes, which one?
EDIT: It looks like the iOS version is a ripoff, but you're developing for iOS as well so the question still stands.
Porting to iOS won't be a huge change as all controls are same. The main reason I've been holding off iOS is I want to release once the game is at a point where I feel there is enough content, fun and multiplayer.
I'm hoping I don't get ant hassle releasing considering that game copied my game name and released first on iOS.
Not sure if you're still answering or not, but what do developers like yourself do against people stealing your namesake? I've seen a lot of garbage games on apple called things like "thrive island survival simulator" and things of that nature that completely rip your game off, and it's definitely a pretty common practice in mobile app development. Is there any way to combat it?
I once emailed Google play about it and they wanted a letter from a lawyer. I contacted a lawyer and they wanted extortionate rates to write a letter to cease and desist. So I just ignored it and warned players on social media. Since then Google just removed it, I haven't contacted Apple until I release there.
I've learned to just accept it as I would be spending all my time stopping that stuff so I just focus on my game.