Race the Sun's one-month numbers breakdown begins on an ominous note: "Launching a PC game without a major distribution platform, such as Steam, is asking for trouble." In its launch month, developer Flippfly sold 771 copies of Race the Sun for a total of $7,400.
"This may seem like a pretty big number to some – but keep in mind there are two of us, with families to support and bills to pay," Flippfly writes. "Additionally, the game's online features require a back-end server, and there are monthly costs associated with that, as well as our web hosting and other expenses."
Race the Sun challenges players to outpace the setting sun by flying toward the horizon at breakneck speeds, avoiding obstacles in a procedurally generated world. In July, Flippfly described it as Temple Run meets Star Fox, and said it was already struggling on Greenlight.
In 2012, Flippfly changed its focus from mobile to PC gaming, and at the time it saw Steam Greenlight as a great opportunity. On year later, Race the Sun is still on Greenlight and it's currently outside of the top 100, "seemingly a ways off." Most potential players tell Flippfly that they'll buy Race the Sun either when it's on Steam or when it's in a bundle.
"I'm just not sure it's realistic to expect to be able to support yourself solely with self-distribution via your website in 2013, unless you're Minecraft," Flippfly says.