Ringside Hero was launched last week with a fair amount of success. While not a ground breaking game, it receives rather good notes, let's say above average, on Kongregate and Newgrounds. It got featured in Newgrounds' game page and reached a second place in Kongregate's weekly contest. Because of this it started spreading very well around the web.
I didn't expect anything more than a fair success from this game so I'm glad about it all. However, it's not returning much money and I doubt it will pay for itself as is. Next step will be to find out how to monetize it in subsequent versions. Let's look at what could be planned for an eventual sequel.
The one thing that comes up the most as a flaw in player's comments is how the time limit of 120 weeks per boxer is disliked. Even though there is three boxers to play through, the time limit was still annoying to a lot of players. This is something I'll be sure to keep in mind as it was also a big critique I had in MegaDrill. I really need to move past the time limit mechanic for my next games.
How to fix it?
The idea behing the time limit is that boxers, in real life, have typically short careers due to the sport being physically very demanding and because of all the injuries that are sustained. I would still like to represent this reality in a future version but instead of a time limit, I'm thinking about using a more explicit "injury system".
Of course you want to avoid brain damage to your boxers as this is what will eventually end their careers prematurely. An injury system might include permanent damages that will lower the max health a boxer can have for fights, thus accelerating their move toward retirement.
To complement this injury / retirement mechanic, the player should be able to recruit and train more than one boxer simultaneously (instead of one after the other like the current version). The game would become much more open ended that way.
The rhythm of the game is far from perfect. While there is a good sense of progression, the last part of the game can feel very grindy and repetitive as there is not much to do once you've bought, unlocked and trained everything.
How to fix it?
Special events, like tournaments for example, would add structure to the overall experience. There needs to be something for players to look forward to and to plan for. To complement this mechanic, new related actions should be available for the player like promoting events, accepting sponsorships and putting boxers to rest. The thing is to not overcomplexify the flow while adding meaning to every actions undertaken.