Iron Tower Studio ForumsRPGColony Ship: A Post-Earth Role Playing GameTaking Care of Business, now with afterword by Feargus Urquhart
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Vince
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« Reply #45 on: May 09, 2018, 05:31:47 pm »

Shouldn't be a problem because we budgeted for it (we treated AoD revenues as TNW budget and stretched them to make sure they cover us until we hit Early Access).
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Pladio
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« Reply #46 on: May 10, 2018, 03:36:58 pm »

 Salute Approve
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Lgrayman
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« Reply #47 on: May 16, 2018, 04:37:53 am »

I don't know why but it really didn't hit me how much money this game has made until this thread. To me that seems like a crazy amount of money for such a niche game, but I suppose it was 10 years of your life and you were previously working a high salary job so it might not be as big of a deal to you. Still, though - millions of dollars from an old school indie hardcore RPG, I would've never thought that would happen. I also expected the hype to be mostly limited to the RPG Codex sphere and some older RPG fans and then die down after the first year, but it's still going strong at almost 50,000 copies last year? Amazing.

It also makes me think how unbelievably lucrative games like, say, Stardew Valley or Undertale must be. All (or mostly) made by one person and relatively simple systems/graphics, obviously selling magnitudes more than AoD. The developers of those games must be absolutely rolling in it.

On another note, I just saw this thread and thought to come back to this thread. The logic in that thread is a bit spotty but it does line up with what you've said regarding sequels. Shame because I'm really enjoying PoE2 so far (would love to hear your impressions of it at some point, Vince).
« Last Edit: May 16, 2018, 04:47:18 am by Lgrayman » Logged
Vince
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« Reply #48 on: May 16, 2018, 06:41:42 am »

Keep in mind that the revenues are neither profit nor a reward for 10 years of work but the operating budget for the next 4-5 years. We have 6 people working full-time plus several contractors. From this perspective it's just enough (hopefully) to make it to the next game's release without much room to expand the team further (I wouldn't mind hiring a couple of level designers but I don't want to stretch our resources too thin).

Massive hits like Stardew Valley or Undertale or Minecraft (Notch made a fortune on it, then sold it for 2.5 billion) are indeed very lucrative but massive hits are always lucrative, no matter the industry.
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Sotnik
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« Reply #49 on: May 21, 2018, 08:29:54 am »

Thank you for your enlightening article. 2 ideas:

1) I don't think that parallels between AoD/DR and TNW/tactical TNW are totally fair. The visuals have a serious impact on the niche the game takes. Many people who are not fans of TB RPGs might be interested by a TB RPG with pretty graphics and vice versa. It took several years for me to overcome my disgust of AoD's 3D and finally buy it. A friend of mine (he loves true RPGs too) still hesitates despite all my compliments to the game for the same reason.

2) As for the tactical TNW spin-off, it is generally better to make a sequel (or a story without a specified timeline) than a prequel. I always lose much interest to a game/movie if I know where the story led to.
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Yosharian
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« Reply #50 on: June 06, 2018, 01:03:10 am »

I feel like I have spent the last few years under a rock or something.  How did I miss this game (AoD)?  I plan on buying it ASAP, it definitely looks like my sort of game.  I am really interested in your new game too, as I feel like there are relatively few decent science-fiction RPGs around lately.

Anyway, that's it, just wanted to let you know that you've definitely got a new fan here.  Keep it up, you're doing god's work.
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Nick
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« Reply #51 on: June 07, 2018, 01:49:49 pm »

 Salute
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"Oh, 'twould be marvelous if the world and its moral questions were like some game board, with plain black players and white, and fixed rules, and nary a shade of grey."
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menyalin
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« Reply #52 on: June 08, 2018, 01:41:38 am »

Vince, I'm curious why you didn't let out any DLC with bonus materials like artbook or soundtrack? It seems to be a very common practice for indie developers, while quite acceptable by players. Have you decided that it will not pay back the resources spent or have abandoned it for ideological reasons?
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Vince
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« Reply #53 on: June 08, 2018, 08:24:06 am »

Vince, I'm curious why you didn't let out any DLC with bonus materials like artbook or soundtrack? It seems to be a very common practice for indie developers, while quite acceptable by players. Have you decided that it will not pay back the resources spent or have abandoned it for ideological reasons?
I woudn't call it ideological but I believe such things should be free.
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menyalin
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« Reply #54 on: June 21, 2018, 05:57:18 am »

Quote
Neither a success nor a failure, so let’s call it a promising start!
Thinking about it: I would say that it is quite a success, given the lack of experience and reputation, as well as a brave, but very risky design decision to make so many full and unique storylines. Now you have experience, some reputation, and you could even stay in business, collecting money for a new game without the support of publishers - it IS success.

Maybe the survivor's error, too?  Smile
« Last Edit: June 21, 2018, 06:13:02 am by menyalin » Logged
Scott
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« Reply #55 on: June 21, 2018, 10:54:11 am »

The reputation part is very real. Every developer I talk to, even if they haven't played it themselves, has heard of Age of Decadence and heard it praised.
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contributed to: Age of Decadence | Dead State | Dungeon Rats | Battle Brothers | Fell Seal:Arbiter's Mark
working on: Colony Ship RPG | Stygian:Reign of the Old Ones | Encased | ATOM RPG | Sin Slayers
Ravn7
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« Reply #56 on: July 15, 2018, 01:35:52 pm »

About the crowdfunding campaign. Obviously it has its pros and cons. But I think it may be very important. Just for different reasons you discussed in this thread.

It’s the PR. Kickstarter campaigns get press coverage. And create opportunities for more coverage. News, previews, interviews, etc. People become more interested, many of them receive updates. Also, in the campaign description you can present the game and its features in details. And the video. You can put there a good trailer. A few years back some studies showed trailers have greater impact on sales than demos. Of course there are also youtubers these days but they rarely cover indie games (although you can always try to give free copies to some just before release).

After the campaign it may be easier to raise funds by pre-orders. Most probably it’s best to offer a few tiers on a website. Recently Julian Gollop said in one of his interviews they sell so many tiers it’s enough for their studio continuous upkeep. And it almost certainly wouldn’t be possible without the crowdfunding campaign.

Since you and many others see drawbacks of crowdfunding campaigns, shouldn’t it be possible to avoid most of them? There’s no need to make stretch goals that break awesometers. Just some realistic ones. Better music, radio chatter, etc. Sure, stretch goals should be interesting and “catchy” but this isn’t a game for casuals and children who generate most hype. There isn’t going to be any great AAA-style hype at all. It’s going to be a serious project for serious players who know what they want. I mean not necessarily too serious. Making the game more appealing for casual players boosts sales. And I don’t see why some reasonable compromise couldn’t be achieved. I’ll be watching closely Phoenix Point to see how it turns out for them. Although, for me it already tries too hard to achieve awesomeness but it doesn’t mean the game won’t be rich and complex. Even if not serious enough for my taste. But that won’t be the case with TNW.
« Last Edit: July 16, 2018, 05:42:26 am by Ravn7 » Logged

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Vince
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« Reply #57 on: July 16, 2018, 09:30:54 am »

It’s the PR. Kickstarter campaigns get press coverage. And create opportunities for more coverage. News, previews, interviews, etc.
In the early days, yes. When KS was still new and exciting, a promise of great things to come, the press was all over it. Now you get what you can get on your own (i.e. indie-friendly sites). They already cover The New World. Either way, I don't think that launching a KS without a demo is a good idea. By the time we have the demo, we'll be 6 months away from the Early Access, which, like I said in the article, is a more straight-forward way of raising funds during development.

Quote
People become more interested, many of them receive updates. Also, in the campaign description you can present the game and its features in details. And the video. You can put there a good trailer. A few years back some studies showed trailers have greater impact on sales than demos.
A Steam page has all that.

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After the campaign it may be easier to raise funds by pre-orders. Most probably it’s best to offer a few tiers on a website. Recently Julian Gollop said in one of his interviews they sell so many tiers it’s enough for their studio continuous upkeep. And it almost certainly wouldn’t be possible without the crowdfunding campaign.
Well... first, it's Julian Gollop, second, the game has great visuals, which is a very important factor when it comes to sales. That's why he raised 750k, while Xenonauts 2 raised only 200k. Mind you, Xenonauts is a MUCH bigger 'brand' than AoD.

Quote
Since you and many others see drawbacks of crowdfunding campaigns, shouldn’t it be possible to avoid most of them? There’s no need to make stretch goals that break awesometers. Just some realistic ones. Better music, radio chatter, etc. Sure, stretch goals should be interesting and “catchy”...
Exactly. The stretch goals' purpose is to generate excitement and drive up sales. Low-key goals don't work.
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Sparacul
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« Reply #58 on: November 12, 2018, 04:44:06 am »

>Obviously, Pillars of Eternity 2 and three planned DLCs suggest you're a strong believer.
I wonder if he is still a believer after PoE 2 flopped. I mean...300k copies sold, ouch. Anyone got a comment on this situation? Share your thoughts.
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Dr.Eleven
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« Reply #59 on: November 12, 2018, 08:53:40 am »

>Obviously, Pillars of Eternity 2 and three planned DLCs suggest you're a strong believer.
I wonder if he is still a believer after PoE 2 flopped. I mean...300k copies sold, ouch. Anyone got a comment on this situation? Share your thoughts.

Hmm, heard that PoE2 is inferior to PoE1, maybe that's the reason. Reviews aren't so great, the game lacking depth and complexity of the first part.
Haven't played it yet, will try PoE2, I don't take what is said in the reviews for granted.
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