Author Topic: It's August - Hurry up and take my money  (Read 11849 times)

Offline realcoolguy

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It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« on: August 01, 2011, 11:40:50 PM »
Even if it's just screenshots, and development videos  right now... I'm not too picky, it'll be more fun than some games I've played.   8)

I'm sure it's all coming together great, but if this money keeps burning holes in my pockets, I'm going to run out of things to wear.  Please hurry before I'm left naked.  :'(

When do you feel your next update is going to come out?  I've been blown away by the last few.  I feel I should be paying for those too... you sure you won't take my money? $$$$

Offline Deekay

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2011, 06:34:09 AM »
lol ^_^
I think the next update is going to be in a couple of weeks or something? With beta towards the end of the month early next month? Something like that.
Also looking forward to hearing more about how the game is doing :)

Offline x4000

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2011, 09:23:50 AM »
Hahaha, thanks for the kind words on that. :)

The problem with our AVWW beta is that there's just so very little that we can take out of the game while retaining the "wow factor" that people want.  We can have less content than in 1.0, sure, but we have to have basically all the main structural features that we've been talking about fully implemented and polished.  You only get one chance to make a good first impression, etc, etc.

So while the project as a whole is still on schedule, more and more keeps getting crammed into pre-beta out of fear that we'll crash and burn with certain fans without X or Y features that are coming, but previously wouldn't have been in there day one.  It's a real mental tug of war there, because on the one hand I want to get this in the hands of folks as soon as possible, but on the other hand I want them to be ecstatic when they do get their hands on it, and those are a bit at odds with one another.

It looks like the middle ground will probably be releasing the beta and preorders in about 6 weeks, but that will become increasingly clear as the coming weeks progress.  Keith is coming on board fulltime on September 1, too, which will really help with our overall available manpower that we're able to devote to the game after that point.
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Offline Deekay

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2011, 02:02:24 PM »
Take your time and release when it is ready, I'm sure it will be worth the wait :)

Offline Otagan

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2011, 02:35:06 PM »
Take your time and release when it is ready, I'm sure it will be worth the wait :)
I see no problem with doing this and taking my money now.

Make it so.
...

Offline x4000

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #5 on: August 02, 2011, 02:42:36 PM »
Heh -- well, as tempted as we've been to open preorders early (to more accurately gauge interest, to get people's buy-in while we have their attention, etc), that's not something we think we should do.

The reason is this: the mental picture people form of the game is undoubtedly not exactly what the game actually is.  This happens with every game, and I know that many people are used to putting down money on preorders and then getting whatever the studio comes out with when the game releases.  However, that model really makes me uncomfortable, as it seems to really revolve around hype.  There's never been an Arcen game where players couldn't try before buying, and I don't want to break that trend with this one.

There's a lot of hype and excitement about AVWW, more than around any other game we've ever done, and that can either be a huge asset for us or can really bite us.  It could bite us if people have this idea that we're making a game we're not actually making, and then get mad when they really play it, most specifically.  My feeling is that if you haven't put down any money yet and try the demo of the beta when that comes out, then you can make an informed choice as to whether we really seem to be making the game you want to play, or if it's not for you after all.

Not that I want to turn away customers, but I don't want to gain customers by -- accidentally or intentionally -- misleading them.  The proof is in the pudding, so we try not to sell pudding that people can't actually try. ;)

Of course AVWW will continue to evolve through beta and beyond, and so there's a certain amount of a leap of faith there as with anyone who bought AI War from 1.0 onward.  But it's not like older versions disappear from the world, so if someone just really hates what we did with 4.0+ of AI War then it's not like 3.189 went away for good, for instance.  It's still quite playable.  But buying something with no demo... bah, seems like something a AAA publisher would make you do.  ;D
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Offline ShinseiTom

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #6 on: August 02, 2011, 03:26:55 PM »
But buying something with no demo... bah, seems like something a AAA publisher would make you do.  ;D
Thank you for not doing this, though I'd probably give you my money anyway.

I find I just feel better giving my money to smaller devs even if I end up not playing the game terribly much, and especially when I can honestly talk to the people making the game and not just a media/forum spokesperson who may or may not actually know anything about the inner workings of the game.

Offline x4000

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #7 on: August 02, 2011, 03:29:31 PM »
We always appreciate any kind of support we can get, and I know a lot of other indies feel the same.  Though it's best when the customers are enthusiastic about the game on its own merits.  :D
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Offline Cyborg

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #8 on: August 02, 2011, 10:40:30 PM »
Being able to try it first is very important. I want to see how the villains exist.

I mean, we all like arcen, but I want to buy the game more than the 'indie experience,' assuming my mental picture of the game is correct.
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Offline keith.lamothe

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #9 on: August 03, 2011, 11:45:20 AM »
assuming my mental picture of the game is correct.
Based on my experience with this and other games and seeing people's reactions (and my own) before/after they have something in their hands... I can 99% guarantee you that your mental picture is way, way off.  This is particularly true of people with analytical and imaginative minds.  My (confident) hope is that you'll like what you actually do find, though :)
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Offline x4000

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #10 on: August 03, 2011, 11:47:54 AM »
Same.  The reason that I'm a game developer is that my mental model has been off so many times that I'm building the games that I thought other developers were building, incidentally.  So it's a fairly good bet that we're not building the game that anyone else is imagining, and that's both for better and for worse, as with any game that is talked about before release.
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Offline getter77

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #11 on: August 03, 2011, 03:18:27 PM »
My thinking is it will all work out so long as the time-honored traditional trap of a November release is avoided, as I'd imagine this November in particular is going to leave many a person pressed for gaming time and purchases otherwise.

My AVWW fund remains strong, strong as a pile of disheveled small'ish bills can be at any rate.
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Offline x4000

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #12 on: August 03, 2011, 03:28:45 PM »
Hmmm, what's coming up this November?  That's certainly looking like the earliest we'd be likely to hit 1.0.

Granted, since people can preorder, that means that in September folks who want to can go on and get it and then have the beta version and not worry about it from then on.  And if it's super popular in beta, well, then that's some incentive for us to delay 1.0 longer and really throw everything and the kitchen sink into there.  If it's only middling popularity during beta, then there's a lot more incentive to do 1.0 so that it's on Steam and other platforms in time for the holidays.  Either way it works out the same in the end because we plan to continue developing this post-1.0 anyhow; you know how we are with free DLC.

And another option if we're hurting financially in the fall is an AI War micro-expansion slotted in there.  With Keith coming on fulltime September 1, that gets a lot more feasible in terms of doing both at once.

My ideal scenario:
1) AVWW does quite well even in beta, letting us release "whenever" in the Minecraft sense where nobody particularly cares because the game is already awesome pre-1.0 and is growing all the time anyway.
2) Then do a full AI War expansion in Q1 of next year, probably after releasing 1.0 of AVWW and then continuing on with a ton of AVWW free DLC.
3) Then hit the first expansion for AVWW sometime next year, along with a heaping pile of free DLC alongside that, like we've done with each AI War expansion also.


So... we'll see what happens.  Once AVWW is out in the hands of the public, hopefully in about 6 weeks, then the question of when 1.0 hits is mostly about whether a lot of people are waiting for 1.0, Steam release, etc, before buying it.  If too many people hold out for that, then that forces us to release earlier, and probably hit that November period that you're seeming worried about.  In the past, our betas have tended to only sell in the three figures of numbers of units moved, but then we're into the six figures of units moved in total.  So it's really a small percentage that get into the beta that early.  Hopefully this game follows a different pattern, but only time will tell.

That's another reason we're really trying to cram the kitchen sink into even the first beta, though, because if people are really wowed from the start then that makes things easier on us all around.
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Offline c4sc4

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #13 on: August 03, 2011, 03:53:07 PM »
Well in November, TESV: Skyrim is coming out, so is Minecraft and apparently CoD: Modern Warfare 3.

Offline x4000

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Re: It's August - Hurry up and take my money
« Reply #14 on: August 03, 2011, 03:54:56 PM »
I knew Minecraft was, not suprised about CoD, and didn't know about Skyrim.  I'm presuming that Minecraft's 1.0 won't be much of an event since it's already so popular and the price goes up at 1.0.  I expect it will still sell amazingly, but I'm not figuring that will be much different than any other month. ;)
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