Author Topic: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.  (Read 11911 times)

Offline Captain Jack

  • Hero Member Mark II
  • *****
  • Posts: 808
  • Just lucky
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #30 on: March 13, 2015, 09:51:11 PM »
Hey Chris, I'm curious about the returns percentages you posted further up in the thread. You mentioned 8% and 0-2% returns for your site; is that in the sense that you only GET that much of the sale or you LOSE that much off the sale? I'm certain it's the latter but I admit I don't know gaming economics half as well as I like to say.

Offline Pumpkin

  • Hero Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,201
  • Neinzul Gardener Enclave
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #31 on: March 14, 2015, 04:45:11 AM »
On the same topic as Watashiwa, I too have a question about numbers and money.
For instance, Tidalis (I got hooked by the demo yesterday, anyway, that's another story). On Steam's store, it's 4.99€ (Yep, €. I guess it's the same calculation with $) and on Arcen's store it's 4.51€. As far as I understand it, you get a higher percentage from the 4.99€ on Arcen's store than from the Steam's 4.99€.

Admitting percentages are very different, for example you get 100% of my money from Arcen's store, and only 50% of my money from Steam's. In that case, it's more interesting for both you and me if I buy from Arcen's. But if percentages are 100% from Arcen's and 98% from Steam's, you get more money if I buy from Steam's.
So, is there a global rule? Arcen's store alway gives you more money? Or Steam's? Or is each product (game) different?

And a last side question: do I get a steam key if I buy from Arcen's store? I don't remember. In this case, the answer to the previous question can be very interesting (I would get the exact same product with two different prices and final-money-to-Acren).
Please excuse my english: I'm not a native speaker. Don't hesitate to correct me.

Offline Gwmngilfen

  • Newbie Mark III
  • *
  • Posts: 40
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #32 on: March 14, 2015, 02:10:59 PM »
I could write pages on how excited I am by SBR, how much value I place on Arcen's games in general (Steam says I've sunk 134 hours into TLF; those one-race wins are hard :p) and how I'm confident you'll release it when it's ready. But others have beaten me to it, because I don't check the forums half as often as I should.

So, I'll restrict myself to this: if you want a specifically-Linux tester (I have both a low-powered Intel laptop and an Dell nVidia Optimus laptop) to check for any Linux issues, then I'm happy to assist. I love it when a game launches cleanly on multiple platforms. I can see me sinking a lot of hours into this anyway, regardless of exactly *when* I get my hands on it ;)

Offline Tridus

  • Master Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,305
  • I'm going to do what I do best: lecture her!
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #33 on: March 14, 2015, 06:31:19 PM »
On the same topic as Watashiwa, I too have a question about numbers and money.
For instance, Tidalis (I got hooked by the demo yesterday, anyway, that's another story). On Steam's store, it's 4.99€ (Yep, €. I guess it's the same calculation with $) and on Arcen's store it's 4.51€. As far as I understand it, you get a higher percentage from the 4.99€ on Arcen's store than from the Steam's 4.99€.

Admitting percentages are very different, for example you get 100% of my money from Arcen's store, and only 50% of my money from Steam's. In that case, it's more interesting for both you and me if I buy from Arcen's. But if percentages are 100% from Arcen's and 98% from Steam's, you get more money if I buy from Steam's.
So, is there a global rule? Arcen's store alway gives you more money? Or Steam's? Or is each product (game) different?

And a last side question: do I get a steam key if I buy from Arcen's store? I don't remember. In this case, the answer to the previous question can be very interesting (I would get the exact same product with two different prices and final-money-to-Acren).

The Steam number is usually 70% (AFAIK), that is if a game costs you $10 on Steam, the publisher gets $7 and Steam gets $3. That's not an absolute rule of course, as there's always exceptions, especially when the contracts are mostly secret. It's not a bad deal considering Steam handles the transaction fees, game install bandwidth, and all the stuff Steamworks does. (The numbers were retail were a fraction of this, and people often don't realize that this number was a huge improvement when it was new.)

Arcen's store will be a higher percentage, but they still have to pay credit card transaction fees and such, so it's never 100%. Chris has said in the past that they get the most money if you buy from them directly, but he's also said that if you like Steam then it's good to buy from them. The most important thing is to buy it. :)

Offline Cyborg

  • Master Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,955
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #34 on: March 14, 2015, 10:10:57 PM »
What about paying for early access for your beta testers?


I'm more than willing to compensate you for the hard work you put in to this title. I would enjoy that arrangement much more than a "donation." Or, if I was going to donate, I would rather do it buying license keys to arcen titles and giving them out to friends.
Kahuna strategy guide:
http://www.arcengames.com/forums/index.php/topic,13369.0.html

Suggestions, bugs? Don't be lazy, give back:
http://www.arcengames.com/mantisbt/

Planetcracker. Believe it.

The stigma of hunger. http://wayw.re/Vi12BK

Offline tbrass

  • Jr. Member Mark II
  • **
  • Posts: 87
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #35 on: March 15, 2015, 01:33:47 PM »
Anyway, PLEASE do not send us any money related to this game until you actually have it in hand, because I don't want anyone having buyer's remorse after getting something sight-unseen when it's in an early state, etc.  If you are in the beta and feel like you want to throw in a tip, we do have a page for that on the main site navigation area, and we'll link to that.

But seeing as you guys are doing us a service by testing and giving feedback, a free copy of the game is the least we can do, so don't feel obligated.  We'll be fine even without any tips/donations, don't worry.

Class act, Chris, class act. I still long for the day when you open some of your titles up to modding (yes, I know, we can just request features here and they automagically appear, but sometimes I want to make the sausage myself,) but you do run a fine shop. And I think that your customer-focus is reflected in the quality of interactions on these here forums.

Glad to hear that you can push the release to improve the quality.

Offline P3X-639

  • Newbie Mark II
  • *
  • Posts: 11
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #36 on: March 15, 2015, 10:00:10 PM »
Well, I had planed on waiting for 1.0 but waiting till June to get my hands on this sounds just to cruel :'(. If you'd be so kind, I'd love to be on the test list. I'll do my best to turn my feedback brain on. I personally love messing with diplomacy in these games so I'm sure I'll bang on that for awhile. :)

Offline Pumpkin

  • Hero Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,201
  • Neinzul Gardener Enclave
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #37 on: March 16, 2015, 04:37:09 AM »
Or, if I was going to donate, I would rather do it buying license keys to arcen titles and giving them out to friends.
I think this is an excellent idea! It gives money to Arcen and makes new pal discover it. And testers still have a free game as thanks for helping. I'll do that!

The most important thing is to buy it. :)
Thank you for your explanation. You're right, the essential is to buy it. (Well, the true essential is to enjoy it; I was speaking in terms of money.)

Thanks to you both. I feel more comfortable with this part of the tester's deal.
Please excuse my english: I'm not a native speaker. Don't hesitate to correct me.

Offline x4000

  • Chris McElligott Park, Arcen Founder and Lead Dev
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 31,626
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #38 on: March 16, 2015, 02:20:16 PM »
Hey Chris, I'm curious about the returns percentages you posted further up in the thread. You mentioned 8% and 0-2% returns for your site; is that in the sense that you only GET that much of the sale or you LOSE that much off the sale? I'm certain it's the latter but I admit I don't know gaming economics half as well as I like to say.

How much is lost!  Goodness, that would be a terrible amount to get.  A retail developer selling physical games might only get 30% or so due to all the manufacturing costs, wholesalers, retailers, etc -- but for digital the developer+publisher cut is almost always 70%.  For indies we are both the developer and publisher, so that's our cut.  With ecommerce sites, they charge X amount for their service that covers their fees plus the cost of the underlying transaction costs.  FastSpring is one of the very best at 8%.  Most others are closer to 15%, though it varies.  Raw paypal can either be free or 2% depending on the context.

So, is there a global rule? Arcen's store alway gives you more money? Or Steam's? Or is each product (game) different?

We always get the most money if you buy through our store, with the exception of the humble widget, which gives us an even better percentage than FastSpring.  That's the widget on our site for TLF and a couple other games, NOT the humble store, which is a different thing.

All that said, when you buy a game of ours on a platform of your choice and push our sales numbers up, that's always a positive thing for us when dealing with that vendor in the future, plus it can raise visibility for us on that platform with that game, and thus lead to extra sales.  When a game is already unpopular that doesn't have much of an effect because it's kind of an aggregate thing, but still.

And a last side question: do I get a steam key if I buy from Arcen's store? I don't remember. In this case, the answer to the previous question can be very interesting (I would get the exact same product with two different prices and final-money-to-Acren).

Yep, you do get a Steam key!  On the store page for us it shows what you get with each product you buy.  It used to be that steam keys were not universal, nor were DRM-free builds, but we gradually built to that and now that is the case.  And they all support linux now, which wasn't always the case, either.

In terms of the percentages to us, and the price to you, yes that can vary based on where you buy it.  Steam and other online sellers have their own specific currency conversions that they use in order to set the prices for games based on the USD intended cost of them.  We always go with the store default, which is recommended in general.  With an ecommerce platform like FastSpring, though, it's doing the conversion to other prices closer to realtime.  So if you come back two weeks from now and the international currency valuations have shifted, then the price here might be somewhat different.  There are pros and cons to that approach, too.

I could write pages on how excited I am by SBR, how much value I place on Arcen's games in general (Steam says I've sunk 134 hours into TLF; those one-race wins are hard :p) and how I'm confident you'll release it when it's ready. But others have beaten me to it, because I don't check the forums half as often as I should.

So, I'll restrict myself to this: if you want a specifically-Linux tester (I have both a low-powered Intel laptop and an Dell nVidia Optimus laptop) to check for any Linux issues, then I'm happy to assist. I love it when a game launches cleanly on multiple platforms. I can see me sinking a lot of hours into this anyway, regardless of exactly *when* I get my hands on it ;)

Thank you so much for the kind words!  And I've added you to the list as well as making a note of your hardware and linux machine.  Definitely I'd like to have testers from all three platforms in there early.

Arcen's store will be a higher percentage, but they still have to pay credit card transaction fees and such, so it's never 100%. Chris has said in the past that they get the most money if you buy from them directly, but he's also said that if you like Steam then it's good to buy from them. The most important thing is to buy it. :)

Bingo! :)

What about paying for early access for your beta testers?

I'm more than willing to compensate you for the hard work you put in to this title. I would enjoy that arrangement much more than a "donation." Or, if I was going to donate, I would rather do it buying license keys to arcen titles and giving them out to friends.

Couple of funny things here.  Firstly, due to arrangements... hmm.  How can I put this without getting into NDA trouble anywhere?  Ahem.  Basically if we wanted to do a DRM-free version that we charged you guys for, then nothing's stopping us.  That's between us and you, and that's the end of it.  If we want to use someone else's platform to distribute updates and whatnot, they have exceedingly valid reasons to expect us not to be selling something that isn't in their actual storefront.

Even more than that, Tridus was actually technically incorrect when he said that the transaction cost is never 0%.  Donations through paypal are an exception.  Those go 100% to us in most cases, with the exception being sometimes if you are out of the US or most European countries there might be some fee.  But technically if you do a "donation" in the amount of X dollars, versus paying us through FastSpring for the same X dollars, then we get more via the "donation." 

And it doesn't break any agreements since we are not selling the game.  And that's not just lip service to the agreements on our part, either; we literally do believe that the beta testers very much earn the games that we give them for free in exchange for their testing.  So if they want to take the game and there's no money involved, I'll still call that a win and something I'm grateful for from my end.  A "donation" is probably better phrased as a "tip," if that sits better.  Maybe I should actually rename that on the site, even.

Basically we're not selling the beta to the game, but if folks in the beta want to give us a tip for it, they can choose to do so or choose not to.  Donation has the wrong connotations to it, but that's just what paypal calls that type of transaction.  I should change it to tip on the site, though.

Class act, Chris, class act. I still long for the day when you open some of your titles up to modding (yes, I know, we can just request features here and they automagically appear, but sometimes I want to make the sausage myself,) but you do run a fine shop. And I think that your customer-focus is reflected in the quality of interactions on these here forums.

Glad to hear that you can push the release to improve the quality.

Thanks much. :)

Well, I had planed on waiting for 1.0 but waiting till June to get my hands on this sounds just to cruel :'(. If you'd be so kind, I'd love to be on the test list. I'll do my best to turn my feedback brain on. I personally love messing with diplomacy in these games so I'm sure I'll bang on that for awhile. :)

I've added you!  And always good to see someone who will focus specifically on diplomacy. :)
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline Pumpkin

  • Hero Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 1,201
  • Neinzul Gardener Enclave
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #39 on: March 16, 2015, 02:50:12 PM »
if you want a specifically-Linux tester (...) to check for any Linux issues, then I'm happy to assist.
(...) I've added you to the list as well as making a note of your hardware and linux machine.  Definitely I'd like to have testers from all three platforms in there early.
Oh! I forgot to mention that: I have a linux too (and a windows, but no mac, sorry). Ya can edit tha list, captain!

And thanks for the money explanation, by the way. (Wanting to be a game dez' one day, this sort of details are important to understand.)
Please excuse my english: I'm not a native speaker. Don't hesitate to correct me.

Offline Gwmngilfen

  • Newbie Mark III
  • *
  • Posts: 40
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #40 on: March 16, 2015, 03:28:59 PM »
And they all support linux now, which wasn't always the case, either.

I'm in danger of derailing the topic even further, but since you mentioned it... this is one of my many reasons for having a great love of Arcen. Not only do your new games have Linux support (something that is becoming increasingly common, thankfully), but you've actually gone to the effort of returned to older titles and adding support there. While I was happy to play TLF on Linux, I never expected to get AI:War as well (or the rest). It's a trend I'd love to see more of :)

Thank you so much for the kind words!  And I've added you to the list as well as making a note of your hardware and linux machine.  Definitely I'd like to have testers from all three platforms in there early.

As per the above, helping to ensure the trend continues is the least I can do - thanks for adding me :)

Offline x4000

  • Chris McElligott Park, Arcen Founder and Lead Dev
  • Arcen Staff
  • Zenith Council Member Mark III
  • *****
  • Posts: 31,626
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #41 on: March 16, 2015, 03:37:29 PM »
if you want a specifically-Linux tester (...) to check for any Linux issues, then I'm happy to assist.
(...) I've added you to the list as well as making a note of your hardware and linux machine.  Definitely I'd like to have testers from all three platforms in there early.
Oh! I forgot to mention that: I have a linux too (and a windows, but no mac, sorry). Ya can edit tha list, captain!

And thanks for the money explanation, by the way. (Wanting to be a game dez' one day, this sort of details are important to understand.)

I've edited the list, thanks!  And my pleasure on the money explanation -- hope it turns out useful some day. :)

I'm in danger of derailing the topic even further, but since you mentioned it... this is one of my many reasons for having a great love of Arcen. Not only do your new games have Linux support (something that is becoming increasingly common, thankfully), but you've actually gone to the effort of returned to older titles and adding support there. While I was happy to play TLF on Linux, I never expected to get AI:War as well (or the rest). It's a trend I'd love to see more of :)

Thank you so much for the kind words!  And I've added you to the list as well as making a note of your hardware and linux machine.  Definitely I'd like to have testers from all three platforms in there early.

As per the above, helping to ensure the trend continues is the least I can do - thanks for adding me :)

My pleasure on adding you, and again thanks very much, it means a lot. :)
Have ideas or bug reports for one of our games?  Mantis for Suggestions and Bug Reports. Thanks for helping to make our games better!

Offline screamingpalm

  • Newbie Mark II
  • *
  • Posts: 22
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #42 on: March 16, 2015, 05:36:12 PM »
Hey Chris, I'm a huge fan of your games and would be happy to help out in any way I can. If that means helping test the game, I'd be really happy to do so. This is the only game I'm really excited about and have plenty of free time on my hands. Cheers!

(If you already have enough testers, I'm also happy to help donate to a kickstart etc)
« Last Edit: March 16, 2015, 05:37:49 PM by screamingpalm »

Offline Misery

  • Arcen Volunteer
  • Core Member Mark V
  • *****
  • Posts: 4,109
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #43 on: March 16, 2015, 09:53:03 PM »
You guys, always handing these games over for free to testers... you dont HAVE to do that, you know.  I feel kinda bad about it, I have pretty much everything you've made but I think I've actually PAID for... uhhhh.... AI War (and expansions) and Tidalis. 

I'll throw some money at you via donation though, with this one. 




And always good to see someone who will focus specifically on diplomacy. :)

I actually often do this as well in those games.   Believe it or not, but there are occaisional games where my first solution ISNT just exploding everything.   

Of course, the diplomacy stuff in many 4X games can be a bit.... lacking.   That's been my experience with them so far and one of the reasons I"m so interested in this one.

Offline P3X-639

  • Newbie Mark II
  • *
  • Posts: 11
Re: Stars Beyond Reach pushing into a June release.
« Reply #44 on: March 17, 2015, 01:00:14 AM »
Of course, the diplomacy stuff in many 4X games can be a bit.... lacking.   That's been my experience with them so far and one of the reasons I"m so interested in this one.

That's exactly how I feel. I tend to feel it's normally one of the most often undercooked aspect in 4x's which is a shame. I've had a thing for messing with and watching AI play against each other since I was young. Drox Operative is pretty fun for AI shenanigans. I'm looking forward to see what Arcen can whip up! Man, now I'm thinking of how SotS2 wrote up how Diplomacy would work in the manual... Shame that never actually came to pass >.>

And thanks a bunch Chris for putting me on the list! Aside from a few mods, this is pretty much the only strategy game I'm excited for right now :)

 

SMF spam blocked by CleanTalk