Monday, March 4, 2013

Voting with your dollars, does it work in the sense of general game releasing?

Kingdom of Amalur: people voted with their dollars, but was the consumer’s verdict fire the entire studio? No.

The Massive Marketing of Mass Effect 3: Did consumers of the 1st & 2nd game of the franchise vote with their dollars, and polled to have a million dollar campaign for advertising the game vs working on the games story line and plot? No.

Bioware's Budgeting

In the case of Kickstarter's Wildman title (which was fully funded): Fans voted with their dollars and still could not prevent the studio from collapsing. Did kickstarter funders want this game to fail? No.

I thought we were past the days of load screens

Fans of series vote with their dollars, when they purchase every dime and dollar of dlc & expansions. True fans get in there and buy the most obscure collection of costumes, wallpapers, and collector items. These can be a measurement of voting with dollars. The death of studios should not be based on collectible items, costumes, and paid dlc not selling either.

But the general consumer's true verdict of game is found in the form of the opinions they place on forums, community websites, and gaming hubs. This is where you are going to find true opinions, and valuable user feedback that brings forth an addition to the consumer understanding process. Sometimes we are tricking into spending our dollar by false claims. The only place we can vent about such a purchase is via forums or social hubs for gamers. We definitely cannot complain to the studio, developers, and publisher. Once they have our money we fall into the category of "not their problem"

Industry heads talk a lot about the consumer and what they know we want. When they say these things I think when is the last time, I have been polled or questioned about any aspects of their upcoming release.  

To me video game developers lost their collective respect of Gamers a long time ago. Our relationship has vastly deteriorated. Annual releases are the living proof of how little they respect us on their end.

If a video game developer is releasing same franchise projects
within a years time
of one another 
two things are happening.

One, they are recycling the technology they originally developed with. This is not a cardinal sin, but if the “new release” is the same technology why can it not be an in depth expansion of the original game? Why can’t it be a reduced price expansion pack in the $25.99-$35.99 range.

Two, if the games are coming out within a year of each other, does that mean parts of the team that were developing the first game got pulled off to start on the second game? Wait that doesn’t make sense. Am I truly getting a game made by a whole other team? Is the game I am receiving the pieces off the cutting room floor? Is this really a full fledged product?

Bottom Line: Gamers need to be smarter consumers and demand more from publishers/developers.

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