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Corvinus

Video Games: May the force of your wallet be with you

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44 minutes ago, Fez said:

I really think that is the right way to market a game. It's less expensive and hasn't backfired yet for a big release (though I think only Rockstar and Bethesda regularly do it). Meanwhile, I think there have definitely been some examples of lengthy marketing campaigns leading to fatigue and backlash before the game even comes out.

E.g. Would so many people have demanded refunds for No Man's Sky if there hadn't been an extremely long (albeit, also vague) marketing campaign giving people time to develop unreal expectations about the game?

I agree, although Rockstar did announce GTA5 quite a long time before release (and later regretted it), although it was fairly low-key for a while. 

I think the fear is that for some developers doing marketing just before release can backfire. Obsidian and Paradox did that with Tyranny and it backfired with many people not even realising the game exists even now. So I think that suggests it works really well for the big producers and games, but less so for smaller studios.

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4 hours ago, KiDisaster said:

I loved everything about Wolfy 2...except the gameplay.

I played stealth for most of it.  I thought they improved the stealth significantly from the first game, where it was mostly worthless.  In the sequel it was viable for most of the game.  There's a satisfaction in getting through a massive area and picking off Nazis one by one with brutal hatchet takedowns and silenced headshots.  

The game can get difficult, to be sure, but I think the shooting is a lot of fun and very satisfying.  My main issue is that the game doesn't give you enough feedback when you're getting destroyed.  I'd occasionally glance down at my health/armor in the midst of a massive firefight to find I was damn near dead and the game hadn't really given me any indication that I was on death's door.

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35 minutes ago, Werthead said:

I think the fear is that for some developers doing marketing just before release can backfire. Obsidian and Paradox did that with Tyranny and it backfired with many people not even realising the game exists even now. So I think that suggests it works really well for the big producers and games, but less so for smaller studios.

Yeah, smaller studios and games definitely need to worry about getting lost in the shuffle.

A good rule of thumb may be: If you're going to be on stage at E3 (or, to a lesser extent the Tokyo or Paris game shows), you can wait until the one that's the year of your release to start the marketing campaign.

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2 hours ago, Corvinus said:

And here it is, the next historical era/location for Total War games is China, specifically the Three Kingdoms. Lots of people predicted this. Personally I was hoping for the Warring States, as the 3K was done in other games, too, but maybe there are just more historical records to this era.

 

More historical records plus of course the fact that Romance of the Three Kingdoms is one of the most famous novels on the planet.  Especially the latter given the trailer quotes its opening and ending lines and shows one of its most famous scenes.

Trailer didn't give away much other than as usual despite calling itself a Three Kingdoms game it won't be set in the Three Kingdoms Era proper.  Which is smart as there can be more than 5 factions that way.

As for expansion..... Warring states is a possibility although more likely would be an Alexander style for Qin Shi Huangdi.  I could see a Liu Bang vs Xiang Yu for the start of the Han.  An Lushan is also a possibility. I very, very much doubt a mongol invasion one, I would assume that will be left for med 3. 

EDIT:  Also seemed weird that at least in the trailer they are noting the Romance style Generals fight each other in the field but then do so on foot which never happens in the novel.  I'm curious how they are going to do that dynamic, or if they tone it back and its more historical so that shit just doesn't happen.

Edited by Slurktan

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All this talk of Witcher 3... I bought it maybe black Friday PSN sale in 2016 (???) and it has been sitting on my hard drive all that time.  At some point, I should probably play it.  :D 

I struggle with open world games these days though.  Quit FFXV just a few hours in.  I hated DA:I.  I enjoyed ME:A but felt like it was too long.  etc  That's what has made me hold off on actually starting it.

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5 minutes ago, Rhom said:

All this talk of Witcher 3... I bought it maybe black Friday PSN sale in 2016 (???) and it has been sitting on my hard drive all that time.  At some point, I should probably play it.  :D 

I struggle with open world games these days though.  Quit FFXV just a few hours in.  I hated DA:I.  I enjoyed ME:A but felt like it was too long.  etc  That's what has made me hold off on actually starting it.

Speaking of PS4 open world games...if you haven't played Horizon Zero Dawn yet, I'd highly recommend it. Much more buttoned up than most open worlds out there (fewer wild goose chases) plus it's not too long. Downright amazing story and setting.

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40 minutes ago, Ferrum Aeternum said:

Speaking of PS4 open world games...if you haven't played Horizon Zero Dawn yet, I'd highly recommend it. Much more buttoned up than most open worlds out there (fewer wild goose chases) plus it's not too long. Downright amazing story and setting.

I've been hearing that more and more.  May need to do that one as well.

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As for expansion..... Warring states is a possibility although more likely would be an Alexander style for Qin Shi Huangdi.  I could see a Liu Bang vs Xiang Yu for the start of the Han.  An Lushan is also a possibility. I very, very much doubt a mongol invasion one, I would assume that will be left for med 3. 

They could do the Mongol Invasion as its own game, actually, or as some kind of modular bridge to a Medieval III that would allow them to expand the map west to include Europe and all its factions (Warhammer I-II-III style). I think it's very likely that Medieval III will be the next game after Three Kingdoms, so that makes sense.

1 hour ago, Rhom said:

All this talk of Witcher 3... I bought it maybe black Friday PSN sale in 2016 (???) and it has been sitting on my hard drive all that time.  At some point, I should probably play it.  :D 

I struggle with open world games these days though.  Quit FFXV just a few hours in.  I hated DA:I.  I enjoyed ME:A but felt like it was too long.  etc  That's what has made me hold off on actually starting it.

The Witcher 3 is a very un-open-world-feeling open world game. I mean it is an open world game and there's a lot of optional stuff to do, but it prioritises its main story, characters and narrative over anything else. It's just that the quests are enormous, complex and lengthy with lots of choice, consequence and reactivity. It's almost like the anti-Skyrim (everything you do has enormous consequences, almost everyone knows who you are and the game world reacts to stuff you do) and it leans more towards the BioWare focus on characters and story whilst still being an enormous open world game (far bigger than Skyrim).

It's a bit hard to explain. It's really huge and also really focused at the same time.

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19 minutes ago, Werthead said:

They could do the Mongol Invasion as its own game, actually, or as some kind of modular bridge to a Medieval III that would allow them to expand the map west to include Europe and all its factions (Warhammer I-II-III style). I think it's very likely that Medieval III will be the next game after Three Kingdoms, so that makes sense.

The Witcher 3 is a very un-open-world-feeling open world game. I mean it is an open world game and there's a lot of optional stuff to do, but it prioritises its main story, characters and narrative over anything else. It's just that the quests are enormous, complex and lengthy with lots of choice, consequence and reactivity. It's almost like the anti-Skyrim (everything you do has enormous consequences, almost everyone knows who you are and the game world reacts to stuff you do) and it leans more towards the BioWare focus on characters and story whilst still being an enormous open world game (far bigger than Skyrim).

It's a bit hard to explain. It's really huge and also really focused at the same time.

I'm down! A little heartbroken, 'cause I was jonesing pretty hard for an updated Medieval, but hey I've been saying for years that my far eastern history needs work and this is a great avenue for further study.

Nothing like having a relevant history book on hand for the initial launch of a TW game, turns take AGES.

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1 hour ago, Slurktan said:

EDIT:  Also seemed weird that at least in the trailer they are noting the Romance style Generals fight each other in the field but then do so on foot which never happens in the novel.  I'm curious how they are going to do that dynamic, or if they tone it back and its more historical so that shit just doesn't happen.

I know very little about Chinese history in general, so thanks for some of that info, and I need to brush up in time for this game.

On the note about the generals - while the novel may have described the generals fighting on horses, virtually every Chinese historical movie that came out in the last decade has them fight on foot, so maybe they were influenced by that. I, too, hope they don't necessarily encourage players to directly pit their generals against them (though ironically enough, I've done this often in Medieval II, Shogun 2, and of course, Warhammer), and imo, what they showed in the trailer, probably hints at some significant RPG elements for major characters, which is something they've done with Warhammer, and a little with the new Rome 2 DLC, Empire Divided.

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6 minutes ago, Corvinus said:

I know very little about Chinese history in general, so thanks for some of that info, and I need to brush up in time for this game.

On the note about the generals - while the novel may have described the generals fighting on horses, virtually every Chinese historical movie that came out in the last decade has them fight on foot, so maybe they were influenced by that. I, too, hope they don't necessarily encourage players to directly pit their generals against them (though ironically enough, I've done this often in Medieval II, Shogun 2, and of course, Warhammer), and imo, what they showed in the trailer, probably hints at some significant RPG elements for major characters, which is something they've done with Warhammer, and a little with the new Rome 2 DLC, Empire Divided.

Interestingly the fact that they even showed Lu Bu vs Guan Yu and Zhang Fei would point to them going more towards the novel than history which is fine, it is the popular version.  However the way it's done in the novel would be new for Total War.  Basically the armies line up and the generals go taunt and duel each other in between the armies.  This could work in the Deployment phase actually now that I think of it, I'd guess they would have two kinds of generals then, fighter types (winning the duels would help morale and such) and then the strategist types who don't get in duels and actually effect the battle as the generals do currently.

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14 minutes ago, Slurktan said:

Interestingly the fact that they even showed Lu Bu vs Guan Yu and Zhang Fei would point to them going more towards the novel than history which is fine, it is the popular version.  However the way it's done in the novel would be new for Total War.  Basically the armies line up and the generals go taunt and duel each other in between the armies.  This could work in the Deployment phase actually now that I think of it, I'd guess they would have two kinds of generals then, fighter types (winning the duels would help morale and such) and then the strategist types who don't get in duels and actually effect the battle as the generals do currently.

All I know of this era comes from Dynasty Warriors.

Because of this, I assume that Lu Bu is an incredible badass and you are best off running if he spawns on your map.

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So 40 million people have played Rocket League at least once. 

 

Not sure how this translates to persistent players, but 40 million is a lot of people to have even given a game a try. The tweet is a bit of an overstatement since it implies ongoing players which I'm sure is totally not true. But being on all current gen gaming platforms maximises the player base.

Speaking of small studios and their marketing / release strategies, Rocket League's marketing / release strategy was to make the game free on PSN+ on its month of release and then trust in the appeal of the game and word of mouth to generate full price sales, and make the full price of the game only $20. It worked brilliantly. I watched a Youtube documentary about the making of Rocket League and the devs talked about being really nervous about making it a PSN+ release. But they really had no better idea of how to market the game without spending a lot of money up front, so they went with reduced revenue as their marketing budget rather than spending money they didn't have up front.

I think this is an option for more smaller scale game devs. Both PS and Xbox have free monthly games for subscribers, so making a game free through that mechanism on one or other platform for a month, possibly even exclusive for that platform for the month, brings the game to prominence on that storefront, leads to an initial burst of downloads and if the game is good will lead to word of mouth promotion.

 

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I've been waiting on a China set Total War and been getting by on occasionally janky mods for years so the new TW is music to my ears.

6 hours ago, Corvinus said:

And here it is, the next historical era/location for Total War games is China, specifically the Three Kingdoms. Lots of people predicted this. Personally I was hoping for the Warring States, as the 3K was done in other games, too, but maybe there are just more historical records to this era.

 

3k makes sense with the 'brand' recognition and that but also the benefit of it beginning with dozens upon dozens of warlords scrapping it out which allows for the usual one province start spread across a much larger area as opposed to the balance of power between defined nation states of the Warring States period.

 

For DLC scenarios I'd probably guess Chu-Han Contention and the Fall of Sui/Rise of Tang since they allow similar 'whole heaps of warlords start' though given that Imperator Augustus and Rise of Charlemagne start with several multi region powers duking it out a Warring States or An Lushan Rebellion setting could work but I'd probably guess for either something Mongol Related or the Sixteen Kingdoms as that allows for a lot of horse archers being introduced as the gameplay 'twist' of the DLC.

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Not sure how this translates to persistent players, but 40 million is a lot of people to have even given a game a try. The tweet is a bit of an overstatement since it implies ongoing players which I'm sure is totally not true. But being on all current gen gaming platforms maximises the player base.

 

That's impressive. But worth noting that PLUNKBAT has gotten 20 million players in less than one year on sale. World of WarCraft I believe has had over 100 million sales, although it never had remotely that many people online at once.

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Interesting video talking about the science and psychology behind loot boxes.

Probably nothing particularly new to many people. But it's a side of the discussion that I've not seen appear on Youtube yet.

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Mini Nintendo Direct announced some new stuff this morning and gave release dates for other previously announced stuff: https://www.gamespot.com/articles/all-the-new-switch-games-announced-at-todays-ninte/1100-6456021/

Dark Souls Remastered is the highlight for me, but I'm looking forward to the Kirby game as well. Might finally try TWEWY also. 

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Picked up Zelda; Breath of the Wild, I look forward to someday getting to it. Meanwhile, I'm continuing to have a joyous time with Mario Odyssey; though some of those moons seem super well-hidden. I reached the Seaside kingdom and decided to backtrack and spend some more time in all the kingdoms I've already been to, and I've only been able to find slightly more than half the moons in each one. Fantastic game though, and unlike most of what I've played the past few years.

I've also been enjoying Cosmic: Star Heroine; which unabashedly shows off its Chrono Trigger homages/influences/ripoffs (in a good way). It was clearly a low-budget game (though the pixel cutscenes are amazing), but it's kinda charming how quickly it zips through absolutely massive plot points.

 

I thought I was basically done with TW games, but a Three Kingdoms setting may be the one thing to get me back into it.

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2 hours ago, KiDisaster said:

Mini Nintendo Direct announced some new stuff this morning and gave release dates for other previously announced stuff: https://www.gamespot.com/articles/all-the-new-switch-games-announced-at-todays-ninte/1100-6456021/

Dark Souls Remastered is the highlight for me, but I'm looking forward to the Kirby game as well. Might finally try TWEWY also. 

What a time to get a swtich!  Mobile Dark Souls!!!!

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