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Larian Studios CEO Swen Vincke told in an interview that the upcoming RPG's development cost was very high and that they need the game to perform well to afford similar projects in the future

Divinity 2 - Ego Draconis is an upcoming PC/X360 RPG in development by Belgian dev Larian Studios, set for release later this year. In an interview, the CEO Swen Vincke commented about the development costs of the game and the expectations they have set on it, and the future of the company

"Divinity 2 is the biggest project we have ever developed. The cost of investment is excrutiatingly high. If it would flop, the chances are very low for us to develop something like this again. Especially since future projects would need even higher investments.

He also talked about how the development is going, and the chances of a demo

Expectations are high. We notice that our play-testers are having fun and we litterally have to shove them out the door at night. The game has gone gold in Germany and we eagerly await the reviews and the general acceptance of the game there. Before we can start working on a demo, we have to finish up the international versions and the XBox 360 version though."



If the development cost was so high, it's evident they have lots of expectations set on it, so be sure to check it when it releases later this year. Check some of the trailers of the game in the official site



Source: 9Lives (Dutch)
VGChartz
Well. It's not like going "plz plz buy this game cuz it cost us so much effort" is going to change anything. If the game is actually a good game, I'm sure it will sell well. But if the game is a bad game, it will not sell many copies.
Posted By: Koen Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 18/07/09 09:43 AM
Marketing is also quite important if you want a game to succeed. Both "Beyond Good and Evil" and "Sands of Time" were brilliant games, which got raving reviews from the press. But they still failed because most people were not aware of these games smirk

I've been playing Div2 for a while now, and I really love it (especially the dialogs,they just crack me up, they're really funny and well written). I was actually surprised I still liked the game: since I worked on it for about 4 years, I was expecting to be fed up with it. Man, was I wrong ... So buy it peeps, you won't be dissapointed smile
Yeah marketing is highly important.
Whats the point of having a good game without Marketing to match it.
I think the Publishers need to push Marketing to help this game succeed.

Nice to hear your having a blast on div2 it even though you've worked on it for years. smile
I'm sure I won't be dissapointed.

PS.I hope everything goes well for you at Larian.
I think DTP must works hard to have publish more stuff, gameplay videos, interviews of Div2...beacause I haven' t seen much around...; many gamers don' t know it well...

Good luck Larian wink
Koen's right. I've gotten some amazing games in the past that I'd never heard of and no-one I knew had ever heard of and that definitely didn't set the sales charts on fire. Word of mouth will only carry you so far.
indeed. The cheapest game I ever bought was Evil Islands, and there are few games I've spent more time playing with. But hardly anyone else has ever heard of that game. Some obscure russian developer.
Evil Islands...sounds interesting.
I think we all agree marketing is the KEY.
I have wanted to get Evil Islands for a long time, since I saw the demo. Never released in the UK though, sadly, so I've never quite gotten round to it. Some day, though...

***

DivineGamer - I think you are right.
Posted By: turi Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 18/07/09 04:47 PM
yeah larian kinda fails when it comes to Public Relations.

look at Dragon Age, or Star Wars The Old Republic.

there must be ten of thousends of people preordering this games, just from the PR work while the games where produced.

and ego draconis?

your started your vids way too late.
if someone doesnt have interest in DD and BD he propably wont notice Ego Draconis.

if just seen some ads in the printed Gamestar mag.
actually not very impressing.

people needs hype, and hype can be only generated while the game is made, not after release.

after release theres to many reviews of diffrent people with diffrent kinds of taste.
Ahemm sorry, but I really think you should take the huge differences between Larian/DTP and Bioware into account smile

Bioware is an internationally acclaimed trademark and well known in every important market. Every game from them WILL result in a hype, regardless of its actual quality, actual known facts, the price etc.
It's just the name that makes the hype.

But Larian is obviously very different. They are much smaller (in terms of financial capabilities) and they are by far not that known in the world.

So, the marketing and hype around Bioware is not at all comparable to Larian's situation.
Furthermore, I think (not sure) that marketing is organized by the publisher. So DTP is to blame, if you think that the game's marketing strategy is flawed wink

Bioware has nowadays the money of EA in its back, plus, it is well known among (A)D&D players because of their RPGs.

Larian isn't. And Neither has Larian a huge mother company in their back.

Larian is - compared to Bioware & EA - rather like an Indie developer.


Besides, there are examples of failed, but hyped games, too. Paraworld, for example.

The failing of Paraworld drove its developing studio into extinction, literally.

True Alrik.

Bioware and EA are Software Giants.
Were as Larian are a small company.

Well my advice is that If they have enough money left over spend it on Marketing.
Anyway especially DTP and the English Publisher to get the word around.
Well, first the'll concentrate on the German market.

I fear that this will be the "key market", which is used by them as kind of a "view into the future" of how the game might be recieved by the audience.

Of course, it should be kept in mind that national markets differ from one another. Read my last two or three entries in the "RPG Snippets" (in the RPC Chat (English) on that).

Alrik is right. Some companies only have to put out a small announcement and the games press will pick the ball up and run with it on their own. Bioware and Blizzard probably lead the pack, there, although certain franchises are likely bigger than any company (I'm thinking The Sims especially, here).

For the smaller companies, though, they have one heck of a hurdle to leap over and that is the general indifference of the games press to small publishers. It CAN be overcome as CDProjekt (Amongst others) proved, but you need to hit them with one heck of a whammy to do so.

All indications are that Larian have turned out one heck of a game, but they are still a small company with the obvious budget limitations that entails. They can't just casually throw a few million into advertising the way EA would, so they have to work on the slow build and hope to create enough interest that their campaign catches fire.

Alrik is certainly right that Germany will be the first and most important market for D2. One only has to look at the German language sections of this forum to see that...
Posted By: Lar_q Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 18/07/09 10:16 PM
The idea behind what I said in the interview is not "our future depends on this so buy this game" - it's an honest answer to the question I was asked - how important is the title to you ? In this industry you're only as good as your last game, especially nowadays, so as a company we cannot afford a slip-up, especially if we want to continue developing this universe and attract investors. Fortunately, I happen to believe div2 is actually quite a good game, and I hope soon players and reviewers will come to share this opinion as they experience div2. Concering PR & marketing, Larian is a developer, not a publisher, and in the games industry, it's the publisher who manages the PR & marketing. In Germany, the place where the game is coming out first, visibility is quite high, and I hope we'll see the same in other territories soon too. The game definitely deserves it.
So, roughly how many copies do You expect to sell?
Or, how many is required to make a desired profit? Just wondering...

I really hope that this game will get the attention it deserves. After all, quality is worth more than some annoying adds popping up every now and then in my internet-browser.
Good luck with German market!
Posted By: wolfden Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 19/07/09 01:46 AM
I live in Canada and would like to now when it will be available here. I love the first game> A lot of Canadians and Americans would love to buy your game but can`t get any information on when or where to buy it. I personly deal with E.B. (Electronic Boutique) but they do not have any information or you can`t pre order that game. If you wan`t to sell your game in this area and you wan`t your company to be sucessfull you better advertize better on this side of the ocean. It will be a good seller in Europe but if you don`t advertize on this side you won`t make the game profitable.
Posted By: Raze Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 19/07/09 03:22 AM

No English publisher has been announced yet; that will likely come before September, when the game should be released (DTP, the German publisher, recently mentioned early September for the English release). Presumably pre-order information and more advertising will be available before then.


Welcome to the forum. wave
Posted By: mivine Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 19/07/09 10:45 AM
psychonauts is another awesome game that did not sell well. kind of sad.

im sitting here in germany and i already have the game preordered via amazon and im looking forward to playing it hopefully this friday. thats all i can do for you guys lol
I hope that Divinity 2 will make a "Boom" like The Witcher did.
Very little advertising, only quality stuff. If the game has quality, reviews all around the internet will do the rest.
There is a serious lack of good RPGs these days and Divinity 2 will be a nice surprise.
Posted By: ironcreed Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 19/07/09 03:49 PM
Well, when I first heard of this game here in the US I thought it looked interesting enough, but I had too many other games I was anticipating more. However, the other day I just decided to read up on Divinity 2 while I had the spare time. Wow, was I ever suprised at how fantastic the game looked and sounded.

To me, it looks like what Oblivion, Fable and Lair should have been all rolled into one, yet still retains it's own distinct identity from both an artistic and gameplay perspective. Now it is my most anticipated game, right along with Dragon Age from almighty Bioware. It even looks better to me in some regards.

What really baffles me, though, is the fact that so many here are unaware of this game and what a gem it indeed appears to be. So many disappointments, such as with games like Fable 2 that clearly did not deserve the scores it recieved. I know there are legions of RPG fans here in the us like me that feel the same and would go nuts over this game if they but had more exposure to it.

I think the story trailers are a good start, but what is needed is more media previews, and especially emotionally moving GAMEPLAY trailers that show off the world, the atmosphere, the action and the incredibly beautiful music. This would, in my opinion, have the good old snowball effect, as it were. As the quality of the product will speak for itself.

Anyway, I am so looking forward to finally hearing of when the Xbox 360 version will be releasing here in the USA and I truly hope that this game will get the recognition that I believe it deserves. As I can tell from looking at it that Larian has put heart and soul into this game. I know I am trying to inform as many of my fellow gamers as I can and I think a great many of them will see something special in this game, as I do.

*By the way, could someone please tell me who does the theme music? As it is some of the most enchanting, ambient music I have ever heard in my life. Thanks and nice to meet you all. Looking forward to the conversations here about Divinity 2.

Posted By: AlphaZen Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 19/07/09 03:54 PM
Kirill Pokrovsky, he did the music in the other both Divinity-Games, too. smile
http://www.kirillpokrovsky.com/

You can download his music. At least we now know there will be a demo, just not for a while yet. Guess like a month before the full release, think that is how it was for the 1st game.
Originally Posted by ironcreed
What really baffles me, though, is the fact that so many here are unaware of this game and what a gem it indeed appears to be.


This reminds me of what many people say about the Gothic series of games.
Posted By: ironcreed Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 19/07/09 07:24 PM
Speaking of which, what do you think about Arcania: A Gothic Tale? You think it will be accepted by fans of the original Gothic or do you suppose that they will flock to Risen instead, since it is being developed by the original devs of Gothic? Looking forward to both, myself. However, not as much as I am Divinity 2.
Looking forward to both, Arcania moreso than Risen, because the former seems to take itself more seriously. But neither as much as Div 2, Diablo 3, or Dragon Age.
Posted By: mivine Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 20/07/09 06:23 AM
4. Arcania
2. Risen
3. Divinity2
1. Dragon Age
Posted By: turi Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 20/07/09 08:41 AM
Originally Posted by DivineGamer

Well my advice is that If they have enough money left over spend it on Marketing.
Anyway especially DTP and the English Publisher to get the word around.


but its so easy to get attention these days.
and it costs not a single dollar.

twitter,blog,kotaku,gametrailers.com

ill remember these very first DD2 screenshots on may 2005
http://news.softpedia.com/news/New-graphics-engine-from-Larian-Studios-2047.shtml

between these screens and the very first preview in august 2008
http://www.computerandvideogames.com/article.php?id=192049

this game was absolutley invisible!


and after the first preview and the RPC this year there was not very much material.

it wouldnt hurt them to let the publicity take a look at the game.
invite some gaming mag writers, releasing artworks, screenshots, short vids.

you dont need millions for PR, you need only a good informed fanbase.
Honestly, the guys (and pretty lady) from Larian know what they're doing. I'm sure they've done all they can short of tv-commercials and gigantic promotion stunts. Look at the buzz the Witcher generated before it came out. Wasn't that great really. It was mostly due to its quality that its sales took off big time. And that's what we have to hope for in Divinity 2. As for me, I'll do a lot of word-of-mouth publicity in my area... Hope there's a collector's edition, too.

And really, it's a no-brainer that there was little publicity between 2005-2008. It was the same thing with Dragon Age, and that's as high-profile as it gets. It just doesn't pay to do something, because generating buzz 3 years before something hits the shelves may hurt your game more than it benefits it.
Posted By: Myrthos Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 20/07/09 10:36 AM
Originally Posted by turi
it wouldnt hurt them to let the publicity take a look at the game.
invite some gaming mag writers, releasing artworks, screenshots, short vids.

you dont need millions for PR, you need only a good informed fanbase.

As far as I can see that was all done in Germany. All gaming magazines and several gaming sites have received preview copies. There are plenty of previews to be found at german gaming websites. But then again there is a publisher in Germany to take care of that. There isn't one in the rest of the world.
Swordscythe is right. I've seen some over-eager hype machines go into action far too soon and public interest peaked before the product was out - after which, the only way is down. That kind of thing actually loses sales.

I think Larian have kept the balance about right in slowly rising the profile of their game as launch nears.

***

Turi - the problem with the 'rely on online marketing' model is that the only people who will find out about the game that way are hardcore gamers with a definite interest. By far the largest number of people who buy games are more casual and buy stuff that looks cool or that has good word of mouth.

Online marketing does have a cost too, BTW, as you need people to do it and people cost money for salaries. Not to mention the various normal expenses of running an office. It's cheaper than many other methods, yes, but it's not free.
Posted By: OLLI_S Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 20/07/09 03:52 PM
Hello,

it is annoying that the demo will be released in September (or even later).
My problem is that I do not know the prequels and also just saw a video of the game.
So I want to play a demo to "try before I buy" the game.
If I can not try a demo I will not buy it.

The reason for this is simple: in past I get disappointed by some games.
And if I had played the demo before, I would not have bought them.
So I will wait for the demo and not buy the game.

Divinity II sounds excellent, but I am a bit carefully and fear to waste money for games that I do not like.

So PLEASE release the demo quicker!

Greetings

OLLI
Rent the game to see If you like it.
Posted By: OLLI_S Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 20/07/09 06:47 PM
Hello,

first of all I have to apologize.
I just read in the first topic the passage about the demo (I searched in FireFox for "Demo" and just read that it will be released after the XBOX release).
I did not read the rest of the topic, also not that the development costs were (are) so high.

My problem is that I also just saw some trailers.
Also in the German magazine "GameStar" I did not see a lot of the gameplay.

I want to know how a fight feels like (at least a video).
please publish a video where you see some fights.

I also would love to see some more details about the abilities and spells.
In the GameStar video I saw that you have some and that you see a preview of the current selected spell.
But it was not very clear.
So any information about spells and abilities would be fine.
Maybe just publish the manual as PDF, there you already describe the abilities (I hope so) and so you just need to publish an existing document.

I really WANT TO buy the game, but I need more information.
So I asked for a demo.

By the way: the biggest magazine "GameStar" wrote that Ego Draconis is ecxellent.
I hate them.
They have a playable version, that I do not have.....

So, please publish more videos.

Greetings

OLLI
We'll just wait a week or so.
Then you might hear about some spells and abilites from forum members and others.
You also might find some gameplay videos uploaded by various people.
I doubt the description of Ablities will be in the manuals.

Like I said Rent the game...
Posted By: Koen Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 20/07/09 07:08 PM
Or you could havbe a look at this wink

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XwaL50KKtNQ&feature=related

Posted By: ironcreed Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 20/07/09 08:01 PM
I do not speak German, but that was some great footage, regardless. Thanks.
Posted By: Koen Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 20/07/09 08:35 PM
We should be getting the english version soon enough, a bit more patience smile
Posted By: Raze Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 20/07/09 08:51 PM
Originally Posted by OLLI_S
it is annoying that the demo will be released in September (or even later).
My problem is that I do not know the prequels and also just saw a video of the game.

Playing the previous games would not help as far as combat, since the controls have changed in D2:ED. The demos for them should still be around somewhere, though, which would give you an idea of the style and atmosphere that will most likely be carried over into the new game (both were designed to be fairly linear, though the DD demo is more open and has more NPC interaction, etc). Also, while not necessary prerequisites for D2:ED, playing the first two games (or at least Divine Divinity) would certainly help hold you over until September (it is still possible to find both online (eBay, etc) and Beyond Divinity can be downloaded from GamersGate.

I have also had to wait awhile after a game's release to get to play a demo. In this case I am willing to 'gamble' based on the previous 2 games and what I know about D2:ED, but couldn't say that about many other new games (old/cheap games I am a little more willing to gamble on based on reviews from trusted sources).
If the English PC version goes gold the same time as the XBox versions, then (depending on how long it takes to make the demo compared to the lead time it takes for manufacturing, packaging and shipping the games before release) there may not be too long a wait for the demo. If not, at least there should be lots of help and information available by the time the demo is out, from those who didn't wait.
I don't look too many videos in order not to spoil me. wink
Posted By: turi Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 20/07/09 10:57 PM
Originally Posted by Koen


any HD version out there?
No theres no HD Version.
Thats the best quality as it was stripped from Amazon.
I already preordered the game so I gave a credit of trust to Larian (and I did it because I think that Divine Divinity was one of the best cRPG's in gaming history).
Posted By: OLLI_S Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 21/07/09 06:30 PM
Hello,

thanks for the Youtube video.
I also found a GERMAN Video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xVZdVtbK3W8&feature=related
There you get a good impression of the game.
Seems to be a fantastic game.

Greetings

OLLI
Posted By: OLLI_S Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 21/07/09 06:34 PM
An other video (also in German) with many facts:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-1pdI8BACVc&NR=1
Originally Posted by OLLI_S
An other video (also in German) with many facts:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-1pdI8BACVc&NR=1


You should remove that link from your post.
I posted it in the German Section and they said it was Illegal.
Since that video is from a premium service and is not aloud to be watched for free or something like that.

PS.Theres no point putting phrases like 'many facts' as most of us don't understand German.
Posted By: OLLI_S Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 23/07/09 06:12 PM
Hello,

I bought the game (without a demo) because the videos were exciting.
And I must say, I am very impressed.
An excellent game.

Greetings

OLLI
Posted By: Koen Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 23/07/09 08:22 PM
Thanks OLLI laugh
Posted By: OLLI_S Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 23/07/09 09:07 PM
Hello Koen,

there are many things that need to be improved......
Like in dialogs where NPCs sometimes do not move their lips.
Or Videos, that I can not skip pressing [ESC].

Greetings

OLLI
Why would someone skip videos ?
Posted By: Silencer Re: Larian:Our Future Depends On This Game - 24/07/09 01:29 PM
Originally Posted by AlrikFassbauer
Why would someone skip videos ?


If you're playing the game once more.
Or in my case, if you died after the video played laugh

Happened in a few games in the past and there's little worse than having to run through a vid you saw five minutes ago all over again when you just want to get killed get back to the fight!
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