Its the difference between a hungry indie studio / dev & getting established. Halo blew the gaming world up when it came out. The studio was fun, interesting, and engaging. If we exclude rabid fans who think Halo 152 is so different and whoa, never seen this before!, the studio got stale after Halo 2. They ended their game, however, with the message "Help us take over the world!". How far they had come from "I hope we can do great things together."
If you watch the indie game the movie, it follows 3 indie devs. One guy said he would literally kill himself, and I believe him, if his game didn't do well. There is a thirst that some companies have and it usually takes the form of engagement. Some studios like Bioware earned a mandate on ME2&3 (forget about the end, was a good game). Andromeda wasn't their main studio and by then EA had bent the main studio over the barrel to spawn Anthem. They lost their autonomy they had fought so hard to earn.
What I am seeing here is a bizarre mandate feeling where its mainly "we are making this, we know you want it" and help us tweak it. I don't know if they know or are just ignoring the level of concern that there is over this. WotC didn't give it to them for 3 years or something because they said "go earn the right". Getting access to the right means you have to earn it all over again. If this bombs Id probably not buy a DOS3, Id wave them off as out of touch and repetitive.
I will amend my statement to "In the short run, they have very little reason to care". They are going to make their money on this. CEO can retire. The devs? Probably not. Will the studio survive a reinvestment of proceeds into another clone? The long run economics on this are concerning for the studio. This is going to be a bubble game that doesn't have any strong predictors of the future success if it doesn't have a differentiated product. Which, right now it isn't. Its a pig wearing D&D lipstick (not that bad, just felt like using the saying). Right now D&D is the more compelling part of this. If it was Blurplorps & Hengits I'd care...so...little. I happen to know the Shadovar that get mentioned in the arcane tower, I know theyre netherese casters. I can tie snippets of all of this into disgusting amounts of personal knowledge of D&D lore. If the note had said "I found some snurkbles" Id be like cool, wow this game has no story.
So, while I have 270+ hours in this, it was mainly because I enjoy testing things and its an entertaining enough platform to try a bunch of stuff and have enough "sweet, i CAN do that!" moments to be enjoyable. I overall think they have shot themselves in the foot this first month, and they are down to only 11 prior to launch now. Thats not a long time and they have WAY more of this game built already than EA. Major course corrections would have to be implemented across hundreds of fights and scenarios.
So - why care? Right now? Short run - they will sell, they will make money. Hands down. This is just too big of a property for it to not suck in a given number of people. 1 million EA is an example of that. Short run why NOT to care - ticking clock. What does changing REALLY get them in the short run? A miserable, frantic, and bug ridden mess from, tinkering under the hood on core issues. The timelines are going to be too tight to introduce haste into the dev process without truly measure the unintended consequences and the inability to have the time to adequately test. The reasons to care in the long run are much more expansive but the short run needs of creating a product preclude some of the things that make the long run so important. They have no reason to not care in the long other than this is seen as a the golden goose being planned with future expansions until the well dries out and by 2025 Larian is a name of the past.
100% speculation, yes its negative, but from everything I heard about previous titles compared to this, their attitude has changed to what all of this means and their position as to what they are delivering. Even doing horizontal comparisons to other games with short EA, EA, and extended EA, they are the lowest ranking for what you typically look at for EA - engagement, the appetite for scale of change, and what % of nuts are on bandsaw. Its an odd juxtaposition of variables and responses and I, Orbax the dumb guy, cannot find the magic hidden variable that makes it all make sense.
Last edited by Orbax; 31/10/2004:14 PM.
What is the problem you are solving? Does your proposed change solve the problem? Is your change feasible? What else will be affected by your change? Will your change impact revenue? Does your change align with the goals and strategies of the organizations (Larian, WotC)?