What is the business model for when SotA is "released"?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Canterbury, Mar 13, 2017.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Canterbury

    Canterbury Avatar

    Messages:
    1,466
    Likes Received:
    3,895
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    In a recent thread called "Suggestion for a Quarterly Crowdfunding development/revenue generation model", our peer, Innascual Inch, made some suggestions for future funding.

    Rather than mess up the comments relating to his suggestion with something a little off to the side, I'm making my thoughts into a new discussion, because I truly don't know the answer.

    Basically, what I see being done at present to raise revenue (the telethons), or in a suggestion like Innascual's, are ways to keep the fires stoked during "development".

    But what is the end goal?

    It would surely have to worry some, because it certainly worries me, if the model for the rest of the game's life is just, "Send us money, we need some money..." every few months.

    I think the game really needs to know how it's going to fund itself in a released state. Most people, quite rightly, won't want to keep throwing large amounts at that stage.

    So does the game know what the model will be once it's released? I've never seen it expressed, so I'm assuming there isn't one (?!?), but I'm really happy to be corrected on that.

    The cynical side of me is already starting to think what we have is "the" model, which will keep things going until the Episode 2 Kickstarter. I'm not sure it's the best model, though.

    Long story short, I'm keen to hear if there's an actual model planned for revenue when the game is "live" (so to speak), and operating month to month like any other title out there.

    Cards on the table, I think an optional monthly sub (that provides genuinely useful, but not game breaking, benefits), is a no-brainer. It generates revenue AND ties people to the game.
     
  2. Nomad2

    Nomad2 Avatar

    Messages:
    44
    Likes Received:
    82
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Saskatchewan, Canada
    Wow - I definitely wouldn't be opposed to a monthly subscription for sustainability. Good post.
     
  3. Lained

    Lained Avatar

    Messages:
    2,390
    Likes Received:
    4,135
    Trophy Points:
    165
    Location:
    Yeovil, England
    Hopefully a sufficient number of people buy and play the game.
    Feel free to buy some COTOs from the add-on store.
     
  4. Jaanelle DeJure

    Jaanelle DeJure Avatar

    Messages:
    1,854
    Likes Received:
    4,283
    Trophy Points:
    113
    I'm not sure what the industry standard is regarding this. And I'm also not sure that it matters. But in any case I think it would be good to have a lot more transparency regarding the fundamental financials of this game.

    What's the overhead? What's the payroll? What are the operating costs? What is the targeted profit margin? How DO they plan to keep the lights on post-launch?

    Also- while we tend to speak and hear in terms of "time" to launch, at least to some degree, time is actually a proxy for money.

    I'm not exactly sure when or where I got the notion, but I have the impression that recruiting and retaining staff is more of a challenge that finding the funds to pay them. Could be wrong though.
     
    Jens_T likes this.
  5. yarnevk

    yarnevk Avatar

    Messages:
    402
    Likes Received:
    804
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Technically for those that have to pay monthly rent, COTOs indeed are a form of subscription. This is how Wurm Online funds itself, they only sell game currency, no cosmetic shop. Deeds require monthly game currency. Future continental land rushes should just give you a voucher for monthly rent, so that what you are actually doing is prepaying a monthly subscription, rather than getting a 'free' deed.

    I don't think future kickstarters for future episodes is a good idea, they would have to prove they kept their prior kickstarter promise. They do not have the track record of kickstarted RPGs that have been able to go back to that well. In WOW terms of equivalent yearly subscription I consider myself paid up for all five episodes (not that I think they will actually come out every year).

    I think ESO proves an optional sub with cosmetic shop can work, if population is high enough since converting free players into payers will always be a low number you have to play the number game. Heck ESO got $8 out of me for a respec as I really did not want to grind gold on an alt when I was not happy with my spec.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2017
    K1000, Shanna, Hornpipe and 1 other person like this.
  6. Canterbury

    Canterbury Avatar

    Messages:
    1,466
    Likes Received:
    3,895
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    They are all good questions, too. And while I understand that sometimes things need to be private for one reason or another, and sometimes things can be embarassing if aired publicly or even used against you (eg: if it's known the game needs 'x' amount of dollars, per month, and it isn't making it, any games journo worth their salt should be all over that), but I also think the opposite is true; that if true believers know the game needs something, they're more inclined to give it than if they are left with the impression that everything's fine whether they kick in this month or not. So I can see very good reasons for a "broad" sort of amount to be known, that the community can track, and maybe see fit to help out with, every month.

    That's ^^^ my big one. I am intrigued by it, honestly.
     
    Ice Queen and Jaanelle DeJure like this.
  7. Canterbury

    Canterbury Avatar

    Messages:
    1,466
    Likes Received:
    3,895
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    I can't see any other way. Some people have paid in advance for Episode 2 (and some have even paid for all 5), but I sorely doubt it's been enough people/enough dollars to fund all future episodes without serious additional funding.
     
    Numa and Ice Queen like this.
  8. Ravicus Domdred

    Ravicus Domdred Avatar

    Messages:
    3,715
    Likes Received:
    9,055
    Trophy Points:
    165
    Location:
    Get In MY BELLY!
    They might just roll into ep 2. They do monthly updates and possibly they might just say: Q1 2018 will be R2. They will have another telethon and rinse, repeat. Possibly a kickstarter but It would prob be a lesser amount IMO.
     
    Canterbury likes this.
  9. yarnevk

    yarnevk Avatar

    Messages:
    402
    Likes Received:
    804
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Technically they only paid for the digital download of the new episodes with their pledge, they did not pay for the land rush that will be inevitable although I have no doubt some will think they are entitled to that deed given how much they bought! I think even as a lowly Knight Marshal benefactor (post kickstarter) don't I also get that benefit of the episode downloads?
     
  10. Canterbury

    Canterbury Avatar

    Messages:
    1,466
    Likes Received:
    3,895
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    I'm not even thinking about land. I'm thinking about those who believe they've paid an amount of money and the future episodes will come, full-stop. But I'm not sure there's enough $$$ in the kitty for that (without future fund-raising).
     
    Ice Queen likes this.
  11. Jaanelle DeJure

    Jaanelle DeJure Avatar

    Messages:
    1,854
    Likes Received:
    4,283
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Yeah I can see how airing that information could backfire, especially considering the volatility of the community.

    As with other things, I get a sense of being caught in between those complaining about expansions of the add-on store, and those whining about the so-called "whales".

    Then again, what would be the point of trying to retain players who are unwilling to pay for the game, anyway?

    As for me, I can say that I am reaching the limits of my willingness to invest money in this game without being able to perform due diligence or to make a reasonable assessment of the chances of getting an adequate return on deliverables.
     
    Canterbury likes this.
  12. Jaanelle DeJure

    Jaanelle DeJure Avatar

    Messages:
    1,854
    Likes Received:
    4,283
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Wait. Are you saying that some people expect their one-time kickstarter pledge was indended to fund all five episodes?
     
    Canterbury likes this.
  13. Canterbury

    Canterbury Avatar

    Messages:
    1,466
    Likes Received:
    3,895
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    Absolutely! Someone pledging $80, for example, was told they'd get Episodes 2 & 3 for not another penny. Some people completely expect that promise to be filled. I find it unrealistic, myself. But that's just me.
     
  14. Jaanelle DeJure

    Jaanelle DeJure Avatar

    Messages:
    1,854
    Likes Received:
    4,283
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Who told them that?! Geez that's yet another ticking time-bomb. It's bad enough dealing with unreasonable expectations people make up in their minds, much less handing it to them on a silver platter.
     
  15. Canterbury

    Canterbury Avatar

    Messages:
    1,466
    Likes Received:
    3,895
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    The Kickstarter did...! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/portalarium/shroud-of-the-avatar-forsaken-virtues-0 Scroll down to the $80 package, and beyond. The beauty of KS is that it saves this stuff forever.
     
  16. Merlota

    Merlota Avatar

    Messages:
    292
    Likes Received:
    611
    Trophy Points:
    28
    I'm a BIG fan of monthly subs. With them the developers and the players have the same goals. The devs don't have to add slowdowns or annoyances with a cash bypass with a monthly sub..
     
  17. yarnevk

    yarnevk Avatar

    Messages:
    402
    Likes Received:
    804
    Trophy Points:
    43
    It depends on if people think it means 'funds' all episodes when it said 'gets' all episodes.. That certainly is something they need to start clarifying what people are entitled to....

    As far as I am concerned I funded all five episodes, because my benefactor was equivalent to five years of WOW subs. If it means I cannot house on a new continent, well I did not fall for that second land rush in Wurm Online, won't do it yet again here.
     
  18. Koldar

    Koldar Avatar

    Messages:
    1,956
    Likes Received:
    4,893
    Trophy Points:
    125
    Location:
    Novia
    My pledge during the KS stated I would receive all 5 episodes. I have no plan to contribute anything more at this point until I see something in the add-on store that is worth an additional investment. I'm not really into emote parties nor parishable fluff. Unfortunately, that's most of what I see these days. Maybe they will find a way to extricate additional funds from my wallet for episode 2, but they'll have to try pretty hard - I already own it. ;)

    Edit:. On second thought, it's actually pretty easy to convince me to outlay some additional captial for a product I already own: Make it fun, again. It's too much of a grind anymore. I only login to refresh my deeds and grab 500xp on occasion. If it were fun, I'd be back in game regularly.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2017
    Cordelayne, Budner, Ice Queen and 9 others like this.
  19. Sargon

    Sargon Avatar

    Messages:
    437
    Likes Received:
    694
    Trophy Points:
    55
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Illinois
    Do people really think there is going to be another land rush? I spent a lot of money on the original funding campaign and I am perfectly happy where my house is right now and have no intention of moving to any new land area. I don't doubt that some people will want to live in the new areas, but I have a hard time envisioning anything close to the original land rush. I realize that Portalarium wants to maximize the money they bring in, but my hope would be that the new areas are focused more around story with little or no player housing. The last thing I want to see is all the existing towns become even more of ghost towns than they already are today.
     
  20. yarnevk

    yarnevk Avatar

    Messages:
    402
    Likes Received:
    804
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Can you think of another way that they will get large sums of money out of people at a kickstarter? The reality is they don't need the space because there is still plenty of space in PRT and nested POTs which can go very deep. I do hope if they do it they keep PC's out of NPC towns, because as we know now it has impacted the game with lack of consequential town quests.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.