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I also think that markting/exposure/attention takes a big part - and I personally blame the move from Kickstarter to Fig for that. 

But I think the multiplayer option is a bigger point than I thought it was. 

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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Out of honest curiosity, would there be a reason not to go to Kickstarter again for PoE3? I mean with Microsoft in the background and all that? I'm kind of surprised they're making a survival game now, especially since the market for those seems really saturated.

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2 hours ago, SchroedsCat said:

To get the full experience from the Witcher games, you need to have played all the games and actually you need to read the books as well. You only really appreciate everything that was put in there that way. Of course, if your only objective is to "kick some monster ass lul" then story and worldbuilding isn't really important.

I'm one of the people for whom that "convulted storyline" is a big bonus point. Deadfire feels like there should be even bigger things to come in the future and I love that.

I would describe the main storyline of each Witcher game as self-contained and had no trouble recommending TW2 to people who hadn’t played TW1, or TW3 to people who hadn’t played either of the first two games or read any of the books. I absolutely would not describe the main storyline of Deadfire as self-contained and wouldn’t (and didn’t) recommend it to anyone unfamiliar with the story of PoE 1.

I don’t think the millions of new players The Witcher added with each new game release were only interested in ‘kicking some monster ass lul’, it’s just that ‘you are Geralt, professional monster slayer’ is adequate knowledge to be able to enjoy the story in any individual TW game without playing the others.

I would still highly recommend playing every Witcher game, but because I think they are each excellent games in their own right, not because I feel anyone particularly needs to be familiar with the earlier games to enjoy the latest one.

”Deadfire feels like there should be even bigger things to come in the future and I love that.”

It might feel like that, but it’s all but confirmed that there won’t be because Deadfire didn’t sell well enough. There weren’t enough fish in the small pond they chose to cast their net in. If they ever return to the PoE setting (which I hope they do) it will surely have to be with something new, rather than an increasingly convoluted investigation of the obscure reincarnation system of the setting, which the writers themselves didn’t even seem to fully understand.

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6 minutes ago, flamesium said:

I would describe the main storyline of each Witcher game as self-contained and had no trouble recommending TW2 to people who hadn’t played TW1, or TW3 to people who hadn’t played either of the first two games or read any of the books. I absolutely would not describe the main storyline of Deadfire as self-contained and wouldn’t (and didn’t) recommend it to anyone unfamiliar with the story of PoE 1.

I don’t think the millions of new players The Witcher added with each new game release were only interested in ‘kicking some monster ass lul’, it’s just that ‘you are Geralt, professional monster slayer’ is adequate knowledge to be able to enjoy the story in any individual TW game without playing the others.

I would still highly recommend playing every Witcher game, but because I think they are each excellent games in their own right, not because I feel anyone particularly needs to be familiar with the earlier games to enjoy the latest one.

”Deadfire feels like there should be even bigger things to come in the future and I love that.”

It might feel like that, but it’s all but confirmed that there won’t be because Deadfire didn’t sell well enough. There weren’t enough fish in the small pond they chose to cast their net in. If they ever return to the PoE setting (which I hope they do) it will surely have to be with something new, rather than an increasingly convoluted investigation of the obscure reincarnation system of the setting, which the writers themselves didn’t even seem to fully understand.

Well you may think that way about The Witcher because you have played them all. I tried just playing The Witcher 3, not knowing anything from the previous games and it was extremely confusing. I had to stop playing because I had no idea what was going on or who was who.

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1 hour ago, Boeroer said:

Also for almost all RPGs it's normal that a huge percentage of players doesn't finish. D:OS I and II are no exception but sold tremendously better. The sequel even sold better than the first installment. 

Yep, Larian -and tbf, almost every other developer by now- understands this and so very deliberately avoids the trap of limiting their potential customer base to existing fans.

Even Ubisoft learned with AC that they were on a hiding to nothing with the continuing and obscure metastory, and that they should minimise that as much as possible and just make each game a standalone experience loosely based on the same gimmick.

I was not at all surprised by Deadfire struggling to sell well despite reviewing relatively well, as I knew they had made it inevitable for themselves with their narrative approach.

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50 minutes ago, AeonsLegend said:

Well you may think that way about The Witcher because you have played them all. I tried just playing The Witcher 3, not knowing anything from the previous games and it was extremely confusing. I had to stop playing because I had no idea what was going on or who was who.

This mirrors my experience of trying D:OS2. I had no idea what was going or what was important in the world of the game. What's more, none of it seemed inviting, and the system was unappealing, so I stopped playing very quickly.

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59 minutes ago, AeonsLegend said:

Well you may think that way about The Witcher because you have played them all. I tried just playing The Witcher 3, not knowing anything from the previous games and it was extremely confusing. I had to stop playing because I had no idea what was going on or who was who.

Fair enough. That isn’t a complaint I have come across often with regards TW3.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, SchroedsCat said:

Out of honest curiosity, would there be a reason not to go to Kickstarter again for PoE3? I mean with Microsoft in the background and all that? I'm kind of surprised they're making a survival game now, especially since the market for those seems really saturated.

It's not surprising if you take into account that Microsoft wants a broad portfolio of smaller games for their Game Pass program. That's the main reason why they aquired so many smaller development studios in the near past. 

Grounded was a "pet" project of some devs which was initially greenlighted by Feargus (iirc) even before Microsoft took over. It's a small team which also means small(ish) budget. So it fits the Game Pass quite well I think. Maybe that was a reason why Microsoft also said: yeah go for it.  

Crowd funding seems to be out now that Microsoft can provide lots of funding. Also going back to Kickstarter even without Microsoft would have been very unlikely because Feargus is one of the board members of Fig. 

Edited by Boeroer

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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1 hour ago, AeonsLegend said:

Well you may think that way about The Witcher because you have played them all. I tried just playing The Witcher 3, not knowing anything from the previous games and it was extremely confusing. I had to stop playing because I had no idea what was going on or who was who.

Yeah, I played the first two games and still had to go read the books (the ones translated into english anyway) before I got even close to all the references. I honestly don't know how people are expected to play 3 without having played 2 at the very least.

"Art and song are creations but so are weapons and lies"

"Our worst enemies are inventions of the mind. Pleasure. Fear. When we see them for what they are, we become unstoppable."

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3 minutes ago, Achilles said:

Yeah, I played the first two games and still had to go read the books (the ones translated into english anyway) before I got even close to all the references. I honestly don't know how people are expected to play 3 without having played 2 at the very least.

When you play 3 and indicate you haven't played the first games you get a bit more back ground info and pick who you were with and what your choices are, but none of that made much sense to me. I mean for instance I had to choose between Yennefer and Triss, but seriously how do you choose that if you have no idea who these people are?

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1 hour ago, flamesium said:

Yep, Larian -and tbf, almost every other developer by now- understands this and so very deliberately avoids the trap of limiting their potential customer base to existing fans.

Even Ubisoft learned with AC that they were on a hiding to nothing with the continuing and obscure metastory, and that they should minimise that as much as possible and just make each game a standalone experience loosely based on the same gimmick.

I was not at all surprised by Deadfire struggling to sell well despite reviewing relatively well, as I knew they had made it inevitable for themselves with their narrative approach.

You must have misread my whole post then because I don't think that this was an issue at all. As I said it's very easy to dive into Deadfire even if you haven't played PoE1. I don't think writing the watcher story further had any significant impact on the sales numbers. You start as lvl 1 (with new race and class if you wish) anyways.

It's not as if PoE is a gate to Deadfire and you can't understand or play it without playing PoE first.

D:OS II is turn based, multiplayer and 3D. It's also very different in tone and overall appereance and writing (quality and amount). Swen Vinke told Josh Sawyer that surveys show that both games have an overlapping audience of only 40%. Both are CRPGs so you would suspect it's bigger - but no. I presume the numbers would be similar if you try to find out the overlap of Skyrim/PoE players. 

The target audience of single player RTwP party pased isometric RPGs is just very, very small. PoE had big success as a crowdfunding campaign and got a lot of exposure that way. So it did fairly well given the expectations and the dire situation Obsidian was in.

Edited by Boeroer

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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1 minute ago, AeonsLegend said:

When you play 3 and indicate you haven't played the first games you get a bit more back ground info and pick who you were with and what your choices are, but none of that made much sense to me. I mean for instance I had to choose between Yennefer and Triss, but seriously how do you choose that if you have no idea who these people are?

I'm assuming that you're referring to non-simulated save import feature? Yeah, it's helpful, but I was commenting more along the lines of your 2nd sentence. You really need to have played the second game to get who all the major players are. And even if you did play the first two games, you still won't get Yennifer (or her relationship to Ciri) without picking up a book. I mean, unless you're really, really committed to running with the barest amount of direction handing to you by a developer. 

Not saying this to trash CDPR; I really liked TW3. It's just very obvious that they did not write the game to be easily accessible for people new to the franchise....despite what flamesium says to the contrary.

"Art and song are creations but so are weapons and lies"

"Our worst enemies are inventions of the mind. Pleasure. Fear. When we see them for what they are, we become unstoppable."

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Boeroer said:

 

  • nostalgia needs were sated/increased competition in that small party-based, isometric RPG niche

  

Did they ever conduct a research on that one? I remember engaging in a survey they did early 2015. That was shortly after me finishing PoE, where I was in the state that I'd wanted to express: "ME WANT MOAR OF THIS KINDA STUFF IN THE FUTURE." And they did it, eventually.

Fatigue/competition can definitely be a thing. Especially if you take into account that these are pretty big games. Purely anecdotical, of course, but back then I hadn't actually played both BG2* and IWD2 until years after their initial release. In parts that had happened as I was a bit burned out of These games. I had bought all of the prior ones when they came out -- and in between also had played Might & Magic 7, Lands Of Lore 3, D.W. Bradley's Wizards & Warriors (awesome dungeon design!) and several more. Games that may not be exactly like the IE style games, but close enough to the general idea nonetheless.

I've yet to play a couple of CRPGS that came out in the past several years too.

 

* That was pretty amazing, btw. I actually still found the floppy disk (!) I had exported my character to from the end of the first game like six years or so earlier, so could carry on with him after so many seasons passed. :)

Edited by Sven_
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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, flamesium said:

It can’t be proven of course, but there’s no doubt in my mind that Deadfire would have fared significantly better without the convoluted narrative baggage from PoE1. Larian avoided this mistake with DOS2 and I suppose Owlcat will avoid it with WotR.

 

From Sawyer's own statements though the problem was that they were trying to tell two stories together that didn't really mesh well (the factions in Deadfire, and the Eothas thing).  They needed to pick one or the other.

There's no reason I can think of why it's *necessary* for the PC to be somebody besides the Watcher in either of those cases. 

*edit*  I will say that it does kill my desire to replay Deadfire though.  I like Deadfire and 2 or 3 times better than POE1 and I'm extremely disinclined to replay Deadfire because to get the most out of it with a new character, I'd also have to go back and play the considerably less fun POE2. 

Edited by Ontarah
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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, Sven_ said:

Fatigue/competition can definitely be a thing. Especially if you take into account that these are pretty big games. Purely anecdotical, of course, but back then I hadn't actually played both BG2 and IWD2 until years after their initial release. In parts that had to do as I was a bit burned out of these type of games. I had bought all of the prior ones when they came out -- and in between also had played Might & Magic 7, Lands Of Lore 3, System Shock 2 and several more. Games that may not be exactly like the IE style games, but within the general area nonetheless.

I've yet to play a couple of CRPGS that came out in the past several years too.

Yes, especially CRPGs with a good amount of writing and sophisticated mechanics usually take a lot of time to get into, play and finish. If there are several contenders at the same time they can hurt each other really badly because of that. It's not like Candy Crush vs. Solitaire (in terms of players investment of time and energy).

Edited by Boeroer

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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3 hours ago, SchroedsCat said:

Out of honest curiosity, would there be a reason not to go to Kickstarter again for PoE3? I mean with Microsoft in the background and all that?

The optics of a $1 Trillion company letting one of its studios fundraise is totally not worth the negative press and community fallout.

If Pillars 3 made business sense, and the player base was there, Obsidian is basically free to just make the game whenever with Microsoft's support.

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3 hours ago, AeonsLegend said:

Well you may think that way about The Witcher because you have played them all. I tried just playing The Witcher 3, not knowing anything from the previous games and it was extremely confusing. I had to stop playing because I had no idea what was going on or who was who.

I guess this varies from person to person. I also played TW3 without ever having played the other games or having any knowledge whatsoever about that franchise, and I not only did I not have any problems understanding what was going on but I found the game very easy to get into and a very enjoyable experience.

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6 minutes ago, Boeroer said:

As I said it's very easy to dive into Deadfire even if you haven't played PoE1. I don't think writing the watcher story further had any significant impact on the sales numbers. You start as lvl 1 (with new race and class if you wish) anyways.

Strongly disagree. Strongly disagree. I don’t think race/class of the MC changing or not is the issue.

The focus of the first game is revealing the true nature of the setting’s gods, its soul cycle, the role of the Watcher and the morality of ‘animancy’ in such a setting - none of which is exactly intuitive without playing PoE1. They chose to make the Deadfire narrative a continuation of those esoteric themes, which inevitably introduces a barrier to entry for new players.

The target audience of single player RTwP party pased isometric RPGs is just very, very small.”

We know it’s at least as big as PoE1.

 

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1 minute ago, kanisatha said:

I guess this varies from person to person. I also played TW3 without ever having played the other games or having any knowledge whatsoever about that franchise, and I not only did I not have any problems understanding what was going on but I found the game very easy to get into and a very enjoyable experience.

I'm sure it does. My wife also likes reading book 5 first  in a series of 7 books. I myself don't like that lingering feeling that I should have been along for the ride instead of reading some generic history card that really doesn't tell you anything.

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Posted (edited)

As I already said Microsoft is eager to fill its Game Pass portfolio. So maybe we will see some smaller Pillars/Eora games. Josh is still working on the TTRPG rules (part time at work) and he would like to do a Pillars Tactics game - so maybe there's enough material and motivation to make something smaller but likeable  for Game Pass. 

And as I also said in previous posts Feargus is (or at least was) eager to make a Skyrim in Eora which is even more likely to happen now after the success of the Outer Worlds (even would use the same Unreal engine I presume so there's a foundation to build on). 

But PoE3... like a real sequel in more than the name... the more I listen to Josh and the more I learn about the figures of Deadfire sales the more I think it's not going to happen. 

Edited by Boeroer
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Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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3 minutes ago, flamesium said:

Strongly disagree. Strongly disagree.

As several people now did with your assessment of the Witcher games in that regard.

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Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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6 minutes ago, flamesium said:

The target audience of single player RTwP party pased isometric RPGs is just very, very small.”

We know it’s at least as big as PoE1.

 

Yes, but what I meant was that if something competes with your game which already uses a small niche (and/or disappoints with the first installment and/or has bad marketing and/or has a setting that rubs players the wrong way and/or fed the nostalgia too much with a prequel) then you will sell very few copies.  

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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1 hour ago, Achilles said:

It's just very obvious that they did not write the game to be easily accessible for people new to the franchise....despite what flamesium says to the contrary.

They absolutely did, and very successfully judging by the many millions of people who quite happily joined the Witcher franchise at TW3 with no prior exposure. Each game stands alone quite comfortably.

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24 minutes ago, Boeroer said:

Yes, but what I meant was that if something competes with your game which already uses a small niche (and/or disappoints with the first installment and/or has bad marketing and/or has a setting that rubs players the wrong way and/or fed the nostalgia too much with a prequel) then you will sell very few copies.  

I don’t think the marketing has much chance when it has to try and convince potential new players they don’t need to be familiar with the previous game when it’s quite obvious they need to be familiar with the previous game. Gamers talk to each other.

The Deadfire marketing inevitably ended up making about as much sense as the intro sequence of Superted, because the metaphysics of the setting -which the storyline over both games obsesses over, and still doesn’t manage to explain particularly well even after two games- are not exactly intuitive even by fantasy standards.

It’s pretty funny to me if the developers seriously consider the pirate setting to be a bigger issue for new players than the impenetrability of the continuing storyline. With insight like that it’s perhaps for the best if they leave the franchise dormant.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Boeroer said:

Grounded was a "pet" project of some devs which was initially greenlighted by Feargus (iirc) even before Microsoft took over. It's a small team which also means small(ish) budget. So it fits the Game Pass quite well I think. Maybe that was a reason why Microsoft also said: yeah go for it.  

Crowd funding seems to be out now that Microsoft can provide lots of funding. Also going back to Kickstarter even without Microsoft would have been very unlikely because Feargus is one of the board members of Fig. 

Eh, too bad it doesn't look like anyone wants to adopt PoE3 as a pet project. Whenever Sawyer writes about the topic, I have the impression he is kind of disgruntled over Deadfire. Might be just me though.

Not gonna lie, I think I'm starting to see why Avellone doesn't like Urquhart.

Edited by SchroedsCat
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