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I also believe that single player isomeric RPG is a rather narrow niche. But I also think that MS Game Pass could lead to some more (lower-budget) isometric RPGs. Microsoft wants a broad portfolio for the game pass and naturally they don't want to fill it with AAA titles only.

Isometric RPGs have a long life. Recently more and more people came up on Twitter saying that they only now started to play Deadfire and had a blast. So I wouldn't lower prices... yet. :)

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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2 hours ago, Almaar said:

When PoE was announced people, especially fans of the infinity engine games, were eager for something like it. The market wasn't saturated

Isometric cRPG is such a niche genre that I don't think the market has ever been even close to saturated.

My hunch(*) is that the majority of people who enjoy these games have at least tried nearly all the major titles and would be happy to buy most new games in the genre. Isometric cRPG has never been a genre where you've been able to say, "I haven't tried that one, because there are so many other games to play."

 

(*) So yes, it's a hunch, so I might be completely wrong.

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Yeah as I said in another thread here, my guess is that the market for classic, iso cRPGs is a max of about 2 million. That's still enough potential buyers to make such a game financially viable (see D:OS2). But a studio, and especially a mid to large sized studio like Obsidian, needs more than that from a financial standpoint. So this is why I have said I am actually very happy about the MS buyout of Obsidian, because with MS's money, and with the specific needs of Game Pass, so long as Obsidian is able to make big audience games like TOW and Avowed, they will now also be able to (and have need to, for Game Pass) make those niche games that they otherwise may not have been able to continue to make. So even the odds of us seeing a PoE3 in the future have improved, imo, because of MS and Game Pass.

Edited by kanisatha
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IIRC grounded has an active core team of like 12 people, which is seriously impressive. i'm sure other people will surge in as it nears release and bits and pieces are being picked up by others as the need arises, but that seems very smart and the success so far seems like they are punching far above their weight.

i think some of the deadfire burnout will have to recede into the distant past before obs feels like picking up poe3 as a project, but it seems like they could do a smaller project, smartly, and well. i think step #1 is avoiding crowdfunding which would have them making promises that end up not making business sense but still have to keep. alot of the vestigial quicksand features i can think of in poe1 *and* deadfire seem purely like a result of early ideas for a crowdfunding that they had to keep (poe1 stronghold, golden-plated npcs, poe1 having two quest hubs, and then of course obviously deadfire ship combat and VO, among othe rthings).

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1 hour ago, thelee said:

IIRC grounded has an active core team of like 12 people, which is seriously impressive. i'm sure other people will surge in as it nears release and bits and pieces are being picked up by others as the need arises, but that seems very smart and the success so far seems like they are punching far above their weight.

I just read a gamesindustry.biz article on Grounded in which Brennecke says his group is 14 people, though he also says those people are all senior people. Yeah, a super-impressive game building model to be sure. A similarly small team of (senior) people with a solid budget and, most importantly, a good concept for the game, could create a fantastic PoE3. Oh, and totally agree: no crowdfunding (the single biggest weakness of both PoE games).

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4 hours ago, thelee said:

i think some of the deadfire burnout will have to recede into the distant past before obs feels like picking up poe3 as a project, 

After Josh posted his last answer to a Deadfire question on tumblr (basically saying smth. along the lines of "we know there are fans who love PoE and Deadfire, we hear them and we know that they want a PoE3, but we as a team of developers also have to want to make it" Alec Frey (Producer), Matt Hansen (Artist) and other Obs devs chimed in and said they'd do it. :)

So maybe it's not a distant future when the devs decide they want to try again. Don't know if Josh wants to be in though (he still seems to feel pretty unenthusiastic about a PoE3). But maybe he doesn't have to be the lead. Maybe somebody else will do it and Josh will just give feedback and throw in ideas. I mean most DLCs weren't directed by Josh and they turned out pretty well imo. 

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Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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7 hours ago, Boeroer said:

After Josh posted his last answer to a Deadfire question on tumblr (basically saying smth. along the lines of "we know there are fans who love PoE and Deadfire, we hear them and we know that they want a PoE3, but we as a team of developers also have to want to make it" Alec Frey (Producer), Matt Hansen (Artist) and other Obs devs chimed in and said they'd do it. :)

 

What did they say and where?

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17 hours ago, Boeroer said:

After Josh posted his last answer to a Deadfire question on tumblr (basically saying smth. along the lines of "we know there are fans who love PoE and Deadfire, we hear them and we know that they want a PoE3, but we as a team of developers also have to want to make it" Alec Frey (Producer), Matt Hansen (Artist) and other Obs devs chimed in and said they'd do it. :)

So maybe it's not a distant future when the devs decide they want to try again. Don't know if Josh wants to be in though (he still seems to feel pretty unenthusiastic about a PoE3). But maybe he doesn't have to be the lead. Maybe somebody else will do it and Josh will just give feedback and throw in ideas. I mean most DLCs weren't directed by Josh and they turned out pretty well imo. 

Yes, the DLCs in both games were excellent, so I can see whoever was the lead on those being a very good choice for project lead on a PoE3. And frankly, Josh taking a backseat on such a project may be a good thing for that IP going forward.

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my main concern is that as far as game mechanics go (which the DLCs didn't have to do), je sawyer has been the driving force for every major decision i've liked with since icewind dale 2. i'm sure the institutional strength at obs is good, and jes taking a back seat would happen inevitably, but it does make me a wee bit nervous going forward.

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But that's the point. He'd take a backseat, not go away completely. He'd still be the overseer, the big-picture person, the visionary. But imo Sawyer tends to overthink the details and go overboard constantly tinkering with those details. He is excellent in setting down the vision and the path forward, but should let others handle the details.

Personally, I just hope Feargus is grooming Sawyer to replace him as studio boss someday.

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23 hours ago, thelee said:

 alot of the vestigial quicksand features i can think of in poe1 *and* deadfire seem purely like a result of early ideas for a crowdfunding that they had to keep (poe1 stronghold, golden-plated npcs, poe1 having two quest hubs, and then of course obviously deadfire ship combat and VO, among othe rthings).

I understand where you are coming from regarding the stretch goals, and I know I'm in the minority on this, but I think the Stronghold, the Endless Paths, and the ship combat are all awesome.

21 hours ago, kanisatha said:

 Oh, and totally agree: no crowdfunding (the single biggest weakness of both PoE games).

There would be no PoE or PoE2 without crowdfunding. For decades, no publisher would touch a 2D, isometric, RTwP RPG. Now the market is "saturated". If you like the genre, you have crowdfunding to thank (and I have you to thank for being a backer).

1 hour ago, thelee said:

my main concern is that as far as game mechanics go (which the DLCs didn't have to do), je sawyer has been the driving force for every major decision i've liked with since icewind dale 2. i'm sure the institutional strength at obs is good, and jes taking a back seat would happen inevitably, but it does make me a wee bit nervous going forward.

I felt like a lot of the development quicksand in PoE2 was rewriting half the mechanics from the first game. If they make a third, they can (and should) keep what they have and polish it to a bright shine.

Edited by Helz
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16 minutes ago, Helz said:

I felt like a lot of the development quicksand in PoE2 was rewriting half the mechanics from the first game.

My recollection is that a lot of that was done because people complained about the mechanics from the first game.

My guess is that the rest is the result of watching all of the Ultimate runs and seeing how some of the mechanics were abusable (i.e. consuming 15 meals and 8 potions before an important encounter)

"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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1 hour ago, Helz said:

I understand where you are coming from regarding the stretch goals, and I know I'm in the minority on this, but I think the Stronghold, the Endless Paths, and the ship combat are all awesome.

oh i like ship-to-ship combat and i like the endless paths, and full VO is nice. it's just a matter of whether or not it was worth the cost, which it sounds like they definitely weren't. (endless paths may have been worth it). especially since people like us appear to be a minority or at best a slim majority.

 

1 hour ago, Achilles said:

My recollection is that a lot of that was done because people complained about the mechanics from the first game.

people did want multiclassing, some demurk of buffs/debuffs, and slower combat (i don't know if people were explicitly asking for this, but tons of people played at slow mode for combat, so OBS made it the default). though that wasn't really quicksand. 

i do agree for a poe3 they should probably keep the system in place (basically like the de facto official "ruleset"). though i think that however much i enjoy AR/PEN, in practice that would be one area they would have to revisit for a poe3. combined with inversions it is a frequently confusing and surprising aspect of deadfire (and a lot of people apparently do not enjoy having to pay close attention to PEN on weapons and stuff).

 

edit: worth pointing out that I was using the term "quicksand" the way JE Sawyer was using it, e.g. a pit that you keep tossing money and time into and it devours it up without giving you much back in return (he used this to describe ship-to-ship combat in particular). I have no doubt multiclassing took a lot of time to get right (and I remember the iterations it went through in some of the backer beta updates), but I wouldn't qualify that as "quicksand" because the multiclassing in the game is truly phenomenal and a big draw to deadfire over poe1 and better than competitor systems as well imo.

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3 hours ago, Helz said:

There would be no PoE or PoE2 without crowdfunding. For decades, no publisher would touch a 2D, isometric, RTwP RPG. Now the market is "saturated". If you like the genre, you have crowdfunding to thank (and I have you to thank for being a backer).

I agree with you here. It was a very good thing crowdfunding was available as an option when Obsidian badly needed it to save both themselves and this niche genre. But where crowdfunding is not needed or is no longer needed, best to stay away from it for all the reasons others have cited.

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16 hours ago, Sven_ said:

What did they say and where?

They said something like "I could be convinced to do it." with a smiley or "I'm in!" and stuff like that.

And they said that on Twitter (Josh's Tumblr posts automatically get published on Twitter as well).

Edited by Boeroer

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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On 8/13/2020 at 3:48 PM, xzar_monty said:

Isometric cRPG is such a niche genre that I don't think the market has ever been even close to saturated.

My hunch(*) is that the majority of people who enjoy these games have at least tried nearly all the major titles and would be happy to buy most new games in the genre. Isometric cRPG has never been a genre where you've been able to say, "I haven't tried that one, because there are so many other games to play."

 

(*) So yes, it's a hunch, so I might be completely wrong.

English isn't my native language so this might be a bit difficult for me to explain properly but i'll try.

A market is defined by it's customer base, even if it is a niche genre it could be saturated. Before Pillars 1 it wasn't obviously but after that quite a few games have been released in a relatively short time. Wasteland 2 (and 3 comes out in 2 weeks), Tyranny, Tides Of Numemera, D:OS 1 and 2, Pathfinder Kingmaker, Disco Elysium, there was also a D&D game i can't remember the name right now and of course Baldur's Gate 3 that is also coming out this year. 

The same thing happened with mobas but everyone kept playing League of Legends and Dota 2. Same thing is happening right now with battle royale games.

Obviously no one has the right answer, there are plenty of possible reasons for Pillars 2 low sales and this might be just one of them.

Another thing that could have had an impact (and this is my hunch) is that the average gamer don't seem to realize how different games can be even when they're part of the same genre. I have the feeling that a lot of people bought Original Sin without giving others a chance.  

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20 hours ago, thelee said:

 je sawyer has been the driving force for every major decision i've liked with since icewind dale 2. i'm sure the institutional strength at obs is good, and jes taking a back seat would happen inevitably, but it does make me a wee bit nervous going forward.

I wonder who's behind this "We're really stressing that it might be in your interest to side with one these factions, but even though you're going to be able to live without them, they're going to be around for much/most of the game anyway" thinking that is very prominent in PoE, Tyranny and Deadfire. At least. (Any other games?) I think Obsidian could toss that aside.

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7 hours ago, xzar_monty said:

I wonder who's behind this "We're really stressing that it might be in your interest to side with one these factions, but even though you're going to be able to live without them, they're going to be around for much/most of the game anyway" thinking that is very prominent in PoE, Tyranny and Deadfire. At least. (Any other games?) I think Obsidian could toss that aside.

I agree. I'm not really interested in faction stuff. If they are in that's okay, but I don't like to be nudged towards joining them.

Deadfire Community Patch: Nexus Mods

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On 8/15/2020 at 6:43 AM, xzar_monty said:

Any other games?

New Vegas, which is also the source of DT. It's a good idea but one that's not necessarily appropriate for every game. Factions have generally been disappointing in the PoE series so if they return in a hypothetical PoE3 I'd prefer if they got an overhaul.

“By striving to do the impossible, man has always achieved what is possible. Those who have cautiously done no more than they believed possible have never taken a single step forward.” ― Mikhail Bakunin

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On 8/13/2020 at 5:06 AM, Boeroer said:

Isometric RPGs have a long life. Recently more and more people came up on Twitter saying that they only now started to play Deadfire and had a blast. So I wouldn't lower prices... yet. :)

i was wrapping up my most recent run and noticed on steam they've had a new welcome message since last spring. I wonder if Deadfire getting is getting a kick in the pants in long tail sales because of covid-19.

 

separately, i was looking up articles on some new RPGs to play or keep an eye on, and deadfire cropped up on them, whereas before (even well after deadfire was released) at best only poe1 might be mentioned. i wonder if people are finally getting around to the game (or past the pirate marketing). if they get deadfire on xbox game pass that would really help with the "long tail" imo.

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