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I am sure this is going to be wildly unpopular, but I wanted to express some reservations about the Kickstarter project.

I backed the project the first day that it came out.

I have also played every single Black Isle, Obsidian, and Troika RPG game.

So I am a huge fan, and I hope that the game that comes out is going to be amazing and legendary and everything I hoped for, and end up more like the 1992 Olympics basketball "Dream Team" and not like the Philadelphia Eagles' "Dream Team" last year.

 

BUT, I am concerned about a few things:

1) Time to finish the project-the projected finish date for the Kickstarter project is supposed to be April 2014. Is that enough time for the team to finish the project? Obsidian has, unfortunately, a reputation for patches. I would rather have a realistic completion date up front rather than have a product that ends up being rushed out that's either buggy or missing substantial portions or a product that ends up being delayed anyway

 

2) I am not sure how much of the project has actually been started, again going back to the time restrictions. I backed the project without even looking at the sales pitch because of previous work done by the team. However, I have to say that I am uncomfortable without having a lot of information about the game. What Tim Schafer did with Project Doublefine was different. He was very upfront from the beginning that the project was going to be something that the backers and the development team would walk through together on. In fact, there is a documentary that is being filmed on the development process itself.

I may be unfairly comparing Doublefine's project with Project Eternity, but as a backer for Doublefine as well, I got a LOT of information from Doublefine about who was going to be on the team, what the concept art is, what the engine was going to be, etc... Doublefine communicated extremely well.

With Project Eternity, aside from a few concept art and a map, there's really not a lot of details on the engine. Right now, speculation is that it might be Onyx. Who's the art director for the project? Who's the composer? If Tim Cain, Chris Avellone, and Josh Sawyer are all involved in the project, what are their actual roles?

But that's something we "think", not something we know. You would think if you are asking for around 1 million dollars, that there would be something more substantial.

Why give an interviews to Gamebanshee with specific information about the game and then not put it on the Kickstarter page concurrently? It would only help backers learn more about the project.

 

3) Not having Paypal set up, originally asking $30 shipping for $5000 backers, not having more details on multilanguage support for the game.

Also, the stretch goals. It looks like the game leads got together over the weekend to talk about stretch goals after the Kickstarter's initial success? Why didn't they anticipate that this project was going to funded and make those stretch goals ahead of time?

We had to find out that the game was going have 3 races and 5 classes IN THE UPDATE. That information isn't even in the official Kickstarter Project announcement page.

 

I am surprised that a lot of these details weren't taken care ahead of time. Especially the mulitlanguage support, because a lot of Europeans have played Planescape and Icewind Dale. There's probably going to be less incentive for European backers to back a project if it's not going to be in their native language. What's the point of asking for $20 and $30 international shipping when you don't have multilanguage support??

 

4. Hugely paranoid on my part. But 9 job openings on the Obsidian website? Are they hiring for the project now?

 

This all seems...very disorganized to me and goes back to the whole time issue. How much has actually been completed? Because I don't realistically see how this is going to come out by April 2014 if they don't have some of the things I mentioned lined up already. I am just worried that I am setting myself for a disappointment.

Edited by rf5111918
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It feels like they're being a little reserved with info either because they don't know, or because they want backers having a call every step of the way. I admit however I could be overly optimistic there though. In both cases.

 

I'd like a proper breakdown of how they plan to use the money, but I suppose that's going to be difficult to put together until they know exactly what they'll be working with.

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It's been launched three days ago, and then there was the week-end. Be patient, obviously we will now more in the coming days.

 

As for paypal, it cannot be set-up before the project reaches its initial goal on Kickstarter, otherwise it would break the all or nothing model

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All valid points, the deadline being the most concerning. Most AAA games take between 3-4 yrs to develop.

 

This ain't an AAA title though, is it? Not in the overblown, over-hyped, uber-marketed CoD way I consider 'AAA.'

 

I paid $35.00 for a game up front. I don't suddenly feel like a shareholder, just a person who put his money where his mouth is. Over-entitlement is one of the most prevalent yet pointless features of these types of forums. I'm not saying *you* are, far from it, but we're heading slowly in that direction IMO.

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Information is a tricky thing. Often you can't just tell people everything because (1) they haven't decided yet; (2) they might want fan input before deciding; (3) it's not ready yet; (4) tell the fans everything there is about the game, and they'll just speculate themselves into a messy puddle of goo on the floor and not necessarily form good judgments. There's nothing worse than telling fans everything about your game every day or every week, then asking them "what do you think". All that will do is increase complaints and incorrect speculation and panic.

 

Actually, Double Fine and Wasteland 2 were pretty much the same. There's a lot more info now for W2 because it's been developing for a few months, but initially, it was all the same - this is us, this is our big vision, help us and there shall be marshmallows and fluffy bunnies in the skies. W2 didn't tell you what engine (they didn't have one), etc.

 

I would like more info as well, since Obsidian probably do know what engine they are using for example, but it's been 3 days, and for KS you can back out or change your pledge at any time for the next 30 days. They should and I'm sure they will provide more info in that time, but I think it needs to be at their own pace and discretion.

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I also agree. What I find equally troubling are some of the discussions not only on this forum, but also on the comments section of the Kickstarter page.

 

I read everything I could find on the web on Friday and Saturday before investing. I thought I had a pretty good idea of what they were interested in developing, but given some of the discussions taking place, I'm beginning to think I misunderstood (i.e., people wanting console support, multiplayer, full VO, Bioware staff, non-isometric view, horror, etc., etc., etc.....)

 

I was hoping to up my commitment from $140 to $250, but not as it stands. I need to know what their vision is for this game. If it's to truly embody the spirit and gameplay of the classics, I'm onboard. If it's going to be just another modern hybrid (DA:O), I'll pass.

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I think the concern over the schedule is perfectly legit. On the other hand, I don't see the inherent advantage of having the design team being constrained by the community here. If you mean simply keeping people informed, I agree. In fact, I'm surprised that Obsidz did an interview that they didn't immediately post on their front page and on the kickstarter page. On the other hand, if what you want when you suggest that "the backers and the development team would walk through [the project] together" is that the fans and backers are full partners with the devs in terms of the actual design, I say not only but also hell no. There are things they might want to keep close to the vest, and I'm down with that. I didn't pre-buy the game because I wanted a game that every Tom, ****, and Biff would design. I want the game Obsidz designs. From what I've seen, we'll get info pretty regularly, especially if Sawyer follows past habits, but I don't want them to be forced into a box in terms of divulging or deciding anything.

Edited by Cantousent

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All valid points, the deadline being the most concerning. Most AAA games take between 3-4 yrs to develop.

 

This ain't an AAA title though, is it? Not in the overblown, over-hyped, uber-marketed CoD way I consider 'AAA.'

 

I paid $35.00 for a game up front. I don't suddenly feel like a shareholder, just a person who put his money where his mouth is. Over-entitlement is one of the most prevalent yet pointless features of these types of forums. I'm not saying *you* are, far from it, but we're heading slowly in that direction IMO.

 

That's true, it probably shouldn't be considered AAA. I do think info is a little sparse but I'm sure they'll step that up.

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I also agree. What I find equally troubling are some of the discussions not only on this forum, but also on the comments section of the Kickstarter page.

 

I read everything I could find on the web on Friday and Saturday before investing. I thought I had a pretty good idea of what they were interested in developing, but given some of the discussions taking place, I'm beginning to think I misunderstood (i.e., people wanting console support, multiplayer, full VO, Bioware staff, non-isometric view, horror, etc., etc., etc.....)

 

I was hoping to up my commitment from $140 to $250, but not as it stands. I need to know what their vision is for this game. If it's to truly embody the spirit and gameplay of the classics, I'm onboard. If it's going to be just another modern hybrid (DA:O), I'll pass.

 

I'm curious as to why Kickstarter comments make you afraid for those things. Obsidian will choose to listen to fan feedback at their discretion, but there is about 0.1% chance that they would do things like change real time with pause, 2D Isometric, or add full voice acting, multiplayer, Bioware staff, etc. The original vision they communicated to you remains the same; give us support, and we will make something our way, in this spirit. They never promised to do a 'democratic' everyone-designs affair, which would be terrible.

 

Anyway, we're at that kind of stage in time - give it a few days or weeks, they talk a bit more, and their idea of the game will set hold amidst all the excited talk.

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Information is a tricky thing. Often you can't just tell people everything because (1) they haven't decided yet; (2) they might want fan input before deciding; (3) it's not ready yet; (4) tell the fans everything there is about the game, and they'll just speculate themselves into a messy puddle of goo on the floor and not necessarily form good judgments. There's nothing worse than telling fans everything about your game every day or every week, then asking them "what do you think". All that will do is increase complaints and incorrect speculation and panic.

 

Actually, Double Fine and Wasteland 2 were pretty much the same. There's a lot more info now for W2 because it's been developing for a few months, but initially, it was all the same - this is us, this is our big vision, help us and there shall be marshmallows and fluffy bunnies in the skies. W2 didn't tell you what engine (they didn't have one), etc.

 

I would like more info as well, since Obsidian probably do know what engine they are using for example, but it's been 3 days, and for KS you can back out or change your pledge at any time for the next 30 days. They should and I'm sure they will provide more info in that time, but I think it needs to be at their own pace and discretion.

 

Those are really good points and I also want to thank you for starting that compilation topic for those of us who do want more information.

I don't really care as much about the gameplay. I am confident that will be excellent. I am just a little alarmed about more some of the technical and logistical aspects that don't seem to have been sorted out yet.

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I also agree. What I find equally troubling are some of the discussions not only on this forum, but also on the comments section of the Kickstarter page.

 

I read everything I could find on the web on Friday and Saturday before investing. I thought I had a pretty good idea of what they were interested in developing, but given some of the discussions taking place, I'm beginning to think I misunderstood (i.e., people wanting console support, multiplayer, full VO, Bioware staff, non-isometric view, horror, etc., etc., etc.....)

 

I was hoping to up my commitment from $140 to $250, but not as it stands. I need to know what their vision is for this game. If it's to truly embody the spirit and gameplay of the classics, I'm onboard. If it's going to be just another modern hybrid (DA:O), I'll pass.

 

I'm curious as to why Kickstarter comments make you afraid for those things. Obsidian will choose to listen to fan feedback at their discretion, but there is about 0.1% chance that they would do things like change real time with pause, 2D Isometric, or add full voice acting, multiplayer, Bioware staff, etc. The original vision they communicated to you remains the same; give us support, and we will make something our way, in this spirit. They never promised to do a 'democratic' everyone-designs affair, which would be terrible.

 

Anyway, we're at that kind of stage in time - give it a few days or weeks, they talk a bit more, and their idea of the game will set hold amidst all the excited talk.

 

 

I agree completely. AS LONG AS IT's NOT 3 DIFFERENT COLORED ENDINGS, I am cool.

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1. QA is usually done by the publisher. Make of that what you will.

 

2. I don't remember Double Fine having that much of an info after three days. When they started it, they had about as much info as Obsidian has right now (I might be wrong about this). I don't think they even had any kind of stretch goals. InXile announced the engine they're using on Wasteland 2 month or two after the kickstart. Obsidian put up their kickstart on Friday and did not expect this to get funded as fast as it did. They even went to work on weekend just so they get their stretch goals up when people demanded those. It's only been 3 days. I know where you are coming from but have a little patience.

 

3. What's the hurry with paypal? First they had to secure that the game is funded via Kickstarter. It's coming. That $30 shipping for $500+ rewards was kind of weird but I think I read somewhere that it was an error. And they did fix it so why complain? As for the multilingual thingy for Europeans... Well, I'm European (someone might have figured it out from my not-always-so-good-grammar) and I think that is just a waste of time. That probably is because they will never, ever release this game on my native language. But, once again, I know there are people who wants it and Obsidian has already said, they are looking for ways to translate this.

 

(Did Planescape: Torment even get released in other languages than English?)

 

tl;dr - Sit down and wait. All will be answered in time.

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I also agree. What I find equally troubling are some of the discussions not only on this forum, but also on the comments section of the Kickstarter page.

 

I read everything I could find on the web on Friday and Saturday before investing. I thought I had a pretty good idea of what they were interested in developing, but given some of the discussions taking place, I'm beginning to think I misunderstood (i.e., people wanting console support, multiplayer, full VO, Bioware staff, non-isometric view, horror, etc., etc., etc.....)

 

I was hoping to up my commitment from $140 to $250, but not as it stands. I need to know what their vision is for this game. If it's to truly embody the spirit and gameplay of the classics, I'm onboard. If it's going to be just another modern hybrid (DA:O), I'll pass.

 

I'm curious as to why Kickstarter comments make you afraid for those things. Obsidian will choose to listen to fan feedback at their discretion, but there is about 0.1% chance that they would do things like change real time with pause, 2D Isometric, or add full voice acting, multiplayer, Bioware staff, etc. The original vision they communicated to you remains the same; give us support, and we will make something our way, in this spirit. They never promised to do a 'democratic' everyone-designs affair, which would be terrible.

 

Anyway, we're at that kind of stage in time - give it a few days or weeks, they talk a bit more, and their idea of the game will set hold amidst all the excited talk.

 

Thanks alot for the clarification and reassurace. Well, this is my first Kickstarter so I didn't know what to expect. I just couldn't (and can't) believe people are tossing out suggestions that would obviously require a much larger budget than will be possible for this game -- or would only be possible at the expense of the game.

 

I guess it's just normal and my naitivity with the process.

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All valid points, the deadline being the most concerning. Most AAA games take between 3-4 yrs to develop.

 

This ain't an AAA title though, is it? Not in the overblown, over-hyped, uber-marketed CoD way I consider 'AAA.'

 

I paid $35.00 for a game up front. I don't suddenly feel like a shareholder, just a person who put his money where his mouth is. Over-entitlement is one of the most prevalent yet pointless features of these types of forums. I'm not saying *you* are, far from it, but we're heading slowly in that direction IMO.

 

I somewhat agree. But you are also paying for a game that you are going to be waiting 2 years or longer for. Ahead of time.

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I was thinking of actually investing more, but I just couldn't see doing it. On the other hand, I might buy in a couple more times at a more reasonable level and gift those to friends for Christmas. Hell, I think you get an actual boxed version of the game for only a little more than you'd pay for a boxed version at retail. That's not such a bad deal. I don't care about getting all the swag, but I'm actually looking for reasons to invest more. However, you have a point about waiting. I've already bought into the project. I still have another month to decide whether I'll purchase on behalf of friends.

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@ SqueakyCat

 

Rest assured that 95% of the jibber-jabber on here will be quite rightly ignored and a few gems will be panned for, found and suitably polished.

 

I suspect the Devs want to feel the vibe of what we want more than specifics.

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1. QA is usually done by the publisher. Make of that what you will.

 

2. I don't remember Double Fine having that much of an info after three days. When they started it, they had about as much info as Obsidian has right now (I might be wrong about this). I don't think they even had any kind of stretch goals. InXile announced the engine they're using on Wasteland 2 month or two after the kickstart. Obsidian put up their kickstart on Friday and did not expect this to get funded as fast as it did. They even went to work on weekend just so they get their stretch goals up when people demanded those. It's only been 3 days. I know where you are coming from but have a little patience.

 

3. What's the hurry with paypal? First they had to secure that the game is funded via Kickstarter. It's coming. That $30 shipping for $500+ rewards was kind of weird but I think I read somewhere that it was an error. And they did fix it so why complain? As for the multilingual thingy for Europeans... Well, I'm European (someone might have figured it out from my not-always-so-good-grammar) and I think that is just a waste of time. That probably is because they will never, ever release this game on my native language. But, once again, I know there are people who wants it and Obsidian has already said, they are looking for ways to translate this.

 

(Did Planescape: Torment even get released in other languages as English?)

 

tl;dr - Sit down and wait. All will be answered in time.

 

2. Yes, but Doublefine was also the first video game company to have that sort of success. They didn't anticipate that they were going to get 10 times the amount they asked for. I think Obsidian could have learned from Doublefine and anticipated coming up with the stretch goals ahead of time.

 

3. I am not necessarily complaining about issues like multilanguage and Paypal support and stretch goals as things that haven't been resolved. I am using them more as examples on why I have reservations on the level of organization. These are all issues that have arisen BEFORE in other Kickstarter Projects and it surprised me that Obsidian didn't anticipate and address them AHEAD of time.

There's a general set of questions that everyone usually asks for these Kickstarter video games: multiplatform support, multiplayer support, game distribution (Ie. Steam).

It's like going to an interview and not thinking about your questions and answers ahead of time.

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1. QA is usually done by the publisher. Make of that what you will.

 

2. I don't remember Double Fine having that much of an info after three days. When they started it, they had about as much info as Obsidian has right now (I might be wrong about this). I don't think they even had any kind of stretch goals. InXile announced the engine they're using on Wasteland 2 month or two after the kickstart. Obsidian put up their kickstart on Friday and did not expect this to get funded as fast as it did. They even went to work on weekend just so they get their stretch goals up when people demanded those. It's only been 3 days. I know where you are coming from but have a little patience.

 

3. What's the hurry with paypal? First they had to secure that the game is funded via Kickstarter. It's coming. That $30 shipping for $500+ rewards was kind of weird but I think I read somewhere that it was an error. And they did fix it so why complain? As for the multilingual thingy for Europeans... Well, I'm European (someone might have figured it out from my not-always-so-good-grammar) and I think that is just a waste of time. That probably is because they will never, ever release this game on my native language. But, once again, I know there are people who wants it and Obsidian has already said, they are looking for ways to translate this.

 

(Did Planescape: Torment even get released in other languages as English?)

 

tl;dr - Sit down and wait. All will be answered in time.

 

2. Yes, but Doublefine was also the first video game company to have that sort of success. They didn't anticipate that they were going to get 10 times the amount they asked for. I think Obsidian could have learned from Doublefine and anticipated coming up with the stretch goals ahead of time.

 

3. I am not necessarily complaining about issues like multilanguage and Paypal support and stretch goals as things that haven't been resolved. I am using them more as examples on why I have reservations on the level of organization. These are all issues that have arisen BEFORE in other Kickstarter Projects and it surprised me that Obsidian didn't anticipate and address them AHEAD of time.

There's a general set of questions that everyone usually asks for these Kickstarter video games: multiplatform support, multiplayer support, game distribution (Ie. Steam).

It's like going to an interview and not thinking about your questions and answers ahead of time.

 

2. You miss the point; these are not things, no matter how likely, a company can just assume. Obsidian does not automatically know that the project will be funded in the first day just because another developers was. In fact with the recent influx of game projects like these on Kickstarter it is a very valid position for Obsidian to have wondered if the kickstarter users might have already been tapped out for the time being on that sort of project.

 

Even more importantly and this also answers your points on 3. You simply cannot spend money that you do not have. It is one thing for them to have their story mapped out and an idea of stretch goals, but to have anything worthy of showing to the player without funding would have meant they would be tapping into their own financial reserves to begin development of a game on the coattails of several failed publisher projects that cost them quite a bit of cash without any guarantee this one would not be a failed venture as well. I think that is asking a bit much.

 

On the same line, things like platform support, distribution method, multiplayer, modding ability, and even the engine cannot be accurately determined without knowing the games budget, which they did not know, and still do not. Within a day of release we were made aware of platform support once they knew what budget they could expect, distribution method and multiplayer take considerably more time to hammer down, not just internally but through negotiations with third parties (ie gog).

 

All of the game details come back down to requiring budget knowledge they simply did not have on friday, and even now have a very hazy idea of. Unless you want them to make guesses that they may not be able to uphold in the end game we all just have to give them time and our faith. More details will be released before the 30 days are up but to expect that within 1 day + a weekend is absurd.

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While the OP definitely has several good points, I don't understand why this would make him fear disappointment at this stage.

 

Let's assume that all his concerns are correct:

 

- the stretch goals were invented on the fly

- We've got no real information about the game because there is no information

- Obsidian is hiring for the project

- there is no multi-language support

- we won't have detailed access to the content of the game before release

- we won't even have a lot of influence on how it is done

- international shipping stays expensive

- the development time takes too long (which due to the monis isn't so likely after all)

 

Obsidian has an excellent track record, which is why we funded the project in the first place. We want a high quality product, just like its predecessors. We don't need to know how they make it; we didn't in the past.

 

A few days ago, they went public with their idea - not knowing if the goal would be met in 31 days. Certainly they were not expecting to being fully funded and fans clamoring for details after 24h.

 

I'd say: Let them open a bottle of champagne, sit down and enjoy their success.

Then they can take the time to plan what needs to be done.

 

A serious investment of time by acclaimed professionals can after all only be expected after funding. This is were we are at the moment.

 

Obsidian delivered in the past, I see no reason why this time should be different. If in a month there is a suspicious lack of information... Then I'd get worried too.

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Information is a tricky thing. Often you can't just tell people everything because (1) they haven't decided yet; (2) they might want fan input before deciding; (3) it's not ready yet; (4) tell the fans everything there is about the game, and they'll just speculate themselves into a messy puddle of goo on the floor and not necessarily form good judgments. There's nothing worse than telling fans everything about your game every day or every week, then asking them "what do you think". All that will do is increase complaints and incorrect speculation and panic.

 

Actually, Double Fine and Wasteland 2 were pretty much the same. There's a lot more info now for W2 because it's been developing for a few months, but initially, it was all the same - this is us, this is our big vision, help us and there shall be marshmallows and fluffy bunnies in the skies. W2 didn't tell you what engine (they didn't have one), etc.

 

I would like more info as well, since Obsidian probably do know what engine they are using for example, but it's been 3 days, and for KS you can back out or change your pledge at any time for the next 30 days. They should and I'm sure they will provide more info in that time, but I think it needs to be at their own pace and discretion.

 

One could argue that the optimal Kickstarter management policy is to let information out gradually over the course of the funding period. That way each new bit of pertinent info gets the project another trip to the frontpage of the pertinent blogs, forums, news sites, etc.

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