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Has Obsidian gone too far in some of its recent updates?

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That said, some of the recent announcements not only have me rolling my eyes, they have other "old school" RPG fans I know laughing at how stupid they seem.

 

Sorry, where was this taking place? The only things I've seen are people that are so jaded on day-one piecemeal DLC criticizing the company because they don't remember the days of full-fledged expansion packs. I trust that Obsidian is not going to be using funds from the main game's budget (as they've stated) to fund separate content packs.

 

Asking for Facebook likes to get another dungeon level?

 

...is genius. They get more exposure, press (PC Gamer mentioned it) and potential backers/sales. If even 1% of the people who like the page decide to donate, it's already a win. This is basic marketing 101.

 

Giving away Wasteland 2 now if you pledge above a certain amount?

 

And what's wrong with that? The creator of W2 has enough faith in the project that he wants to help sweeten the pot for people who have already donated - I see nothing wrong with that. It's an additional bonus you weren't getting yesterday.

 

Promising an expansion to pledgers above a certain amount?

 

If it drives the incentive to come in at a higher price point, why not? You're already getting the base game for less than half of retail price, and the proceeds from this Kickstarter are all going to the base game. The sales of the product will presumably enough that they can funnel it (seeing as it's likely going to be all-digital, it's practically pure profit) into more expansions/funding for future installments.

 

If you've already donated at the base price, you're getting a full-fledged product with the guarantee of the developer that it will have a rich amount of content. If you invested the "market value" ($60) of the game, you get a boxed copy and bonuses. If you're generous enough to go above a certain price point, you get additional bonuses over and on top of an already-stacked package for your commitment. We haven't even seen what their stretch goals are for the next week - it's likely going to push the base game up and over in terms of content, and drive pledges up. I fail to see how this is a bad thing.

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There's really no difference between a good old expansion like Tales of the Sword Coast

and a DLC like Fallout 3*s Broken Steel or New Vegas Honest Hearts or Old World Blues.

Eternity's expansion will be Downloadable and it will be Content.

 

But it's just great there'll be more to come.

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There's really no difference between a good old expansion like Tales of the Sword Coast

and a DLC like Fallout 3*s Broken Steel or New Vegas Honest Hearts or Old World Blues.

Eternity's expansion will be Downloadable and it will be Content.

 

But it's just great there'll be more to come.

its all in the terminology.

Want smart AI that picks targets intelligently? Absolutely. Want aggro mechanics? NO KILL IT WITH FIRE!

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There's really no difference between a good old expansion like Tales of the Sword Coast

and a DLC like Fallout 3*s Broken Steel or New Vegas Honest Hearts or Old World Blues.

Eternity's expansion will be Downloadable and it will be Content.

 

But it's just great there'll be more to come.

 

All true. And after sitting back and rolling my eyes at people expressing a lot of fear, I think I've actually found some empathy. EA/Bioware (and many, many others besides) have released an awful lot of games with cut content that you can buy via "micro transactions" (I bet George Orwell would have loved that one?). This cut content instead gets called "DLC." I even got suckered into it with DA:O and that stupid stone golem companion.

 

What a sorry state gaming is in, where the expectation is that companies are mainly interested in screwing people over instead of actually entertaining them.

Edited by nikolokolus
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There's really no difference between a good old expansion like Tales of the Sword Coast

and a DLC like Fallout 3*s Broken Steel or New Vegas Honest Hearts or Old World Blues.

Eternity's expansion will be Downloadable and it will be Content.

 

But it's just great there'll be more to come.

 

All true. And after sitting back and rolling my eyes at people expressing a lot of fear, I think I've actually found some empathy. EA/Bioware (and many, many others besides) have released an awful lot of games with cut content that you can buy via "micro transactions" (I bet George Orwell would have loved that one?). Thus cut content instead gets called "DLC." I even got suckered into it with DA:O and that stupid stone golem companion.

 

What a sorry state gaming is in, where the expectation is that companies are mainly interested in screwing people over instead of actually entertaining them.

 

You know, TotSC wasn't a big expansion. You got one new town (Ulgoth's Beard), one new small dungeon (the Ship of Balduran) and one mega-dungeon (Durlag's Tower), along with a handful of inconsequential filler areas. It had more in common with Old World Blues than Throne of Bhaal, which is still the pinnacle of old-school expansion packs as far as I'm concerned.

 

I said this on another board, but it still rings true. Ten years ago, companies wouldn't cut characters out and sell them to you piecemeal. The cut content was just that - inconsequential. The BG2 Unfinished Business mod was nice to have, but didn't do much besides give you more dialogue with Suna Seni/Bodhi and the ability to create Boo clones. Nowadays, they cut lore-heavy characters like Javik out and sell it for $10 while the setup files (along with the pre-order/CE content) are on-disc. Recently, I've had people try to justify Shale ("(Download Content) Let me take a look.") and the on-disc Resident Evil 6 costumes.

 

Going back to the days of Shivering Isles-level expansion packs is not a bad thing. I'd rather have a full-fledged extra campaign than a 2-3 hour miniquest that doesn't do much besides leave me with a few new items and a feeling that it was just an appetizer instead of the after-dinner dessert. DA:O's Return to Ostagar/Awakening kind of got that right, but it's been a while since anyone making RPG's gave us a fully-fledged expansion.

Edited by crazyrabbits

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on disc content really is the worst. I don't mind smaller DLC packs, but when they were clearly finished and withheld purely as a money grab it makes me mad.

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I was very happy with the new vegas DLC's, especially after the FO3 DLCs were mostly so ordinary. But if you want to see what Obsidian can do with an expasion pack, look no further than Mask of the Betrayer,

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On the one hand the talk about this reward and that reward "being an outrage" or "going too far" is absolutely and completely

 

A. Ridiculous

 

and

 

B. Entitled

 

If a stretch goal doesn't benefit you "This game sucks I am withdrawing my support."

 

If a reward doesn't apply to your tier "They are excluding me! I am withdrawing my support!"

 

They try to market the game to a wider audience through the use of reddit or facebook "This is not old school! They are selling out with their vision! I am withdrawing my support"

 

A meaningless aesthetic "pet" is added "I will only pay for the game if I get ALL of the content." Does that even qualify as content?

 

It all is just so obsurd at first glance and on a certain level it angers me. HOWEVER, taking a step back we all must remember. Publishers have done nothing but screw gamers over the past 5 or 6 years. Games have increasingly all converged towards a single look, style, and common denominator of gamers that we all feel betrayed and used. In addition the deceptive and sometimes almost criminal miss marketing of games has caused such a degree of distrust among gamers that it is difficult to believe the industry has not completely collapsed under its own weight. On this level I understand the impulse to jump to irrational conclusions at the slightest hint of this type of thing. The idea that they might actually fund an expansion with their own money, after the fact just seems code for DLC cut from the game. The completely arbitrary "pet" is far too similar to the dog, or extra oped equipment from any of the recent shamelessly marketed bioware games. I get it, I really do.

 

Just take a deep breath and think for a second as if you have not been ripped off 20 times over the past 5-8 years already. Does anything they have said honestly look like what the big publishers have done to us? No, no it does not. Calm down and try to remember Obsidian is not a publisher, but instead a poor developer that has very good, and not sinister, reasons for doing everything they have done so far. Innocent until proven guilty.

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I said this on another board, but it still rings true. Ten years ago, companies wouldn't cut characters out and sell them to you piecemeal. The cut content was just that - inconsequential. The BG2 Unfinished Business mod was nice to have, but didn't do much besides give you more dialogue with Suna Seni/Bodhi and the ability to create Boo clones. Nowadays, they cut lore-heavy characters like Javik out and sell it for $10 while the setup files (along with the pre-order/CE content) are on-disc. Recently, I've had people try to justify Shale ("(Download Content) Let me take a look.") and the on-disc Resident Evil 6 costumes.

 

Not that I'd like to justify cutting content just to act as a tie it to a single user copy protection.

But I could appreciate some "minor" DLC's as well.

 

Like a bunch of people seem to really want bard and paladin classes in game, let's assume they wont be in because it's a waste of effort and resources.

Then let's assume those could be included as DLC, together with a new full companion of each class. I'd be fine with it.

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Another sucky update. Guys, you guys suck too for sucking it.

 

I'm still excited for this game because it's probably just the PR guy being bananas. Seriously, why can't we just get information about the game and pledges that jumps the quality of the game in big increments?

 

Btw, don't defend ****ty tiers by saying "it does what it has to pull in money". We are gamers here, we want cool tiers that make a better game. Not a ****ing optional unfitting pet.

 

They should've just prepared this kickstarter better beforehand, might've gone way better, but hey, they made it atleast :).

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They should've just prepared this kickstarter better beforehand, might've gone way better, but hey, they made it atleast :).

 

Have you even seen how much cash they got? "they made it at least" ?

Silly troll.


Unobtrusively informing you about my new ebook (which you should feel free to read and shower with praise).

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Another sucky update. Guys, you guys suck too for sucking it.

 

I'm still excited for this game because it's probably just the PR guy being bananas. Seriously, why can't we just get information about the game and pledges that jumps the quality of the game in big increments?

 

Btw, don't defend ****ty tiers by saying "it does what it has to pull in money". We are gamers here, we want cool tiers that make a better game. Not a ****ing optional unfitting pet.

 

They should've just prepared this kickstarter better beforehand, might've gone way better, but hey, they made it atleast :).

 

given the way it's gone and what they were expecting, it's not that shocking. they thought they had a 50/50 chance of getting what they needed during the full length of the kickstarter, not getting it in basically a day. so it's kinda understandable that they didn't expect to need stretch goals.

 

on a different note, there's no need to be insulting. it doesn't do anything but irritate people. and that doesn't gain anyone anything.


Master Wetboy of the Obsidian Order of Eternity

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I guess I feel like the update should have given a bit more information about what access to the expansion pack truly meant. If people who have more money are getting access to it sooner than people who don't, then that's not particularly fair. I guess they probably don't mean that at all, but they didn't really clarify what they meant very well in their update so it leaves it open for misinterpretation. I for one would love to pledge enough to get the expansion too, but I lack the funds to get anything more than the base game unfortunately. That being said, if they are offering the expansion at a higher price then it would come out of the box and not giving it to people early they are also not really incentivising people to go for a higher tier either - so it works both ways. I don't think offering more will get the majority of people to increase their pledges either as by now I think most people will have offered what is within their means to give.

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on a different note, there's no need to be insulting. it doesn't do anything but irritate people. and that doesn't gain anyone anything.

 

You are right. Sorry. If anyone was offended by my rage post, I apologize. It was just that I read the new update and was very dissapointed and then I came to the forum and saw lots of people just writing it off. "They do what they have to do to get more money", no they are not, they are making bad assumptions about their userbase. We don't want pets or tacked on levels to a dungeon, we just want a solid good game and even hard as it may, they should create good stretch goals which really get you excited about the game and want to have in. But perhaps it's just me who thinks like that :).

 

Also wasteland 2 at 165? Seems pretty weird choice to me. Most want the cheapest "get the game" pledge so a 35-40 would've been more appropriate even though I think most RPG fans has already pledged for that game.

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Btw, don't defend ****ty tiers by saying "it does what it has to pull in money". We are gamers here, we want cool tiers that make a better game. Not a ****ing optional unfitting pet.

 

 

The problem isn't the pet, it's that certain tiers are excluded from having the pet. It is very similar to the bs publishers are pulling with pre-orders at various stores (ironic given Kickstarter's recent announcement that it is NOT a store). Exclusive content really is the kind of bs that needs to die in fire.

 

Give everyone the same content in game, what is so hard about that? Obsidian has a chance to make a great F'n game without the typical bs from publishers and they are pulling the same bs that publishers pull and further blurring the lines between Kickstarter and a pre-order store. :facepalm:

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Up front, I'm pledged on the game and that isn't going to change. That said, some of the recent announcements not only have me rolling my eyes, they have other "old school" RPG fans I know laughing at how stupid they seem. Asking for Facebook likes to get another dungeon level? Giving away Wasteland 2 now if you pledge above a certain amount? Promising an expansion to pledgers above a certain amount? How about they just focus on things that will expand PE, not other stuff like that?

 

Am I the only one who thinks they've gone a bit too far with this?

 

Likes are better than a stupid facebook flash game with in-game rewards for P:E.

Edited by DocDoomII

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on a different note, there's no need to be insulting. it doesn't do anything but irritate people. and that doesn't gain anyone anything.

 

You are right. Sorry. If anyone was offended by my rage post, I apologize. It was just that I read the new update and was very dissapointed and then I came to the forum and saw lots of people just writing it off. "They do what they have to do to get more money", no they are not, they are making bad assumptions about their userbase. We don't want pets or tacked on levels to a dungeon, we just want a solid good game and even hard as it may, they should create good stretch goals which really get you excited about the game and want to have in. But perhaps it's just me who thinks like that :).

 

Also wasteland 2 at 165? Seems pretty weird choice to me. Most want the cheapest "get the game" pledge so a 35-40 would've been more appropriate even though I think most RPG fans has already pledged for that game.

 

Stop using "we"?


1669_planescape_torment-prev.png


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on a different note, there's no need to be insulting. it doesn't do anything but irritate people. and that doesn't gain anyone anything.

 

You are right. Sorry. If anyone was offended by my rage post, I apologize. It was just that I read the new update and was very dissapointed and then I came to the forum and saw lots of people just writing it off. "They do what they have to do to get more money", no they are not, they are making bad assumptions about their userbase. We don't want pets or tacked on levels to a dungeon, we just want a solid good game and even hard as it may, they should create good stretch goals which really get you excited about the game and want to have in. But perhaps it's just me who thinks like that :).

 

Also wasteland 2 at 165? Seems pretty weird choice to me. Most want the cheapest "get the game" pledge so a 35-40 would've been more appropriate even though I think most RPG fans has already pledged for that game.

 

didn't upset me, just thought it was best to not have that get started in here was all.

 

part of why they added a pet was that a LOT of people did ask for it in the comments... i don't even know how many days ago. and there was a lot of buzz around it on there, so i guess they thought it would appeal to people. personally i think it's a nice gesture (everyone is getting a pet BTW, it's just that everyone over 50 is getting a unique KS one (comes from feargus... i don't even know how many days ago now)). doesn't do much, but it can add a little flavor.

 

on the stretch goals, they've been having a devil of a time with those. there's really just so much they can do with this kind of game. they can't add multiplayer, as no one wants it. they can't do... well a lot of things that have been done in other kickstarters, and i think within the constraints of a cRPG, they've done a fairly good job. but again, there's only so much that really CAN be done with it.

 

they aren't just doing what they can to get more money out of this, although that's part of it. they're trying to give people things that they think they actually want, and get whatever marketing out of it they can. there's always going to be people that aren't happy with stuff, but if they can hit with the majority, then that's a good thing. and overall, i think they have for the most part as seen by this being the highest pledge day since the 20th of september, both in amount (57k), and number of backers (830).

 

given how wasteland 2 happened to get added to this, (and i think it's partly again from the comments section about saying add another game, or say that you'll fund another game as a stretch goal), it's not really that big of a deal. as you said most of the people here have probably backed it, but i know a number of people that have been very thankful for it because they missed the kickstarter, and this lets them kill two birds with one stone. that new tier already has almost 200 backers at it, so some people must like it.

 

 

Btw, don't defend ****ty tiers by saying "it does what it has to pull in money". We are gamers here, we want cool tiers that make a better game. Not a ****ing optional unfitting pet.

 

 

The problem isn't the pet, it's that certain tiers are excluded from having the pet. It is very similar to the bs publishers are pulling with pre-orders at various stores (ironic given Kickstarter's recent announcement that it is NOT a store). Exclusive content really is the kind of bs that needs to die in fire.

 

Give everyone the same content in game, what is so hard about that? Obsidian has a chance to make a great F'n game without the typical bs from publishers and they are pulling the same bs that publishers pull and further blurring the lines between Kickstarter and a pre-order store. :facepalm:

 

how many of the kick starters promise additional stuff in game for backing? as far as i know, there hasn't been one that i've seen that didn't do that. in this case it's a pet (which everyone is getting, just the 50+ are getting a special one). no one is complaining about the special in game item that's been there since day one, or the backer only trait in wasteland 2. it's just part of the way things are not, but this is not doing it the same was as publishers and all of the bonus DLC stupidity. nothing in these will effect the balance of the game, this is just a way of saying thanks for helping us be able to make this, not a "give us moar moneyz and we'll give moar weapons!"


Master Wetboy of the Obsidian Order of Eternity

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Good to see a majority of responders are in the sensible camp rather than frothing at the mouth. Giving an expansion to higher tiers is a way to encourage people to up their pledges which then go to the base game, making a better game for everyone. Those who have already forked out an exorbitant amount to back the project get a little "Thankyou" in the form of not having to pay for the expansion. Those who can't afford to pay for those higher tiers will be able to purchase the expansion at a much more reasonable price when it is released.The assertion that they have "go too far" in doing this is hyperbolic stupidity.

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I agree with OP regarding the nature of stretch goals. While I am glad that better tiers are offered to high pledgers (it is only fair, in my opinion), I am concerned with the fact that, since the 2,2M USD stretch target, new goals have only been about game mechanisms and the introduction of "old school / hardcore" game features, instead of being about the story, the universe to explore.

 

Look at Shadowrun Returns and Wasteland 2 : the stretch goals were about expanding the universe (WL2), adding a full new city (SR:R), increasing the quality of writing (WL2, with the addition of Avelone to the design team), and more generally, making the game better.

 

Many are arguing the fact that mechanism are more appealing to potential or existing pledgers. I think, on the other hand, that storyline & universe stretch goals can also be pretty appealing. What about (just examples):

- Adding a long and intricate side-questline to the game, the kind of side quest that are almost as memorable as the main one

- Providing depth to a new city

- adding another region

- creating n NPCs that would have their own history, intricate dialogues, specific quests, the kind of well written and memorable NPCs

 

I do not mind having mechanics based stretch goals, as mechanisms are part of the game. I mind having the recent stretch goals being only about mechanisms.

 

Well, they are to post an update today, let us hope for the best.

Edited by Loki Ador

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I came to the forum and saw lots of people just writing it off. "They do what they have to do to get more money", no they are not, they are making bad assumptions about their userbase.

 

If anything, this Kickstarter is one of the most conservatively-built campaigns I've ever seen. They haven't built in stretch goals that are too far off from their current monetary amounts, which says to me that they've been planning this very carefully. I'm willing to bet they already had the basics of the story and several pieces of art planned out by the time they started this whole thing. If anything, they've made very good assumptions about their base. They know that the funding is already anted up, and anything else afterwards is just the gravy on top.

 

Look at it this way - people have been calling Bioware out for months, nay, years for failing to live up to the standards of their older works and being under the thumb (inadvertantly) of a larger corporate entity. Now we have a developer, free of corporate influence, that's raised enough to fund a game that is structured well enough to allow for future installments and expansions down the road (which is pretty much a fan's wet dream), and has some of the leaders in the RPG industry supporting it, and you have the audacity to say they're making "bad assumptions"? That's about the furthest thing from the truth.

 

We don't want pets or tacked on levels to a dungeon, we just want a solid good game and even hard as it may, they should create good stretch goals which really get you excited about the game and want to have in.

 

Plenty of people are excited about the new classes, additional companions and Adventurer's Hall. I know I'm excited to test out additional party members - it spurs replayability. Pets are said to be a cosmetic addition - it won't radically change the game.

 

Also, I'm fairly sure they've already weighed the cost-benefit to running a campaign to increase the "Endless Paths", either through Facebook or pledges. It doesn't take much money-wise to craft an extra floor of a dungeon per 2,500 extra backers.

 

You know, I kind of figured that there'd be less whining from people who either have no faith in what the developer is doing or are just so jaded that the concept of an independently-funded RPG with all the fixings is an impossible concept in 2012.

Edited by crazyrabbits
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I agree with OP regarding the nature of stretch goal. While I am glad that better tiers are offered to high pledger (it is only fair, in my opinion), I am concerned with the fact that, since the 2,2M USD stretch target, new goals have only been about game mechanisms and the introduction of "old school / hardcore" game features, instead of being about the story, the universe to explore.

 

Look at Shadowrun Returns and Wasteland 2 : the stretch goals were about expanding the universe (WL2), adding a full new city (SR:R), increasing the quality of writing (WL2, with the addition of Avelone to the design team), and more generally, making the game better.

 

Many are arguing the fact that mechanism are more appealing to potential or existing pledgers. I think, on the other hand, that storyline & universe stretch goals can also be pretty appealing. What about (just examples):

- Adding a long and intricate side-questline to the game, the kind of side quest that are almost as memorable as the main one

- Providing depth to a new city

- adding another region

- creating n NPCs that would have their own history, intricate dialogues, specific quests, the kind of well written and memorable NPCs

 

I do not mind having mechanics based stretch goals, as mechanisms are part of the game. I mind having the recent stretch goals being only about mechanisms.

 

Well, they are to post an update today. let us hope for the best.

 

basically with every stretchgoal they reach, the story additions and the game getting longer, side quests getting added, etc, is happening in addition to the mechanics based stuff. so that is happening. people have questioned feargus about that one repeatedly, and he's always had the same answer, more money=more story. it's really that simple.

 

there are also over 120 NPCs to be added by the backers at that particular tier, and the ones above it. someone said that they thought all of those would have a sidequest to go along with them, but having not gotten a direct quote on that one i can't really comment on it. but there are going to be more than that many NPCs running around the world.

 

but overall, the money going towards the game is not just hitting the goals, but hitting every other aspect of the game as well.


Master Wetboy of the Obsidian Order of Eternity

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Wow!! Totally pumped about the update! That's Fargo, man, helping out his buddies at Obsidian... and why did he do it? Because WL2 is his damn game. Because he can, no permision needed. Like a goddamn boss. :thumbsup:

 

Sweet that they're announcing their plans to build an expansion! It re-affirms their ongoing commitment to the project that they're going to continue to build further content beyond the completion of the core game. NWN (the original) had a great expansion pack ecosystem in it's Premium Modules program. They were fantastic, and I enjoy them greatly. I envision something like that augmenting the production of full expansions.

 

After all, without Atari/EA/Activision to hold them back, why not continue to build unique content for the game far into the future? Building a game financed in large part by themselves (on top of our backing) is enormously expensive. They can make the best of their investment by dedicating a small team to making this rich content years into the future. Not to mention, pending full information about the modding tools, they could easily contract the best of the community to build Premium Modules and asset packs for expansions and such. The sky's the limit!

 

I just really hope that the WL2 awards are gift-able, since a goodly chunk of the $165+ people probably already backed it! Like me :o

 

Oh, and Rasmudd, be serious... I suspect it's as simple as Fargo not wanting to give out fifteen-thousand free freaking licenses! Maybe consider that. It's incredibly generous of him to give anything to this project at all, and, of course, there is still the chance WL2 may not come to be (there are no guarantees in game development!). So the two studios have bonded over Kickstarter, and their fates and integrity are now woven together. For what it's worth, I hope both are wildly successful.

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You are right. Sorry. If anyone was offended by my rage post, I apologize. It was just that I read the new update and was very dissapointed and then I came to the forum and saw lots of people just writing it off. "They do what they have to do to get more money", no they are not, they are making bad assumptions about their userbase. We don't want pets or tacked on levels to a dungeon, we just want a solid good game and even hard as it may, they should create good stretch goals which really get you excited about the game and want to have in. But perhaps it's just me who thinks like that :).

Speak for yourself -- I do like the idea of a large dungeon. In fact, they specifically made a thread in the announcements forum to ask what people want for stretch goals and they've implemented some of the things the things people suggested. If you do not like their stretch goals, that would be the place to suggest the ones you want.

 

And I think their assumptions about their base have been pretty good -- they might have alienated a small number of people, but the overall collection rate tends to increase when they make an announcement.

 

Also wasteland 2 at 165? Seems pretty weird choice to me. Most want the cheapest "get the game" pledge so a 35-40 would've been more appropriate even though I think most RPG fans has already pledged for that game.

Wasteland 2 is not theirs to give away to tends of thousands of people so they've deliberately put it at a tier where only 1-2 thousand will get it.

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Too far is:

-2 Day One DLC (10 bucks each if you don't buy collector edition)

-10 different single item preorders

-Facebook flash game with ingame items(1-3 usually)

-Bonus item(!) for X likes on facebook

-DLC item packs for 10 bucks

-Skin packs for far too much $

 

 

I'd say that:

20k likes on facebook for an entire dungeon level

An entire dungeon level for each 2.5k backers

Expansion pack (not day one DLC, but a big chunk of content)

Wasteland 2

 

seem much more consistent and appealing rewards, that don't require you to spin your head over 10 different retailer to see what bonus you want to get or to do solly thing like play a social flash game that requires real time turn base combat or to have a ****load of friends to gain little bonuses.

Edited by DocDoomII
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