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Pillars of Eternity – Partnership FAQ for Backers


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When I backed for a boxed copy I was expecting an old school box like the IE games. Will that be the case, or will we receive DVD cases? Thanks!

 

Also the min wage in NZ is $11 so I don't get all the "fair prices" bull.

We are currently talking about the package design. Once we have the final details we will let everyone know.

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Let's not start the "someone is forcing Obsidian to make DLC" talk.

 

 

No one was...

 

You said you were uneasy about the partnership with Paradox because of how Paradox has handled DLC in their games. The only reason to be uneasy about such a thing is if you think that Paradox would have some influence on the DLC creation for Eternity.

 

 

You are correct in your statement. However do we really need to go over the differences between 'influence' and 'forcing'?

 

They are marketing.

 

Come on, dude.

 

Is it really that important that there be a Big Bad for you to rally against?

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This partnership actually puts Obsidian in a better position to create more Eternity content (DLC/Sequels).

 

DLC is one the thing that has me a little uneasy about the partnership with Paradox. Only because they have taken to the nickel and diming DLC marketing/additional content strategy for some of their titles in the last couple of years (which has diminished my opinion of them), notably in their Europa Universalis and Crusader Kings franchises. Another strike against Paradox is that they also forced some of their Crusader Kings 2 customers to go to Steam, something they had previously assured their fan base would not happen (something that greatly diminished my opinion of them). I very much hope Obsidian doesn't go that route.

 

On the bright side:

 

I now hope to see commercials of the quality we saw for Crusader Kings 2.

 

DLC was a misnomer on my part. We aren't releasing small chunks of content. We will be doing a full fledged expansion on par with how CRPGs used to release expansions. The partnership with Paradox does nothing to change any of that.

 

Keep in mind that Obsidian still fully controls the IP and is the main driver for any content going forward. We will make sure we do right by our community.

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Ah ok. I suspect the keys for the general public will be either 1) Steam and 2) GoG. I don't see why Steam and GoG wouldn't be selling the game on their own platforms. Possibly 3) Paradox to offer a choice to redeem at either GoG or Steam.

Option (3) would be the best, but it would be a change from Paradox's current Steam-only distribution policy.

 

Obsidian's announcement says that Paradox would be dealing with all distribution, which means it would be solely up to them which stores (physical or digital) could sell copies of Pillars.

 

We will still be selling the game through Steam and GOG like we had planned previously.

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Just physical distribution (and marketing) then? No chance of our game becoming steam-exclusive in the middle of it's lifespan like other Paradox titles?

No chance. We will still be delivering everything we promised to our backers.

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Sounds like a good deal overall.

Just throwing my tupenny in for a 'all future PoE-ness will also be available DRM-free on GOG' request for some degree of certainty.

(edit: Confirmed that this release will, of course, be as promised to backers - just wanting to make sure that it's also going to be true for future releases (expansion, PoE2 et al) - as far as such assurances are possible).

 

Sounds like the deal will mean extra sales though so that can only be a good thing for the future of PoE :)

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We are currently talking about the package design. Once we have the final details we will let everyone know.

 

 

Hi Brandon. Just something out of my own personal curiosity. Do developers like Obsidian normally design the box covers of your titles or do you let the publisher do that? Or is a collaborative effort. Some of the box covers have been quite good in the past.

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Let's not start the "someone is forcing Obsidian to make DLC" talk.

 

 

No one was...

 

You said you were uneasy about the partnership with Paradox because of how Paradox has handled DLC in their games. The only reason to be uneasy about such a thing is if you think that Paradox would have some influence on the DLC creation for Eternity.

 

 

You are correct in your statement. However do we really need to go over the differences between 'influence' and 'forcing'?

 

They are marketing.

 

Come on, dude.

 

Is it really that important that there be a Big Bad for you to rally against?

 

Just to nip all of this in the bud, nobody is forcing Obsidian's hand here. We have chosen to partner with Paradox because we truly feel it is the best for the game and our community. Having them do the marketing and distribution will be a huge weight off of the development team and will allow us to focus more resources on the game's creation. Obsidian is still in control of Eternity's future and how we choose to make content after it is released.

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Sounds like a good deal overall.

Just throwing my tupenny in for a 'all future PoE-ness will also be available DRM-free on GOG' request for some degree of certainty.

(edit: Confirmed that this release will, of course, be as promised to backers - just wanting to make sure that it's also going to be true for future releases (expansion, PoE2 et al) - as far as such assurances are possible).

 

Sounds like the deal will mean extra sales though so that can only be a good thing for the future of PoE :)

I can't predict the future, but I can't imagine why we wouldn't release a DRM-free version in future releases. If people want a DRM-free option we will likely provide one. I mean, the more platforms we can sell the game on, the better, right?

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We are currently talking about the package design. Once we have the final details we will let everyone know.

 

 

Hi Brandon. Just something out of my own personal curiosity. Do developers like Obsidian normally design the box covers of your titles or do you let the publisher do that? Or is a collaborative effort. Some of the box covers have been quite good in the past.

 

It depends on the title, the developer, and the publisher.

 

On Storm of Zehir, for example, we did the box art. On other games we have put out, it was done by the publisher. Some games required a lot of back and forth collaboration. For Eternity, we are still deciding how we want to handle it. We would love to have Kaz or Rob create the box art, but it is a very time consuming process. It will likely be a collaboration between both companies.

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There's probably some nervousness due to the experience of CDPR and Namco-Bandai regarding The Witcher 2, what a farce that was. In that light, having someone jump in early and answer questions clearly and concisely is just what was needed - even when the answer is "we don't know yet". Too often other developers just respond with conspicuous silence.

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L I E S T R O N G
L I V E W R O N G

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I get the impression some people didn't read your opening post.

Well, I know it can be a confusing issue. Luckily, since not much is changing on the development front (other than more focus on the game), it is easy for me to answer most of the questions. ;)

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There's probably some nervousness due to the experience of CDPR and Namco-Bandai regarding The Witcher 2, what a farce that was. In that light, having someone jump in early and answer questions clearly and concisely is just what was needed - even when the answer is "we don't know yet". Too often other developers just respond with conspicuous silence.

We don't know yet.

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This is great news because Paradox has a long time experience with PC AND also have their own internal studio making awsome strategies games for a niche genre today.

 

As for the DLC i can not aggree with some people before. The DLC model for Crusader kings 2 or the latest Europa universalis wasnt preventing you from getting full advantage of the game. If you did not buy the DLC you still had some features from them coming freely with each patch. The best exemple is the next big DLC for Crusader Kings 2 which will also expand the game map featuring india and ural steppes for those that wont buy this dlc.

 

What do you expect from a studio, to make free games? When they have a good franchise, and when they can expand on it with new features and ideas, its a lot of work behind, and it is worth those DLC price. Also Paradox are known to be very good listeners of their community, each game from them is a true improvement on the previous ones.

I do agree that the cosmetic DLC graphic/music packs are pricey compared to the added value in game, but i dont care since you dont need them to enjoy the game and i get them all just to support this company.

 

So the DLC model of paradox is fine for me and dont worry me at all, since i know that when they make a major DLC, even if you dont want to get it it also mean major improvement for the game that will come for free with the DLC release.

 

On a side note about steam, recently i was also a bit surprised they discontinue support of Crusader kings 2 on digital distribution sites like Gamersgate, focusing only on Steam, but they explained why on their forum and it makes perfect sense. This steam bashing which is almost 10 years old, is indeed very old ;)

was a steam basher when steam launched, now i changed my mind ;)

 

ps : forgive my english

Edited by vahadar
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Just so everyone is aware, I won't be answering any more questions tonight (Diablo III has a new patch and I want to check out the changes ;)), but I will take a look through the thread in the morning and answer anything that comes up.

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With Paradox on board, how much input will they have into the EULA for PoE?

 

I normally refuse to purchase Paradox games because their EULA terms give them the ability to summon me across an ocean to appear in a court that normally would not have any jurisdiction over me.  Never going to happen (for both financial and other reasons), thus I have games that I purchased in bundles sitting in my Steam account (don't get me started on them, either) that will never be played because of their EULAs.  Essentially, Paradox titles are wasted money for me.

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At this point in time, would you know if activation of the physical copies both (a) non-backer copies and (b) backer copies will require Steam?  I assume Paradox will also cover distribution of backer copies.

 

While the information may not be on hand right now, I have a feeling it would be a good idea to add in a pre-release FAQ, given people's experiences with recent releases.  Mostly with regards to non-backer physical copies, e.g., does it require uPlay, does it require Origin, does it require Steam, is it one-time activation, are you redirected to an Obsidian portal to choose which one to take ownership.

 

I'm sorry, I was generally the FAQ-maker at work so it's a hard habit to break.

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I am ok with this mostly because Paradox is my favorite publisher.

The area between the balls and the butt is a hotbed of terrorist activity.

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I understand that this is probably not something you can really answer, but I'd like to know how this will affect profits. As it was up until know, Obsidian would receive all the profit, but now that Paradox is involved, that obviously won't be true. I'm not asking for percentages on how this will be split, but I would like to know how this will affect the scope, size, and resources available to the expansion pack and potential sequels. 

 

This partnership actually puts Obsidian in a better position to create more Eternity content (DLC/Sequels).

 

 

That's excellent.

Just for the sake of PoE sequel(s) (but not only) I hope the future's so bright, you all have to wear shades.

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We will be providing both Steam and GOG digital versions of Eternity. The GOG version is still going to be released. The partnership with Paradox has not changed anything we have promised to our backers.

Thanks for that - as long as the general public have the option of DRM-free that's fine with me. :)

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I'm not happy at all about that partnership, and all italians backers shouldn't be happy: if you check the list of the games published by Paradox Interactive in tha last years you'll find that the publisher has very little interest in italian market. I would have liked to buy many of these games (Crusader Kings II, Europa Universalis IV, etc) but even if I'm able to play in english I choosed not to buy them due to the lack of attention to italian customer. So, I think that definitely we'll not have any italian translation. I'm very disappointed. I hope I'm wrong... :(

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http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2014-03-19-paradox-and-obsidian-we-both-know-theres-no-bs
 



Paradox and Obsidian spoke frankly to Eurogamer at GDC yesterday about their Pillars of Eternity partnership.
 
"What we both know is there's no BS," Obsidian boss Feargus Urquhart said.
 
"A lot of publisher handling is just relationship management. It's asking what's going on, it's handling that relationship, everybody patting everybody on the back and burping them.
 
"I feel like I could just call Paradox and say - excuse my language here - 'What the f***?!' I probably never would, but we could have a quick conversation about a situation and not do this dance. And that's great."
 
Paradox boss Fredrik Wester agreed. "It's a personal relationship that I feel works. This is not like our first awkward date. We've both been in the industry for a while, we know the ups and downs. We've both had some failures, both had some successes. We've both released some buggy games in the past and now we both want to release a really great gaming experience.
 
"Two or three years ago we had to publish games we couldn't really stand behind and that damaged our reputation, because we needed the cashflow," Wester added. "Now we're in a totally different position.
 
"If we don't think Pillars of Eternity is up to standard, we're going to tell these guys. And we're opinionated people, we're going to come back with tons of opinions. We have a QA team of eighteen people who're going to play the game for weeks and weeks and give their feedback."
 
Paradox's role in marketing, distributing, testing and supporting the game - as well as fulfilling backer rewards - will allow Obsidian, and the budget, to concentrate on the game.
 
That's not to say Paradox is doing all of this out of the kindness of its heart.
 
"There's always a financial upside in a partnership like this," Wester said. "You should never lie about that. You take a risk by investing your money, your time and your QA resources, but we think this game deserves to be played by a lot of people.
 
"[Obsidian] is probably the most prestigious developer we've ever worked with. It shows that we can do games not just with smaller developers, but we can work with larger developers too. Experienced developers who really know what they're doing."
 
The partnership raises the possibility of boxed versions and special editions of the game, although "nothing is set in stone yet", Wester said.
 
There's the possibility the pair may go on to work together past Pillars of Eternity as well. The two companies - and men - clearly see eye-to-eye.
 
"In our industry, it's our job to get along with people," Urquhart said. "But having said that, after this we're going to go out and hang."

 
 
The mention of "boxed versions and special editions" as something that's not a sure thing makes me think Paradox might be taking a cut off the digital release of the game as well.

Edited by Infinitron
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