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El Quintron
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THQ Over.

Some updates about THQ going out:

»kotaku.com/5978429/this-is-the-l···s-today/

»kotaku.com/5978425/thq-is-gettin···we-know/


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Krisnatharok
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That sucks, they raised nearly $72 million through the auction. It's becoming increasingly hard to make AAA games, from a combination of rising fan expectations (they damn well want to feel like they are in the middle of a movie starring them) and investor demand of a business model that can turn a profit.

Gone forever are the good ole days of free content updates--everything has been monetized. Dead Space 3 will even let you pay to upgrade your stats.

That said, thank god for Kickstarter.
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El Quintron
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said by Krisnatharok:

It's becoming increasingly hard to make AAA games, from a combination of rising fan expectations (they damn well want to feel like they are in the middle of a movie starring them) and investor demand of a business model that can turn a profit.

Gone forever are the good ole days of free content updates--everything has been monetized. Dead Space 3 will even let you pay to upgrade your stats.

You've hit both ends of the spectrum. I'd like to see a lot less crass monetization like the situation you just mentioned in DS3, but at the same time I think it isn't really reasonable to expect that every time you put down $60 you're getting a 100+ hours of entertainment.

Maybe a better deal would be a ~$40 price point for a new PC game with modding encouraged as a standard... I'm throwing this out there, because even as an ex-creative I don't have a concrete financial system that works if I did I might still be in that field.

said by Krisnatharok:

That said, thank god for Kickstarter.

I think Kickstarter is going to end risk aversion in creative industries simply because Kickstarter makes it so that you don't have to guarantee a return, which will bring a lot more variety, and a lot of different artistic styles, and new game types.

Kickstarter is definitely going to unlock some serious potential.

EQ
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pnjunction
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Is it just me that is not so rosy optimistic on Kickstarter? I see the potential in crowd-sourced funding but I'll believe that it can pull off big projects when I see it happen.

Has anything big been successfully funded, produced and distributed yet from there?

I personally think the complete lack of protection for investors is going to leave people 'twice bitten once shy' after a few of these big projects flop (or turn out to be scams) and suck their money down a black hole.



El Quintron
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said by pnjunction:

Is it just me that is not so rosy optimistic on Kickstarter? I see the potential in crowd-sourced funding but I'll believe that it can pull off big projects when I see it happen.

Has anything big been successfully funded, produced and distributed yet from there?

I personally think the complete lack of protection for investors is going to leave people 'twice bitten once shy' after a few of these big projects flop (or turn out to be scams) and suck their money down a black hole.

Realistically speaking, must companies/entrepreneurs "flop" in their first incarnation. So you should regard your participation in Kickstarter as a form of high-risk venture capitalism.

One of the benefits of Kickstarter is that people want to see a project come to light regardless of its long term financial viability, so by removing risk aversion you're also inviting money-drainers that people like for emotional or intellectual reasons, who's benefits are not strictly financial.

I'm not saying all Kickstarters are one-ofs but the reason it exists is so that projects who couldn't get financing, or project owners that want direct financing from the end users get to try something different.
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Goggalor
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reply to El Quintron

said by El Quintron:

You've hit both ends of the spectrum. I'd like to see a lot less crass monetization like the situation you just mentioned in DS3, but at the same time I think it isn't really reasonable to expect that every time you put down $60 you're getting a 100+ hours of entertainment.

Part of the problem with the video game industry is that feeling that games should be giving you that much entertainment for such a small price. Compare other entertainment options available (movies!) to a person and you will find that, dollar for dollar, gaming is one of the better, if not best, returns on investment when a game gives you even 20 hours of entertainment.
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Nightfall
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said by Goggalor:

said by El Quintron:

You've hit both ends of the spectrum. I'd like to see a lot less crass monetization like the situation you just mentioned in DS3, but at the same time I think it isn't really reasonable to expect that every time you put down $60 you're getting a 100+ hours of entertainment.

Part of the problem with the video game industry is that feeling that games should be giving you that much entertainment for such a small price. Compare other entertainment options available (movies!) to a person and you will find that, dollar for dollar, gaming is one of the better, if not best, returns on investment when a game gives you even 20 hours of entertainment.

I have to agree. People flock to movies and pay top dollar for 2 hours of entertainment. For $50 I bought Dead Space 2 and played that for 15 hours my first play through. Even if I just stopped playing at that point, thats about $3.33 per hour. As compared to a non-Imax movie even at mid-day pricing with no snacks which is about $10 which is $5 per hour. You go to an Imax or a later movie and you bring a friend and its much more.

Then you have going out to the bar, where drinking and eating can be even more costly.

I think not only the industry needs to put a fair price on a game, but consumers need to have fair expectations. Less than 2% of games are going to give you 100+ hours of play time for $50 and still hold your interest.
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jester121
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Plus you've got people like me who are TERRIBLE at most games, so we get even more hours of enjoyment for our $60.



I AM
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reply to Nightfall

Yeah. I agree. But my wife wouldn't enjoy playing a game thus why we are watching a movie.



Nightfall
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said by I AM:

Yeah. I agree. But my wife wouldn't enjoy playing a game thus why we are watching a movie.

Well, sex is also part of the reason why you are watching that movie.
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Snakeoil
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reply to El Quintron

quote:
but at the same time I think it isn't really reasonable to expect that every time you put down $60 you're getting a 100+ hours of entertainment.

I would at least like 15 to 20 hours of entertainment for my 100 bucks.

quote:
Maybe a better deal would be a ~$40 price point

I would be over joyed with the price of games dropping with in the 30 to 40 buck range. Currently it seems that as soon as you buy a 60/70 collectors edition of the game, there is DLC already available for the low, low, low price of 5 bucks. I recall how that was the case with Mass Effect 3. Why the hell would a company want to have a paid DLC available on the same day the game released? Except to get even more money from the Customer.

Which is why I'll buy used games, and seldom, if ever pay for DLC.
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I AM
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reply to Nightfall

Sorry bro. I practice abstinence.



Nightfall
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said by I AM:

Sorry bro. I practice abstinence.

What a coincidence! I am married too and I do the same thing.
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I AM
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Yeah man. Thoughts of children can be scary.


Chuck_IV

join:2003-11-18
Connecticut
reply to El Quintron

The problem I see is similar to what Krisnatharok mentioned. It seem like everyone wants over the top visuals no matter what and I think that is what is costing too much time and money for developers these days.

I can't tell you how many times that when I see things posted about a game, the first thing I read is "this game looks like "sh*t. I'm not gonna touch it if it looks like that". I just wanna smack those people upside the head when I read that.

What happened to the desire for FUN gameplay? I am more than willing to sacrifice on the graphics side if the game is FUN.

Unfortunately for developers, I don't think too many people think like me anymore.



El Quintron
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said by Chuck_IV:

What happened to the desire for FUN gameplay? I am more than willing to sacrifice on the graphics side if the game is FUN.

I think both TF2 and Minecraft show that a lot of people agree with your statement.

said by Chuck_IV:

Unfortunately for developers, I don't think too many people think like me anymore.

I think thanks to projects like Kickstarter, GOG, and Steam greenlight will provide lots for developpers, but "big content" on the games side needs a bit of a shake up.
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Phantasee

join:2009-08-27
Hammond, LA
reply to El Quintron

I agree with gameplay over graphics. I have some "Halo friends" that sicken me with their ZOMG GRAFIX bro parties. All while controlling a jagged master chef on an xbawx



Ghastlyone
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said by Phantasee:

I agree with gameplay over graphics. I have some "Halo friends" that sicken me with their ZOMG GRAFIX bro parties. All while controlling a jagged master chef on an xbawx

I heard master chef can cook up a royal ass whoopin' in Halo 4.


shinjuru
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reply to El Quintron

The main story link is at »www.businesswire.com/news/home/2···operties

said by BusinessWire :

The $6.55 million sale of the IP assets breaks down as follows:

•$4.9 million from Nordic Games Licensing AB, a Swedish-based video games publisher, for Darksiders, Red Faction, MX vs ATV, Other Owned Software (includes Destroy all Humans!, Summoner and more), and Other Licensed Software (includes Marvel Super Hero Squad, Supreme Commander and more);
•$1.35 million from Gearbox Software, LLC, a Plano, Tex.-based developer of interactive entertainment, for Homeworld; and
• $.3 million from 505 Games Srl, an Italian video game publisher, for Drawn to Life and Drawn to Life: The Next Chapter.

The company expects the Bankruptcy Court to hear the sales motions on May 13, 2013 and to finalize the sale transactions thereafter.

On April 18, the company filed its Chapter 11 Plan of Liquidation and Disclosure Statement with the Court. The Plan outlines how certain classes of claims will be satisfied. Once the Court approves the Disclosure Statement, voting on the Plan by certain impaired classes will commence. Both documents are available for review online at www.kccllc.net/thq.

THQ and its domestic business units filed voluntary petitions under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware on Dec. 19, 2012.

For additional information about THQ, please visit »www.thq.com. For information regarding the Chapter 11 case, please visit »www.kccllc.net/thq.


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shinjuru
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Click for full size


El Quintron
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I'm glad Gearbox got in on this, I think they'll do good Homeworld, I think Nordic is another good one, but that's pure speculation on my part.
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shinjuru
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THQ owed quite a bit, it seems.

»www.polygon.com/2013/4/26/425754···emasters

said by www.polygon.com :

Included among the claimants are companies like Microsoft, who registered a claim with the court for $213,772 in licensing fees for third-party peripherals and $888,652 for financing fees; UFC parent company Zuffa, LLC for $1.9 million in unpaid royalty fees; and Codemasters, which is seeking $1 million in unpaid royalties and stock on Dirt 3, Bodycount, F1 2011 and other titles.

Double Fine Productions, creators of THQ-published games Stacking and Costume Quest, is seeking $595,000 in royalties related to the sale of those games and money owed for PlayStation Plus promotions.

Tattoo artist Christopher Escobedo is listed among the claimants. His representation claims he's owed $4.16 million as part of a copyright infringement suit filed last November over the inclusion of a tattoo he created, which appears on UFC fighter Carlos Condit in UFC Undisputed 3


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El Quintron
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said by shinjuru:

THQ owed quite a bit, it seems.

No kidding!

I was floored after reading that.
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Snakeoil
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reply to shinjuru

Damn, Darksiders and Red Faction? I hope someone continues the series.
But then again, maybe they should just let it die?


me1212

join:2008-11-20
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reply to El Quintron

I think the largest part of why they failed(and why others may be on shaky ground) is how freaking much it costs to develop an AAA game now. I mean I looked earlier this week and the cost to license unreal engine is far far more than I thought it would be. I can only imagine how much epic spent to actually make it, although I do wonder how much of it was "wasted" money, form like scrapping work/code and going a new route same with the cost of making a game. Seriously millions upon millions, sometimes hundreds of millions, of dollars just to make one game!? I really wonder how much it cost ID to make the wolf3D, Doom, Quake, Quake2, Quake3, and Doom3 engines, as well as their respective games, compared to IDTech5 and Rage.

Probably the nice graphics are a large part of the cost, possibly the largest, still seems like a lot. I'd like to know how much CDPR spent on TW2 and its amazing graphics and engine's developments. I know most of us here don't care that much about graphics, especially since with mods we can get custom texture packs, but the graphics whores, who for some bizarre reason are usually console players, bitch and moan when they don't get the best looking game ever so far it seems like. Still, I don't think even with the high costs it makes it right for the companies to monetize every little thing, we payed for the game already I can understand expansion pack DLCs, but their nickle and dimeing it getting waaaay out of hand.

If companies put out a free, or even cheap/inexpensive, modkit I can't help but think they may do better in sales. With mods we can get a LOT more enjoyment and playtime out of a game, and that, at least in my eyes, makes me feel more comfortable buying a game thats more expensive/not on sale.

I do think kickstarter, and stuff like that, can and will help. Especially with indie games. Granted I may be biased there since me and another CS major friend of mine, and an artist friend of ours, just decided to start work on our own indie game.


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There were some great games on that list. Even some smaller ones I didn't realize were them (ie you don't know jack).

I remember watching a video interview with a developer and he basically felt they were always one game away from bankruptcy given the financial risks it takes to make such games.



Savious
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reply to shinjuru

Red Faction was awesome. Armageddon was a great game.



TigerLord
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reply to El Quintron

Out of all this list, only a few games stand out and were true commercial successes. "All Star Karate"? Seriously?

CDPR has shown that even small studios can dash out quality games. If these folks can do it, why couldn't THQ?



puppy

join:2010-01-28
reply to El Quintron

When studios realize we want good play in our games and not focus 90% of the budget on the next gen graphics is when they can cut some of these costs down and be profitable again. This is why indie studios can do it, ala Torchlight.



El Quintron
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said by me1212:

I think the largest part of why they failed(and why others may be on shaky ground) is how freaking much it costs to develop an AAA game now. I mean I looked earlier this week and the cost to license unreal engine is far far more than I thought it would be.

(snip)

I'd like to know how much CDPR spent on TW2 and its amazing graphics and engine's developments.

I'm glad you brought both of those things up.

Using a 3rd party engine is fine if you're going to developp a game or two, but otherwise the licensing costs are going to eat you alive, so if you plan on operating in the long term then you're much better off with your own engine than renting someone else's.

CDPR developped their own engine for TW2:

said by wikipedia :
CD Projekt RED developed their own engine for the game, unlike the first installment which ran on a modified version of BioWare's Aurora Engine. The game also incorporates the Havok physics engine.

Speaking of CDPR:

Their offices are in Poland, so I'm sure they're making off pretty good on the exchange with reduced operating costs. This isn't to say that they're not producing good games, but they've setup up their company intelligently, which allows them to take more risks as well, so the comparison to THQ may not be entirely fair to THQ.
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