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Norfolk nChance

Idea: Dreadnought EA Easier build road map

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@Nick Thomadis

 

Idea: Dreadnought EA Easier build road map

Short version at the Bottom...

 

Main Problem is always cash...

Please take this as intended and not trying to tell you how your business works. I’ve NO qualification in Games Development, just my own personal entertainment. However, I do look at an awful lot of businesses in all shapes and sizes. Project Development and working concepts no matter how good the end idea or talented the man power all struggle with the same issues. Irregular cash flows that make it hard to model future cost allocation planning.

 

Average length a STEAM game remains in Early Access?

https://steamcommunity.com/discussions/forum/12/618459109270033202/

This article actually tells us nothing at all. However, my un-qualified guess actual was 3 to 5 years what was yours? I don’t know if STEAM looks deeply into its EA launches, I’d hope it does and not just slapping a warning label on the front.

 

NA-OW Problem...

Naval Action [NA-OW] shows STEAM release Jan21’16. I joined in the March’16 paying HKD300 about USD40.00. By mid-2017 I noticed an issue and others also in the forum hinted the same. We want to give extra funding to the small Dev team for this worthwhile project but can’t. A one-off one-time payment in return for un-restricted life time access to the MMO. That is the worse business model imaginable.

The [NA-OW] cashflow each month needs to find a brand-new customer with USD40.00. Its current CUSTOMERs are worthless other than for feedback not cash. ALTs were the only means to provide them with extra money from existing customers.

https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=917654264

This ALT usage wasn’t encouraged either. Moving forward to present [NA-OW] now offers four very different DLC packages. These packages when used together actually allow the solo player to use them like an ALT-Lite. Current to buy all DLCs costs HKD293 or USD37.00 or slightly cheaper than buying a brand-new account. This wasn’t coincidental. However, @Jean Ribault explains this next part much better than I...

I appreciate the fact that you recognize some of my views on the subject.  But I don't really condone the DLC approach either, in the context of game purity.  While bypassing the ALT purchase to go the DLC route might in appearance produce the same result in a more legitimate manner, let me equate it to this situation: in one [U.S.] state it is illegal to purchase or consume marijuana, and in other state it is legal for medicinal purposes, but in either case you get the same result from extended use... your genitals shrink and you experience memory loss.  (...and you enjoy yourself in the meantime)...  Even if in one state the consumption is legit, and one it is not, the results are still similar for your body.

Its (ALT) still viewed as not playing within the context of the game. This I personally don’t agree with, but it is a fair and legitimate point. This rolls on to a lot of negative posts on STEAM. The one outstanding complaint is Game-Labs should not be selling DLC products on an Early Access Game.

This unfortunately I agree with, but revenue needs to come from somewhere. Damned if you do damned if you don’t...

 

My EA with ARMA III

A few years back I bought ARMA 2 UK Forces PACK. Really enjoyed it and the Developer blog ride along. I was hopeless at the game even so. When the ARMA III early access was offered I bought the top package Deluxe Edition because I thought it was worthwhile cost was USD50.00 and to help. It was well worth the ride and sure enough post launch the DLCs started.

It was a great experience from a large Dev House and with already existing platform. A layup shot if there was ever one...

In all seriousness with [NA-OW] as of today Sep’18 and 4,000 hours in-game how much should I have paid? Even with the ALT purchase $80 peanuts to what cost [EvE] or the average player spend in [WoWs]. This is all ret-erect with NA-OW too far down the development road now. Would this idea below be feasible or work or provide an easier path to complication...?

 

Idea: Dreadnought Early Access Road-Map

When it’s at the STEAM EA stage targeting 3 to 5 years to launch (which is stated). Game-Labs needs to leverage of the existing Platforms, Customers and People. Take a more pragmatic and in touch approach with the third Game-Labs development title.

The first customer target audience is older than the average Gamer and is an existing Game-Labs product owner. They are willing to invest and even stay with a project understanding the difficult process, to an extent. This much more than the younger gamer with less disposal able income.

GL are a small boutique Dev house and publisher that punches way above its weight. The company can deliver the detailed product with passion our customers expect. This wasn’t all smooth sailing which GL learned from these mistakes...

 

 

Early Access Cost is structured like this on STEAM...

A fixed six-month contract of USD3.40per month that then rolls monthly. At the end of each 6-month period BLING given. If the player sticks with the full twelve months their total cost USD40.20 per year. The earliest break at 6-month USD20.40...

This first six months collection by Valve needs to lock USD20.40 at the start that’s then paid through STEAM to Game-Labs. This helps [GL] and the customer still sees the money in their account even though its locked. Valve gain sitting on the interest earned from the locked deposits...

Game-Labs can forecast cashflow much better than before and if extra finance is needed its an easier sell rather than periodic spurts. Staff allocations and factoring become more routine...

 

Risk of not Rolling Forward...

The risk of a customer cancelling that monthly roll is the focus. Keeping in touch with smaller but more timed updates like the 15th of every month rather than big patches then a gap. Get an English-speaking Developer to do monthly Dev blog updates YouTube. Not company secrets but how the game is doing...

This is customer retention before the game is even close to competition. This is different from before with sell them one product and forget them. Player retention growth revolves around the USD3.50 monthly fee with build targets laid in.

 

Summary

Just take it with a pinch of salt from an unqualified player. The ability of the idea would it help GL in developing a game in both speed and funds flow? The best customer you have is the one who has already given you cash don’t let him go...

The UG and NA-OW community are very loyal and a valued asset that needs managing as well...

 

The Games UG & NA are brilliant and prove you can do it.

 

Norfolk nChance [ELITE]

 

Sort Version

Change the funding for the next project to monthly that rolls. Helps with even cashflow that makes future planning more realistic. Retain the Customer from day 1 and focus on retention very early on in development with communications and timed updates...

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You identified the problem very well and your general suggestion to remedy itwith monthly income is good. The solution however would probably kill NA community. Instead of offering the game for a monthly fee, you can offer a game like right now, and then offer a set of premium features for a monthly fee - eg. some extra warehouse slots (as alts give this already), some premium visuals, some discounts for LH for crafting etc - something that saves players some time and hassle. 

Edited by vazco
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5 hours ago, vazco said:

You identified the problem very well and your general suggestion to remedy itwith monthly income is good. The solution however would probably kill NA community. Instead of offering the game for a monthly fee, you can offer a game like right now, and then offer a set of premium features for a monthly fee - eg. some extra warehouse slots (as alts give this already), some premium visuals, some discounts for LH for crafting etc - something that saves players some time and hassle. 

Thanks for the reply,

Nice Idea and a great twist for NA-OW I’d never even considered. Very cool.

The third title if it became Dreadnought then the monthly roll and closer customer contact from this early stage would give the project a real boost in my opinion

 

 

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