Author Topic: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project  (Read 58939 times)

Fenrir

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #45 on: September 04, 2010, 05:16:13 PM »
who hasn't fantasized about breaking windows and taking things?
That would be me.

In the end, it doesn't really matter. If it was the "shock factor", it sure as Hel won't make a difference to me, since I wouldn't make a serial-killer simulation anyway. If it was anything else, it isn't news to us, since we know that originality and skilled marketing are good, or, at least, they don't hurt.

Skeletor

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #46 on: September 06, 2010, 07:15:15 AM »
Marketing is for commercial games. Want success in roguelike scene? Just make a good game and watch it go skyrocket. The simple truth is that most of the new roguelikes are not that good. Games that are good will be found by the players who know what they want. You can't sell any crap to hardcore players! They are not going to buy it, no matter how hard you advertise it. One of the success stories is Dwarf Fortress and I remember how it appeared from nowhere. No marketing bullshit was ever needed to make it a hit for those people who were attracted to it.

I fully agree.
What I enjoy the most in roguelikes: Anti-Farming and Mac Givering my way out. Kind of what I also enjoy in life.

Rya.Reisender

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #47 on: September 06, 2010, 10:05:32 AM »
I don't think that game quality is one of the main aspects of a game being successful.

I can make the most original and fun roguelike ever made, if I only tell my friends about it, there will be hardly any feedback.
The opposite also exists, I can make a rather average roguelike but advertise it like crazy and it will become rather successful.
Alone a roguelike being released on let's say XBLA, would make it a lot more popular than if the same roguelike was released for PC.

I mean there are hundreds of really amazing games that everyone who played them liked and that are still rather unknown.

orator

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #48 on: September 06, 2010, 01:18:47 PM »
about the serial killer roguelike (the other topic was locked)

Some people over at the bay12 forums have in response decided to start a project that's somewhat similar, only a general crime game

http://sourceforge.net/projects/crimelike/
http://crimelike.blogspot.com/

Skeletor

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #49 on: September 08, 2010, 06:52:23 AM »
In my opinion, books and movies may need advertising because: a- there are already a lot of books and movies; b- there is a lot of money involved in books and movies (in creating and selling them).
So it is possible for a very awesome book or film to be ignored just because of an insufficent marketing tactic.

But roguelikes are different: almost no money involved, no big competition, no many releases every month.. so a good roguelike will always hit the audience.
Sure, there are still some nice games not much talked about.. but have you ever seen Thomas Biskup advertising Adom? or someone advertising Angband, Nethack, Dwarf Fortress?
Kick ass roguelikes don't need marketing that much in my opinion.

What I enjoy the most in roguelikes: Anti-Farming and Mac Givering my way out. Kind of what I also enjoy in life.

ido

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #50 on: September 08, 2010, 08:05:00 AM »
But roguelikes are different: almost no money involved, no big competition, no many releases every month..

The cost is the same as with most books - the author's time + the cost of a computer. 

Rya.Reisender

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #51 on: September 08, 2010, 01:55:00 PM »
I dunno. I'd say that most retail roguelikes are quite more popular than Nethack/Angband/Crawl, even though they aren't better.

Ari Rahikkala

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #52 on: September 08, 2010, 02:46:30 PM »
I vaguely thought of this when I first watched the Serial Killer Roguelike character generation video, but it was this Expedition video here that really brought it home:

When you're advertising a roguelike, you want people to want to play it for the first time. It's good to have something going on that makes people expect they would want to keep playing, but the only thing you can do to the vast majority of your potential audience is to get them to play for the first time.

Watching the Expedition video, I felt that if I put some work into that game I could really enjoy it. Finding just the right optima between risk management and growth potential, learning how to navigate reliably, exploring interesting new lands, squeezing out the most gold that I can, what's not to like? It seemed like it could be a great game on the tenth session, and I would have liked to play my tenth game of Expedition. But I don't want to play my first game of Expedition. Or the second or, perhaps, even the third. I don't want to play them because based on what I saw in the video, they'd just end up with me choosing some poor balance of resources and dying ignominiously before I get to anywhere interesting.

Compare to SKrl. In SKrl, I could choose a character with high stats and mild or no disorders (assuming that the game's challenge level is not affected by the stats you choose, effectively making your stat choices a reverse difficulty setting), and the game would dump me somewhere where I could go and kill people. The videos made me want to play SKrl for the first time - even if the game could turn out very difficult, it never seemed overwhelming. And even better, the video let you see enough that you knew you would likely still want to play another game, and another, down to trying to survive with an all-minimum-stats and heavily-messed-up-in-the-head runt.

To see how the SKrl videos went right about this, consider how they could have gone wrong. Suppose the game had had the precise same feature set, except that instead of just choosing your stats, you would have had options like "go to gym for strength training", "play ball games for perception and agility training", etc.. Each with a dollar cost, of course. Oh, and for play balance, a "have traumatic experience" option that would give you a negative trait but refund you a certain amount of dollars. All of that would have seemed... pretty overwhelming and pointless. And it would have annoyed those who haven't yet reached enlightenment on the realism vs. gameplay issue :p. (And if you tried to bring it closer to the "pick your difficulty level by picking your character's level of capability" by letting the player choose how much money they start with, well, that would just have exacerbated the pointlessness)

As a final illustration of the point I'm making... if SKrl is "good" and Expedition is "bad" in the I-want-to-play-this-game-for-the-first-time sense, Prospector is a pretty good example of a game that's "eh, close enough". The ship choice menu has an obvious choice for the first play, based just on the name of the game (you probably would want to prospect with a scoutship!), but also shows based on what kinds of ships are available that there's more to do in the game than just prospect. The amount of money it gives you is enough to make some interesting choices at the first station once you're more familiar with the game, but small enough not to feel like much, like you could mess up your first try by not buying something essential. You don't have to worry about fuel before you've left the station, you don't have to worry about how to repair your ship before it's actually been damaged. In short, Prospector doesn't feel too overwhelming, and a lot of the things it does do say "I have potential!" to the player. It's just that the SKrl videos did the same sort of things even better. Killing people as a horrifyingly ugly and clumsy schizophrenic, for instance, just sounds like a more interesting challenge to eventually get to than going from prospecting planets to trading contraband does.

5v3nd0ttg

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #53 on: September 09, 2010, 05:26:46 PM »
Roguedevs (or any other class of indie developers) use MP (Motivations Points) as fuel.
...more stuff here...

Great post, and quite true at that as far as I'm concerned.

Personally, I don't care about an SK roguelike. It did have decent marketing which caused a hype.
People predictably flourish around controversy.
Lets all make Roguelikes about eating babies? Oh wait, Jonathan Swift beat me to it. (1729)
Back to orcs I suppose.
Check out my artwork, photography, and video game projects at www.theoestudio.com.

magellan

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #54 on: September 09, 2010, 08:03:24 PM »
On originality:
I sometimes get accused of being original, in this very thread even! Yet i stole 90% of the gameplay from Starfight, and the remaining 10% from Traveller!

The thing is "Orcs & Dragons != Original game" is a rather superficial way of looking at it.
If your "Purple furry man eating Mango" is something that wants to kill you, has no special abilites and is of low to medium danger, it is an Orc in a Mango Suit.
But it has a disadvantage over the Orc: As a new player I have no Idea what it does. For the first few games It will be all exciting and new, but soon i will learn PFMEM is another word for "Orc".
Its just a cheap thrill, no substance. Might as well call them orcs and benefit from the fact that the player already knows Ogres will be tougher.

Now when it comes to generate interest, i will propably be more successful if I say "In my game you kill PFMEMs" than if i said "In my game you kill orcs" But only until the player found out its actually an orc in a mango suit.

You need to tell people what is unique. Frozen depth doesn't advertise "You get to kill Cave Kanagaroos". It says "No magic!" it says "You can die from cold exposure" It says "Get your custom items crafted"
Actually, i would enjoy FD more if I could kill orcs instead of cave kanagaroos (wouldnt they bump their head pretty often?) The name of the critter you kill really doesn't matter.

Bear

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #55 on: September 11, 2010, 03:38:18 AM »
I dunno.  I think that "originality" is more or less a natural consequence of doing what you really enjoy.  If there's some aspect of gameplay that really appeals to you, and you spend a lot of time developing it, then sooner or later you'll start implementing features that no one else has. 

For example, I really like individual, differentiated items.  So I sit around thinking up different items, or magic items, or ways to introduce slightly different versions of standard items, and I stick them into the data file (or the idea file) and grin, imagining someone finding them and the process of figuring out how to use them.

Somebody somewhere is probably going to accuse me of originality, just because they found a fireball wand that has a slightly longer range than most fireball wands, or a damaged magic carpet that still works but can only go straight or turn left, or an Axe of Contrition that does massive damage and then apologizes to whomever it hit, or an Unnatural Axe with a huge variety of obscene funny messages, or notices that if they toss an overcharged fireball wand into a bag with an overcharged ice wand they'll explode a minute later, or discovers that "Ogrish Love Pottery" can be sold to Ogres, or used to make friends with them by giving it to them, or finds a book of "Goblin Love Poetry" or whatever.

But that stuff isn't happening because I'm striving for originality.  It is happening  because it makes me giggle and doing it is fun for me.   ;D

So, here's my thoughts on originality.  Do something that makes you giggle and is fun for you.  And keep doing it.  And develop new content in that direction whenever you think of it, and enjoy yourself.  Before you know it, someone will accuse you of being original.

Bear

Conal

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #56 on: November 28, 2010, 03:17:26 AM »
I think the prime reason that serial killer roguelike got so much interest is :

1: Awesome video
2: Video at least seems very original
3: Original/Awesome concept -
[
The awesomeness is perhaps compounded with all the too small roguelikes or clone roguelikes and because of various forum feedback which portrays a message of total reluctance to anyone who trys to break the mold of the traditional RL model - then theres the other extremes where a Developer will make lots of over the top changes that break to much with tradition and drag the game down. It seems like a balancing act and so much gets compared to traditional roguelike rules BUT the serial killer roguelike concept broke all these rules and luckily got away with it, unfortunately I would not be surprised , if for ever 200 rogues 1 roguelike gets away with that.

I can understand what may be slight disillusionment of the developers who are dealing with the reality of implementation and who see this as another concept thats probably not going to see the light of day but on the bright side I have a friend who I have been trying to get into roguelikes for 2 years now and this serial killer roguelike has made him go and try some.
]

I have to admit, lately I have implemented proof of concept for various, roguelike tough implementation areas that I have decided to have a go at coding a somewhat similiar theme but on a much smaller scale for my own use. (I would not release a game until I am confident my code is refined/clean enough but perhaps thats the wrong attitude) I shall be attempting this in the Summer as busy as hell at University but I did take note of the link which is so a bunch of people can collaborate.

If anything I would say the best thing people can take from it is to do development based on an enjoyable concept and if something has been cloned over 3 times before then think hard before you go hoping to release it to the public in the hope of making it a big roguelike. I dont dislike doom the rl as an example but its by far not the best in my eyes however people love it , why do you think that is? (I think what I have written covers that questions as well!)

Marketting may be essential in a commercial project but where roguelikes are concerned the majority are mainly hardcore/geeky people(Thats a compliment in my book for the record, I class myself as one, maybe both of those) who are always on the net looking for games, new projects, reading whenever it is possible and they will be looking first and foremost for a good concept before they waste their time looking through rogue clone 55b , all the more modern succesful games such as :

Elona
Dwarf Fortress

Are orginal in some ways OR they take the genre to new heights.


Food for thought I hope :), Also apologies if this post is not written well , the main reason being that when you right a couple of paragraphs on this forum the scroll system screws up.

Finally, Slash! I like that motivation points post, lol I may put it on my wall to give me motivation while coding haha

« Last Edit: November 28, 2010, 03:21:23 AM by Conal »

Fenrir

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #57 on: November 28, 2010, 04:02:04 AM »
This is beating a dead horse.

Conal

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #58 on: November 28, 2010, 05:22:10 AM »
With respect, it may seem that way to you but I am short on time at the momment and hence this has relevance because I am only on these forums once in a while, my point being that they are new topics to me even if they are not to yourself.

If its an old thread and no use it should be locked, I have never believed it's my job to date check threads which are sitting with massive views and at the top of the forum listing. (The old admin/user whining about a necro thread or somesuch but really its a crazy mentality since its not rocket science to have a script that locks posts that are a certain age , this would mean one less triviality on the forums at large)

I am crazy for justifying answering a post on a forum anyway but never the less owing to being busy both myself and one of my friends only found out about that serial killer rouguelike but a week ago and we both really like the concept, albeit a fake.

« Last Edit: November 28, 2010, 05:28:13 AM by Conal »

Fenrir

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Re: Acquiring feedback for your roguelike project
« Reply #59 on: November 29, 2010, 03:48:55 PM »
With respect, it may seem that way to you but I am short on time at the momment and hence this has relevance because I am only on these forums once in a while, my point being that they are new topics to me even if they are not to yourself.
Your late arrival doesn't make the horse less dead.

If its an old thread and no use it should be locked, I have never believed it's my job to date check threads which are sitting with massive views and at the top of the forum listing. (The old admin/user whining about a necro thread or somesuch but really its a crazy mentality since its not rocket science to have a script that locks posts that are a certain age , this would mean one less triviality on the forums at large)
I'm not talking about the age of the thread. "Beating a dead horse" means "a particular request or line of conversation is already foreclosed or otherwise resolved, and any attempt to continue it is futile; or that to continue in any endeavour (physical, mental, etc.) is a waste of time as the outcome is already decided." Nothing more can be had from this discussion, and all you have told us is that the Serial Killer Roguelike hoax was successful because it was original and awesome. Far too vague to be of any use.