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240 or 80 ms points to start off with?

Last post 12/24/2012 3:51 PM by NewToXNA. 9 replies.
  • 9/17/2012 5:09 PM

    240 or 80 ms points to start off with?

    I know most games these days degenerate towards a 80ms point price point. Many games I have thought would never drop, eventually succumb to the lower price. My question is, I have a game I think is worth the 240ms points. I'd like to NEVER drop the price to 80 points, or at least not in the first year. Is this going to be accepted in the current marketplace? Project Gert: Recon I feel stands up on it's graphics and voice acting, and gameplay very well. I feel it would insult people who are fans of the game to offer it at an initial price so low. But what is the market telling us? Does the game have to start out at a low price? Are sales still calculated in units moved, and thereby making my move that much more ludicrous? Does anyone have a history of starting at a low point, and moving into a high point with success?

    Thanks.
  • 9/17/2012 7:04 PM In reply to

    Re: 240 or 80 ms points to start off with?

    As Col. Nathan R. Jessup once said, "You ... roll the dice and take your chances"

    I don't have any personal experience as I don't have a product out on the marketplace.  However, I feel your pain.  You've worked hard and feel confident in your product, I get that... but you are only on the new releases list for a very short period of time and nothing else is guaranteed.  If you lower your price later and you aren't on one of the other lists then who will know that you've lowered the price?

    Personally, I don't feel that it's worth the gamble and I'm going to release my game at 80ms.  Of course I don't have voice acting and artists to pay for like you do.  The only cost for my game has been my spare time, so anything I make is pure profit.

    Also, I would rather have 100 people playing my game and having fun (hopefully!) at 80ms than 33 people at 240ms.

    Good luck!
  • 9/17/2012 8:52 PM In reply to

    Re: 240 or 80 ms points to start off with?

    Modern07:
    My question is, I have a game I think is worth the 240ms points. I'd like to NEVER drop the price to 80 points, or at least not in the first year. Is this going to be accepted in the current marketplace?
    Doubtful. Just looking at the video, I can't see it being accepted as a 240 point game.
  • 9/20/2012 2:50 AM In reply to

    Re: 240 or 80 ms points to start off with?

    Thank for the answers. I might go with 240 points this time around. If I don't hit top 10, I'll probably drop the price. I do need to seriously revise the trailer. Unfortunately, most of my dreams of a better trailer are also accompanied by dreams of new storyboards, which are still in the works.
  • 9/20/2012 5:22 AM In reply to

    Re: 240 or 80 ms points to start off with?

    80, sure.
    240, no way...
  • 9/21/2012 10:40 AM In reply to

    Re: 240 or 80 ms points to start off with?

    Modern07:
    I might go with 240 points this time around. If I don't hit top 10, I'll probably drop the price.

    Hitting the Top 10 these days is really hard. Only minecrafters and FPS's do it. Not saying your game is bad by any means, but it does belong to a different genre.

    By the time you drop the price (after one week), it will be too late. With the dreadful 7-day system, you either make it big on launch or you're doomed.
  • 11/17/2012 2:18 AM In reply to

    Re: 240 or 80 ms points to start off with?

    Jim Perry:
    Modern07:
    My question is, I have a game I think is worth the 240ms points. I'd like to NEVER drop the price to 80 points, or at least not in the first year. Is this going to be accepted in the current marketplace?
    Doubtful. Just looking at the video, I can't see it being accepted as a 240 point game.

    Thanks, I took these words to heart. I've worked on the trailer quite a bit.

  • 11/17/2012 4:56 AM In reply to

    Re: 240 or 80 ms points to start off with?

    Not bad, but your game animations are too stilted. It looks like you are animating at (as a guess) 6 fps (maybe 8) rather than 12+ fps. I'm talking specifically about the animation of the main character running; the individual frames are good, but there should be frames in between all of them to create a fluid animation look. Right now it animates like Mr. Game and Watch from Super Smash Bros. It could just be a byproduct of whatever you are using for video capture. If so then see if you can find a way to get a better frame rate from your capture.

    If you have an established game with really good sales, you can maybe get away with 240. But I advise you to read this first: http://gamasutra.com/blogs/RobertBoyd/20120112/90892/Cthulhu_Saves_the_World_XBLIG_sales_data_since_the_price_drop.php .

    If you aren't familiar with ZeBoyd games, you can read up about them here - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zeboyd_Games - and here - http://store.steampowered.com/search/?developer=Zeboyd%20Games (yes, they are on Steam and also have two games with pretty good MetaCritic scores (especially considering that some people are just down on classic 16-bit art regardless of how well done it is)).

    If you really don't want to read the first link, the summary is that their game (which came out when games of its size weren't allowed to sell for 80 msps) tripled revenue a year after release once Microsoft increased the size of games that could sell for 80 msps and they decided to take the plunge and drop the price. CSTW is the 30th best rated XBLIG in the US - http://marketplace.xbox.com/en-US/Games/XboxIndieGames?sortby=TopRated - and is the 118th best selling of all time in the US - http://marketplace.xbox.com/en-US/Games/XboxIndieGames?page=4&sortby=BestSelling . Its predecessor, Breath of Death VII (which released at 80 msps because it was a small enough CCGAME to qualify) is 19th best rate XBLIG in the US - http://marketplace.xbox.com/en-US/Games/XboxIndieGames?sortby=TopRated - and is the 74th best selling of all time in the US - http://marketplace.xbox.com/en-US/Games/XboxIndieGames?page=3&sortby=BestSelling .

    I'm fairly sure that Robert Boyd (one of the two founders of ZeBoyd Games) has speculated in the past that he thought CSTW would've done at least as good, if not better, than BoDVII on XBLIG in terms of both sales and ratings (yes, people will down-rate you if they think you are "over-charging" even if, as with CSTW, they couldn't price it at 80 because the game was over MS's 80 MSP size limit (50 MBs at the time, if memory serves)) but for the initial 240 MSP price point, but I don't have a link handy for that so it could just be faulty memory on my part.
  • 12/15/2012 8:33 PM In reply to

    Re: 240 or 80 ms points to start off with?

    Thanks. I have come around to your guy's way of thinking. Even with low sales, I'm thinking I would not be that much better off at 240ms points. The 80 point model seems more legitamite at this point to establish myself as a developer. Also, my game is only 1 hour long, so I'm thinking that it could be closer to the "I made a game with zombies init" model.

    If my game were longer, like 3 hours, I'd probably be trying 240ms points for certain. 

    In other news, my 6 day total is only 70-80 sales. So maybe I was wrong. 


  • 12/24/2012 3:51 PM In reply to

    Re: 240 or 80 ms points to start off with?

    80 is fine but not 240 for sure...

    I am about to reach soon a beta and thinking about the game price too, so probably i may go to 80 even if my game is way over 1 hour, probably with all the unlockeable content plus different endings it will take like 3-5 hours of gameplay but I haven't finished designing all levels yet.
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