What can we learn from other similar pojects?
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Hello, i was just checking how Wildterra was doing on Steam and the answer is not very well..Anyway im not here to promote another game but i just connected it to this project. There are some core similarity as for exemple:
- medieval fantasy BG
- player driven towns\economy
- surive part
And some things that are very different as:
- we have better graphics\more potential server side
- little server vs MMO
Anyway i remember that wasn't bad at all, who tried other games like me maybe can post some elements that we could potentially share with other projects. Looking around never hurts!
For exemple i very liked the taming part of WT with the gradual difficulty like was in UO..
for the graphic side of things i particularly very much did like the graphic and art style of Albion online .
Hope that this game will be similar to that art style , simple but beautiful and from what i did see it will be .
Provide a solid, reasonable prediction and manage to accomplish your milestones by the time you intended to. This includes calculating with 'unforeseeable delays' and not promoting 'best case' schedules.
There are enough other Kickstarter projects that are seen as 'this game is never going to release', I don't think you want that stigma.
The most important (for me) is performance in large scale battles, so large group PvP can be fun and depend on skill and tactics, instead of on who has less lag.
We can learn from other projects much:
- Staying patient
- Don‘t release too early
- Don‘t go to platforms like steam into an EA
- Don‘t chose a publisher who has too much rights in changing your way
- Stay at your vision path, but listen carefully what works and what not.
- Don‘t let the community too much influence your path of the game, especially not if the requested features don‘t follow the vision you have.
- hands off from being greedy
- doing things step by step
... and much much more
I believe the main difference that may allow this game to be more successful is the amount of traction that it is gaining due to the fact that we're already seeing quite some number of people investing themselves into the foundation. Also, this game has more mentions in media at this current stage than Wild Terra every did. Sadly to say, there is a influx of A LOT OF games (welcome to the free market everyone) with not a lot of actually well made ones. Therefore, a lot of game communities are started and sustained by a healthy player base. Without traction/hype it is hard for a good game to gain a lot of recognition quickly, allowing even hidden gems to die because of the lack of player base. Wild Terra really was not that good at advertising (actually neither is Fractured, but it is doing far better and of course a new team with a new game has its limitations).
Personally, I also think Fractured has plenty of unique systems that makes the game more unique than other isometric-full loot-sandbox-arpgs. This, however, does not mean that it will have a bigger player base per se. It just means that it can become a niche game and loyal fans will be loyal. However, as these systems may not be all that appealing to quite some number of people (or even the majority) it might also be a detrimental aspect of the game to a large community. I'm just going to say that right now even when I have followed Fractured since the VERY BEGINNING, (oh yeah lol, this is one long ride from when foundations weren't even a thing) I will drop the game if I do not end up liking it (not saying it is bad, just might not be my type of game since I don't enjoy full loot much anyways).
Don't waste time on hype features/crowd pleasers like Star Citizen. Just get the game that is currently announced released on track. We'll all be happier for it.
Here's my take:
Make sure that the basics are solid before building anything else
decide what the core mechanics of the game will be and make sure that they integrate well
listen to the community, but don't change your core vision
From what I learned with game projects and not specific for similar projects like this is to always be communicating with the player base. Listen to their feedback they give, build on the positive feedback and look for ways to improve the points that are not liked.
Also, a good way to make a game project not fail is to net get greedy.
(...)Staying patient (...)Don‘t release too early(...)
That should only apply to the final product though and even then in a limited form.
Releasing a minimal viable product early on is crucial to 'prove' that you can get things done. And there's a fine line between being patient and getting into feature creep, effectively running out of funds, having to cancel your project in the end.
Don‘t let the community too much influence your path of the game, especially not if the requested features don‘t follow the vision you have.
This pretty much.
Albion got destroyed because of bad game-design decisions, because they didn't filter their feedback well enough. So the most whiny people got what they wanted and the game became much worse.
I hope devs do read the forum, and this thread in particular.
I'll double the "keep your core vision". For example, I'd really like to see any vertical progression of a character, even if just a tiny one, and many other people will want the same, and many other things on top of that. Filter the feedback you gather, and don't try to implement feedback-based changes as fast as possible. Even if 80% of playerbase whines on some topic, it doesn't mean that you should change it. Analyze it all, come to conclusions, and then find the solution, gradually. Having some problem in your game that you've made yourselves, won't affect your playerbase as much as catering to some chosen fraction of players, which may be seen by players as changing of the game's direction, which may cause many people to leave, and in MMORPGs it's very hard to get your players to return, if you lose any of your initial fan/playerbase - it will be very hard to regain those numbers.
So don't copy others' mistakes and just make what you intended to make in the first place.
I also cast my vote for "stay true to your vision," but also "avoid feature creep" - while it is good to have features, and it is very good to plan for features, make sure your core engine and game experience are there first, and that your features do not get in the way of that experience. Being able to ride a horse is cool, but if you and your horse fall through the map, that's no good XD (as an example).
I think, if you really want a good "not what to do" - read up on the original launch of FFIV, and how they fixed it. While it is a much different game, how it was broken is a good case study for any mmo - the lack of cohesion, the scattershot focus, the non-integrated systems, failed implementations and buggy mess of a playing experience.
While the following doesn't relate to game mechanics, it does relate to Dynamight Studios as a company. I've seen a problem repeated time and again when a start-up is successful and becomes a larger.
When a company is a start-up the people leading the company are also managing it. And as managers they need to make decisions that affect the company direction - they make many decisions every day, the decisions are small (relatively speaking) and don't really have that dire consequences (again, relatively). What's needed during this start-up phase is drive, vision, passion, excitement and technical capability - all traits of a good leader. This is where Dynamight is now and all of us who have pledged have believed, and are trusting Dynamight to produce.
But a leader can't produce a good product. All those above traits are not traits of a good manager. Managers need to be careful, precise, risk adverse, studious. Unfortunately these traits don't get people interested in a product.
Take a look at two very successful start-ups - SpaceX and Tesla. Elon Musk is a brilliant leader, but he is a crap manager. In SpaceX he passed the management to Gwen Shotwell. Here you have a fantastic leader, a fantastic manager and a company that is doing brilliantly. With Tesla, Elon has maintained a hold over the management - because of ego, I think - and the company is in the press for all the wrong reasons.
Where's this discourse going? I hope Dynamight and Fractured are wildly successful and if that happens the company will grow and will need to evolve. I hope when that happens that the start-up team are able to truely look at themselves and, if needed, say, "I'm a leader, not a manager, and there's no shame in that." And ensure that the right people are in the right positions.