I'm a fan and i was thinking of a way to help you.
i have a steam greenlight fee licenses and i want to help you get on steam.
i just want to be sure that your are ok with that (be on greelight).
i didn't knew where to put this message..
Please reply to my message at email@example.com
Thanks for your answer and don't forget to put all your questions in your reply!
Yeah, this is the right place to post this, no sweat. We keep the whole development and discussions in the open, there is no package manager working in the shadows ;-)
Wow, that's cool! That'd definitely take care of one hurdle of OC appearing on Steam. However, greenlight has been discussed before. Apart from the fee, another concern was that we have to maintain yet another platform (we were on Desura back then, which was always a hassle) with possibly little visibility because OC is not commercially oriented.
Even though Desura was specially made to include free games as well, it did not feel worth the effort. Steam might be (much much) bigger, but Clonkonaut hat a point there. In my opinion, it is only worth it if we can keep the maintenance work low.
Let's say OC is accepted via Greenlight, do you have an idea what kind of maintenance work will be waiting for us if we want to stay on Steam? (I.e. do we have to integrate Steamworks, do we have to create steam package installers manually?)
>I.e. do we have to integrate Steamworks
Ah, found out the answer already: No.
> Please reply to my message at firstname.lastname@example.org
Did you send a mail there? Or does the forum send that anyway?
Steam, however, is widely regarded as a platform for products and attracts a community that wants to play the finished game, not build one. So I'm actually opposed to going to greenlight.
>Steam, however, is widely regarded as a platform for products and attracts a community that wants to play the finished game, not build one.
Really? What about the ton of unfinished early acces games, or the nth clone of a survive-in-a-forest-game? I think OC has already more to offer than much of the stuff that's on Steam.
Steam is a good way to get more players and contributors and we can't lose anything. There were already many requests for Clonk to go to Steam and now we have an opportunity.
> What about the ton of unfinished early acces games, or the nth clone of a survive-in-a-forest-game?
Those don't really receive high appraisal though. Moreover, I think the presence of such games makes it even harder for OC to go on Steam. People are sensitised to these shitty games being on Steam and even minor flaws can easily make people believe your game is just the same.
Not to mention that on Steam, OC will probably be seen as the nth clone of Terraria.
>OC will probably be seen as the nth clone of Terraria.
Place a "Clonky since 1994" label everywhere!
The goal of attracting attention to OC is to gain more support and contributions, right? That is our business model. Our target group, from this point of view, are simply not gamers who expect a finished product, but tinkerers and modders like us, who like to play video games, but also like to work on, enhance and experiment with games that have potential.
How else would we attract their attention than by showing presence there? If we presented to the players on Steam a game that feels complete, then we mostly only attract attention of gamers that expect the game to be complete. If we present a game that has potential but is obviously and explicitly described as incomplete, that feels like a playground, then we reach exactly our target group.
Reminds me of the story of the stone soup. The soldiers in the story do not try to create a tasty soup right from the start but act as a catalyst for creating it in an iterative process.
>I do not understand this fear of getting bad reviews. So what?
Don't mistake my position: I'm not against making ourselves seen, advertisment or encouraging people to join us. I just think for the game and the current state of development, steam in particular is not the right audience. Steam Greenlight isn't asking "hey do you like this project and want to work with them to get it finished?", it's asking "will you download this game from our platform when it is released" - and ultimately, it's releasing on steam that I fear. If we ever want to make an "entrance" on steam, we only got one shot, at least that is how I percieve it. And I, at least, would be sad if we paid money to get on there, and there were 990 (your other 99%) negative reviews and a big red thumb at our game, just to have us sit there and say "yeah well maybe we should have polished X first".
> If 1000 people play the game through Steam and only 1% of the people does not ditch the game for being too unpolished, buggy or incomplete but like it and want to contribute - is this not already a gain?
No actually, because then you have 990 people who, when their friends ask them about this one game that looks nice and like a mixture of Worms and Terraria, will reply "oh yeah, I've seen that on Steam but it's a buggy mess and crashes all the time".
As Matthias said, getting on Steam is more or less a oneshot.
> If we present a game that has potential but is obviously and explicitly described as incomplete, that feels like a playground, then we reach exactly our target group.
I agree with Matthias here. Steam isn't that target group. Steam is a platform for gamers, not coders. While there will be coders on Steam, the vast majority of people just want to play things. It's not easy to actually explain these things through Steam (people would have to read the store / campaign page). Even Greenlight isn't designed to work as a hiring platform. You can either enter your game as a finished product or as a concept / new project that needs community feedback. Later, you cannot change the category.
But speaking of Desura... My impression was that on Desura, the gamers were very forgiving and well-meaning towards the project. Whether this was a characteristic inherent to that community, I can not say of course. But the simple fact that our game is free (really free) makes people much more forgiving towards unpleasentries in our game, also on Steam. Or perhaps particularly on Steam because it is quite the commercial platform and the gamers are used to pay for everything on there - and if it is free, there must be a catch (-> free to play). This is just a wild assumption of course.
Anyway, most of us here are on Steam, so while the platform itself might not be made for tinkerers, a subset of the users are people who not only like to play games but also make games.
Also, I feel that you guys cling to my grossly exagerated example of "1% of the people will actually like the game" too much. Let me say here, that actually, I find OpenClonk quite playable already with quite a lot of content. We do not constantly have to compare ourselves to the level of content in Clonk Rage, you know.
>I find OpenClonk quite playable already with quite a lot of content
I have bought way more broken games on Steam already (broken netplay with lags/desyncs, completely unable to start on windows, ...). OpenClonk is pretty decent already.
> Whether this was a characteristic inherent to that community, I can not say of course.
That was my (purely subjective) impression of that platform. It felt like being kind of targeted towards 'other' OS users and OSX / Linux users are actually quite forgiving if a game even attempts to run on their systems. ;)
> Also, I feel that you guys cling to my grossly exagerated example of "1% of the people will actually like the game" too much.
I wasn't trying to. Still, I wanted to point out that for a game to be grenlit, positive reviews should outrank negative ones (so more than 50% positive to begin with).
I totally agree that OC has a lot to offer right now and demands nothing because, yes, it's free! I also don't think that Steam is out of the question per se. Personally, I would like to have at least some more polishing in the game before going on Steam. Currently, gamepad support is out (meh), splitscreen is broken (meh), network save games fuck up (meh). Also, we have just begun with really getting nice content that looks good and starts to fit (still, some of our buildings look disgusting).
> We do not constantly have to compare ourselves to the level of content in Clonk Rage, you know.
The concern I have is that it's a self-contained game and it's relatively hard for players to "get involved". I feel that lots of people are just playing some offline rounds, maybe they like the game, but then they're done. On Steam this would be even worse because there's no direct way for players to get in touch with us.
So I think there should be ways for people to do more from within the game. For example:
1. Players don't know/don't care about our forums. In Mario Maker, after you've played a level, there's always the "comment" and the "star" buttons. You can write something (in Mario Maker you can also paint something :)) and/or you can give a "plus vote" for a level. The comment page loads automatically for anyone in the game evaluation screen and shows the most recent comments. I think it would be cool to have that for our evaluation screens. The comment screen should also be accessible directly from the scenario start dialogue and from the main menu in the game. Comments could be stored in the league DB simply associated by filename.
2. Players don't know that there's editing options. So we should have an Editor button in the main screen that just leads to the scenario selection dialogue. After you selected a scenario, it simply starts in editor mode where people can push around stuff. But I don't think it would be that much work to do. The Editor screen could also contain helpful buttons such as a link directing to the wiki for help or a button you can press to open your user path in the file manager.
Naturally, we'd need to do some minor improvements so our normal editor mode is sufficient to build something simple.
* One, orchestrate a campain, tend to the project site, answer questions, look at the messages, advertise the campaign all over social media to get attention where you answer messages again (which is a lorry full of work).
* Two, do nothing and just pray to the lords of kobol that your project gets enough views and isn't pushed out by newer titles too soon and is getting enough thumbs up.
There is no (obvious) rule when you get greenlit, but reading the one or the other article about it suggests they really put a lot of effort in.
We ourselves even lack the possibility to advertise the campaign to a broader range of people because we have no social media following which we could activate. But we could start there: Create a twitter account, link our blog posts there, create a facebook page and use our personal accounts to share them from there. We could do that on each new blog post. I'm positive that this would get us a lot more attention, maybe some subscribers we could activate later and maybe even some hobbyist devs.
And it costs no money. We didn't even update cost-free desura properly, having a nealy invisible project site which costs money will not help.
How far should Clonk evolve before we are confident in taking such a step as submitting it to steam, WiiU or something different. What are the goals we want to achieve before that?
Edit: ideally the F-menu is bigger/better and allows to change more things switch controls and even change key assigments.
We should assess what OC has to offer without overly glorifying our efforts (which have been high nonetheless). Right now, OC is a single player game with occasional multiplayer. We offer a couple of hours of single player content. The best way to advertise our game would probably be to stress a little more on that than on multiplayer features. We can't just tell everyone that we offer great multiplayer rounds with super-duper competitive aspects and as soon as you go into the network screen there are 0 games. Furthermore, you cannot simply host one because most likely no one will be able to join (because of ports). However, I have played a few games on Steam that required port forwarding, so that's not a no-go per se.
I think if we really are honest, OC is at first a single player game and being one makes it hard to compete on a platform which focuses on online multiplayer gaming. Not impossible but a little harder. Moreover, a few hours of gameplay isn't great. I don't want to undermine our efforts but really, it's not great. You can argue that OC holds potentially endless hours of fun and while that might be true, coming from a player-only (and not developer) perspective, you can't see that. There is no good way to customise scenarios except the few scenario parameters. Replay value is low. Editing things into scenarios is cumbersome and will feel like unintelligible hacking to a lot of players just because you have to open stuff in text editors.
As I already said, multiplayer isn't our strongest feature. Even worse, coming from a lot of nicely working online games, our multiplayer will appear broken to a lot of people (lags??ß OMFG how can a game with bad graphics lag?). On a platform like Steam, you have zero to no chance to tell people why multiplayer in OC is like it is (and the explanation doesn't make you feel better when your game lags, anyway). Even more worse, some (online) features are simply broken. While runtime join is something you don't necessarily need, multiplayer savegame resumption is something that will be ridiculed. "Online coop" is broken without a save feature. People that are not experienced developers often spend a couple of hours solving some of our missions and forcing them to do it in one go when playing with friends is something they won't understand.
In the past, splitscreen was a unique feature in Clonk. I think, OC could really stand out against other Steam games if local coop was supported. But, as you probably know, it's broken. :(
My personal list of 'Features For Greenlight' would be:
- Working gamepad support
- Working splitscreen support
- Working network savegames
- Possibly thinking about improving single player experience / replay value / playing time
- Nice to have: An easy development tool at least for Windows users that allows for slight scenario modifications
- Nice to have (what Zapper said): Mod-management
Of course, I cannot say if any of these features would turn the odds in our favour or if we might even succeed without them.
(Personally I am following the development of Clonk since Clonk Planet. OpenClonk looks really good, keep up the good work!)
Powered by mwForum 2.29.7 © 1999-2015 Markus Wichitill