I’m starting a series of blog posts “in response to”. In them – I will write large responses to articles I find interesting and/or disagree with. Obviously these series will only feature large responses which are not 1-2 sentences.
Current response is to this article:
Approximately 5–6 people die every minute on this planet. Should we stop doing anything and instead carry over with immortality serum, just to discover that overpopulation will kill everyone?
Art always was and is. At any point in history — hard times breed high art. Games are most complex art up to date so it’s no wonder that most of indie games are showing cracks. By the time you have entered production — you already satisfied that you have something, and the original idea you wanted to carry over is inadvertently tattered by focusing on mechanical side.
And also. I am not doing it for creative first and money second (shitheaded black and white mentality can go fuck itself) — I am doing it for both simultaneously. What’s the purpose of dedicating your life to art of gamedev if all your work flops so you will end up on the street, without means to continue your art.
So both are important EQUALLY. And both are skills.
The problem springs from the worldview which has been hammered into your (and many others) brain by lame artists who couldn’t care less, but were loud enough to pan corporate and marketing tactics as “bad” and “inhumane”, creating illusion of “purity” of romanticized artistic intent.
My answer to that is — FUCK OFF with your romanticized pink snot bullshit.
Corporate structure helps immensely, as long as you understand ups and downs. The downs mostly (in my opinion) come from investors and going public with your company – greed is a detriment in corporate world, not a boon, and only reason why anyone pushes company public is to rake more money from selling shares.
In my not-so-humble opinion – that’s where you get all the corporate horror stories and that’s where you get Electronic Arts situation.
Also note – if you don’t believe you can keep your company privately owned while maintaining huge profits and staying at the top – galaxy chocolate. Is my answer. Galaxy fucking chocolate is one of the largest chocolate manufacturers and sellers worldwide. AND IT IS PRIVATELY OWNED.
Levelheaded planning, ability to strike good deals, and ability to secure your company’s success is what gives you ability to do whatever you want and still make profit.
And correct, engaging marketing is an art in itself, multiplied by strategy and tactics methods. Ability to both deliver content while also engaging public, both with conventional, and lame methods — everything works, because end goal of the process is monetary gain. (as long as it’s legal – read ahead)
And if you remove any ‘purity’ nonsense from that — you are left with the best damn management strategy game you ever came across.
You need to be cynical to understand that — people like being manipulated, despite what anyone would tell you consciously. Because most of the people are too dumb and/or lazy (even I’m lazy to search store myself at times, I need recommendations otherwise I risk personal money) to find something on their own, go into the wild and engage. They need a little bit of herding and positive feedback loop to engage with the product.
XCom (remake) is a good example of that. If you analyze it’s marketing campaign (remember the videos about dude which was, in the shop, swaying casuals?) — it’s quite brilliant. But it’s also a very good example of herding customers to a genre which they never engaged before.
My personal ruleset is this – as long as it’s legal, and as long as you sure it will not ruin someone’s life – do whatever the fuck you want with marketing. It’s all money in the end. Leave guilt of “shady” but legal tactics other side of the door.
If you afraid that it will corrupt your “soul” don’t worry — you don’t have a soul — you are a soul, you have a body.
Late but much needed P.S. (i actually forgot to write it down, sorry):
*cackle* It’s not that gamers maintain status quo, it’s – when game is shit – it is shit. Everyone gone to the rapture was a piece of shit because it tried to tell a story – but did it like shit. Because authors don’t know how to hold narrative.
If there was an ominous mindset (of gamers refusing more artistic games) like that..then tell me – Why “Stanley’s parable” is highly praised by everyone? Or even Va-11 Hall-a? Because they were a walking simulator/visual novel too – BUT – they had great writing and (int case of sp) great voice acting.
What did gone to the rapture had? Jack fucking shit.