Commercial Games

Helladen

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Promotion for your Games/Projects Host your games via the new RPG Maker Download Center. We'll be going through submissions on a regular basis and featuring our favourite ones on the site, blog, and newsletter.
You have it on your Member+ page, maybe I am misinterpreting it or something?
 

Touchfuzzy

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This conversation is still incredibly offtopic and has nothing to do with this thread that you are derailing horribly. If you would like to discuss this, take it to site feedback.
 

Shaz

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Back to the subject at hand ...

Here's the thing ... if you are going commercial, then it's very likely that the RPG Maker crowd will not be your target audience. There aren't very many people on this forum who will hand over money for an RPG Maker game, and those who do, will not base it solely on whether the game uses RTP or not. They'll base it on the story, on how well your characters are developed, on how well the maps are put together - RTP or otherwise.

The casual market, on the other hand, don't even know what RTP is. They could care less if your hero is an orange-haired kid named Aluxes. What they want is a good story and a fun game. And there aren't enough games being released commercially that they can look at one and instantly say it uses the same graphics as that other one that was released 6 months ago.

The group in the middle of these two is what you'll find at the RPG Portals. They play lots of them, some even tinker with the makers a bit. They're more likely to recognize tilesets or characters that pop up in different games, but really, they don't care. Again, they want good stories, interesting characters, maps that are put together well, and a fun game.

So it's fine to say YOU don't think a game is worth playing if it uses RTP (graphics). You belong in the first group. We expect you to not bother with our games if we use RTP (and usually, even if we don't). And that's okay, because you are not our target audience, and those who are, are fine with RTP. In fact, for someone just starting out, who doesn't have the skill or the money for custom graphics, I think RTP is perfectly fine. Just don't be lazy - learn how to use it properly, and build beautiful maps. Make people praise your game despite the fact that you've used RTP. THEN use the money you make on your first game to make the next one better - get some custom stuff done to make your next game a little more unique.

Once again, it's fine to have your opinion. Nobody is saying you shouldn't hold that belief yourself. But don't say people should or shouldn't do certain things. If people REALLY should or shouldn't do certain things, we'd be able to read about it in Enterbrain's EULA ;) Anything else is up to the individual.
 
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Helladen

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The way I write things does not always come out correctly on the other person's end. I never said that RTP cannot be used. You're right if you target outside of RM sites no one will care if it uses all RTP characters and you don't even change the name of the characters, but the point is your major audience for feedback and construction is going to be here. You should first get skilled enough to please this audience then market your game further out there, because you do not want to waste time/money/energy advertising when no one will buy your game.

My criticism about this is not saying people need to do this, but it is a good practice to start off doing it. You want to be creative in everything you do in a game, not just the story. Creativity does not mean a graphics style, but the way in which you use your art in the game. I don't care about the art in a game by any means, but transitions and the mood a game sets can be greatly influenced by art. Art doesn't need to be super fancy, but the way in which it is expressed is very important. Lastly, you can do the same techniques forever, but then you aren't going to get better, and remain the same developer you have been for years. My philosophies are weird, so be it, but I'm not saying people should do this by any means. I'm just debating over my philosophy of what is the best approach to do this when making a commercial game. A free game you don't need to worry about any of this. You can use all the sample maps and use a simple story just to get your feet wet, but this is commercial-quality, and it is very serious compared to making a game that is free.
 

Indinera

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but the point is your major audience for feedback and construction is going to be here.
Hell no. :huh:

You get a lot of feedback from players on RM commercial websites (and BFG). It may not be as technical as the kind of feedback you'd get here, but it's as (if not more) important, because it comes from:

1- people who actually buy games and play them entirely

2- people who cares for the game itself regardless of how it was made, and will more likely give feedback based on how they felt about the story, the gameplay etc. As a game maker, it's a gold mine of information.

You should first get skilled enough to please this audience then market your game further out there, because you do not want to waste time/money/energy advertising when no one will buy your game.
It doesn't work like this. It's two entirely different audiences with very different priorities, and ideas of what is a good game.

Besides, I've yet to see a game "no-one buys".
 
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Helladen

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When I say here, I refer to community sites that offer project boards for RM.
 

Lunarea

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You should first get skilled enough to please this audience then market your game further out there, because you do not want to waste time/money/energy advertising when no one will buy your game.
This is where you're entirely wrong. If your audience is nothing like your fellow developers, then you're likely to do more harm than good by trying to cater to fellow developers first.

There are far too many things that experienced developers will take for granted, where a new player might not. There are also things and features that impress a fellow developer because they know how hard it was to implement. But a player won't know or care about that. I've seen people make decisions like omitting a basic button tutorial because everyone (read: other RM devs) know that Z/Space is "A". Someone who's never played a game like that won't know. And they may get frustrated. If they're your main customer base, you should care more about them than whether a fellow developer is inconvenienced by rushing through a basic button tutorial.
 

Helladen

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You see, those things are common sense. I'm not talking about the mechanisms to be fit to a specific audience, you should make those targeted to your casual audience.

You need to first build an audience and cater to what was built. I'm not by any means saying to modify functions of systems, because it is not suitable to another audience. Things like that have both options. For example, if some players don't like to watch introductions you have an option to skip it, so that everyone is satisfied not just one side.
 
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Lunarea

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Uh, that's not what you said. You said:

the point is your major audience for feedback and construction is going to be here.
And that's just not true. If you're not selling your game here, then the majority of your feedback should not come from here. Not only do you risk getting the wrong kind of information on certain issues (such as game difficulty, or complexity and impact of the story), but you also risk putting focus on the wrong things. What a fellow developer appreciates (custom graphics, for example), your customer may not. And vice versa.

Don't get me wrong. It's perfectly fine to discuss game development theory here. Or ask for help, or even get a review from a developer or two. But it shouldn't be your main go-to place for feedback. That place is wherever your customers are. :)
 

Shaz

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Totally agree. When I release my game, if I post it here, I expect it's going to get hammered, because I know so many people here can, and do, make better games than mine. But on our forum, and on BFG (where my target audience lives), I expect a much better response. I am making it with them in mind. I might come here for feedback on screens, or for opinions on mechanics, but I will not be making my game to please this audience, because I'm not expecting this audience to buy it, though there might be an exception or two.
 
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Helladen

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I had one last question about something. If your game is free and you offer a musical soundtrack for money (on the side) does that make the game commercial? It can really be a great start to open the game up to more people, and easier to get out the door.
 

Shaz

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If the soundtrack is only available with the game, then it doesn't really matter what you're saying they pay for - most people would consider them to be paying for the game, and getting the soundtrack as a bonus, not the other way around. If they can buy the soundtrack and not get the game, then the soundtrack would be commercial but the game would not be.
 

Helladen

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What if you were to market add-on packages to your game? Would that make it commercial? By add-ons I mean, maybe a new soundtrack or something like that, so at-least everyone can play the game and anyone that wishes to support it could purchase a new soundtrack for the game. This could give them a reason to replay through it. Additionally, the game could have a lot of replayability, too. I think this could be a great step to take between commercial and free to get your feet wet, because it can be hard to get the game how you want it without using many resources. Anyone else have anything to add, suggestions, or clarifications?
 
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amerk

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You might consider making a free game to test the water, and once it's become popular enough make a new version (with plenty of updates, new content, new areas, extra story, etc) that you sell.

But simply attaching a soundtrack to it wouldn't necessarily mean your game was commercial. It'd be more like, buy the soundtrack for it, and we'll give you the game free. The problem, if the game is already free, then inciting to buy the soundtrack as a bonus really wouldn't be much incentive unless:

A. Somebody really wanted that soundtrack or

B. They could use the music in their own game.

It could come off as a bit shady, too, if somebody believes they must buy the soundtrack just to get the game, only to find out the game was free regardless.
 

Helladen

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You buy the soundtrack and can install it into the game or listen it to like on iTunes, it is free to use however you see fit.
 

amerk

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I get that, but your question was:

What if you were to market add-on packages to your game? Would that make it commercial?

If your game is free, the game is free. If you're selling an add-on (like a soundtrack), it wouldn't make your game anymore commercial than any other free game title you can find in the community. It would, however, make the add-on a commercial investment (be it music, art, or some other bonus incentive).

A lot of commercial sites (like Amaranth) do allow free games to be hosted, and I've seen separate add-ons like voice packs for Aveyond and strategy guides go for additional cost. So you certainly can sell your add-ons assuming they were made by you, just as long as they don't go against any sort of contract you might have made with somebody you hired to do the work.

For example, if you hired somebody to compose the music for your game, and they never relinquished the rights of the music to you for distribution, then you won't be able to sell the soundtrack as an add-on. You could sell your game with the music included, but you could not sell or distribute the soundtrack by itself.
 

Helladen

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Thanks, that is what I thought.
 

Lord Valdyr

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I generally blind myself to weather a game is engine made or from scratch in the end it always comes down to my enjoyment of it.
 

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