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Old 05-29-2011, 06:41 PM   #1
zratchet
 
 
 
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Question What makes a game worth the money?

I'm kind of running a survey of sorts here so be warned

What makes a game (or an expansion) worth the money? What makes a game worth $50 to you vs $10. Expecting some wildly different opinions here.

We want to provide expansion content but also want an open dialog on what is too little or too much (both content and price wise). As we release stuff (both patches and DLCs) I expect this thread to grow.

I'd also like to hear thoughts on preorders (minecraft style) and subscriptions (not that we will implement these necessarily but this game's beta was a paid beta like Minecraft's). We would like to experiment with things and see what works best for you, the community. And we'd like to know what other games you thought had interesting pricing models, and what you didn't like.
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Old 05-29-2011, 07:50 PM   #2
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I don't really honestly believe most games are worth $50 by the current standards, not when "AAA" titles often last no longer than 4 or 5 hours.
Some still have the content to back it up, but as it is, what makes a game worth a certain amount basically seems to come down to who made it, and can they get away with charging that much.
Which is kinda sad.


As for you providing DLC, I think you were very generous with the pricing of your game, but I wouldn't think it a good idea to ever charge more for add on content than the cost of the core game.
Depending on the type of content and ammount probably between 50-75% of what the core game cost at released would be reasonable enough.


As for pre-orders, I think the best types when it comes to indie releases are always the ones that give you early beta/alpha access. And let you give feed back on the games development, then not only are you contributing funds to its further development, it makes the community feel that much more involved in its actual physical development.
(Unless its minecraft, then the community asks you for something, you tell them its impossible, and then the next day someone makes a mod that does it )
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Old 05-30-2011, 12:30 AM   #3
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I've bought full price games and hardly played them, this could be due to bugs or the game is not as good as the hype led me to believe, other times I've spent very little on a game during a Steam sale and the game is played constantly.

I want to feel as though I've spent my money wisely so I've stopped pre-ordering games until I have an idea what that game is like.

I don't mind DLC but I will not buy any that splits the PC community between those that have it and those that don't, map packs as an example, you know my views on this as I've spoken to you via Steam chat. I also want the DLC to be worth my money and not just something a modder could put together in 5 minutes and usually better quality too.

In short, any game is worth the money if it's supported well and I can actually play it without beating it in 3-4 hours.
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Old 05-30-2011, 01:28 AM   #4
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Question

What if paid-for maps were rotated free on the weekend servers and/or only the host of a server had to have the map to make it playable? (not saying this will happen for sure, but it seems like it would address the concerns here?)

We want to create new things without splitting the community, but we also have to keep folks monetized on our end, the most likely things to be DLC are new game modes (not saying what yet ) which would be available on the weekend "preview sessions" and we'll consider a few other things as I said above to make sure folks that don't get the DLC right away aren't left out.
We probably will also run special previews for those who buy DLC early (i.e. preorder) - those people could also be beta testers for new games.

Maps most likely won't be in DLC unless they are just for a specific game mode in which case our goal will be to create a game around that mode that's just as much worth your money as the original MP modes. (at least we hope so!) Another option is that a new map could be released for the vanilla game modes a week after the DLC is released.

There probably will be a few additional goodies in DLC based maps but again with host-based DLC and preview weekends these will be available to the community at large.

Lastly one other option would be a preorder of DLC for X number of months at a reasonable cost.

Please feel free to discuss further what you do and don't like about these ideas - I'm throwing them out there so we can do what y'all want. We just need to support ourselves to keep making the game great for you guys.
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Old 05-30-2011, 01:57 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zratchet View Post
What if paid-for maps were rotated free on the weekend servers and/or only the host of a server had to have the map to make it playable? (not saying this will happen for sure, but it seems like it would address the concerns here?)
In all honesty, I think that's a bad idea, why would people pay for it when they can play the map/s for free all weekend anyway? The weekend is when most people are off work and they can just stay on one particular server without the need to ever purchase the DLC as the server is already running it.

I'm not sure how you'd address the issue, maybe someone else can think of an idea that might work.

As I said to you via Steam chat, I bought the DLC for ARMA II but I liked the way they did that as it didn't stop anybody from playing the new maps as they could have the lite versions for free, granted, the quality was not as good but it could at least give those players an idea what the DLC was like until they had the money to buy the DLC themselves, it still gave them the option of not being kicked from a server because a new map was running.

The same could apply to the ARMA II lite versions, players might never buy it as they already had the lower quality versions but when you looked at the lite versions I think a lot of players decided to buy it anyway.

Maybe a timed map tester would work? A server is setup that runs the new maps for one full weekend only, this should be enough time hopefully to try the maps out.

I also forgot to add, this can work both ways, if players don't like what they see with the free weekend, it could impact the sales of that DLC.

Last edited by xX_Renegade_Xx: 05-30-2011 at 02:05 AM. Reason: Added addition.
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Old 05-30-2011, 07:54 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xX_Renegade_Xx View Post
In all honesty, I think that's a bad idea, why would people pay for it when they can play the map/s for free all weekend anyway? The weekend is when most people are off work and they can just stay on one particular server without the need to ever purchase the DLC as the server is already running it.

I'm not sure how you'd address the issue, maybe someone else can think of an idea that might work.

As I said to you via Steam chat, I bought the DLC for ARMA II but I liked the way they did that as it didn't stop anybody from playing the new maps as they could have the lite versions for free, granted, the quality was not as good but it could at least give those players an idea what the DLC was like until they had the money to buy the DLC themselves, it still gave them the option of not being kicked from a server because a new map was running.

The same could apply to the ARMA II lite versions, players might never buy it as they already had the lower quality versions but when you looked at the lite versions I think a lot of players decided to buy it anyway.

Maybe a timed map tester would work? A server is setup that runs the new maps for one full weekend only, this should be enough time hopefully to try the maps out.

I also forgot to add, this can work both ways, if players don't like what they see with the free weekend, it could impact the sales of that DLC.
Hey Ren, (hope shortening is fine )

Most likely we would rotate through different maps each week.

Can you expand on how these lite versions worked? Was it texture quality, etc?

One inspiration for the weekly tests is how League of Legends works (they provide new content weekly and if you want to keep it you buy it), also we would probably do the same sort of townhall as this last weekend to gather feedback and if a DLC is not liked we'll either do something else or fix it based on feedback.

Any more feedback you have is much appreciated!
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Old 05-30-2011, 01:02 PM   #7
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I'm old.....

So I would buy a DLC if it gives me something good in return of course.
I also buy stuff from companies I do support. Like BIS OFP, Arma, Arma2 and next summer Arma3....
But this game here I use just for fun and relaxing. I thought the game was worth what I gave for it.
Since I'm old, I use it to play with friends and we play coop.
Other kinds of game modes I don't enjoy that much. So if the DLC gives me "death match" and one mission....it's a no go for me.
But if I get 3-4 more episodes it might be worth it for me.

Not that I can't make my own episodes, but then I have to put time and effort into it, when I'm all ready using a lot of time on other things.

This little shoot'em up game would not even be considered if it had cost more than €10 in my case. I'm not saying it's not worth it, but that is how I spend my money. I don't have every game I can find. I stick to some games and some types of game play.

And it might just be some income for you if you make a lot of episodes and sell it cheap. I don't know. But this is my feed back.
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Old 05-30-2011, 07:58 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoBrainer View Post
I'm old.....

So I would buy a DLC if it gives me something good in return of course.
I also buy stuff from companies I do support. Like BIS OFP, Arma, Arma2 and next summer Arma3....
But this game here I use just for fun and relaxing. I thought the game was worth what I gave for it.
Since I'm old, I use it to play with friends and we play coop.
Other kinds of game modes I don't enjoy that much. So if the DLC gives me "death match" and one mission....it's a no go for me.
But if I get 3-4 more episodes it might be worth it for me.

Not that I can't make my own episodes, but then I have to put time and effort into it, when I'm all ready using a lot of time on other things.

This little shoot'em up game would not even be considered if it had cost more than €10 in my case. I'm not saying it's not worth it, but that is how I spend my money. I don't have every game I can find. I stick to some games and some types of game play.

And it might just be some income for you if you make a lot of episodes and sell it cheap. I don't know. But this is my feed back.
Hi NoBrainer,

Understood - we just want to provide the option of more content - we'll probably keep the vanilla option as well as "complete" versions once we have a good set of content ready. I just figure its better to provide DLCs than keep people waiting for Episode 3 ... not to say that Ep3 won't be coming, but a trickle is better than a drought...
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Old 05-30-2011, 08:01 PM   #9
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Given what's already been said:

What would you buy for $1?

$2.50?

$5?

$10?

$15?

$25?

Anything worth going higher for or for a subscription for? (not pushing this option, I'm just curious why folks would subscribe to a game, I don't subscribe to any - I was on WoW for a while and when friends quit playing I quit)

One other question - would you rather wait a year or more for something comparable to what Rise of Rome was for Age of Empires or the HL2 Episodes were for HL2?
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Old 05-31-2011, 08:41 AM   #10
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ok my 2 cents...

i would pay €3,- (around 50% of the core game) for a DLC which gives me a campaign which offers more maps than ep1 but less than ep2... it should also contain 1 or 2 new ships (optical gimmick) which are unloackable.

every multiplayer content, like new maps and new game modes (TDM, chase cam DM... ) should be for free, so that the community is not split into people who have the DLC and people without it.

if you support the player, they will support you as well, good example is tripwire/killing floor.

also i would early preorder said DLC if i get something for it... like beta access or stuff like this.
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Old 05-31-2011, 09:12 AM   #11
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An example of what we *don't* want to do: http://ca.kotaku.com/5806775/how-cal...-paying-for-it

Unless you think it's good...?
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Old 05-31-2011, 09:20 AM   #12
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What about multiplayer-only episodes (i.e. Ep2-level amount of content but for multiplayer) ? They might technically be a different game/genre (hint!) but the same "world" - so I don't necessarily see that as splitting the community.

That said, I hear you. Maps at least can be free. We will incorporate this into our development process.
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Old 05-31-2011, 09:43 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by zratchet View Post
What about multiplayer-only episodes (i.e. Ep2-level amount of content but for multiplayer) ? They might technically be a different game/genre (hint!) but the same "world" - so I don't necessarily see that as splitting the community.
well what i wrote above about ep3 as DLC would also kinda split the community coz of the coop mode... though the other multiplayer modes would be still the same for everyone...

to be perfectly honest, while it was fun to play DM/CTF with you guys, i am not really into multiplayer atm... however, i am willing to support you guys and if we still talk about €3,- i would consider to buy it. though it should offer something more than just maps, maybe a new game mode as well. (new game/genre? mmmm)
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Old 05-31-2011, 04:28 PM   #14
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I think a game is worth $50 for a few reasons:
My interest in the game is high, either because it is based on a previous game I really liked or it seems to be the genre I like but still seems innovative.

Also, having a group of friends that are also excited about the game (and the game is multiplayer) really helps. Playing multiplayer with random people can be fun and is a good way to meet new people, but ANY multiplayer game I've played has always been the most fun playing with people I know.

I guess that's why I usually wait for a sale on single player games. I don't need friends to play it and I'm usually not so rabid over a game that I can't wait. Usually. BUT I will never pre-order a game again because I have been deceived by hype too many times in the past. Since Valve now offers a discount for some preorders, I am tempted but need to resist (On top of that and perhaps unrelated is that I often don't feel the need to buy single player games from steam for full price since I really don't see a benefit to logging in to play them. If a sale goes on for a single player game on Steam then I might buy it here.)

I usually don't pay full price for a DLC for any reason because they have a bad track record -- they're usually very short and add little value to the game. That makes even $10 seem too high. DLC at $10 should feel like the value of 1/5 of a game. That's really subjective to measure, but I don't think most DLC delivers on that, especially when 4 or 5 DLCs are cranked out in a short period of time or show up only a week or two after launch.

With multiplayer, as others have said, you can be caught between a rock and hard place with DLCs. Someone else updates and you don't, so you can no longer play with them. From a marketing standpoint you might think that puts pressure on the player that didn't buy the DLC to finally purchase it, but it can also alienate the player. If multiplayer DLC is something like maps, I won't jump at the chance to pay $10 for them. Also, if it's purely cosmetic, I probably won't pay $10 either.

As for what is worth $1, $5, $10... I think this post is long enough. If its helpful I'll reply with more
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Old 05-31-2011, 10:45 PM   #15
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Good stuff.

So to those who've bought Steel Storm, what made you decide that $9 or $10 was worth it?
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