Double standard for reviews of indie games?

Discussion in 'Indie Business' started by Musenik, Apr 15, 2011.

  1. lightassassin

    lightassassin New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2009
    Messages:
    191
    Likes Received:
    0
    Whoa don't read the topic for a bit and was keen to see some interesting conversation about standards of games and this place goes insane.

    Umm... back on topic I guess.

    Can anybody point out some games that get praise but really don't meet the polished standards. I saw ROTT, Gemini Rue and other games mentioned as good games, but what about ones that prove the point in the negative (ie they are lacking due to failing to polish)?

    About 2 weeks after Torchlight was released it became very obvious that it was a bit deal they left out multiplayer, obviously they left it out to polish what they had and stick to their strengths, but maybe they should have left something else out as it would have increased sales because I know when I finished SP I gave my copy to my brothers to complete since they couldn't play with me.

    Edit: Ohh heck, I typed this post and 5 others appeared!
     
  2. Indinera

    Moderator Indie Author

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2008
    Messages:
    636
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hmmm I remember when I had a talk with you and saying it was possible to make a decent living out of 2k monthly, you told me (in your typical belittling way) you don't want to live in poor countries, and then I told you I lived in the Riviera, and you told me you'd like to live here eventually.
    So "what you think is rubbish".... well, is kinda rubbish too.

    Bottom line: you are way too entitled to your own vision, you always think you know better.
     
  3. Applewood

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2004
    Messages:
    3,859
    Likes Received:
    2
    I think I've already alluded to the fact that I know for sure of lots of people doing very well, and I'm sure a decent percentage of them make more money than me for less work. I wasn't trying to show off, merely highlighting the fact that as a studio owner making a profit (albeit a small one) for six years running, through a recession, when the average lifetime of a startup is below two, surely my voice should at least count for something. Especially when it's arguing financials with people who live with their moms and somehow I came away losing? Methinks there's just no point having these conversations, which is where I'd got to before I lost it.

    EDIT: Just to catch up with your other post. If you can live on 2K a month and get all your art done by similarly cheap people, then great. Say a year of you and a year of an artist. (2+2)*12 = 48K (we were talking ukp) which in dollars is... gets calculator... Oh. Very nearly 100,000 dollars. Surely that can't be. And this is two guys working for less money than I'd get out of bed for tbh. Somehow you're just not selling it to me....
     
    #43 Applewood, Apr 16, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2011
  4. Indinera

    Moderator Indie Author

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2008
    Messages:
    636
    Likes Received:
    0
    Oh well I was always agreeing that adding your salary does raise the budget (obviously).
    I for one don't think it makes sense to add your salary since I consider my salary based directly on my games' profit.
    I did add, back then, that even adding the salary, you can get away with way (way) less than 100k and still make a profitable game.
    Yet I believe everyone has their truth, what I disagree with, is to impose your own to everyone else, and you do tend to do that often.

    PS: my previous post was not stating I earn 2K/month, but that it is possible to live decently at that rate.
     
    #44 Indinera, Apr 16, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2011
  5. Applewood

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2004
    Messages:
    3,859
    Likes Received:
    2
    As an older guy with a house and a family, I just couldn't live on that. Not here at any rate. It's technically possible if you cut down to basics, but I don't see why anyone should end up earning the same as a farm labourer for doing a job like this. It's hard to judge your value in terms of salary when you don't actually earn one, so then what you need do is compare what you do all day and think honestly what sort of wages you'd get doing the same thing for someone else. And that'd come to a darn sight more than 2K a month in most countries and especially in France where the employee seems to have godlike status.

    Whilst I've never had much of a bedside manner, the only time I really start lording it over people is when they're just flat wrong and won't listen to reason. Many times just because two or more people are talking, that doesn't make it a debate. A lot of times one person is right and one is wrong and that's just the end of it. When a fact is being discounted, I stand up for sanity instead of just leaving them to it. If that makes me look like an asshole, then fine.
     
  6. Indinera

    Moderator Indie Author

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2008
    Messages:
    636
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have little knowledge about economics and wages, even in France, and I prefer to admit it right away.
    Yet however, I do recall programmers having quite low salaries in France. Think about it, 50% of the french live with 1500k or less. And unless I'm mistaken, 80% earn less than 2k/month net.
    Those numbers should be verified but I'm pretty sure most are indeed under 3k/month. So this does put things under a different perspective.
    And bear in mind in Portugal the minimum wage is around 500 euros, in Spain it is something like 700 euros. If I was born in Portugal, 2k/month would be monstrous. Yet it's a pretty decent country to live in (trust me).
     
  7. Dogma

    Dogma New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2008
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    0
    This discussion just makes me sad. Why not give each other valuable advice instead of having these discussions. I don't get why this can be such a interesting, or difficult discussion. You need money to support yourself. If you decide to support yourself by making games, then the games need to make enough money to support you. How much you need to support yourself depends on where you live and your personal situation. Games usually require investments because there are so many disciplines involved in game development, but there are always exceptions to the rule. There isn't really a lot of room for discussion here, it is simple logic.

    Also, I know $100k sounds like a huge sum of money. It is for an individual, but it simply isn't for a company. Sure it is substantial, but what if I tell you that when me and my friends work as freelancers in the Netherlands, that ranges from somewhere between €75 - €150 an hour on IT jobs, does it still sound like a lot of money? When I work for €100/hour, it only takes me about 17 weeks to earn $100k. So we can discuss this for hours and hours, but this is just reality.
     
    #47 Dogma, Apr 16, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2011
  8. Adrian Lopez

    Original Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2004
    Messages:
    489
    Likes Received:
    0
    The free version of Unity supports "lower-end shadowing techniques, like Lightmaps or Projectors".

    It could be that, but it could also be due to people disagreeing with your particular interpretation of the truth.
     
  9. Adrian Lopez

    Original Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2004
    Messages:
    489
    Likes Received:
    0
    Speaking for myself, I have never claimed to be an expert of any sort.

    I thought you didn't want to discuss this any more. Since you clearly do, whether or not it's rubbish depends very much on how you look at it. As I've already stated, if I own a corporation (which is legally a separate person from myself) and that corporation chooses to pay me $0 to make my game, the cost to the company is literally $0. This is not debatable: It is a legal fact.

    What does making proper wages have to do with whether a particular statement is true or false? Perhaps you feel incapable of judging people's arguments on their merits, but that's not really the debater's problem.
     
  10. Dogma

    Dogma New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2008
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    0
    Come on, now you are just trolling him Adrian. What is the point of this? So what, it is common to start companies with no intention to make any money at all for yourself? Then you are just hobbying and wasting money on company registration...
     
  11. Adrian Lopez

    Original Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2004
    Messages:
    489
    Likes Received:
    0
    Perhaps you did, perhaps you didn't. You having greater experience than others does not amount to you winning by default. While an expert is generally more likely to be correct than than a non-expert, and argument once made stands on its own and is true or false regardless of who made it.

    Then again, it could be substantially less:

    "Jason Rohrer (born 1977) is a computer programmer, writer, musician, and game designer. He publishes most of his software under the GNU GPL or into the public domain, and charges for the iPhone ports of his games. He practices simple living and says his family of four has a budget less than $14,500 per year"
     
  12. vjvj

    Indie Author

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2004
    Messages:
    1,732
    Likes Received:
    0
    I understand what a graphics whore is, I'm more referring to the whole review process itself. I think it's ironic that the way to dodge the bullet from "non-graphics-whore" reviewers is to simply go back in time an extra 10 years and take the cutting edge from that era. I think some of them forget (or are maybe just too young to remember) that games like Super Metroid and Turrican were CUTTING EDGE, AAA TECHNOLOGY not too long ago...

    Who back in 1994 was saying "You don't NEED colorful sprites, multiple levels of transparent parallax, and fancy mode 7 effects to offer polished graphics and gameplay!". Yet these days, it seems like every 7 seconds someone in the world is posting "You don't need Crysis blah blah blah". Again, it just goes back to my original point that reviewers are no more rational than consumers.
     
  13. Nexic

    Indie Author

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2004
    Messages:
    2,437
    Likes Received:
    0
    You made a point in your post that I disagreed with. I didn't say anything else you said was wrong. In fact, I happen to agree with you on most of your other points. Specifically:

    1. If you're a decent programmer, and you spent 2 years making a game, then it's a little silly to say it only cost you $5k to make. You should at least be valuing your time at the rate you'd be able to make working for another company in your country of residence.
    2. Whilst spending $100k isn't 100% required for success, it drastically improves your odds. I'd say it's a pretty good benchmark. My future projects are unlikely to have a smaller budget than this.
    3. Yes, most indie games do cut far too many corners and scupper their chances of doing well as a result.
     
  14. Applewood

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2004
    Messages:
    3,859
    Likes Received:
    2
    And now we get to the swearing part again. I feel like I've stepped into some kind of special ed class. Yet it's me getting the bloody flames.

    Here it is, just one more time. Please get it this time else my head will implode. It's really not that hard. Ready?

    Nobody is discussing how much it costs you to make your own frigging game. Who gives a toss? The blog was about, the subsequent debate should be about, and was in fact about: How much A game costs to develop. In the third person. Someone else's frigging game. Wht the bloody helll would any 3rd party want to post to blog about how much Adrian Lopez pays himself. FFS
     
  15. Applewood

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2004
    Messages:
    3,859
    Likes Received:
    2
    Actually I apologise that it looked like that was aimed your way - it wasn't meant to, but I kind of snapped due to this bloody troll known as adrian lopez and a few others. Your head was next over the parapet is all, so sorry again.
     
    #55 Applewood, Apr 16, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2011
  16. Indinera

    Moderator Indie Author

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2008
    Messages:
    636
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well no the blog post said a game needs 100k to make a profitable game. Which is wrong. No matter which way you take it it is just utterly wrong and many, many sources can prove it wrong - not just Adrian's game, but "plenty of people's game". So "a" game does NOT need 100k, end of the story.
     
    #56 Indinera, Apr 16, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2011
  17. Adrian Lopez

    Original Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2004
    Messages:
    489
    Likes Received:
    0
    The main reason to start a one-man corporation is to shield yourself from personal liability. Whether or not paying yourself $0 a year is ultimately sustainable depends very much on your living expenses and your income from other sources. I wouldn't want to do it on a long-term basis, but it could work well as a short-term cost cutting strategy.
     
  18. Applewood

    Moderator Original Member Indie Author

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2004
    Messages:
    3,859
    Likes Received:
    2
    You volunteering are you? Me, I'll pass. Or are we playing "My special case trumps the 99% of cases everyone else would relate to just so I can score a point" again maybe.
     
  19. Adrian Lopez

    Original Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2004
    Messages:
    489
    Likes Received:
    0
    That's not necessarily our fault.

    I don't recall the blog post saying anything about working on "someone else's" game, but I do recall the author talking about "sweat equity" as his way of countering claims that folks making "their own frigging games" could do it for less than $100,000. Besides, why can't this "someone else" you speak of be working on "A game" that also happens to be his game?
     
  20. Indinera

    Moderator Indie Author

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2008
    Messages:
    636
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well it's true that as long as there is an exception, a statement is no longer true.
    Besides in that present case it's hardly a matter of "one" exception anyway.
     

Share This Page

  • About Indie Gamer

    When the original Dexterity Forums closed in 2004, Indie Gamer was born and a diverse community has grown out of a passion for creating great games. Here you will find over 10 years of in-depth discussion on game design, the business of game development, and marketing/sales. Indie Gamer also provides a friendly place to meet up with other Developers, Artists, Composers and Writers.
  • Buy us a beer!

    Indie Gamer is delicately held together by a single poor bastard who thankfully gets help from various community volunteers. If you frequent this site or have found value in something you've learned here, help keep the site running by donating a few dollars (for beer of course)!

    Sure, I'll Buy You a Beer