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Port Starscape to the Gamecube???
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Fost
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Joined: 14 Oct 2002
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 01, 2004 3:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Darth Dallas wrote:
and other times you might have folks able to host an ad for little or nothing just because of the fan following or word of mouth factor.


There does seem to be this idea that somehow you can get free advertising by using the internet. We've never had an advert we didn't pay for, and if it was really cheap then it usually wasn't that good. The only time we have found you can get a good deal is if a site has a shortage of adverts, realises you aren't a big studio so can't afford much, and drops their prices for you for just that month.

Things like that are good to look our for (if rare) when you are starting out. No one ever seems to do anything out of the goodness of their heart though Crying or Very sad

EDIT: Actually, that's not 100% true, other indie developers are great, always helpful and always mention you on their web boards, as we always try to do to. It's almost worth being an indie developer just to know you are amongst friends Very Happy
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Darth Dallas



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PostPosted: Thu Jan 01, 2004 11:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

True enough. When you've got the same struggle, other bonds form from that and you never know where it could lead (hopefully lots of good things Smile )

I just thought of one piece of advertising that would cost you nothing though. Gamers who lurk and post on forums that let you put sigs for one thing, could link people to all kinds of cool gaming sites for titles like this one Smile Then everytime they post, its staring viewers in the face that much more often Smile

Course that all depends on if them other forums like you having your own ads or mad props in your sigs.
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Fost
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 02, 2004 2:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Darth Dallas wrote:
Course that all depends on if them other forums like you having your own ads or mad props in your sigs.


Ha! We ended up turning off sigs because they were starting to hurt our eyes when working late at night Cool. Once you've seen that excerpt from War & Peace in multi coloured letters once, it starts to grate Cool. We didn't think anyone might miss them!

Generally though if someone keeps banging the same drum on a forum I think it tends to have a a negative effect. Once you have said your piece you have to leave it to other people to make up their own minds. We actually don't bother to post about Moonpod on forums we frequent. We only post if we can help in any way. If people respect your help then they sometimes check out your www link.

Still, we don't mind at all if people post about related sites or other games (in fact, the sharing of such knowledge is an important part of the forum, and we've already found loads of cool games we wouldn't have found otherwise Very Happy )
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Darth Dallas



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 02, 2004 5:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually I like that you guys have sigs off on this forum...though I do like them, I don't use them much (I don't always have anything interesting to put there 'cept maybe some silly movie quote or something heh). In part however, I'm ok with links being shown, but its the banner images that can get huge and distracting. Also I wouldn't want to advocate spamming another forum for the sake of showing the links only in the sig part Very Happy
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Konedima
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 02, 2004 12:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

have you ever tried contacting nintendo? i'm sure they wouldn't be as cynical as sony.
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Doctor Max



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PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2004 2:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah but they would prolly make the defult name Yoshi Shocked Razz Embarassed
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Flumpaphone



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PostPosted: Sun Jan 04, 2004 10:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gamepark's GP32 might be worth a look in too. I think their licensing system is quite open. From what I have read (I really don't know much though) in some magazines, Nintendo have a pretty tough policy with developers. I have heard it is very hard to make money with GBA games, although I'm not sure why that is, I know it has somehting to do with Nintendo's policies.

It might be hard to make money with a GP32 game because they have a tiny part of the market Sad
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Juggy



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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2004 4:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Flumpaphone wrote:
Gamepark's GP32 might be worth a look in too. I think their licensing system is quite open. From what I have read (I really don't know much though) in some magazines, Nintendo have a pretty tough policy with developers. I have heard it is very hard to make money with GBA games, although I'm not sure why that is, I know it has somehting to do with Nintendo's policies.

It might be hard to make money with a GP32 game because they have a tiny part of the market Sad


Nintendo use to have tough policies on developers, but if you talk to them they have become more open because its in their interest to design good games no matter if they are 1st, 2nd or 3rd party developed games.
I read an article some where last year that the royalties have been reduced and other factors as well have been changed, so 'Moonpod' crew its time to call 'David Gosen' and demand that you want to develop games for Ninendo... Or call the big man 'Saturo Iwata, the president of Nintendo'. Shocked

I know I said something like this before, but I think its time to talk and see what happens, you never know 'Nintendo' may act as your publisher for 'Starscape'. that would be great... Very Happy

Juggy Cool
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Fost
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2004 5:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Juggy wrote:
... but I think its time to talk and see what happens, you never know 'Nintendo' may act as your publisher for 'Starscape'. that would be great... Very Happy


That would indeed be good! You are right of course, we have become a little jaded about these ideas. We've realised in the past year that we really want to concentrate on the way we are doing things presently: selling direct online ourselves.

Regarding Nintendo: have a look at http://www.noa-engineering.com/ for more information on licensing. The main issue again for us is the lack of a Nintendo licensed publisher. To publish ourselves we would have a minimum spend of $10 $20k on development hardware, and 5,042 cartridges/discs minimum initial purchase (not sure what the cart manufacture + royalty would be, but could be anywhere up to $10).

Obviously we don't have that kind of money.

Well, why not contact all the publishers? We could (and have in many cases in the past), but we've found you can get the same experience by banging your head against a brick wall, and that way you don't waste as much time. Each publisher we have ever contacted will soak up a couple of days worth of time in emails alone.

We just want to make games, and make a living. We think we can do that concentrating on our current audience, and it's far less hassle than having to prepare submission documents, samples, etc only to be ignored.

I don't think anyone on this board truly understands what trying to get a publishing deal is like. We have tried (a lot, and often), but now unless someone contacts us, and their first email says they will get us devkits and cover development costs, it's pretty unlikely we are going to be developing for consoles any time soon.
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Juggy



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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2004 9:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fost, thanks for that link about Nintendo licensing and developing games, it is quite a procedure to follow, however its still achievable to get the game developed for any of the Nintendo devices...

1. I think firstly Moonpod need to develop a few more games and to establsih themselves, to show they are very good independent games developers.

2. Secondly, how about if all us fans and supporters of 'Moonpod' get together and donate some money into a fund that can help buy a dev kit. I am sure most fans and supporters will be able to help.. Razz

So what do you think and I am sure it will seem strange but if we work together we can get the game onto the console format. Sorry I dont want to patronise you because I know getting publsihers on your side is a difficult task because they are in the business to support the games to make money..

I think this could be more of a viable solution to build on....
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Fost
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2004 12:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Juggy wrote:
I think firstly Moonpod need to develop a few more games and to establsih themselves, to show they are very good independent games developers.

Yes, we've been kind of thinking that. If we have a couple of games then we might be a bit less strapped for cash, or be able to interest someone more easily. We've kind of closed the book on it, but might revisit it in the future.

Juggy wrote:
2. Secondly, how about if all us fans and supporters of 'Moonpod' get together and donate some money into a fund that can help buy a dev kit. I am sure most fans and supporters will be able to help.. Razz


! We appreciate the sentiment, you are talking 10-20k for Nintendo kits, but that's not the problem; you need to be a Nintendo approved developer before you can buy one. So you are back needing a publisher.

You'd be better off sending a petition to Nintendo asking them to publish the game and pay for it's development on GBA (let's not be under any illusions here> Starscape in current form would not be saleable on a GameCube. Oddly I'd personally like playing it on a Cube quite a bit! The reality is: Joe and Josephine Public have been told by the press that all games now have to be 3D and multiplayer. They won't give something a look if it isn't at least in 3D.)

This idea also has the advantage of being free Very Happy
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Juggy



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PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2004 1:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fost wrote:
Quote:
You'd be better off sending a petition to Nintendo asking them to publish the game and pay for it's development on GBA (let's not be under any illusions here> Starscape in current form would not be saleable on a GameCube. Oddly I'd personally like playing it on a Cube quite a bit! The reality is: Joe and Josephine Public have been told by the press that all games now have to be 3D and multiplayer. They won't give something a look if it isn't at least in 3D.)



True if I could get petitiion together and Nintendo maybe perusaded in Japan, but its a different story here in Europe. In Japan I know that Nintendo does work well with small time developers, but I cannnot speculate on this matter in the US or Europe..

I also see you are a cube fan like me and have many games, but your correct in a sense that most of the public has led to believe in 3D graphics and mulitplayer games, but this does not guarntee success. There are many games for the cube that are not all good graphically and multiplayer is also shameful... Sad

However, there is one game I know that has done well in 2D, single player and is side scrolling; Viewtiful Joe. Razz
Of course there are more games for the cube that are not multiplayer and have done well. I think another problem is making games for the net, so you can play with users anywhere in the world, its expensive and the business model is not adequate becauseof costs(add on devices, subscription to broadband, game)....

Well all I can do is maybe wait and let you 'Moonpod' create some more games for the pc, then see if they will come onto console: 'N5', 'PS3' and 'Xbox2'....
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neverm1nd



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PostPosted: Sun Jan 18, 2004 11:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This might seem a bit far fetched. If you guys really arent going to publish the game for a console, what are the chances of releasing source code so others can port starscape to xbox? Like how id released doom, and quake source which in turn got ported to xbox and is now playable if you own the original by transfering the .wad files. Maybe a similiar type thing could happen where either you release the source, someone else ports it and then end users could just transfer over the starscape.000 file. maybe im just talking crazy but it might also increase sales by interesting a whole other slew of ppl. Releasing the source is also a good way to get linux users involved.
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Goober
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 12:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Releasing the source code to (currently) our only game would also be a great way to put ourselves out of business. It's not going to happen soon. Maybe (like id) once we've gotten 3 or 4 huge selling games under our belts and we're so rich we don't care about money anymore, we might consider it.

Hopefully, one day Smile
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 1:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are so many different factors up against what you are saying I don't know where to start, but here's a few thoughts:

1: ID released the Doom and Quake source many years after they had finished making money out of it. So, I'll 'never say never', just 'now now' !

2: Call me greedy if you like Very Happy but I'd be quite happy if I could afford to pay my mortgage right now (which I cant btw), and we would not see a penny from an xbox linux port. Ok that's my opinion, but even in the unlikely event we did: see No.3:

3:If we make money in any way from an Xbox title then we will be in the s*** with Microsoft. You can't simply say: get this open source software that happens to only work if you buy a key from Moonpod. MS are unfortunately not that stupid Sad Bear in mind that Xbox linux and so on are technically illegal (I'm not saying I agree or disagree, just the facts). It has been released by anonymous individuals, so MS can't do anything to prosecute. I'm sure they would have no trouble locating the Moonpod office and dispatching 'War Rocket Ajax to bring back our bodies!!!' (Possibly misquoting Flash Gordon there - sorry!)

4:We haven't discounted any ports at the moment, we are just so busy we aren't able to do them Sad Doesn't mean we don't want to Very Happy

5: Currently we have a standpoint with modding (which this pretty much applies to). We like modding (actually that's not strong enough, we love it!), but we believe if we are going to release a game with modding capabilities, then we want to support it properly, and have proper 'public safe' editing tools. Some people have openly disagreed with this (they would rather we release it 'as is' and let people hack away at it). We have noted these opinions, and understand them, but we as yet haven't changed our minds. It's a bit of a motto we have: 'If you can't do something well, don't put it into the game'. Available resources unfortunately dictates we cannot make a good job of it right now. As before: Never say never!

6: We haven't yet finished with Starscape, we have some features that we would like to add still. Currently we are concentrating on our second game though. This is something we are thinking would be cool for all games: adding little features to them and constantly updating them as and when we have time. We certainly like this as a concept; whether we will be able to follow though depends on how well we fair in the future. Starscape has already seen several major updates, and we hope that trend continues with everything we do. We think it's certainly something that would be vastly different to what 'mainstream games' provide.


Sorry, that's a fairly long tirade of negative responses. In principle I like what you are saying though. It boils down to the same old problems: we have the capabilities to make console games (xbox in particular would be pretty easy), but that doesn't mean we can sell them online or get round that problem without promoting console modding (any console manufacturer would set ninjas on us for this) and/or bypassing the license fees console manufacturers expect (see previous ninja comments).

You just can't release on consoles without going though the console manufacturer, and then we are back to the old publishers headache.
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