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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

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Vogel Reveals Geneforge 4 Sales Figures
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

On his new blog, The Bottom Feeder, Spiderweb Software's Jeff Vogel has announced the sales figures for one of the company's more successful games, the Indie fantasy role-playing game Geneforge 4: Rebellion. Using sales figures for Geneforge 4, Vogel offers a view of the realities of independent game development. In future weeks, the blog will break down the sales by platform, discuss price issues for Independent games, and include advice for aspiring developers.

I am going to give full sales results for our game Geneforge 4: Rebellion. I am not the first Indie developer to reveal this sort of information. However, most public sales figures come from projects that were either blockbusters or disastrous. But our games have never landed in either pool. I have been doing this for a living for almost fifteen years. I make good money, but I'm not a rich guy. At the same time, I have been unusually successful in this business, if for nothing else that I HAVE done it for a living for a long time.

So, young developer, beware. Even the numbers you are about to see are difficult to attain. You have to write a very solid game, of the sort that a million other people aren't making, and then get it noticed. Then, if you catch lightning in a bottle, this might be your reward.

I'll split the information into two parts. This part contains information on the game in question, the budget, and the basic sales numbers. Next week, I'll break down the data a little more and scatter some interesting opinions about being a small-scale game developer into the wind.

I picked Geneforge 4 because it was very much an average performer for us. Some of our games have done worse. Some have done much better. Its sales were respectable, at about the minimum level I would require to consider its development a success. It's also worth pointing out that it did not get any distribution on third party sites, which is unusual for us these days. This made it easier to calculate sales for it, but also means that far fewer people played it than our other games.
Read the entire blog post at the site linked below.

The Bottom Feeder: So Here's How Many Games I Sell
Spiderweb Software
Geneforge 4

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StarCraft II: Banelings, Battle Reports, LAN Play Concerns
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | 5 comments and IncGamers have posted a collection of new information about the upcoming StarCraft II gleaned from posts on Blizzard Entertainment's official forums. Blizzard rep answers include discussion of the Zerg Baneling unit, Battle Report release dates, and uncertainty about the inclusion of a LAN play option in StarCraft II.


Are Banelings going to be visible? Because the only way i see them to be effective is if theyre cloaked.
Banelings are visible and still very effective. When they are grouped with Zerglings, it is hard to focus fire several Banelings approaching at the same time. Even one Baneling getting through can be devastating to mass Marine armies or groups of Zealots.
Burrowed Banelings are also like mines, deadly when used as an ambush on unsuspecting forces.

But Banelings splash damage doesn't hurt your own units right?
No, it doesn't hurt your own units.
From IncGamers:
Blizzard Community Manager Kevin Yu took part in a Q&A session with StarCraft fans, including IncGamers' StarCraft network site, StarcraftWire, answering questions about the game's balance and individual unit statistics.

However, when it came to the LAN issue, Yu was unable to confirm or deny its inclusion in the RTS sequel. The reply does not exclude the possibility that network play will be included, but seeing as the company already decided to exclude the feature from its other anticipated sequel, Diablo III, it's likely that the StarCraft II development team will go the same route.

There are a number of possible reasons for Blizzard not to include LAN multiplayer; from piracy concerns to the fact that a game played on a Local Area Network would make Blizzard's service miss out on ad revenue.
Click over to the links below to read more. SC II Q&As
IncGamers: Starcraft II LAN Missing In Action?
Blizzard Entertainment
StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty
Buy StarCraft II: Wings Of Liberty

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StuntMANIA!pro Version 3.1 Released
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Sector3 Games recently released version 3.1 of StuntMANIA!pro. SM!P is a fast paced car stunt driving game that allows players to perform tricks and stunts with a selection of stunt cars on a variety of tracks. Version 3.1 introduces a variety of changes and bug fixes including new audio effects, visual effects, and improved car jump mechanics.

What's new in 3.1.0?
Brand new Audio Effects for in game and user interface
Added car skid marks
Dramatic improvements to how cars jump off ramps
Improved car physics colliders
Added high speed turn sensitivity to Game Options
New Nitro Booster VFX
Consolidated all Three Hang-Times into One
Added bonuses collection to ranks system
OSX downloads are now DMG's
Windows downloads are now Installer.exe's
Many performance optimisations
Visit the site below to learn more.

Sector3 Games

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Dominions 3: The Awakening Updated
6:00 AM | Cord Kruse | Comment on this story

Shrapnel Games has released a new patch for Dominions 3: The Awakening, Illwinter Game Design's third installment in the turn-based fantasy war game series. The patch brings the game to version 3.23 and introduces a variety of bug fixes and updates.

Features and bug fixes v3.23:
Battles in Inferno, Cocytus and the Void could not be viewed, fixed.
Hovering over an equipped item and pressing 'l' sends it directly to the lab. Also added a popup for the 'l'
shortcut on the next screen where you choose a commander or the lab.
Crash during turn generation bug fixed.
Global enchantments could incorrectly stay up if its immortal caster was permanently banished, fixed.
Immortals could die permanently from disease, fixed.
You could get permanently unable to appoint a new prophet in some circumstances, fixed.
Various magic items got bonuses on returning from other planes.
Forgotten city adventures had broken traps. E.g. the ballista only dealt 1 point of damage.
New units: Ryujin, Shark Warrior, Shrimp Soldier, Crab General.
AI learned how to use the seduction, lure and corrupt special abilities.
AI can no longer ignore sea of ice and similar restrictions.
AI could ignore target restrictions for rituals like Tidal Wave in some circumstances, fixed.
Head over to the links below to learn more.

Dominions 3 Update Page
Shrapnel Games
Dominions III: The Awakening
Buy Dominions III: The Awakening

Mac Games News for Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A Brief History Of Diablo6:00 AM
Discussing The Penumbra Series6:00 AM
Driving Kids Reviewed6:00 AM
IMG Reviews Multiwinia: Survival of the Flattest6:00 AM
Laserface Jones Wins Big In uDevGames 2008 Contest6:00 AM
Pangea Ends Mac Development In Favor Of iPhone6:00 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Tuesday, March 17, 2009 on one page

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