Official RPG Codex Discord Server

  1. Welcome to rpgcodex.net, a site dedicated to discussing computer based role-playing games in a free and open fashion. We're less strict than other forums, but please refer to the rules.

    "This message is awaiting moderator approval": All new users must pass through our moderation queue before they will be able to post normally. Until your account has "passed" your posts will only be visible to yourself (and moderators) until they are approved. Give us a week to get around to approving / deleting / ignoring your mundane opinion on crap before hassling us about it. Once you have passed the moderation period (think of it as a test), you will be able to post normally, just like all the other retards.
    Dismiss Notice

Obsidian and inXile acquired by Microsoft

Discussion in 'General RPG Discussion' started by Wunderbar, Aug 8, 2018.

  1. jf8350143 Savant

    jf8350143
    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2018
    Messages:
    891
    At least they will be still making RPGs(or so they said), Bioware and Bethesda didn't even bother to making rpgs anymore.
     
    • Fabulously Optimistic Fabulously Optimistic x 2
    • decline decline x 1
    ^ Top  
  2. mondblut Arcane

    mondblut
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2005
    Messages:
    19,011
    Location:
    Ingrija
    They are too busy paying out to mail.ru so it would fund a few more F2P mmos in development.
     
    • decline decline x 1
    ^ Top  
  3. mondblut Arcane

    mondblut
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2005
    Messages:
    19,011
    Location:
    Ingrija
    Bioware and Bethesda keep saying they are still making RPGs, too.
     
    • Acknowledge this user's Agenda Acknowledge this user's Agenda x 1
    • Makes you think... Makes you think... x 1
    • [citation needed] [citation needed] x 1
    • it is a mystery it is a mystery x 1
    ^ Top  
  4. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

    Vault Dweller
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Messages:
    27,841
    Are these the biggest problems that held Pillars 2 back then? Marketing and localization?

    They will deal with scripting bugs?

    From a purely financial perspective, selling out to MS is a dream come true. The owners make millions, the employees gain some stability for the near future. That's it. From 'do they get to make better RPGs without having to worry about money' perspective, the answer is 'lolwut?'. My posts were in response to the latter, not the former.
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 11
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • meh meh x 2
    ^ Top  
  5. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

    Vault Dweller
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Messages:
    27,841
    They picked the design/story/style, not the backers.

    So they picked the game that would have the highest chance to make them some money, yet under Microsoft's wing they will be free to create games unburdened by such bourgeois materialistic concerns?
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 7
    • Funny Funny x 4
    • meh meh x 1
    ^ Top  
  6. AW8 Arcane

    AW8
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2013
    Messages:
    1,724
    Location:
    North of Poland
    Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    The Outer Worlds is going to be a massive hit, even here on the Codex. Then before they can release another game, the Big One hits and sinks all of California into the Pacific Ocean.

    The discussion will last for decades. Did Trump knowingly let it happen? Was it aliens? Were the best parts of The Outer Worlds developed before or after the Microsoft aquisition?
     
    • "It was Aliens" x 5
    • Fabulously Optimistic x 2
    • Brofist x 1
    • hopw roewur ne x 1
    • Funny x 1
    ^ Top  
  7. MRY Prestigious Gentleman Wormwood Studios Developer

    MRY
    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2012
    Messages:
    5,468
    Location:
    California
    I wonder if The Outer Worlds will work better in the Halo universe?
     
    • Funny x 8
    • Excited! x 4
    • Yes x 2
    • decline x 1
    • Rage x 1
    • Despair x 1
    • Makes you think... x 1
    ^ Top  
  8. Quillon Magister

    Quillon
    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2016
    Messages:
    4,869
    Nope but its more in line with Upper Management's ambitions now as opposed to picking a style of game that would make money on KS and assigning leads on it who are either wanting do something else or not fully available for it.

    Who knows what will happen tho? Maybe MS wants them to make buncha low budget games instead of a big one or if they'll do a big one they might do it in Pillars' highfantasyverse. They can make lots of mistakes or right decisions, we'll see.
     
    • hopw roewur ne hopw roewur ne x 1
    ^ Top  
  9. Kruno Arcane Village Idiot Zionist Agent Shitposter

    Kruno
    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2012
    Messages:
    6,002
    I wont buy anything on the M$ store. Pray they don't do some retarded shit like make Obshitian and inXile M$ store exclusives, unless they just want to bury their IP.
     
    • Brofist Brofist x 1
    ^ Top  
  10. 2house2fly Erudite

    2house2fly
    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2013
    Messages:
    1,877
    It's kind of funny how buddy-buddy he is with Fargo. All the informed consumers here should tell him how bad Fargo is
     
    • Funny Funny x 11
    • When words are not enough When words are not enough x 1
    ^ Top  
  11. Multi-headed Cow Magister

    Multi-headed Cow
    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2018
    Messages:
    1,761
    Location:
    Illinois
    I fully expect a Wasteland 3 that's an actual AAA production with no fucking Unity. It'll be a masterpiece. The Figstarters will truly be blessed with a perfect CRPG that'll sell for $60 retail without sales for years to come and Inxile will take the throne that Blizzard has left empty for so very long. :kfc:
     
    • Funny x 7
    • Fabulously Optimistic x 5
    • WTF am I reading x 2
    • hopw roewur ne x 1
    • not sure if serious x 1
    • Yes x 1
    • Friendly x 1
    ^ Top  
  12. MRY Prestigious Gentleman Wormwood Studios Developer

    MRY
    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2012
    Messages:
    5,468
    Location:
    California
    Maybe they want to make a cinematic RPG like Mass Effect or The Witcher. Maybe they want to make a Star Wars RPG, or a LOTR one, or some other prominent IP. Maybe they want famous voice actors voicing everything. I dunno. It’s not what I would want, but neither is POE.
     
    • Funny Funny x 3
    • nice nice x 1
    ^ Top  
  13. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

    Vault Dweller
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Messages:
    27,841
    Sure. Now Feargus can get that 30 mil budget he once asked for BG3 but as you know the golden rule of investment into project is this: if someone gives you 30 mil (plus marketing), you have to earn them 50 mil (i.e. sell 2 mil copies - I'm accounting for Steam's cut, regional pricing, discounts in the first year, etc). We watch the train leaving Creative Freedom station and heading for Design That Sells Millions depo.
     
    • Brofist x 14
    • Agree x 3
    • Despair x 3
    • Funny x 2
    • meh x 1
    ^ Top  
  14. Chris Avellone Arcane Developer

    Chris Avellone
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2005
    Messages:
    460
    Location:
    Moblin Villige
    While as an Obsidian developer and secret owner, Nick is biased, there's a point to be made in that a critically well-received game didn't achieve the numbers it probably deserved - and that deserves examination.

    Marketing (as a tool of evil) is there to make you want to buy a product where no such want may have existed, and here's the kicker: they are there to make you want it even before you experience the gameplay. So gameplay decisions that are off-putting are often realized after the sale... but still, word-of-mouth and player feedback then work as a marketing campaign in themselves once an initial wave of players has purchased a title and can now react to it.

    But yes, the marketing component should be examined - and when you see Versus Evil's track record with titles like Banner Saga 2, you see there's a problem there, but then again, Obs. also had a marketing dept. that didn't hit the expected numbers, either (to be clear, while it's easy to blame Paradox for Pillars and Tyranny, I had a chance to speak with the marketing devs at PDX about both titles, and both mentioned that Obs. was the one guiding those products in terms of marketing - Obs. was the one in charge, they were the ones making the trailers, the game box covers, etc. and PDX was there to facilitate that to the point where the PDX people I spoke to had surrendered to the developer, so I feel it's wrong to blame them vs. the process they had to surrender to).

    Also, when PoE2 didn't hit the hoped-for numbers, Obs. did terminate their head of marketing as a result (this isn't drama, it was a pre-existing goal set into the hiring contract, as I understand it).

    And, to give Techland a nod, the story trailer for Numenera I thought was pretty great for condensing a lot of not-so-easy-to-condense ideas into something interesting for a gamer.

    But in terms of going their own way, Obsidian vs. marketing at other companies, though, Obsidian's (and esp. Chris Parker's) approach has always been, "we know better than you":

    Even for the GDC reveal for Tyranny, Obsidian chose to go their own way in promoting the product (for good or ill) which obviously wasn't part of the PDX line-up aesthetic, you can feel the disconnect when you watch the videos of it... Obsidian felt they should market the game's announcement differently, and chose to take it into their own hands. I thought it was jarring in terms of watching the line-up from start to finish, but if you take it by itself, it's not bad... but the problem? The audience didn't perceive it as its own thing.

    Localization: You need to respect the rest of the world.

    Localization on PoE2 was pretty bad, for sure, but I think even the game's localizers indicated the challenges with that on the Obsidian forums (you can't localize properly when you get an XML text dump of verbs and nouns from the game that are intended to be stitched together).

    As a counter example, the FTL localizers had a whole thread on Twitter about how they localized FTL b/c they genuinely had the freedom to care, to adapt, and then even suggest UI changes they thought would convey the terminology of the game systems better: And almost no developer gives or thinks to give a localization company that kind of "power" over the game, nor does the localization company often have the freedom to suggest such things. It's one of the reasons I love Subset games, and have worked with them repeatedly.

    It's a complicated issue, and I think MS can help with both... with the caveat that "if it's convenient for them".

    What I mean by that is that being part of a larger organization, a lot of elements considered for quality, for attention, or for support may be sidelined or lost if you're going up against Blockbuster V or VI, and there's the rub: It's out of your control.
     
    • Informative x 16
    • Brofist x 8
    • When words are not enough x 2
    • hopw roewur ne x 1
    • Salute x 1
    • Balanced x 1
    ^ Top  
  15. Alienman Arcane Patron

    Alienman
    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2014
    Messages:
    12,376
    Location:
    Mars
    Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy Shadorwun: Hong Kong Divinity: Original Sin 2
    Windows Update

    Restarting in: 10 min, 25 sec

    Installing Pillars of Eternity and Wasteland 2 ...
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2018
    • Funny Funny x 8
    • incline incline x 1
    • decline decline x 1
    • Despair Despair x 1
    ^ Top  
  16. fantadomat Arcane Edgy

    fantadomat
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2017
    Messages:
    28,351
    Location:
    Bulgaria
    Playing EU4,razing the world with my Bulgarian Tangra horde,then deciding to check the codex alerts.
    Looking through them i see strange thread with a name worthy of April's fool joke.
    I click expecting to see another one of Planetar's retarded threads.
    .....
    .....
    .....
    .....
    .....
    .....
    Fifteen pages later...
    [​IMG]
    It is real....




    Kudos to Fargo for scamming MS,now he could buy himself a Bulgarian citizenship as any self respecting scam artist would do.
    :excellent:
    :bravo:







    In the end it is neater good nor bad thing. It is not like at this point Obsidian and Inxile are beloved studios that make anything worth buying. Europa will still produce good and fun RPGs. Nothing will change for true RPG fans. I am more hyped for Kingmakers upcoming mega patch than for anything that these three studios could make in the next half a decade. Still MS looks energetic,something decent could come out of it,who knows. Maybe they should promote Fargo as Marketing mega ultra master,that guy could sell shit on biscuit easily:salute:.
     
    • Funny x 7
    • Brofist x 2
    • Salute x 2
    • Bad Spelling x 2
    • :M x 1
    ^ Top  
  17. Chris Avellone Arcane Developer

    Chris Avellone
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2005
    Messages:
    460
    Location:
    Moblin Villige
    My last work on WL3 (but not all inXile games) ended ~October of 2017.

    The inXile purchase was definitely a surprise, though, I had no idea that was happening... but in terms of BT4, it was most likely a deal that started before the game's release (these kind of purchase agreements are usually 6 months+ with 6 months being the bare minimum).

    I do think it's (unfortunately) significant MS chose to announce the inXile purchase first, that's definite shade on inXile. And b/c I love working with George Ziets, that makes me "slightly" angry.
     
    • Brofist x 7
    • Informative x 3
    • Acknowledge this user's Agenda x 2
    • Makes you think... x 1
    • Interesting x 1
    • WTF am I reading x 1
    ^ Top  
  18. Cael Dumbfuck! Dumbfuck

    Cael
    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2017
    Messages:
    15,430
    That is the problem, isn't it? Marketing creates a hype that makes people want to buy stuff. The buyers then find out that what they bought is a piece of poop. But by then, the game developers are high-5-ing themselves over the number of copies sold. Recent examples include the HBS game and Kingmaker. It doesn't matter to the game developers that word-of-mouth crashes their sales after that. It is too late. The devs already made their pile and are laughing all the way to the bank.

    And so the cycle of badly made, bug riddled games continue. I won't even go into the whole craziness that is Kickstarter because giving the game devs money before they even wrote a single line of code is taking the scam up to 11 and then some.
     
    • retadred x 3
    • Brofist x 1
    • hopw roewur ne x 1
    • not sure if serious x 1
    • Agree x 1
    • Friendly x 1
    ^ Top  
  19. glass blackbird Learned Patron

    glass blackbird
    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2015
    Messages:
    664
    PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015
    a game with a Design That Sells Millions would probably be superior to Tyranny in that it would be fucking finished
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
    • Funny Funny x 1
    ^ Top  
  20. Life of the Party Arcane

    Life of the Party
    Joined:
    May 8, 2018
    Messages:
    3,535
    Maybe the point of this acquisition is for Xbox to get its own Horizon Zero Dawn?
     
    • Funny Funny x 1
    ^ Top  
  21. Kyl Von Kull The Night Tripper Patron

    Kyl Von Kull
    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2017
    Messages:
    3,139
    Location:
    Jamrock District
    If there is any justice in the world, Feargus’ new boss will come up to him on Monday and say:

    You should have picked George.
     
    • Funny Funny x 19
    • incline incline x 3
    ^ Top  
  22. Vault Dweller Commissar, Red Star Studio Developer

    Vault Dweller
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Messages:
    27,841
    Sure, but what exactly is marketing today? Games like Skyrim get TV commercials but that doesn't apply to games like Pillars or Divinity 2. Box art in the digital age? Personally, I feel that the four main components are design (developers talking about design and drawing people in via interviews and updates), visuals (eye candy always sells), exposure on Steam, and word of mouth. Any good studio can nail #1, 2, and 4. See Battle Brothers: great design, solid updates with good art, charming visuals, great word of mouth.

    Or, perhaps, Banner Saga 2 simply offered more of the same but the demand was no longer there and no marketing would have helped it double the sales.

    Corporate Culture 101: when things don't go as planned someone must be held "accountable" and promptly sacrificed to the great old ones.

    Too bad the design and writing didn't pull their weight.

    I wouldn't phrase it this way.

    Easy to do when you're localizing a game with very little text.
     
    • Agree Agree x 13
    • Brofist Brofist x 1
    • meh meh x 1
    ^ Top  
  23. santino27 Arcane Patron

    santino27
    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2008
    Messages:
    2,323
    As we all know, you have personal beef with Obsidian, but looking at the output / reception to the two company's recent titles, it's absolutely no surprise to me that Obsidian got the preferred spot in the announcement.

    With regard to what MS can offer, marketing is one thing, assuming Obsidian will take it. But QA is another... presumably, MS can direct a lot of internal QA resources to help their dev studios, which would be a significant boon to Obsidian.
     
    • Agree Agree x 7
    ^ Top  
  24. IHaveHugeNick Arcane

    IHaveHugeNick
    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2015
    Messages:
    1,869,365
    If you handle them badly, they're big enough problems to be relevant factors in the eventual commercial failure, yes.

    You can of course do it internally and waste valuable time and resources, or you can outsource it to some schmuck and pray he knows what he is doing. Or you can have proven specialists from your parent corporation handle it for you. Take your pick.

    If you can freely access expertise and knowledge of highly accomplished engineers and programmers with more professional credentials than your entire company combined, and your only idea how to utilize them is to get them to deal with scripting bugs, you weren't worth buying out in the first place.

    No, the answer is that there are countless quantifiable benefits of tapping into structures and resources of a large parent corporation that might result in making a better game. Might. Or might not.

    Just like your many considerable talents once resulted in AoD which I consider the best RPG since Arcanum, and once they resulted in Dungeon Rats which I uninstalled after 30 minutes.

    If there was a proven formula for a successful game everybody would be successful, but unfortunately the whole concept of success relies entirely on the fact that most people actually fail.
     
    • hopw roewur ne x 2
    • Brofist x 1
    • Acknowledge this user's Agenda x 1
    • Salute x 1
    • WTF am I reading x 1
    ^ Top  
  25. Chris Avellone Arcane Developer

    Chris Avellone
    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2005
    Messages:
    460
    Location:
    Moblin Villige
    So it's slightly worse than that. Forget BG.

    The indications from Obs. is that Chris Parker is calling the shots for the next "AAA" project (his shallow take: "hey, I get to make Skyrim!"), so I'm already done even if ol' "hope my employees guess frame of mind today" Chris Parker's management style wastes countless dollars and time. (To his defense, he learned this shit-stained argument from Fergie McFerg who would change his mind on a daily basis and not tell anyone - but what I can't condone from Parker is how pig-eager he embraced it, and also, how he was the best person to... "realize" it. Cue sad trombones - all of them, everywhere.)

    But in terms of money vs. time: MS has the former (dollars) to spare... the best part, is the secondary part, time, which is a FAR more rare resource for MS.

    Eventually, regardless of terrible producer/exec producer* demands, you need to deliver on something players want/may want... and I'd never want to play a Chris Parker-inspired game, esp. if it was one Fergus agreed to... without profanity.

    (But as the PoE1 KS video showed [and you can hear], there's a LOT of profanity between clashing owners and clashing viewpoints. Nick? Were you there? Sure you were - you heard it. It's okay. It made me uncomfortable and feel shitty, too.)

    * Chris Parker has been - ughhhh, Nick you had a chance - identified as the next, best EP for this shitshow. Be stronger, Nick. Fight for your love of games. Fight for Obsidian.
     
    • Funny x 32
    • Despair x 4
    • When words are not enough x 4
    • Brofist x 2
    • Friendly x 2
    • decline x 1
    • Informative x 1
    • Creative x 1
    • (autism) x 1
    ^ Top  

As an Amazon Associate, rpgcodex.net earns from qualifying purchases.