Tacticular Cancer: We'll have your balls

  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

Will there be a downloadable version of Dhargul?

Discussion in 'Teudogar and the Alliance with Rome' started by Anonymous, Jun 25, 2005.

  1. Anonymous Guest

    Anonymous
    Click here and disable ads!
    I would really prefer it if there was a downloadable version of the game that you could download instantly after you pay. That way you won't have to wait several weeks to get the game. Do you have any plans about this Wolf? I mean the game can't be THAT big, right? Considering that most demos nowadays are hundreds of megs, and nobody's complaining about that, i don't really see size as an excuse. Besides, even if you only have a 56k connection, it would still probably be faster than having it shipped in the mail :)


    So how about it? Will you be offering a downloadable version?
     
    ^ Top  
  2. Wolf Mittag Liturgist

    Wolf Mittag
    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2003
    Parrots:
    331
    Location:
    Shanghai
    Hello Igor,

    I will consider this as an additional option. (For all who may be wondering, at present, there is neither a Demo not a Full Version of DARGHUL available, neither downloadable nor on CD, because this game is still under development and not yet released.)

    Most people seem to like to receive a real CD; but for those who don't, it'd certainly make sense. With my present method of physical delivery by Deutsche Post / DHL, customers within Germany usually receive their full version one or two days after ordering, but delivery to the U.S. seems to take about 5 days - and there have been cases where it actually took more than 10 days. This is clearly unacceptable; and to avoid any possibility of such delays, instant delivery via downloading might really be a good idea for non-European customers.

    However, a great advantage (developer's point of view) of shipping CDs is that it effectively stops credit card fraud, because it simply makes no sense to use a stolen credit card number when you have to specify your postal address for delivery. Consequently, I have never experienced any instance of fraud so far. But according to what I hear from other developers, credit card fraud seems to be a significant problem for those who distribute their full versions as downloadable versions or unlock codes. Apart from the hassle for all non-criminal parties involved in such cases, the resulting chargebacks cause considerable fees for the seller. Such a fee might be about as much as I'd earn from selling 5 or more full versions - that means, assuming that 5% of transactions were fraudulent, I'd have to sell 30% more full versions to cover the resulting extra costs. That's quite a lot.

    Well, I'll be thinking this over; I need to check providers and their conditions for offering this kind of downloads; and I'll have to once again consult with some other developers on this subject, and do some additional research before making a decision.
     
    ^ Top  
  3. Igor Novice

    Igor
    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2005
    Parrots:
    31
    Location:
    Rand of the lising sun.
    I think credit card fraud has been virtually eliminated by now. I'm not sure, but i think that whenever you order something online with a CC, the site you order from check the database of the card provider to see if the card actually exists. If the card was stolen, the owner will probably have blocked it. The only thing i can think of is some kid using their parents card to order without telling them about it, and then when the parents get the bill they block the card because they think someone has hacked it.



    If you still don't want to do this, how about you set up a paypal account, and then people can deposit the money there. When you get payment confirmation you can then personally send the game through an FTP client or something.
     
    ^ Top  
  4. Elwro Arcane Patron

    Elwro
    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2002
    Parrots:
    10,982
    Location:
    Krakow, Poland
    Divinity: Original Sin Wasteland 2
    Fraud issues aside, you could do it the way Spiderweb does it: mail the unlock codes to the customer so he can continue playing the game with no delay, and then send the CDs which he can get in a week or more without being annoyed.
    I remember when I bought Avernum and thought "OK, now I will have to wait a week for the CDs to fly over here and I'll forget all the quests" and was pleasantly surpised when I got the unlock keys in my email the day after. (Yeah, I somehow managed to miss the info.)
     
    ^ Top  
  5. Wolf Mittag Liturgist

    Wolf Mittag
    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2003
    Parrots:
    331
    Location:
    Shanghai
    Elwro, Igor: Thank you both for your reflections & suggestions! I'll look into this.
     
    ^ Top  
  6. Anonymous Guest

    Anonymous
    I didn't mind having to wait 8 working days for my CD to arrive (mind you, by day 6 I was starting to get a little worried it had gotten lost.)
    As Wolf already said, having the CD feels much better (for me) coz if i get a virus and have to format (or crash my system myself doing "improvements") I can symply reload it from the CD.
    Although i can understand those who might want to download it with their fancy cable connections and CD burners :)
     
    ^ Top  
  7. Igor Novice

    Igor
    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2005
    Parrots:
    31
    Location:
    Rand of the lising sun.
    Exactly. I have both, so why should i have to wait up to a week to get it when i could have it within 2-3 minutes by download? I'm sure everyone else who has a fast connection feels the same.
     
    ^ Top  
  8. Anonymous Guest

    Anonymous
    Unlock codes

    Wolf,

    NEVER EVER use a demo version with an unlock code!

    Why?

    Because people will take the codes, and make a keygen, or a crack, and every happy little jerk who wants it for free, will have it for free.

    Heppened to crimsonland, Flatspace, Avernum 1 through 3, Geneforge....


    Dont do it to yourself.
     
    ^ Top  
  9. Wolf Mittag Liturgist

    Wolf Mittag
    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2003
    Parrots:
    331
    Location:
    Shanghai
    Re: Unlock codes

    Hi J P Marshall III, thank you for this warning.

    Yes, there's obviously a problem with unlock codes. Apart from keygens and cracks, sales will be cut in half if someone publishes just one single unlock code on the internet. (And sales won't be great to start with, anyway; I know few shareware authors who can make a living from their work. Writing shareware is a bit like the music industry - a handful of top names who manage to reach a great sales volume make money, sometimes a lot of it, but the majority of developers can be happy if their sales cover their costs.)

    So once a code has been published, an author would have to deactivate it in future versions. I've heard of authors who search the web for published unlock codes and then release new versions of their software, with these codes blocked, every single week. Of course the old versions will still be around (CDs, shareware web sites that actually host and not just link, etc), so while that may limit the damage, it won't undo it. If one doesn't use unlock codes, the software will get pirated the old-fashioned way via warez-sites, though that won't reach as many people, since there's greater risk in downloading and installing a piece of software from an obscure source than in simply googling for a code and then typing in what one has found.

    Many people find it difficult to pay for software or music. "Oh, it'll be all right if I just get it for free; of course the author needs to be paid for his work, but surely SOMEONE ELSE will buy the software." Problem with human behaviour is, when there's a chance to avoid costs, virtually everyone will take it. There usually will not be SOMEONE ELSE, or, at best, very very few of them.

    In my point of view, for a developer, it's a question of focus. Most people will never buy my software. Most will never use it, many will simply uninstall it when they've finished the Demo part, and some will steal it. Too bad, but that's life, and these people aren't really my business. I'll try to win over as many of them as I can, but if I can't, well. Since all of my income comes from the very few who are actually willing to buy my software, my main task is to focus on these great people, and to do my utmost to satisfy them.

    So convenience of buying and speedy delivery are extremely important issues for me. I'll do all I can to make buying and receiving my software as convenient as possible for my customers. If that causes more piracy, so be it. Since potential pirates and potential customers usually are not the same groups of people, it probably won't matter. I wouldn't want to do pure unlock codes since these might be a temptation too hard to overcome even for honest people. But I'll see what I can do with downloadable versions, or other means of delivery. At present, I'm working pretty hard on finishing development of DARGHUL (last technical and game world related things); but when I've finally done this, I'll deal with this issue.
     
    ^ Top  
  10. Anonymous Guest

    Anonymous
    "Problem with human behaviour is, when there's a chance to avoid costs, virtually everyone will take it."

    I agree with you completely. As a poor student i had not enough money to buy games. Now the money is no problem, but I still have a great aversion to pay for software. Perhaps it is a general "human behaviour".
    But as i recognized this, I tried to buy shareware games to help developers, who make content-rich old-fashioned games. Unfortunately my expierience is not very positive.
    For example i bought a game (i think it is in codex-db) with very promising demo, but a full version was only 15% bigger...they promised "continious development with new campaigns", new content en masse...
    I never heard anything from developers after i bought their game, even when i send them email with technical questions.
    What I mean is: there are also shareware developers, who are primary focused on making money.
     
    ^ Top  
  11. Wolf Mittag Liturgist

    Wolf Mittag
    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2003
    Parrots:
    331
    Location:
    Shanghai
    Hello guest, thank you for sharing your thoughts on this. Maybe I ought to give some more consideration to issues of trust and reputation, since - if other people have had similarly bad experiences with shareware developers - this may be the main factor that keeps them from buying. Perhaps a rating system like eBay or Amazon's used-books-merchants use might help addressing some concerns; if people see that others have consistantly received their full versions in a reasonable frame of time, they'll feel more confident of receiving it themselves. Same goes for the quality of the software.

    As to the examples you mentioned above, in my opinion, these people aren't focusing on making money, but on going bankrupt. Of course spending several hours of your working time on giving support for a sale that has brought you a net sum of a few dollars (after all fees) is not profitable in itself. If a sale requires support, you've lost money on that particular sale. But giving this support, and doing it as good as possible, is not just necessary (customers are entitled to this), but also extremely profitable in the long term. First, because it lets you know about problems and thus gives you a chance to fix them, second, because if you do a good job at solving the problem at hand, your customers will usually be quite happy with your service, remember your name, and very often do business with you again.

    On the other hand, if you don't give support (or even don't deliver the software at all), you'll be out of business pretty soon. In this age of the Internet, with countless forums to post your comments, people will find out about your behaviour. And while most satisfied customers will usually not say much about their experience, a customer who is unhappy and has a good reason to be so will probably tell many others; i.e., when things go wrong your reputation will take a disproportionate hit (even if you normally do a good job). So in my opinion, even if one didn't care about anything except money, one has no choice but to satisfy one's customers if one wants to stay in business.

    Anyway, I wasn't aware of the level of bad experiences (and consequent distrust) many people may have had from dealing with some developers. Thank you for bringing up this issue!
     
    ^ Top  
  12. Anonymous Guest

    Anonymous
    Instead of unlock codes on the demo version, why not set up a password site where you can download the full version from? You could make the code active for 24 hours only.

    The other alternative is to use 'temporary' codes on demo versions, as per UrW. Turns the demo version into the full version but only for 1 week until the CD arrives?

    (The first option seems easier to me)
     
    ^ Top  
  13. Anonymous Guest

    Anonymous
    "Anyway, I wasn't aware of the level of bad experiences (and consequent distrust) many people may have had from dealing with some developers. Thank you for bringing up this issue!"

    thank you for paying attention to my expirience.

    and as old "software stealer" ( i am not very proud of it, but it is the truth), I agree with Marshal, that you should never release an ulockable demo. warez sites are much less a treat, because they are mainly focused on new (0-day) soft and do not care very much about niche games (sadly, but old-school RPGs are actually niche games). even p2p is not good for finding such games.
    imho the best way for you to be paid for you hard work is to sent a full version cd direct to the customer. i played all three avernums with keygen, but i never played nethergate...
     
    ^ Top  
  14. Elwro Arcane Patron

    Elwro
    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2002
    Parrots:
    10,982
    Location:
    Krakow, Poland
    Divinity: Original Sin Wasteland 2
    On the other hand, I personally know a guy who played Avernum 1 with a keygen and then bought the whole trilogy.
     
    ^ Top  
  15. Wolf Mittag Liturgist

    Wolf Mittag
    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2003
    Parrots:
    331
    Location:
    Shanghai
    Thanks to all of you for your feedback & suggestions on this subject!
     
    ^ Top  
  16. Igor Novice

    Igor
    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2005
    Parrots:
    31
    Location:
    Rand of the lising sun.
    Wolf, i know you're concerned about people buying the downloadable version and hosting it on warez sites, but i really don't see how that's an issue. What's to prevent anyone from just compressing the entire physical CD into an archive like winzip or winrar and then uploading it to a warez site? It's the exact same thing. So you're not really taking any bigger risk with a downloadable version than with a physical one, unless the CD is starforce protected :D


    But i doubt it since starforce costs like millions.
     
    ^ Top  
  17. Anonymous Guest

    Anonymous
    starforce do not work either...
    there are couple of methods to defeat a starforce protection, and they work with most (if not all) straforce versions
     
    ^ Top  
  18. Igor Novice

    Igor
    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2005
    Parrots:
    31
    Location:
    Rand of the lising sun.
    I know that, but it's currently the hardest copy protection to "bypass" (i say bypass because the latest versions are almost impossible to crack OR clone), while everything else is easily bypassable with clone versions, if not cracks.
     
    ^ Top  
  19. Littlefizz Novice

    Littlefizz
    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2006
    Parrots:
    26
    Nevermind, just realized its an almost year old thread, thank you mister spammer
     
    ^ Top  
  20. Anonymous Guest

    Anonymous
    I played and enjoyed the demo greatly (minus the combat). This is the only game I demo’d and liked a lot and didn’t get (Tuedegar, not Dhargul of course). Not having an instantly purchase option is what got me. I even bought Mount & Blade knowing I wouldn’t like it or play it. I won’t go in-depth into my reasoning for not getting it since this post changed my mind, but the gist of it is that I wanted to support direct download distribution and thought mailing a cd was ridiculous. But I see and understand your reasoning.
     
    ^ Top  
  21. Vistaer Novice

    Vistaer
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2006
    Parrots:
    27
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    I am very much in support of CD-Only distribution for Darghul and other shareware games, provided of course there is a demo to try out first for those who want to try-before-they-buy. Reasons stated above are obvious.

    I for one will even admit I downloaded Fable: Lost Chapters simply because it was leaked to the internet a month before it was to be in stores and even though I purchased the original game, I was anxious to play the extended version and see the final ending, so I couldn't resist, heh.

    My biggest suggestion for Wolf is that when he clearly has a final release date set (say "within two weeks") he allows people to pre-purchase Darghul, that way for people state-side like myself who KNOW they'll want it but also know there will be a bit of a wait, can get ours in the mail as early as it can be sent =)
     
    ^ Top  
  22. P8RID3R Novice

    P8RID3R
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2008
    Parrots:
    1
    Here is a nice and in-depth explanation of credit card fraud
     
    ^ Top  
  23. Jaime Lannister Arbiter

    Jaime Lannister
    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2007
    Parrots:
    7,183
    lol spambot
     
    ^ Top  
  24. Wolf Mittag Liturgist

    Wolf Mittag
    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2003
    Parrots:
    331
    Location:
    Shanghai
    This is a very old thread that's been brought back to the top by P8RID3R.

    By now, I've changed my opinion. The advantages for my customers are really too significant (play the full version IMMEDIATELY after ordering; and pay no shipping costs).

    So by now I've set up the basic infrastructure for offering downloads. The full version of DARGHUL will be instantly downloadable (after purchased); and when everything is complete, I'll offer the Teudogar full version as a purchasable download as well.
     
    ^ Top  
  25. primalchaos3 Novice

    primalchaos3
    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2008
    Parrots:
    6
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    Wolf is on holidays... ohh mann
     
    ^ Top  

(buying stuff via the above buttons helps us pay the hosting bills, thanks!)