Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
40oz

Budgets for video games are too high

Recommended Posts

Many devices and video game franchises have shifted towards downloadable content, direct rights management, streaming services, and microtransactions to preserve the flow of income and maximize profits for their games. Personally I think this is a cheap and unethical way to squeeze money out of people. Video games make people have itchy trigger fingers and sometimes that makes it difficult to control impulses.

Video games haven't gotten much innovation in the last twenty years and extraordinary graphics and cutting edge technology doesn't really contribute much to the entertainment value of a game. Mmorpgs and Sci fi military shooters are a dime a dozen and many series dont innovate from their previous titles, and sometimes when they do, it is for the worse.

As indie game developers and the growth of the doom modding community can attest, a large budget doesn't make for a better game. A large team makes for a rather diluted experience, and the costs associated with developing a rather mediocre title leads me to believe there is a tremendous amount of waste in the industry.

I think its great that there are a lot of talented programmers, artists and visionaries in the industry, but I've never seen as much outrage against video game companies and the policies they develop to secure their income decades ago as I have been seeing today. The tools to make good games are freely accessible and available to many people. It only takes dilligence, talent and patience to make something worth while. The inflated budgets of many video game companies are part of what keeps the industry afloat and the consumers are the ones who end up paying for it in the long run.

Share this post


Link to post

Modern gaming industry = Big fat fucking bloated shell of it's former self

Just my 2c though

Share this post


Link to post

Blame the higher ups- they are the money hungry ones forcing developers to take those measures because they want to line their pockets while the poor sods developing get fuck all and pushed to a deadline.

Share this post


Link to post

So the programmers and artists and actors are talented, but don't deserve the money that they currently get?

AFAIK, the budget goes essentially to the people who work on the title unless they are licensing someone else's intellectual property, so if you want to make X-Men vs. Donald Duck: Operation Tatooine then your budget probably goes mostly to the people who own those properties heh.

Not to be confused with profits which probably the people who worked on the title see nothing of. So it seems to me that if you are against "big budget" then you don't value the people who work on the title, which is in conflict with the statement about them being talented and visionary.

Share this post


Link to post

You misunderstand, it's not "pay them less." It's "stop making things that need more and more resources in the first place because its risky as fuck and hard to maintain."

Share this post


Link to post
40oz said:

Many devices and video game franchises have shifted towards downloadable content, direct rights management, streaming services, and microtransactions to preserve the flow of income and maximize profits for their games. Personally I think this is a cheap and unethical way to squeeze money out of people. Video games make people have itchy trigger fingers and sometimes that makes it difficult to control impulses.

Video games haven't gotten much innovation in the last twenty years and extraordinary graphics and cutting edge technology doesn't really contribute much to the entertainment value of a game. Mmorpgs and Sci fi military shooters are a dime a dozen and many series dont innovate from their previous titles, and sometimes when they do, it is for the worse.

As indie game developers and the growth of the doom modding community can attest, a large budget doesn't make for a better game. A large team makes for a rather diluted experience, and the costs associated with developing a rather mediocre title leads me to believe there is a tremendous amount of waste in the industry.

I think its great that there are a lot of talented programmers, artists and visionaries in the industry, but I've never seen as much outrage against video game companies and the policies they develop to secure their income decades ago as I have been seeing today. The tools to make good games are freely accessible and available to many people. It only takes dilligence, talent and patience to make something worth while. The inflated budgets of many video game companies are part of what keeps the industry afloat and the consumers are the ones who end up paying for it in the long run.


This is EXACTLY what I think. I think the AAA industry is gonna implode sooner or later, with a few companies surviving like Valve, Blizzard and maybe CDPR and Bethesda.

Doom 1 cost about 1 million to make, Doom 4 cost tens of millions of dollars. They have to make that money back and I understand perfectly.

I think we should return to medium-sized companies focusing on gameplay.

Share this post


Link to post

That's an understatement in 2016. They've been too expensive for almost a decade.

FuzzballFox said:

Blame the higher ups- they are the money hungry ones forcing developers to take those measures because they want to line their pockets while the poor sods developing get fuck all and pushed to a deadline.


The higher-ups in the industry will throw money at anything because they don't know what makes a good game regardless. It's the yes men they hire below them that are suppose to understand the community that talk them out of risky practices.

Share this post


Link to post

Inb4 Capcom and thier bs DLC thing, like the DLC is already within the game disc and yet you have to pay them to unlock it, same thing can be said about other companies who make fighting games.

Share this post


Link to post
J.B.R said:

Inb4 Capcom and thier bs DLC thing, like the DLC is already within the game disc and yet you have to pay them to unlock it, same thing can be said about other companies who make fighting games.


Nintendo did that with Super Mario 3 for the GBA.

Share this post


Link to post

Dick Jones said:
"I had a guaranteed military sale with ED-209! Renovations program! Spare parts for twenty-five years! Who cares if it worked or not?!"


It really has come full circle, hasn't it? For instance: At one point Activision was created because Atari was mass producing garbage with zero quality control and underpaying the developers. Now Activision is mass producing garbage and forcing developers to make content cuts or shit games for massive profits. Anybody here that was unfortunate or foolish enough to get involved with Destiny (with its massive amount of cut content and bullshit DLC pricing) can attest to this.

Now I'm not saying Destiny would have been a good game without the upper management types fucking it up in the last year of development - that company is full of megalomaniacs living like rock stars and probably could've funded themselves but you know, gotta have fancy offices and stuff because that's so important to development.

I don't necessarily blame developers; there's nothing wrong with wanting to make money doing what you love. It's also kind of hard to blame investors/publishers since it's foolish to expect them not to want a return for putting their money in. Nor can you blame the consumer because, well, the only other option is to vote with your wallet and most of the time we just want to play something rather than nothing. In my opinion it's a little the fault of all three groups.

Nonetheless, this is the last console generation I will partake in and I'm perfectly happy with sticking to my back catalogue of PS3 and PC games.

Last note: I was rather pissed when at the Star Wars celebration in Anaheim the lady from DICE happily and eagerly announced that preorders of Battlefront would give access to the Battle of Jakku a week earlier than everybody else, and the crowd fucking cheered. Those people were just told that content had been deliberately held back for DLC and they were excited. Maybe the average consumer is the problem. Me, I miss shareware and legitimate demos and full games on the disc.

Share this post


Link to post

I also blame the consumers who continue to purchase these absurd/minor DLCs, $60 games, prepurchasing/preordering and general fanboyism infesting various franchises.

Share this post


Link to post
Glaice said:

I also blame the consumers who continue to purchase these absurd/minor DLCs, $60 games, prepurchasing/preordering and general fanboyism infesting various franchises.


wait, what's wrong with preordering?

Share this post


Link to post

http://www.gamespot.com/forums/games-discussion-1000000/why-you-should-not-pre-order-your-games-31826543/

http://www.craveonline.com.au/culture/813645-heres-shouldnt-pre-order-games-2015

http://www.cnet.com/news/you-should-never-ever-preorder-a-video-game/


There's a lot of reasons - It's never been a big deal to me though, as I'm always content to wait a few months to get a game I want. You will never see me preorder a game or wait in a line on release date, I just don't see the point to it.

Share this post


Link to post

I think Destiny is the perfect example of why having a huge budget doesn't necessarily make a good game. Plus more and more games are trying to "flesh out the story" through DLC which is bullshit. Just ship the damn game together on disc THE FIRST TIME. Such an obvious cash grab.

Share this post


Link to post
Pedro VC said:

huh? Seriously?

Not sure if you expected that number to be higher or lower. 1 million sounds totally reasonable for a dozen-ish talented people working on a project for a year.

Share this post


Link to post

The difference between video games as they were ~15 years ago and how they are now comes down to what big business the industry has become. I read recently that the video games industry is bigger than the film industry now. It seems people have the same expectations that they have with films - engaging story-driven gameplay, cutting edge special effects, etc. Things that are nice to have in a game but get played up and aren't really that important.

As with films, I don't think problems come down to budgets but rather commercial pressures - these aren't little startup companies of video game developers banding together to make something any more. They're large corporations seeking to make as much profit as possible.

Nowadays I'm playing almost exclusively indie games and it's been a while since I played any AAA at all. Elite: Dangerous might be the one exception but I think even that was originally crowdfunded. Indie games have to stand on their have gameplay and it's far harder to regret buying a game when it only cost $5.

Share this post


Link to post

What's wrong with paying $60 for a game? You're probably buying lots of GB worth of data with that money by now when buying such games.

fraggle said:

Indie games have to stand on their have gameplay and it's far harder to regret buying a game when it only cost $5.

That's dirt cheap, cheaper than music albums, way cheaper than books. Probably much cheaper than Doom when it was launched, too.

Share this post


Link to post
fraggle said:

Nowadays I'm playing almost exclusively indie games and it's been a while since I played any AAA at all. Elite: Dangerous might be the one exception but I think even that was originally crowdfunded. Indie games have to stand on their have gameplay and it's far harder to regret buying a game when it only cost $5.

I'm a bit upset that Horizons is also $60 when the base game still feels so incomplete.

Share this post


Link to post
rf` said:

I'm a bit upset that Horizons is also $60 when the base game still feels so incomplete.


What do you think is missing from the game? I've only just recently started playing it so I'm probably not aware of any incomplete parts.

printz said:

What's wrong with paying $60 for a game? You're probably buying lots of GB worth of data with that money by now when buying such games.

Eh? Seems like a strange way to measure the value of a game. I don't value games by how much of my hard drive space they take up. If that's what I was after, I'd download Wikipedia or something.

printz said:

That's dirt cheap, cheaper than music albums, way cheaper than books. Probably much cheaper than Doom when it was launched, too.

Granted $5 is a slight exaggeration, but I just checked my Steam purchase history, and in the past 3 years I haven't spent more than $10 on any one game, with Elite: Dangerous being the one exception (it was $15 in sales). And in that time I've bought a load of really great games that have given me a lot of enjoyment.

Share this post


Link to post
fraggle said:

Eh? Seems like a strange way to measure the value of a game. I don't value games by how much of my hard drive space they take up. If that's what I was after, I'd download Wikipedia or something.

No, but such huge games probably had a lot of effort spent in making the sounds, graphics and music, and that sounds expensive.

Share this post


Link to post
Vorpal said:

So the programmers and artists and actors are talented, but don't deserve the money that they currently get?


Cutting costs isn't limited to cutting salaries and wages. There could be waste elsewhere. Not to mention there are plenty incomeless programmers and artists around the internet. The part im questioning is whether exhausting their talents in every miniscule aspect of a game contributes to making any game more fun.

Theres a blurry point in its history where games have enormous budgets because they can and that gives them the edge in the industry because enormous budgets are something indie game developers can't get a hold of. But no amount of spending on a game will effectively make it a better game. The fun in the game originates from the idea and the execution of the idea, but you can't just pay people more and more so that their ideas just get better and better.

Share this post


Link to post

Movies and video games are making a very slow but steady merge and soon the lines will be completely blurred between the two mediums. That's why games are often seen as being part game, part interactive movie, and why they are costing as much as Hollywood films to develop.

Share this post


Link to post
40oz said:

Cutting costs isn't limited to cutting salaries and wages. There could be waste elsewhere.


A great example of this is the Call of Duty series, though I give other examples as well. Let us ignore the usual gripes about the series for a moment. The waste I'm taking about is hiring professional A-list actors to voice the characters, hiring same caliber actors and athletes for their advertising campaigns and lastly licensing popular music for the soundtrack. (Seriously, fuck Eminem.)

In the first instance, there are scores of talented voice actors that could use a job and instead you're paying a hell of a lot more to people simply for the sake of name dropping, and I've never bought a game just because omg Kevin Spacey/Christopher Meloni/Henry Rollins et cetera is in it. The exception being the Batman Arkham series because the Batman Animated series is the Batman universe I grew up with. Otherwise, it's a waste of resources and adds nothing to the value of the game because more often than not, the story is the least important aspect of a game.

The second instance is because I don't really think having an A-list actor advertise your game actually encourages people who actually buy games to buy them; we usually know about games months or years in advance or hear our friends talk about them. I've never seen an ad for a game I didn't know about save mobile games which are bullshit anyway. When I see Megan Fox in your overblown bullshit ad I immediately think of all the money you didn't pay your developers, and when I see Arnold in your mobile game ad I immediately think of all the dumb dipshits that pay for the micro transactions - which in turn encourages other publishers and developers to put that bullshit in their games.

The third point is because I've never had a gaming experience that was enhanced by a licensed soundtrack; in fact, most of my favorite gaming music was produced in-house in one form or the other. As much as I love Rockstar for their "the game will be done when it's fucking done" additude, I kind of blame them for this phenomenon. Sure, it helps lend atmosphere and nostalgia to their game but does it actually enhance gameplay? No. Did it take from the development budget? More than likely. Did GTAV kick ass so I should stop using them as the bad guy example? Yes. Were the best moments in GTAV punctuated by their original score? Yes, that's my point. Also, I really hate Eminem and hearing his shit at the end of Modern Warfare irritated the hell out of me. Worthless has been.

/rant

Share this post


Link to post

Yeah games are ridiculously overproduced now, which is probably why indie games and even retro games are so successful. Sometimes I'll watch a clip of some upcoming pile of crap and laugh at how much time and money it must have taken them to build a single level or do a stupid animation.

It's not usual for a game to be an absolute financial disaster though unless it's based on a movie. (This goes the other way round, movies based on games also turn out to be terrible and financial flops) So they know they are going to get away with it. Otherwise they wouldn't do it

One thing I notice a lot on wikipedia is that the writer will often stress how much money a game makes even with low budget games. I'll want to read about it and the article ends with all about how much money they made like it was a silver lining and they all walked into the rainbow happily ever after. Like come on get a grip.

Share this post


Link to post
Doomkid said:

Modern gaming industry = Big fat fucking bloated shell of it's former self

Just my 2c though


This sums up my attitude about modern gaming rather nicely.

Share this post


Link to post

GTA5 had a budget somewhere in the range of $300 million. The estimated revenue on Steam last year was just over half of that.The number of estimated copies sold on Steam is also less than 10% of lifetime sales.

The moral of the story is that budget should be proportional to what people want. Proving that, though, is the tricky part.

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×