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AOC too ambitious? Chat with me!

Hello all,

My name is Tim, but the screen name I'll go by here is Taetra. I've played just about every MMO, besides a few obscure Russian/Asian ones, and that being said I've been looking for another game to really sink my teeth into - enter AOC. I'm super thrilled about this game and what it could hold for us players, but also fearful. I know I'm not alone when I say that I'm afraid that the end goal for AOC is too good. There are many GREAT and WONDERFUL things that the devs have outlined and are working towards giving us players, and I wonder if there are too many. I've seen games get too ambitious and have truly awesome visions in mind than just  end up falling short as the devs start making sacrifices to create a "finished" product and push it to the players. I want more than anything right now for this game to succeed, getting as close as possible to this world that the devs and you (the community) have begun to paint. This concern of mine is dwarfed at the moment by the awesome, and consistent, support and activity that this community has. Let's keep it up!


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    If it so happens that development takes more time then anticipated, I'd love if Intrepid just reduces the amount of goals (temporarily) and releases the game with less goals, but all finished ones designed top notch.

    And then start pushing rest of goals as game updates, whenever they are done.
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    I have heard others voice similar concerns about the game sounding too good. During the KS the term "scope creep" kept coming up also. I am unfamiliar with why some are concerned with Ashes achieving their end goal. I am not saying they are wrong, or that I am familiar enough with MMO's to offer reasonable counters, I just don't understand, genuinely, from a "new to MMO's" perspective.

    I understand concern about scope creep, but Ashes has not added any new goals for the game besides skins since the KS. I feel like Ashes is suffering from "wrong place, wrong time" b/c of games like NMS & SC.

    To @Taetra and future posters with similar concerns, please post clear reasons why you feel they way you do. Taetra, thank you for this particular thread at this time. I, truly (not trolling) would like to hear everyone's actual concerns with "game is too good to be true" or if anyone is still fearful of "scope creep" :smile:
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    I think the best answer to the question of is AoC too ambitious is probably: Consider the alternatives. Would you prefer them to be not ambitious enough? What would 'just right' ambition be and look like?

    I think that so long as they do not compromise their core vision or the pillars of the game in a rush to reach completion, the released product would still meet the expectations of the community even if they had to delay some features in the worst case scenario.
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    Well as a follow up, @Azathoth, specifically I am worried that all  these features and ideas are too good for a game with only approx. $3 million from funding. Do they have other sources of funding? Creating an MMO takes a lot of money, and $3 million isn't going to get them very far if I'm comparing it other MMOs that cost at least $50 million to make well.
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    Intrepid has a few major things in their favor that many other studios don't:
    1. Every senior person in IS seems to have a passion for this genre, especially Steven; who seems to be uncommonly skilled at communicating his vision not only to his team, but to the wider community. Like you, I've been involved in many MMO developments in the past and am usually a die hard cynic when it comes to new titles, but I have never felt this passionate about a game before, which I still find quite baffling!

    2. A technology platform that enables rapid delivery. The use of UE4 as the basis for the game is a genius move. This is a huge cost saver that enables IS to use a mature platform that is highly optimized in pretty much every area of game development. Given this, the focus can shift toward game design, economy, security and networking infrastructure, which are the usual killers of new MMOs.

    3. We are watching this game unfold before our eyes! The project is actually pretty far along and the first alpha is due in a few months. Of course, this is a software project so there have been and will be delays and complications, but with the kind of transparency from IS we get to experience the process as warts and all. Inexperienced backers might see this as a negative. From my perspective as someone who has witnessed my funds disappear into a black hole with hardly a clue as to what is going on; this is a welcome approach.

    4. One of the most important details that is often overlooked about this project is the commitment to a subscription business model. Such a model as the primary source of revenue for IS, directly rewards them for fostering a healthy growing community. A business model that dually serves our interests as the community and in Intrepids as a company gives us the best of both worlds. This is definitely not short a term cash grab title like many we have seen in the past.
    Having said all of that, I'm not so blinded by all of this to not understand that there are always risks in every investment. That's the part that everyone has to decide for themselves. For me: the great people I've met in this community and the inspiration I've drawn from the concept of Ashes has gone a long way to returning my investment already :)
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    @lexmax Well said. You definitely bring up some good points, and for sure these are the reasons that I am here now, posting on this forum. I haven't felt this good about a start up in a long time, but of course the wise are always hesitant. Thanks for sharing :smile: I love this community too.
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    Taetra said:
    Well as a follow up, @Azathoth, specifically I am worried that all  these features and ideas are too good for a game with only approx. $3 million from funding. Do they have other sources of funding? Creating an MMO takes a lot of money, and $3 million isn't going to get them very far if I'm comparing it other MMOs that cost at least $50 million to make well.
    I'm on my phone atm, so I can't link to anything specific. However, the $3 million amount is just the crowd funding amount. Through private investment, including Steven's own donations, the real budget of the game is $30+ million.
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    ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited July 2017
    Taetra said:
    Well as a follow up, @Azathoth, specifically I am worried that all  these features and ideas are too good for a game with only approx. $3 million from funding. Do they have other sources of funding? Creating an MMO takes a lot of money, and $3 million isn't going to get them very far if I'm comparing it other MMOs that cost at least $50 million to make well.
    If that is your primary concern then you need not worry. The primary source of funding for Ashes of Creation and Intrepid Studios in general is from Steven. He has stated that he has the capital neccessary to bring the game to market even without Kickstarter. The purpose of the Kickstarter was to grow a community excited about the game and to accelerate the development of some additional features.
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    Most of the above was also true for EQNext and Revival - didn't prevent those games from becoming vaporware. Life happens.

    If you like the game design, back the game design so that the devs can hone their skills and be better equipped to build a similar game in the future... if this one doesn't make it.

    If Ashes has sufficient funds, development should continue even after official release.
    The paradigm for development, playable game and "release" has changed dramatically in the last few years.

    If the team has the funds, they should be able to fulfill the game design.
    We still have to see if it's as fun to play as we all hope.
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    @Mooseknee10 Really? Whenever you get a chance, could you link me some sources? If that's true then a large part of my fear vanishes. Thanks for the info!
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    There is the quotebin in general discussion. The Intrepid_Answers on Discord. And the many, many Q&A videos that address most of your issues and have the information you are looking for. I will give you a freebie, but there is a ton of information on all different topics out there, so personal research is going to be vital. 





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    Well, I was going to provide the information that @Mooseknee10 and @UnknownSystemError did but I will just thank them for posting.  The other less obvious reason for calm is the way IS provides less defined dates for significant project events.  I will explain this as most people are alarmed by this but it actually means they are thinking clearly.  All projects, at the highest planning level, are limited by two things: time and money, and they have an inverse relationship with each other.  Any reasonable goal can be met with infinite amounts of time or money.  Ignore the fact that infinite amounts of either are technically impossible.  IS has provided rather open dates for events and only provide definitive dates when they are sure they can achieve them.  I know some recent events have been a little off on dates but those consist of extemporaneous events for that lie outside of the core product development.  IS has been extremely open with information about the development of the game and seems to have enough sense to provide themselves the ability to time shift events to ensure that development goals have been met before significant project events occur.  The further out the events are the less definitive the dates that have been provided for those events.  This has a calming affect on me because it allows them the flexibility to meet their objectives within the limitations of their budget and timeframes.  Well, here is another wall of text from an extreme introvert.  Damn it, what has this community done to me.  lol

    TLDR: The way that IS has planned the project and provided dates that allow for timeshift for events allows them to meet the project goals without destroying the budget.
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    ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited July 2017
    Taetra, thank you for expanding on your concerns. I feel like your biggest one has been answered though, and that was thoroughly discussed during the KS as well. Thanks to the transparency of IS there is lot's of info out there. I suggest watching the videos on their Twitch feed first, and then transitioning to Discord if you still have unanswered questions. I know many here would suggest Discord first, but the videos are worth the watch!

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    Gothix said:
    If it so happens that development takes more time then anticipated, I'd love if Intrepid just reduces the amount of goals (temporarily) and releases the game with less goals, but all finished ones designed top notch.

    And then start pushing rest of goals as game updates, whenever they are done.
    I agree, most games and this one included are launched as their vanilla version anyhow.

    Over time they tweak, improve the game and to keep their audience interested they will build on it, no doubt. 

    It just comes down to expectations at release and if the game is supported enough to warrant continued investment by the developers there after.


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    Gothix said:
    If it so happens that development takes more time then anticipated, I'd love if Intrepid just reduces the amount of goals (temporarily) and releases the game with less goals, but all finished ones designed top notch.

    And then start pushing rest of goals as game updates, whenever they are done.
    Shame I can only upvote this once. Because I wholeheartedly agree. They could always add the rest of their visions with content updates or even expansions. 
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    While AoC is ambitious, I would say, compared to what Chronicles of Elyria is promising, AoC should be fairly achievable without too much problem.
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    ArchivedUserArchivedUser Guest
    edited July 2017
    Very ambitious?  Yes, indeed.
    Too ambitious?  I don't personally believe so.

    They set goals for the kickstarter with very reasonable dollar amounts to add them each individually.  That's not to mention that the first goal of $1 million would certainly be overkill to simply add some games of chance, so a chunk of that money would obviously be fluff to split amongst the funding of other goals.  This would allow them to hire a mix of full hire and freelancers for individual portions of game creation.  
    "Hey, I got a job for you.  Guaranteed employment for 2 years, potential for full hire after that, depending on business needs."

    The other benefit of how they are running things is that fact that there isn't a large publisher pushing them to release a game by a deadline, whether it's fully functional or not.  They will decide when they feel it is ready for release, based on the state of the game and features they have yet to add.   They obviously can't just push it back forever, but Intrepid will at least have a fair shot at only releasing once they are comfortable with the product they created.


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    Taetra said:
    Hello all,

    My name is Tim, but the screen name I'll go by here is Taetra. I've played just about every MMO, besides a few obscure Russian/Asian ones, and that being said I've been looking for another game to really sink my teeth into - enter AOC. I'm super thrilled about this game and what it could hold for us players, but also fearful. I know I'm not alone when I say that I'm afraid that the end goal for AOC is too good. There are many GREAT and WONDERFUL things that the devs have outlined and are working towards giving us players, and I wonder if there are too many. I've seen games get too ambitious and have truly awesome visions in mind than just  end up falling short as the devs start making sacrifices to create a "finished" product and push it to the players. I want more than anything right now for this game to succeed, getting as close as possible to this world that the devs and you (the community) have begun to paint. This concern of mine is dwarfed at the moment by the awesome, and consistent, support and activity that this community has. Let's keep it up!


    They do have a tall order to fill. I think they can do it. I honestly wouldn't mind if they saved some of the stuff for expansions to the game. Like maybe save the Ocean stuff for an expansion or the maybe the Under realm could be an expansion. That way we still get what we are promised, but they don't have to worry about some of that stuff until later.
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    Hiya, @Taetra! I can't add much to what the others have posted for your edification, nor can I really say more about the "Is there such a thing as too ambitious?"

    What I can say is that IS came to us after they'd developed their base proof-of-concept. They came to use with a plan in place. They came to us and said "This is what we've done so far, and we'll build on what's in place. We want to do more, and so we're offering you the opportunity to take part in this."

    It was understood from the beginning that if the KS campaign completely fizzled, they'd still go forward with building on what they've already created. The KS campaign was essentially a way of fleshing out on the base of what's already there.

    In all, while there've been missteps along the way, I see a solidly developed business project with specific targets. I see a lot of passion on the team, and I see a fair amount of transparency. Seeing that was enough for my husband and I to get on board, and stay on board. Welcome, come in and join us!
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    Imo, finance wise they are not to ambitious but seem to have a good understanding of how much what they want to accomplish is going to cost.
    Now for their design goals they are a bit ambitious but not enough for me to say that if they accomplish everything they want to that I won't feel the need to create a game of my own years down the road... but in all honesty I think that the industry needs to be revitalized before a game like that can really take hold. Which revitalizing the industry is one of the things I believe I.S. is trying to do with ashes
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