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RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Obsidian Entertainment - Project Eternity Update #3 - Party, Characters, Races

Default Obsidian Entertainment - Project Eternity Update #3 - Party, Characters, Races

September 18th, 2012, 13:05
I love what they are doing with the races. It seems like there will be a lot of political and cultural biases and conflicts. That can really make your party interesting. Reminds of of BG2. Can't wait for more info. Heck! I can't wait for the game.
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September 18th, 2012, 13:34
For people wondering why Obsidian doesn't seem "organized", well they didn't expect to get funded in 25.8 hours. In fact, they though they had 50% chance of being funded in the 32 days allocated.

Also, I suggest people read the Eurogamer interview with Tom Cain (and update #3). Extremely informative.
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September 18th, 2012, 13:42
is it a failed campaign when they gathered the money in the first day? Maybe it's actually better to be less detailed!
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September 18th, 2012, 13:57
Good update, sounds great.

Originally Posted by azarhal View Post
Also, I suggest people read the Eurogamer interview with Tom Cain (and update #3). Extremely informative.
Informative, indeed.

I´m particularly glad to hear that
the game does not track an alignment for the player. Instead we will use a reputation system to keep track of what different groups in the world think of you.
Also,
I like the tactics involved in the precise movement, orientation and use of abilities. But it can tend to be slow with a large party of character. Real-time-with-pause is faster and can feel more engaging, but I have found the abilities to be harder to use well. One reason for that is because many RTWP RPGs were made based on paper-and-pencil games that used turns, and their abilities were made for opponents that were not moving. I feel that RTWP can be an excellent combat model if the abilities are designed with respect to that model, and not converted from another system.


One thing confuses me somewhat though.
In the interview, Tim Cain states that
We have an engine already,
However, Chris Avellone recently tweeted, that they will not likely use the Onyx engine.
What engine is Tim Cain talking about then?
I thought using Onyx engine would be a given.

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September 18th, 2012, 14:04
Originally Posted by Merin View Post
for one, I don't think the Obsidian crew really knew what to expect with Kickstarter - I doubt ANY of them were watching any of the other campaigns on a daily, let alone hourly, basis to see how they were run, so them being surprised at how quickly they reached their goal (one of the highest set for a game on there, if I'm not mistaken) shouldn't seem weird to anyone.
They included things like early birds which shows that they had some knowledge of successful recipes that were used on KS.
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September 18th, 2012, 14:14
Originally Posted by Merin View Post
Reaper and Zpocalypse, the other two I personally witnessed do amazing, look like they had PLANNED IT OUT VERY WELL… but even they weren't more than an update a day at the start.
Reaper is the most recent. Zcapolypse or Zombicide were less controlled as they had less how to do knowledge.

Reaper could only update when one of the stretch goals was achieved. It was excellently managed in the way that Repair got the best of hardcore backers who slowly but surely built up the final offer. For a long time, Reaper kept increasing their money collect on 3000~4000 backers. The inflow of new customers that came normally in the last days added geometrically.
Lots of teasing was performed successful.

For that KS project eternity, it is different. They failed on building the same sense of expectation.
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September 18th, 2012, 14:22
Originally Posted by Merin View Post
A company that is busy working on other projects starts this Kickstarter thing, which despite the internet treating everything like it's ancient if it happened more than week ago, is a very new and fragile business model.
The management matters. The project too.

For the moment, Obsidian is selling their reputation and their past achievement more than the incoming game.

That is maybe why they failed to maintain a momentum and why they probably knew they would get founded in a few days. They had the initial rush of hardcore supporters who rely on their past reputation to make up their mind. They probably knew they were numerous as they numbered the early bird offer to 25 000. 25 000 is a large number of backers for a KS project.
Beyond that point, Obsidian has very little to sell at the moment and might be at a dismay to provide meaningful content to their updates.

Reaper had much content to add to their offer.
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September 18th, 2012, 14:29
Originally Posted by DeepO View Post
One thing confuses me somewhat though.
In the interview, Tim Cain states that

However, Chris Avellone recently tweeted, that they will not likely use the Onyx engine.
What engine is Tim Cain talking about then?
I thought using Onyx engine would be a given.
I though Onyx was a given too, but I never though of the middleware (Havok and friends) licensing fee. Maybe they are creating a new engine for this using "parts" of Onyx (as in removing the middleware and filling in the holes with in-house code).

Or they are using Unity (which would actually make MAC and Linux porting a lot more easier…).
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September 18th, 2012, 14:48
Originally Posted by wolfing View Post
is it a failed campaign when they gathered the money in the first day?
Who's saying it is? Nobody here is saying that.
Last edited by jhwisner; September 18th, 2012 at 15:27.
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September 18th, 2012, 15:07
Wow, it's amazing to see my words completely taken out of context like that.

"Before, everything felt so.. half-assed and underdeveloped"

Let's look at that full quote, shall we?

"This was a much better update than the other two. Before, everything felt so.. half-assed and underdeveloped. After reading this, I remembered why I dropped 20 bucks the instant I was able to."

I guess you can take that as a full out vitriolic attack on Obsidian. Or you can take your pills. Your choice, I suppose.


My main point was this: Obsidian is, to my knowledge, the biggest, most professional, and most well entrenched studio to do a Kickstarter. They've also been considering doing this for -months and months-, and they knew they were doing it for at least the better part of a week.

Yet, there are a lot of things here that don't seem to match onto Obsidian's level. The video was decent, but, TBH, it wasn't nearly as good as WL2 or DF. Heck, I think I've been better sold by some of the indie videos lately, and Planetary Annihilation almost certainly had a better video. In all three instances, the videos were more interesting, funnier, yet also more informative than Obsidian's. Of course, that's nitpicking. I recognize that, but it's only because this is Obsidian. This ain't some dudes in a garage. They should be able to blow the competition out of the water.

The stretch goals are even worse. I mean, remember this update: "We are in the office discussing stretch goals right now! Stay tuned for another update today."

I honestly cannot believe Obsidian did not have stretch goals ready and planned weeks ahead of time. I really don't get why they wouldn't. Again, remember, professional team. Lots and lots of staff. Months and months of planning. They had a countdown all week. And.. they didn't even have this stuff set? Like, at all?

I feel like most developers lately have had image versions of their stretch goals with cool little effects to reveal new stretch goals at certain thresholds. Sure, maybe some of those took a bit longer than Obsidian to come up, but I think we all knew Obsidian was going to get shitloads of money incredibly quickly. And, again, this is a professional, sizable well-entrenched developer. This ain't FTL or Star Command or Expeditions. And they knew.. for months.. and, at the least, definitely knew for a week ahead of time.

Now you say that maybe they just didn't know how quickly this could move. Maybe that's right, but I really don't understand how it could be right. Chris Avellone has been a big part of Kickstarter culture, and he should've been well aware of how quickly this stuff would move. In fact, I think pretty much all of us expected this to beat WL2. If they didn't even see the possibility of this happening during the initial weekend, again, that's a mistake.

When the stretch goals came out.. they were. uninspiring. They felt generic and rushed, and little tidbits like this, "Base game includes three races, five classes, and five companions. We have ideas for these, but we want to hear your opinions on what you'd like to see." I don't know, it just felt like they didn't really even have anything to show. For a bit there, I was honestly concerned that PE wasn't anything. It was just "a fantasy RPG" Obsidian wanted to make. I was still willing to support it, but I wanted to see a project with some interesting ideas. Sure, DF got away with a completely detail-less campaign, but, with the long wait, I assumed Obsidian was really putting something together.

You can also see some of this on the main page. The actual info. on the game fits into a couple small paragraphs, and there's really not a lot there. It just felt underwhelming.

Contrast this with, say, the blog updates preceding the Kickstarter, which were awesome. Or the third update, which went back to giving us a sense of what this is all about. That's what I was talking about.

Now, I've gone and really explained my point of view. However, in order to do so, I've necessarily made a far stronger point than I originally intended to. Overall, of course I'm giving my money to this. It's Obsidian. Making a classic RPG for fans. Yes, take my money!

My criticism was meant to be short and couched in positivity: "This was a much better update than the other two. Before, everything felt so.. half-assed and underdeveloped. After reading this, I remembered why I dropped 20 bucks the instant I was able to."

You've made this into a far bigger thing than it was. I'm just explaining what I meant. Overall, I love Obsidian, I put money down almost instantly, I'm watching constantly for updates and money info, and I just want this to be as successful as possible. I'm also happy to see that, with the third update, Obsidian has a lot to say about this, and that's all I needed to know. I would still throw money on a Doublefine-esque "We'll make an RPG of some sort"-type Kickstarter, but, with the months that have passed and with the build up of this week and the interviews and such, my hopes suddenly became sky high. The initial approach didn't really capture that enthusiasm or magic, but I think they're doing it right by turning it around now.
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September 18th, 2012, 15:57
killias2, you might think that Obsidian should have been expecting more, but the thing is that they did not. They had low expectations, an early game design and no marketing department trying to sale lies. I also like their "no marketing coating" approach (it is refreshing).

Also, the whole thing might have been their strategy: start small and grow over the weeks with more information. Problem is that the "fans" decided to start BIG and grow smaller (in perspective of day 1… we seems to be going for a 4th >100k day in a row).
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September 18th, 2012, 16:07
Nice update, however I am still waiting for some more info about what the central premise/conflict of the story is, some more details about the setting. We know it's a fantasy setting, it has mature themes, factions, developed companions… all good. I am also happy with what I hear about systems and design goals… but I still have no sense whether I care about the world or the story they want to tell in it.

We still have 28 days, so no worries, don't bite me, pretty sure I'll pledge before it's over
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September 18th, 2012, 16:13
"killias2, you might think that Obsidian should have been expecting more, but the thing is that they did not. They had low expectations, an early game design and no marketing department trying to sale lies."

If Obsidian didn't expect a response on this scale, it's because they didn't do their homework. I'm not sure how Chris Avellone, in particular, didn't see this coming. I mean, Wasteland 2 raised 600k in a day. Did they really think that wasn't in the cards? That people wanted to see an inXile developed sequel to a game from the 80's more than anything from the last remaining widely respected AAA RPG studio? I mean, geez, look what Chris Avellone, alone, did to the funding on that project. With this, you have a veritable team of Chris Avellones.

I also am not looking for a marketing department to sell lies. Like I said above, the blog posts before the KS were -awesome-. Even just posting some of that stuff on the KS itself would've been a marked improvement over what's there. Some of this stuff involves a bit of marketing, sure, but you don't have to market lies. Does anyone think the WL2 or the DF KS were based on lies? I was just surprised that this large, entrenched, highly professional studio delivered a somewhat mediocre KS to begin with. When selling it to friends, they were like, "What's the big deal?" All I could say was "Look at who is working on it!" Of course, showing them the blog posts, update three, or some of the comments these guys have made elsewhere, and I get an entirely different reaction. "Oh, that sounds awesome." Instead of "Oh, that is an RPG."


"Also, the whole thing might have been their strategy: start small and grow over the weeks with more information. Problem is that the "fans" decided to start BIG and grow smaller (in perspective of day 1… we seems to be going for a 4th >100k day in a row). "

Almost every major KS starts with a bang, slows down, then heats up again at the end. This goes double for anticipated Kickstarters, like WL2 and.. well… this. I mean, geez, they even had a countdown. Of course we were all ready to pop. I jumped on that 20 about as quickly as I could.


More than anything else, two things get me: 1. This is a large, entrenched, professonal AAA studio, 2. They've been considering this and planning this for months, and they knew at least a week ahead of time that they were certainly doing it. How did they go into this knowing less about Kickstarter than most of their fans? How did they fail to translate their passion (apparent in interviews, the blog posts, and, to some extent, update 3) into their base KS page at all? It just boggles.

Of course, I wasn't initially planning on making a novel-sized post about this, with this as a follow-up. I am super excited about the project, and I can't wait to hear more. This has been blown completely out of proportion. Tempest in a teacup indeed.
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September 18th, 2012, 16:25
Originally Posted by azarhal View Post
Also, the whole thing might have been their strategy: start small and grow over the weeks with more information.
I think so as well. It seems to me that they want to reveal the project's specifics gradually in order to maintain sufficient interest during the whole Kickstarter campaign.

Perhaps they didn't anticipate being funded so fast after just one day and were prematurely forced to add stretch goals.
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September 18th, 2012, 16:30
Originally Posted by azarhal View Post
Maybe they are creating a new engine for this using "parts" of Onyx (as in removing the middleware and filling in the holes with in-house code).
Makes sense, some of the middleware likely wouldn´t be of any use in this type of game anyway.
Another possibility might be a modified, "up to date" version of the engine used for Temple of Elemental Evil (which itself was modified Arcanum engine, iirc).

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September 18th, 2012, 17:53
Good update, now the vision becomes more clear.

@Dhruin: Full ack. Good analysis.

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September 18th, 2012, 18:02
Okay, one last thing -

People don't seem to be taking into account all the Kickstarter's that fail to ever raise their amount. The vast majority.
Or that Obsidian was asking for (from what I can tell) the highest amount ever for a Kickstarter video game. Why would they have the ego to assume they'd hit it at about the fast rate ever?

There is a lot of armchair quarterbacking here, and dismissal of them doing as well as anyone else 3 days out.

Even Reaper. 3 days out.

But I'm done. Continue to "gently support" Obsidian by saying how they dropped the ball on raising their money in about a day and lighting up the gaming community online with excitement, crashing their servers with an influx heretofore never seen on their forums.

If you all know how to do Kickstarters so well, why not start your own projects? Seems like you have the formula down pat. Have all you goals ahead of time and reach a million dollars in half a day. Go for it.

Me, I'd be quite satisfied with the failure of being only as good as everyone who came before me and hitting my goals in 3% of the time I set to raise my money. I mean, how big a fail to want to do a project, have a set goal of money needed in mind, hope against hope to raise it… and be overwhelmed that you are going to raise likely over twice the amount. I'd take that failure in my life over most of my successes.
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September 18th, 2012, 19:06
Merin, you are the king of broken logic. It's quite amazing.

"There is a lot of armchair quarterbacking here, and dismissal of them doing as well as anyone else 3 days out."
Who has been dismissive of how well they're doing? Who here has been anywhere NEAR as negative as this straw man you're creating?

"Continue to "gently support" Obsidian by saying how they dropped the ball on raising their money in about a day and lighting up the gaming community online with excitement, crashing their servers with an influx heretofore never seen on their forums."
Again, who said they "dropped the ball"? Keep in mind, almost everyone you're criticizing is excited about this project and has contributed. Again, it's like you're arguing against a phantom. Just because I thought they could've done some things better doesn't mean I'm negative on the whole project. Seriously, take your pills.

"If you all know how to do Kickstarters so well, why not start your own projects? Seems like you have the formula down pat. Have all you goals ahead of time and reach a million dollars in half a day. Go for it."
If I was a well entrenched, professional video game studio with dozens of employees and lots of cred in the hardcore gaming community, you know what, I probably would. Short of that, I can't even begin to see how this is a relevant response.
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September 18th, 2012, 19:09
If people want some stats.
  • Project Eternity is the game project with the highest initial goal.
  • It is the 13th Kickstarter project to go over $1 millions
  • The 2nd project to reach that $1 millions in 24hours (1st was the Ouya).

Last two info taken from KickStarter Stats twitter page.

Pledges are going down currently, but there seems to be a lot of people that are waiting for: MAC support (less than 25k until that goal is achieved), official DRM-free version, the announced digital only tiers and more info.
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September 18th, 2012, 19:13
Typical pattern. Will pobably settle for a daily average of 30-40000, with some spikes , and another big rush in the last 48 hours.
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