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RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Drakensang Online - Interview, "Too few people bought Drakensang"

Default Drakensang Online - Interview, "Too few people bought Drakensang"

August 26th, 2010, 02:21
German site Buffed.de has an interview with Bernd Beyreuther, former head of Radon Labs and now at Bigpoint. While we have limited interest in Drakensang Online, the article says that Drakensang: The River of Time just didn't sell despite the good reviews and that better sales would have saved Radon Labs (Google translation here). On Drakensang Online, he says they've been able to get the Drakensang engine working within a browser, which certainly sounds interesting.
Thanks, Alrik!
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August 26th, 2010, 02:21
Is he talking about domestic sales in Germany or International? If he's including international, then perhaps an English translation would have made up the difference?
Last edited by Thrasher; August 26th, 2010 at 18:28.
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August 26th, 2010, 03:11
Does this mean that River of Time will probably never get an English translation?
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August 26th, 2010, 03:29
Well, perhaps thankfully I seem to have been half right on them going for a modern browser engine for Drakensang Online as opposed to some sort of stark regression—-though I certainly didn't expect it to be the EXISTING engine. Either they had some uncanny foresight on that one, or lucked out in terms of skillful folk and initial composition in order to swing such a conversion.

This doesn't make me hopeful for River of Time and such though.

Will the world ever come to know a proper P&P sourced videogame dynasty not wrought with missteps, bankruptcies, and just out and out boneheaded moves? I feel like it is going to take one or more Indie outfits, or even freeware/OSS folks, taking a shine to one that never made it big, some diamond in the rough, and running fullsteam with an adaptation fit for doings.
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August 26th, 2010, 04:39
Originally Posted by Thrasher View Post
Is talking about domestic sales in Germany or International? If he's including international, then perhaps an English translation would have made up the difference?
What were they expecting? They didn't promote the first Drakensang that well, and then they didn't release the second one in English. Were they daft?

I'm still gonna have to get the German version and translate it with an unofficial English patch. If anyone knows where to get a good one, enlighten me.

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August 26th, 2010, 05:02
Originally Posted by Thrasher View Post
Is talking about domestic sales in Germany or International? If he's including international, then perhaps an English translation would have made up the difference?
He's talking about German sales. RoT went straight to the #1 spot and then quickly ran out of steam. Sales numbers were disappointing.


Originally Posted by JDR13 View Post
Does this mean that River of Time will probably never get an English translation?
They don't have a publisher. dtp is a local company. They can't publish their games in other markets without a partner. All they could do is Steam, etc., and I wonder why they haven't tried this yet. They have the same problem for Venetica.
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August 26th, 2010, 05:07
Originally Posted by gumbomasta View Post
What were they expecting? They didn't promote the first Drakensang that well, and then they didn't release the second one in English. Were they daft?
It wasn't their job. Radon Labs develops. dtp promotes the German version. The international partners promote the international versions - unless they don't. I guess CD Projekt in Poland was the only international publisher really behind it.

And obviously there cannot be an English retail release without a publisher or distributor.
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August 26th, 2010, 07:17
Technically correct, I'm sure. Net result: failure. Spending almost nothing maintaining an English website and sending out a few English PR's might have created some international awareness they might have leveraged into an international deal. I get PRs from dtp pretty regularly on their point-and-click adventure games, so I know someone is capable of writing an English press release.

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August 26th, 2010, 08:16
What a pity! I can't understand why they complain about low sales when there is no English version of River of Time!!! Paradoxically, this game is one of the best translated and dubbed into Spanish which is very rare because here, in Spain, few games are dubbed and some even have awful translations.

It's very sad. I played River of Time and I finished it, and IMO it is the best RPG party based RPG after Baldur's Gate, much better than Drakensang I and of course DAO. Perhaps that was the problem, Drakensang was disappointing and soon eclipsed by DAO so very few people have taken into consideration its sequel, even despite of the good reviews.
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August 26th, 2010, 09:59
I don't think an international release woud've changed a bit. The DSA licence is big in DACH and BeNeLux countries. The game has to make its money there. An international release only produces costs (localisation and marketing) and needs an international publisher that takes the majority of the sales income. And especially overseas a success is not guaranteed. The DraSa series would've never been anything more than a niche product similar to the Gothic games, because it is too "special interest", too european. And you simply can't afford to compete with the marketing monsters that Bioware and Bethesda are.

That said I am at a loss why River of Time failed commercially in Europe. I even bought the personal edition for an insane amount of money and I thought these editions sold well.

A sad thing indeed.
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August 26th, 2010, 10:07
A real shame that german developers always develop their games in the german language. Especially since I tend to like games from Germany quite a lot.
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August 26th, 2010, 11:39
Originally Posted by KasperFauerby View Post
A real shame that german developers always develop their games in the german language. Especially since I tend to like games from Germany quite a lot.
Yes, there are many german and russian mods and games that are really incredible and that people from other countries never get to enjoy. Such a tremendous waste! As a developer it must feel bad too, to paint yourself into a tiny corner like that..
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August 26th, 2010, 11:43
Yup, I never understood that kind of thing - but apparently, people think it's a good idea to isolate themselves and cling to something as pointless as a local language.
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August 26th, 2010, 12:30
The problem of River of Time is simply that it would have been better of being a addon to Drakensang, as they originally planned. The advancements would really have improved that game. The things like fast traveling and revisitable locations would have made it a must have for everyone with a copy of Drakensang. My main complaint about the River of Time is that the player character is not part of the main story; as that is the backstory of three Drakensang characters and feels like the second half of a tie-in novel the the first game.
Originally Posted by Gorath View Post
He's talking about German sales. RoT went straight to the #1 spot and then quickly ran out of steam. Sales numbers were disappointing.
Are you sure he's is only talking about German sales? I remember Beyreuther saying prior to the release of the first Drakensang game that the game "must work internationally".
Originally Posted by Gorath View Post
They don't have a publisher. dtp is a local company. They can't publish their games in other markets without a partner. All they could do is Steam, etc., and I wonder why they haven't tried this yet. They have the same problem for Venetica.
Well as far as I can see The River of Time is released in the regions/languages where the publisher of Drakensang picked it up. E.g. the countries where THQ or Eidos released the first game are still waiting for the game, as those companies will not be acting as publisher this time.
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Yup, I never understood that kind of thing - but apparently, people think it's a good idea to isolate themselves and cling to something as pointless as a local language.
Well than go back in time to when human language first split up, and make sure all languages develop into English. Good luck with that.
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August 26th, 2010, 12:38
Originally Posted by noctrun View Post
Well than go back in time to when human language first split up, and make sure all languages develop into English. Good luck with that.
I don't really care what language we use, and I'd be more than willing to learn whatever we'd pick as a universal language.

Going back in time doesn't really strike me as the way to go about this.

I think waiting a few hundred years until people start being less moronic, should do the trick
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August 26th, 2010, 12:43
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Yup, I never understood that kind of thing - but apparently, people think it's a good idea to isolate themselves and cling to something as pointless as a local language.
I see it differently.

In my theory, putting everything into the English language gives those who have it as their native tongue a slight advantage.

I still believe that the human brain has fewer obstacles in processing the native language than a learned language. Which means, in my opinion, that English-based (as native tongue) programmers have a slight advantage over foreign once (let's say even Greek ones, because Greece has its own set of an Alphabet.


But seriously, the tide might even turn : Chinese language is rapidly growing to be much, much more important in the world … will one day English-based programmers have to program in a programming language that is based on Chinese words ?

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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August 26th, 2010, 13:47
Originally Posted by Alrik Fassbauer View Post
I see it differently.

In my theory, putting everything into the English language gives those who have it as their native tongue a slight advantage.

I still believe that the human brain has fewer obstacles in processing the native language than a learned language.
That really depends of how often you speak or use that language. I process english just as fast as swedish, sometimes faster. It really depends on what i'm "processing".

What language the programming language is in is hardly the biggest obstacle to overcome when learning or doing the programming, it's a minor thing really.

Chinese isn't just one language, it's hundreds, that's the problem.. The difference between regions can be as big as two different languages, so i think english makes more sense in a programming language. But again, the language used for the programming isnt the biggest obstacle at all. The pure programming part is also just the initial part of creating a game (often it's not even needed since many developers don't create their own engines). The actual creation process (level design etc) is via graphical editors, so again, language isnt a big deal. Internally they can use whatever language they want (in their editors or the internal programming for the game).
Last edited by bemushroomed; August 26th, 2010 at 14:05.
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August 26th, 2010, 14:06
I've been hoping to buy it since it was announced, someone really dropped the ball not doing whatever it took to make sure there was an English release. Forget the NA publisher, get it on Steam and/or Impulse yourself. It's not a game that's going to sell well off the shelf anyway, it's a niche game for hardcore gamers, most of whom prefer digital copies already anyway.

Anyway here's hoping (from up on my high horse) we get an English release someday.
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August 26th, 2010, 14:09
Well atleast they got the spanish market.

I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. - Maya Angelou
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August 26th, 2010, 14:10
Anyone willing to open their eyes and see what we're paying as a world society, because of the language barrier - should realise how insignificant the price of learning a new language would be.

Then again, most people enjoy life better with their eyes closed.
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