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September 5th, 2007, 08:05
Originally Posted by Lucky Day View Post
My astonishingly narrow mindset aside Patrick, your target market then is people who buy Bioware games regardless whether they are designed for console or PC? If they happen to be more shooter fans who don't like complex RPG's or vice versa then it's a spillover?
I don't think of it that way. Well, frankly, I don't think of it much, because I'm not the guy who says, "This time, action RPG! Next, classic strategy! Tomorrow, turn-based!"

But I see it working two ways. Every game for a company BioWare's size has to reach out to a wide audience. Maybe that audience consists of BioWare fans and traditional RPG fans (Dragon Age). Maybe that audience is BioWare fans and Halo fans (Mass Effect). Maybe it's something entirely different. The point is that there's a core group of fans who will buy just about any title we put out, because they trust our name. (And yeah, if we consistently put out garbage, we can lose that trust. I figure someone will bring that up at some point. I don't see "Making games for consoles" as losing that trust, but it'd be great to get back onto the PCs, if not exclusively than at least simultaneously.)

If you're one of the people who thought that KotOR was too dumbed-down to really be a good RPG, and was really more of an action RPG in disguise, then you probably aren't one of the BioWare-brand people. You're a traditional RPG fan who happened to enjoy Baldur's Gate and possibly Neverwinter Nights.

That doesn't mean your (not necessarily Lucky Day -- a hypothetical "you" here) opinions aren't valid -- I always recommend voting with your dollar to let the marketplace know what you do or don't like. But it does mean that if you see BioWare as not having put out a good game since BG2, your opinions are going to be skewed from the opinions of the people that make up the "Buy BioWare brand" crowd. That means that not every game is going to be targeted at you. Mass Effect, for example, has a solid story and increasingly sweet combat, and I really like the talent chains and equipment modding system for how they let you customize your character, but if what you want is turn-based stat-crunching, Mass Effect might not be your thing. Some people wouldn't appreciate turn-based stat-crunching, some people can appreciate both, and some people appreciate very little except stat-based turn-crunching.

(I'm in "both". I love crunching numbers, but if a game has a good story, I don't much care whether I'm in turn-based or strategy-mode or action-mode or what. If the story is good and combat is fun for me, I'm happy with whatever.)

So, short version: our target market isn't people who would buy anything with BioWare's name on it. That's part of our target market, certainly, and it's the one part that will be there for every game, but every game also has a different target market beyond that core group.

And the hope/plan is that some of the people who've never played a BioWare game play Mass Effect, like it, and decide to give Dragon Age a try, even though they usually just play shooters. (Which is kind of a duh, but probably needed to be said.)

I'm not saying this to offend you Patrick, and you are right I'm not privy to the demographics so excuse my ignorance. I'm simply saying these are different games.
Agreed. I hope the above clarifies my position. (Which, again, is the position of a guy who is in no way connected with marketing or product direction, so take it as a view from the trenches, nothing more.)

I myself am curious about the next Bioware game but I don't have a console for example. I myself am waiting for the next BG or NWN2 type game from you guys for PC.
I imagine it'll come to PC someday, hopefully sooner than Jade Empire did. No guarantees, but it would make logical sense.

And Dragon Age looks like the game you're waiting for, in any event.
Last edited by PatrickWeekes; September 5th, 2007 at 08:08. Reason: Something that would likely have gotten me in trouble.
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