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It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement

 
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It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/23/2007 7:52:40 PM   
puresimmer

 

Posts: 2299
Joined: 7/24/2005
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OK after careful consideration and some discussions with my family I have decided to actively pursue PureSim commercial development again. I have officially flunked retirement :)

It was nice to slow down and the break certainly helped me recharge my batteries, but I really started to miss working on the game regularly. Of course I have been doing some work on the "PureSim Community Edition" since "retiring", but there were no real plans to move the series forward and do any new commercial releases. My family and I are comfortable that as long as I don't go back to being totally obsessed, then this can work out. I know they'll keep me honest.

I have to say, recently (this week), I really dove back into the code and it dawned on me that this game really does still have a bright future. I found myself having a LOT of fun again, something that was not the case in January when I walked away. Some of the work I did with Gary on Total Pro Golf 2 was a great boost too. This is just in my blood.

I still want to talk to Matrix about whether they'll be interested in publishing the next commercial version of PureSim, but regardless I will be releasing a new version of the game. One possibility is to clean up the CE releases, polish up some things, do some more feature work and release a reasonably priced ($19.99?), fully supported, PureSim 2007 Expansion pack this summer. Another option is to get a little more aggressive with new features and release PureSim 2008 next spring. I also intend to continue to support the open access to PureSim's database, addins, and the PureSim SDK. My dream is to get a really cool developer ecosystem to sprout up around the game. Maybe a bit of a lofty goal given the niche genre, but people have already built some pretty cool add-ins to date!

One thing I have been giving a LOT of thought to is that I need to get better at charging for new features. I look back over all the free updates I do...I add hundreds of features in patches, then wonder why I don't have enough "new" features to warrant a release when spring rolls around The flip side is I really like to work that way, the game stays very stable and improves incementally. The only other option here would be to charge some sort of annual subscription fee and release constant micro updates (I played with this idea in the past).

I'd LOVE to get your feedback on what approach you think would be ideal. A big new PureSim 2008 next year, or an expansion pack this summer, or a shift to an annual subscription model (not sure how that would work yet -- maybe some sort of page you can access for one year that has all the year's free updates?)

Maybe it's the Red Sox great season, maybe it's in my blood, regardless it feels great to be back! I missed it.

I feel great about this decision.

P.S. I just re-read my post and it sounds a bit dramatic, apologies for that, I know I'm not solving world hunger here :)

Shaun


< Message edited by puresimmer -- 6/23/2007 8:19:05 PM >


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Post #: 1
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/23/2007 8:17:22 PM   
rjolley

 

Posts: 75
Joined: 8/20/2005
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Glad to hear you're back, Shaun.

I think the yearly subsription works well. It's like buying a new version every year, like with the other sports games, but we'll get new features throughout the year, like you've always done. Sounds like a good mixture of both worlds to me.

(in reply to puresimmer)
Post #: 2
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/23/2007 9:18:52 PM   
Frozen Stiffer


Posts: 1052
Joined: 8/19/2005
From: California, USA
Status: offline
I too am heavily in favor with the "subscription" option. How it would work out technically, I'm not quite sure either-- however, it would effectively create the type of sports game I have always wanted. Buying Game-X 2007, with a small subscription fee to get the 2008 version, then another small fee for 2009, etc. THIS is how any sports game should run. It should never be released as a 2005 model and then there's no support after that, no growth, no continuation. I think that you've put together a wonderful game that really only needs some love and attention...

I would hope too that even if you don't reply and post in every thread, you have at least seen the level of appreciation and admiration for the game (in general) and its associations and the players (authentic and fictional) it has spawned, and the true (dare I say...) love that faithful Puresimmians have for it.

As far as you and retirement are concerned, I cannot tell you how thrilled I am to hear of this, but in reading how good it felt to take some time off and focus on family, I think that you should fall into a semi-retirement state for a few months out of the year-- let the game run, let things settle, let little issues pop up and little glitches arise, so that when you return again, BAM: instant tasks and goals. There's no reason you can't do both! ...and anyone on the boards that cannot understand that should seek professional help from men in white coats.

Before I read this post, I never envisioned hearing/reading myself saying that Puresim was a great game... and now that you've "come home", I KNOW for a fact that these words will never exit my mouth... or my fingers... but then... when it's through my fingers... that's not exactly 'exiting'.... I mean... that would be painful, no? ... words.... exiting your fingers.... ouch.

Sorry.

Ran off on a tangent.

Anyway.... to make a long story short (too late).

WELCOME BACK SHAUN!   We're all one big happy family again!



_____________________________

"It ain't braggin' if you can do it."

-Hall of Fame pitcher Jerome 'Dizzy' Dean

(in reply to rjolley)
Post #: 3
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/23/2007 9:24:51 PM   
Beach23BoyP

 

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I suppose I'm still around too. I guess I like the idea of a subscription.

(in reply to puresimmer)
Post #: 4
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/23/2007 9:33:47 PM   
dneely


Posts: 226
Joined: 8/20/2005
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Shaun:

I "think" I like the Subscription idea! I really need more details...

As one who has always supported this game I AM THRILLED THAT YOU ARE BACK !and I agree with Frozen Stiffer that you need to set up your calendar so that you have some breaks from the development built in as best you can. Any of us can over-do and get burned out on a project or a hobby, we all understand that! but this community, YOUR game, and those of us who have faithfully supported you over the years want you to stay with it. I have said often that PureSim is SO CLOSE to being the best and most fun to play baseball sim on the market. With your continued work and further community improvements that goal is not far off.

Lots of words but bottom line, Welcome Back! we missed you.


_____________________________

DNeely

PureSim Vet

(in reply to Frozen Stiffer)
Post #: 5
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/23/2007 9:51:55 PM   
DaddyO

 

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The subscription idea is great if it's $20 or so, as long as your base feels they are getting value every year in the updates. That doesn't seem to be an issue at this point.

(in reply to dneely)
Post #: 6
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/23/2007 10:54:18 PM   
SirWolf1960

 

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Shaun, glad to hear you are back. I will agree with the others who posted already that I favor the subscription model. I love the little updates throughout the year. I also give a big Amen to the idea of you taking occasional breaks to enjoy your family.

Here's to a Sox-Mets World Series,
Steve

(in reply to DaddyO)
Post #: 7
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/23/2007 11:43:30 PM   
motnahp

 

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Consider this another vote for subscription. Twenty bucks once or twice a year is still a great value. You always deliver a lot of bang for the buck.

One thing that has really impressed me is that when you've added new features, you've made them optional via check boxes. This is brilliant and should be continued. I'll have my credit card handy. Welcome back!

(in reply to puresimmer)
Post #: 8
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 1:24:48 AM   
33sherman

 

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This is GREAT news!


(in reply to motnahp)
Post #: 9
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 1:39:46 AM   
VanScoy


Posts: 87
Joined: 12/2/2005
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I am in... $20 sounds reasonable for another year of gaming goodness. Glad to see you back. 

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Post #: 10
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 3:19:35 AM   
LetsPlay2


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From: Arkansas, USA
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I am in as well !

Glad your back !

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LP2






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Post #: 11
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 5:32:36 AM   
johneh

 

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The only surprise it that your retirement lasted as long as it did.
Welcome back, but still always make time for your family

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Post #: 12
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 6:05:21 AM   
KG Erwin


Posts: 8900
Joined: 7/25/2000
From: Cross Lanes WV USA
Status: offline
Welcome back, Shaun! I'd be for a yearly subscription, and/or a one-time lifetime subscription. CE was close to that already, without the additional fees. What do you guys think of the "lifetime" option (price to be determined)? I bring this up for the sake of the guys (like yours truly) who've already bought the game in two previous incarnations. If that's not a viable option, then $20 a year would be fine.

As Frozen Stiffer has mentioned, there are many fans of the game who really do love it. Heck, for me, it has become an addiction (not meant in a negative way), so to get my "fix", paying a yearly fee for updates seems reasonable.

(in reply to puresimmer)
Post #: 13
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 6:17:49 AM   
PadresFan104


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YES!!!!

Now if the Padres can hang on and beat the Red Sox the day will be perfect! 


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(in reply to KG Erwin)
Post #: 14
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 6:42:52 AM   
rjolley

 

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Joined: 8/20/2005
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A lifetime subscription would be kool. I'd seriously consider it.

(in reply to PadresFan104)
Post #: 15
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 9:14:04 AM   
DonBraswell


Posts: 383
Joined: 8/24/2005
From: Millbrook, Alabama
Status: offline
OK. Thats great news Shaun.

To every one else I don't want to be a wet blanket but, "actively pursue PureSim commercial development again" to me means Shaun should make money for his hard work. What ever price he thinks fair is ok with me. Not to say I take wheel borrow of money to the bank. I pinch pennies like every one else. I just want to see the game continue and be a money maker for Shaun.

Shaun, don't spend so much time on the game that it hurts family time. Work on next years game, say January to March, then release it. Fix bugs as they come up. But other than that spend time with your family. Then next year start the new game/revision. I know you like to adjust and update. I love getting new updates. But I don't want you to get burn out or for your family to feel left out.

We miss you when you are not around. But do what is best for you.

Don

< Message edited by DonBraswell -- 6/24/2007 9:17:16 AM >

(in reply to puresimmer)
Post #: 16
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 4:22:47 PM   
redsoxfan99

 

Posts: 23
Joined: 11/16/2005
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I will add my voice to the subscription basis - seems fairer to Shaun as he develops things over the course of the year and also better for users to be able to keep up to date.

John
UK

(in reply to puresimmer)
Post #: 17
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 4:25:21 PM   
mking55

 

Posts: 41
Joined: 3/26/2006
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A minor dilema for you.

I'm glad you are going to try to continue to develop this fine game and balance the important things in your life at the same time. I wish you the best luck.

For this year I would recommend the 2007 Expansion pack if it's doable by mid-August. You could pick up new customers and keep the interest of the old ones.

The subscription option is best for you. You have a difficult time in holding things back for a new release so you do deliver many new features in patches. Of course you always have to patch because of the small things that are found by your customer base, but you do "give a lot away for free". I don't think anyone here begrudges you making a buck or two off your hard work and good product. The subscribtion lets you work as you've always worked (adding new features as you felt), but getting some payment in exchange for them.

I'd start with an all-new big 2008 release (if you can) and then go to the subscription model.
Good luck whichevery way you decide. I am sure your many dedicated fans will support whichever way you choose.

(in reply to DonBraswell)
Post #: 18
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 4:25:50 PM   
33sherman

 

Posts: 175
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I like the subscription idea...I would definitely spring for the $20 expansion pack this summer if it would help get the ball rolling.

(in reply to redsoxfan99)
Post #: 19
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 4:36:20 PM   
Bigdummie

 

Posts: 13
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Count me in, a subscription option or an upgrade charge, it works for me. Good news, like the added features you contributed for TPG2. Thanks

(in reply to 33sherman)
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RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 5:11:03 PM   
akcranker


Posts: 477
Joined: 12/12/2005
Status: offline
Good to hear your back Shaun but I would say like others that please take the time when needed to spend with your family and relax so you and your family don't get burned out on your continued development of Puresim.

I'm all for the subscription feature. I've always been. And don't cheat yourself. I'd be willing to pay the full $35-40 we pay every year. You've always released a high-quality product and squashed all major bugs in a timely manner. Better than any other Sim developer out there IMO.

Either way you go I'd be willing to pay for an updated product and I look forward to any new features you can bring to the game.

One suggestion for improvements on the game... I'd really like to see if you can improve on the Multiplayer feature. This hasn't really ever taken off as it's intended. More people use it as a solo feature to run all 30 teams. I'd like to see it used for lots of leagues that draw in more users and I think we still have some bugs that need to be worked out.

Again good to see you back Shaun and I'm always willing to support you and Puresim. Say hi on MSN sometime. It's been awhile since we chatted online.

Cory

(in reply to Bigdummie)
Post #: 21
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 5:32:35 PM   
cdvalenta

 

Posts: 100
Joined: 2/5/2006
From: Palmer, MA
Status: offline
This is some great news.

I would be all for an upgrade charge or a new version discount. Like everyone else on these boards I think PureSim is great and would be willing to pay for upgrades or new versions.

I don't like the idea of "subscription". I don't think it would work for this type game and you would back yourself into a corner and be forced to deliver some type of update every X months or something. 

(in reply to akcranker)
Post #: 22
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 6:04:24 PM   
jzicc

 

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My suggestion (looking at it purely from a business perspective -- as you mentioned that hardly anybody volunteered a paypal donation)  would be to stop anymore free updates and go to a $27.95 for those who have never purchased the game (this would entitle the new user to 12 months of patches) and for those who already have the game, a fee of $20 per year for the ongoing updates and revisions.  This would start with an end of summer expansion pack for $20 that would entitle you to the next 12 months free updates  --- possibly include a $40 lifetime update option ? 

-- just my 2 cents

(in reply to Bigdummie)
Post #: 23
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/24/2007 8:13:50 PM   
sovereignstar

 

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This news pleases me.

(in reply to jzicc)
Post #: 24
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/25/2007 7:25:25 AM   
FranklinNoble

 

Posts: 131
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From: SportsDigs.com
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This is outstanding news! I'm still playing PureSim at least once a week, and I'm glad to see the game will continue to be developed.

(in reply to puresimmer)
Post #: 25
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/26/2007 12:48:06 AM   
DonBraswell


Posts: 383
Joined: 8/24/2005
From: Millbrook, Alabama
Status: offline
Shaun I was so excited I didn't really read through your message. Today I reread it and couldn't help but grin at the first paragraph; "I have officially flunked retirement".
Man I hope when you get to official retirement age you don't officially flunk that retirement.

Still smiling
Don

(in reply to puresimmer)
Post #: 26
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/27/2007 4:11:27 PM   
Abev

 

Posts: 228
Joined: 8/11/2005
Status: offline
Shaun - the subscription method would work and I think is very reasonable.

A product I buy from Sveasoft, which provides super-charged firmware for routers, does the same type of thing. A yearly subscription gives you access to all of their updates. $20 per year would be very reasonable.

(in reply to DonBraswell)
Post #: 27
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/28/2007 5:30:47 AM   
RedSox67

 

Posts: 22
Joined: 9/23/2005
Status: offline
Hi Shaun,

I hope you know where I stand.  If you and your family want this, that's great!  I've always felt like this is a great game and I'm just leasing it from you.  Any year I spend even 5 minutes on it, updates or no, I'm happy to pay another year's lease, because there is so much bang for the buck already.  But if you're looking on votes for changes, I'm always ready for more graphics and/or sounds.  And September roster expansion. And ...

Bob

(in reply to Abev)
Post #: 28
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/29/2007 4:21:17 AM   
jearly


Posts: 30
Joined: 8/19/2005
Status: offline
Shaun,
I have been a subscription player for a couple of years with the soccer game SAAP, and it has worked great. If this is the route you are going I will be happy to support you.
Glad to have you back from semi-reTIREment - now get to work before you get TIRED again.

_____________________________

The Best Exercise - Is Simply Walking with God !

(in reply to RedSox67)
Post #: 29
RE: It's Official - I am coming out of semi-retirement - 6/30/2007 11:50:48 PM   
lynchjm24

 

Posts: 240
Joined: 8/21/2005
Status: offline
I'd be careful just going with what you hear on this site about a subscription system. I think the fact that you've developed in fits and starts might turn off some people to that type of system, where they might be afraid you'll go back into semi-retirement.

I'd also be careful putting numbers into people's heads as it's going to be tough to go up from there once they have them in their heads.

(in reply to puresimmer)
Post #: 30
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