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RE: Pricing Suggestion

 
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RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 3:35:54 AM   
gradenko_2000

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Aurelian
Warspite1, yes we have :)

And they bring nothing to back up their "facts".

To quote Ian from another thread:

1) Follow a business plan based on 13 years of running a successful company and over 20 years in the games industry.
2) Follow a business plan based on what a journalist and our fans (none of whom to my knowledge have ever made a game or run computer game publisher) suggest because we don't have the guts to follow our beliefs.

I know which option I will be choosing :)



It's disingenuous to assert that these pricing discussions and suggestions are coming off the backs of "random people who have never run a business before" rather than, say, Valve Corporation, which has been more successful than Matrix Games by several orders of magnitude.

(in reply to Aurelian)
Post #: 721
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 3:52:11 AM   
flanyboy

 

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The thing is Steam gets what 30-40% of every sale or something similar to how the Apple App store works. So that's a pretty darn big loss of revenue to need to make up. Plus if they sell on steam they probably would need to lower prices which requires even bigger volumes of sales to make up for the losses there. It just is very likely not a good strategy if they need to double or triple their sales to make the same as they do without steam before even breaking even. Those are estimates obviously I don't have the figures but 30% is pretty standard for stores like that (Amazon App Store, Apple App Store) and I think we all can agree they wont sell anymore copies or not many more at present price points in a low price environment like Steam so they'd need to discount as well.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Alchenar


quote:

ORIGINAL: warspite1

Aurelian I think we’ve been here before…

The same old arguments just go round and round in circles. The one about “it’s a fact that if you reduce prices you get more customers” sums up the pointlessness of the thread. If life was that simple why doesn’t every company do that? Hey great, no retailer ever goes out of business!! Right…….

Matrix is a private company, no doubt with investors, shareholders (maybe the bank) all of whom they have to keep happy. They are NOT a charity. They also live in the free world and we have a free market. This means they have to balance price with consumer demand, competition, the size of the market place etc.

If they get it wrong there may be no Matrix in future, if they get it right, they will hopefully be around for some time yet. But it’s the right of the people who invest their cash and hold the risk to set the price. Our investment is limited to what we pay for games. If we don’t like it, then we shouldn't invest.


True, but even if we drop the price argument completely there's things like 'you need a demo', 'get some free advertising by getting some mainstream reviews', 'use the massive customer base that Steam opens up for you' which would not be substantial costs but which would probably be successful to some degree. But instead we just get an insistence that even that effort would be wasted.

The thing is that if a company refuses to let me demo a product and also hides their product from the industry journalists, that sets off pretty big alarm bells in my head that something is very wrong under the covers and they want to hide it until it's too late for me to back out of a purchase.

If you trust Matrix absolutely then their pricing strategy is fine. I have a demand for wargames and the supply is very limited. But if you get burned just once with a game that turns out to be far more expensive than it's entertainment value justified then it becomes very difficult to be a returning customer. And that's a problem.

(in reply to Alchenar)
Post #: 722
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 3:55:30 AM   
gradenko_2000

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: flanyboy
The thing is Steam gets what 30-40% of every sale or something similar to how the Apple App store works. So that's a pretty darn big loss of revenue to need to make up. Plus if they sell on steam they probably would need to lower prices which requires even bigger volumes of sales to make up for the losses there.

That's only if you believe that wargaming is such a closed-off niche genre that you can't ever win over any new players and have to instead resort to gouging the "true believers" for as much as possible.

And that particular assertion itself isn't supported by successful non-Matrix strategy games and successful similarly-niche sub-genres.

(in reply to flanyboy)
Post #: 723
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 4:09:58 AM   
flanyboy

 

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I never said it was not possible but I can see a businesses hesitancy to embrace something that would likely require them to increase sales by between 100%-200% (or more) depending on the title and price drop.

There are definitely some developers doing very very well on Steam but it's not everyone. It's probably more like the mobile app stores where you have 1% of developers striking it rich and the other 99% chasing that one big hit that goes viral.

I'm not saying Matrix is right but I can understand their hesitancy that's all. Steam or bargain pricing is hardly a sure thing for Matrix.
quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000

quote:

ORIGINAL: flanyboy
The thing is Steam gets what 30-40% of every sale or something similar to how the Apple App store works. So that's a pretty darn big loss of revenue to need to make up. Plus if they sell on steam they probably would need to lower prices which requires even bigger volumes of sales to make up for the losses there.

That's only if you believe that wargaming is such a closed-off niche genre that you can't ever win over any new players and have to instead resort to gouging the "true believers" for as much as possible.

And that particular assertion itself isn't supported by successful non-Matrix strategy games and successful similarly-niche sub-genres.


< Message edited by flanyboy -- 9/30/2013 4:10:35 AM >

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Post #: 724
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 4:17:02 AM   
Aurelian

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000

quote:

ORIGINAL: Aurelian
Warspite1, yes we have :)

And they bring nothing to back up their "facts".

To quote Ian from another thread:

1) Follow a business plan based on 13 years of running a successful company and over 20 years in the games industry.
2) Follow a business plan based on what a journalist and our fans (none of whom to my knowledge have ever made a game or run computer game publisher) suggest because we don't have the guts to follow our beliefs.

I know which option I will be choosing :)



It's disingenuous to assert that these pricing discussions and suggestions are coming off the backs of "random people who have never run a business before" rather than, say, Valve Corporation, which has been more successful than Matrix Games by several orders of magnitude.


Really? Valve puts out games such as WiTP-AE, WiTE, and CMANO?.

If so, since when? If not, then why bring them up? No point in it.

These type of threads are started by people who have not run a computer game business. It doesn't matter what the price is, they will complain, as stated in a different thread.

I'll say it again. They have presented *nothing* to back their position. They have not presented anything that shows this company is on the wrong track.

Make the claim that they're losing sales, let's see the numbers.

Make the claim that they will make more money by cutting the price, let's see the numbers.

Show me what the profit margin is on an $80 game. Then show me how many more they have to sell to make the same amount.

Better yet, show the company that make a game as rich and detailed and complex as Command, for a much lower price. Oh, it must cover the same time frame too.

Some guy makes a claim that this price isn't going to bring in "new blood". Well, it isn't supposed to. That's why there are free games here. That's what there are lower complexity games for this "new blood" to dip their toe in.





< Message edited by Aurelian -- 9/30/2013 4:33:58 AM >


_____________________________

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Post #: 725
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 4:27:12 AM   
dutchman55555

 

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Well today I learned something new.

If I'm unhappy with the political leadership in my country, I'm not allowed to comment on it unless I've run for office.

If I'm unhappy with the advertising on television, I have to keep my trap shut unless I've run a marketing company.

If I'm dissatisfied with the treatment my hospital gives, I can't pipe up unless I've gone to medical school.

Otherwise I'm just a "complainer".

Wow, who would've thunk it?

(in reply to Aurelian)
Post #: 726
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 4:34:33 AM   
flanyboy

 

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Complain all you want. I am not saying Matrix is right, I just think people have a far to rosey picture of what would happen if they lowered prices.

I'm not saying it wouldn't bring in new customers it would, I question how many. I think there are very valid concerns that Matrix has with lowering prices and getting involved in the race to the bottom and I don't think their games scale particularly well to a price war.

They COULD be very successful lowering prices, but I also think it could fail miserably and if done poorly enough could even end the company. The slow but steady approach may not be the popular one, it might not even be the right LONG TERM one but lowering the prices is hardly a guarantee of success either.

quote:

ORIGINAL: dutchman55555

Well today I learned something new.

If I'm unhappy with the political leadership in my country, I'm not allowed to comment on it unless I've run for office.

If I'm unhappy with the advertising on television, I have to keep my trap shut unless I've run a marketing company.

If I'm dissatisfied with the treatment my hospital gives, I can't pipe up unless I've gone to medical school.

Otherwise I'm just a "complainer".

Wow, who would've thunk it?

(in reply to dutchman55555)
Post #: 727
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 5:03:01 AM   
Talon_XBMCX


Posts: 192
Joined: 8/1/2008
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quote:

ORIGINAL: dutchman55555

Well today I learned something new.

If I'm unhappy with the political leadership in my country, I'm not allowed to comment on it unless I've run for office.


You have to at least vote ... then you can complain ;)


quote:

ORIGINAL: dutchman55555
If I'm unhappy with the advertising on television, I have to keep my trap shut unless I've run a marketing company.


Or not support any of their products. You can complain, but if you continue to purchase from said company, how much validity is in your complaint?

quote:

ORIGINAL: dutchman55555
If I'm dissatisfied with the treatment my hospital gives, I can't pipe up unless I've gone to medical school.


Actually, at least in the US, reimbursement rates are being tied to patient satisfaction (or very soon will be). You better believe that they want to make you happy. And there is always malpractice.

quote:

ORIGINAL: dutchman55555

Otherwise I'm just a "complainer".

Wow, who would've thunk it?


Labels are never good. I prefer to think that you (and others) just have a different value/price point for this product than Matrix does. There isn't anything wrong with that ... we all have our value/price points for the things we purchase. There are titles here that don't match my value/price point. I wish they all did ... but just because I think that I know best it doesn't mean that they have to think the same.

Back to economics again ... Aint free markets grand!

(in reply to dutchman55555)
Post #: 728
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 5:49:52 AM   
Chickenboy


Posts: 24475
Joined: 6/29/2002
From: San Antonio, TX
Status: online

quote:

ORIGINAL: Aurelian


quote:

ORIGINAL: Chickenboy

Hi Guys! I'm late to the conversation telling Matrix how to run their business. What'd I miss?


Nothing.


Well, it sure fueled another two pages worth of posts in a flash. Care to summarize for those that don't wish to wade through banalities for 60+ posts?

_____________________________


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Post #: 729
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 7:30:47 AM   
Aurelian

 

Posts: 3978
Joined: 2/26/2007
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Chickenboy


quote:

ORIGINAL: Aurelian


quote:

ORIGINAL: Chickenboy

Hi Guys! I'm late to the conversation telling Matrix how to run their business. What'd I miss?


Nothing.


Well, it sure fueled another two pages worth of posts in a flash. Care to summarize for those that don't wish to wade through banalities for 60+ posts?


They don't like the price. And think the company doesn't know what it's doing.

_____________________________

Either you love bacon or you're wrong.

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Post #: 730
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 7:44:58 AM   
gradenko_2000

 

Posts: 935
Joined: 12/27/2010
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quote:

ORIGINAL: Aurelian
Really? Valve puts out games such as WiTP-AE, WiTE, and CMANO?.

If so, since when? If not, then why bring them up? No point in it.

These type of threads are started by people who have not run a computer game business. It doesn't matter what the price is, they will complain, as stated in a different thread.

I'll say it again. They have presented *nothing* to back their position. They have not presented anything that shows this company is on the wrong track.

Make the claim that they're losing sales, let's see the numbers.

Make the claim that they will make more money by cutting the price, let's see the numbers.

Show me what the profit margin is on an $80 game. Then show me how many more they have to sell to make the same amount.

Better yet, show the company that make a game as rich and detailed and complex as Command, for a much lower price. Oh, it must cover the same time frame too.

Some guy makes a claim that this price isn't going to bring in "new blood". Well, it isn't supposed to. That's why there are free games here. That's what there are lower complexity games for this "new blood" to dip their toe in.


I could cite Naval War Arctic Circle with a base price of 19.99 USD and having been dropped as low as 4.99 USD through the course of sales, or Fleet Command with a base price of 19.99 USD and having dropped as low as 1.99 USD during certain sales, but I'm sure you'd just move the goalposts further to some kind of arbitrary reasoning as to why those don't count.

Which circles back to the idea that it doesn't count because it's not War in the East, or it's not War in the Pacific, because wargaming as a genre is some kind of unique, special snowflake that will somehow spell doom for a company that tries to pull off the same kind of bell-curve sale economics that have worked on so many other games.

IL-2 Sturmovik is deep and complex, but it isn't a strategy game about the Eastern Front, therefore putting WITE on a 75% sale every once a while isn't going to generate more revenue than just keeping the price high.

X: Beyond the Frontier/X2: The Threat/X3: Albion Prelude has a very niche appeal, but it isn't a strategy game about the Eastern Front, therefore putting WITE on a 75% sale means the developers won't be able to afford to continue the series

Train Simulator 2012/2013/2014 has a ton of expensive DLC behind it, but it isn't a strategy game about the Eastern Front, therefore putting the main client on a 90% sale every once a while isn't ever going to win any new customers

Hearts of Iron 3 is a deep and complex strategy that does cover the Eastern Front, and is Paradox's best-selling game, but that's just an anomaly, I guess.

In the meantime, Matrix is selling Unity of Command for 10 dollars more than Steam or Gamersgate or even directly from the developer is. What, pray tell, is the justification for this 10 dollar mark-up? Is UOC suddenly more deep and complex when bought from Matrix?

(in reply to Aurelian)
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RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 8:06:20 AM   
Rtwfreak

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Chickenboy


quote:

ORIGINAL: Aurelian


quote:

ORIGINAL: Chickenboy

Hi Guys! I'm late to the conversation telling Matrix how to run their business. What'd I miss?


Nothing.


Well, it sure fueled another two pages worth of posts in a flash. Care to summarize for those that don't wish to wade through banalities for 60+ posts?


Basically a He said, She said, We said thread about pricing. You know these never mount to a hill of beans like all other discussions we have. This place is just a sounding board to throw away or waste our free time and sometimes give a little feedback Matrixgames and Slitherine might read or take into consideration from time to time nothing more though. Just a time waster like all other forums on the net.

(in reply to Chickenboy)
Post #: 732
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 8:06:38 AM   
flanyboy

 

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Grade here's a problem, maybe there is info I'm not privy to but we have no clue what Arctic Circle or Fleet Command made financially do we? If you do that's fine please show me I'm curious. However, are we assuming the games were very profitable just because they were heavily discounted? If they sell 2,000 copies for $5 each, or $250 copies for $29.99 despite our desire for the $5 price the $29.99 is the right decision for a business. Now you might have an argument if you can prove that the $5 price will get you more sales elsewhere but that likely may not be the case if the only way to get their sale is a steep discount that loses more revenue than it gains.

Also I really liked Fleet Command but I'm not sure how relevant that example is given the game was released worldwide in retail stores when the retail market still existed.

(in reply to gradenko_2000)
Post #: 733
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 8:18:24 AM   
flanyboy

 

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Also I think another valid concern would be that if Matrix started limited deep discounts they would undercut their entire catalog and while some games might bring in more revenue, other games might lose revenue. Not all games become blockbusters and not all Matrix Games would translate well to the mainstream even if some do. Their fear likely is that if you sell some games dramatically cheaper than others you'll drive those who don't do well in the system away and it will hurt the company on the whole even if a couple of titles do really well. Their segment of developers isn't large enough that it would be wise to risk alienating half their base if the deep discounts don't work.

Furthermore the Unity of Command while annoying could have something to do with whatever their distribution deal is. For all we know due to the ability to sell a much higher volume Steam was able to negotiate a deal that allows them to sell the game for a higher cut of the game and in order for Unity to agree to sell with Matrix they were able to get Matrix to agree to a lower cut thus Matrix sells it at a higher price to make selling the game here financially wise. (Different cellphone companies sell the same phone for different prices often, for that same reason. I know my company has to pay more per device than bigger ones and thus we charge more for the phone despite it being the same thing as what other companies sell)

< Message edited by flanyboy -- 9/30/2013 8:19:23 AM >

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RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 8:48:44 AM   
Rtwfreak

 

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The minute Matrixgames starts to give deep discounts it when they will start on the spiral out of business because the smart shopper will start to wait on the bargain bin prices on the majority of products.

Example: 99% of the games I buy on Steam and Gamersgate I get for a major discount and usually for less than $10. I have libraries on both of games like Rome TW, Medieval Total War II, Empire TW, Napoleon TW, and about 50 others that I paid little to nothing for and waited for because I couldn't have bought them all at full price when brand new or I'd be in the poor house. I'd say the majority of consumers out there are like me. Can only ever afford a few games a year at regular price. At $5 a game I can play up to a 100 but at $50 a game you figure it out how many I can play. About 10 a year vs 100 which one do you think I will choose?

It's all about patience anymore in the gaming industry, anyone who is willing to wait can get and play a lot of games for the cheap prices. Those who gotta be first will pay to be the beta testers for the games.

If Matrixgames drops their prices to Steam or Gamersgate prices at discount I don't care how old they are then sales will plummet in the future. I already wait for their games to go to less than $20 before I buy because they have these Christmas sales and now these weekly sales. I will no longer pay full price for any Matrixgames product because of this and I'm sure there are many others out there like me.

Noooo they best not ever reduce their game library to $5 or $10 games or that is all they will ever get from the majority of consumers. It's just common nature for the common folk to save money, it's common nature for the 2% or wealthy folk to blow it or spend it on a whim. That's economics of today's consumer.

(in reply to flanyboy)
Post #: 735
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 9:29:26 AM   
flanyboy

 

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RTW I mostly agree with you though I do buy some games full price particularly when they are indies I want to support. Maybe that makes me a sucker or stupid but games like SOW I feel like they deserve my support and I want more games like them so I buy them.

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Post #: 736
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 11:43:50 AM   
Alchenar

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000
In the meantime, Matrix is selling Unity of Command for 10 dollars more than Steam or Gamersgate or even directly from the developer is. What, pray tell, is the justification for this 10 dollar mark-up? Is UOC suddenly more deep and complex when bought from Matrix?


I'm pretty sure the answer is 'Matrix have so much contempt for you as a customer that they don't think you'll spend 30 seconds searching for a better deal. And by keeping this community insular and isolated from the mainstream they're probably right.'

(in reply to gradenko_2000)
Post #: 737
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 12:17:37 PM   
Chickenboy


Posts: 24475
Joined: 6/29/2002
From: San Antonio, TX
Status: online

quote:

ORIGINAL: Rtwfreak


quote:

ORIGINAL: Chickenboy


quote:

ORIGINAL: Aurelian


quote:

ORIGINAL: Chickenboy

Hi Guys! I'm late to the conversation telling Matrix how to run their business. What'd I miss?


Nothing.


Well, it sure fueled another two pages worth of posts in a flash. Care to summarize for those that don't wish to wade through banalities for 60+ posts?


Basically a He said, She said, We said thread about pricing. You know these never mount to a hill of beans like all other discussions we have. This place is just a sounding board to throw away or waste our free time and sometimes give a little feedback Matrixgames and Slitherine might read or take into consideration from time to time nothing more though. Just a time waster like all other forums on the net.



Roger that.

_____________________________


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Post #: 738
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 12:18:08 PM   
Chickenboy


Posts: 24475
Joined: 6/29/2002
From: San Antonio, TX
Status: online

quote:

ORIGINAL: Aurelian


quote:

ORIGINAL: Chickenboy


quote:

ORIGINAL: Aurelian


quote:

ORIGINAL: Chickenboy

Hi Guys! I'm late to the conversation telling Matrix how to run their business. What'd I miss?


Nothing.


Well, it sure fueled another two pages worth of posts in a flash. Care to summarize for those that don't wish to wade through banalities for 60+ posts?


They don't like the price. And think the company doesn't know what it's doing.


Thanks. Sounds like things are well in hand.

_____________________________


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Post #: 739
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 4:23:42 PM   
Aurelian

 

Posts: 3978
Joined: 2/26/2007
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000

quote:

ORIGINAL: Aurelian
Really? Valve puts out games such as WiTP-AE, WiTE, and CMANO?.

If so, since when? If not, then why bring them up? No point in it.

These type of threads are started by people who have not run a computer game business. It doesn't matter what the price is, they will complain, as stated in a different thread.

I'll say it again. They have presented *nothing* to back their position. They have not presented anything that shows this company is on the wrong track.

Make the claim that they're losing sales, let's see the numbers.

Make the claim that they will make more money by cutting the price, let's see the numbers.

Show me what the profit margin is on an $80 game. Then show me how many more they have to sell to make the same amount.

Better yet, show the company that make a game as rich and detailed and complex as Command, for a much lower price. Oh, it must cover the same time frame too.



Some guy makes a claim that this price isn't going to bring in "new blood". Well, it isn't supposed to. That's why there are free games here. That's what there are lower complexity games for this "new blood" to dip their toe in.


I could cite Naval War Arctic Circle with a base price of 19.99 USD and having been dropped as low as 4.99 USD through the course of sales, or Fleet Command with a base price of 19.99 USD and having dropped as low as 1.99 USD during certain sales, but I'm sure you'd just move the goalposts further to some kind of arbitrary reasoning as to why those don't count.

Which circles back to the idea that it doesn't count because it's not War in the East, or it's not War in the Pacific, because wargaming as a genre is some kind of unique, special snowflake that will somehow spell doom for a company that tries to pull off the same kind of bell-curve sale economics that have worked on so many other games.

IL-2 Sturmovik is deep and complex, but it isn't a strategy game about the Eastern Front, therefore putting WITE on a 75% sale every once a while isn't going to generate more revenue than just keeping the price high.

X: Beyond the Frontier/X2: The Threat/X3: Albion Prelude has a very niche appeal, but it isn't a strategy game about the Eastern Front, therefore putting WITE on a 75% sale means the developers won't be able to afford to continue the series

Train Simulator 2012/2013/2014 has a ton of expensive DLC behind it, but it isn't a strategy game about the Eastern Front, therefore putting the main client on a 90% sale every once a while isn't ever going to win any new customers

Hearts of Iron 3 is a deep and complex strategy that does cover the Eastern Front, and is Paradox's best-selling game, but that's just an anomaly, I guess.

In the meantime, Matrix is selling Unity of Command for 10 dollars more than Steam or Gamersgate or even directly from the developer is. What, pray tell, is the justification for this 10 dollar mark-up? Is UOC suddenly more deep and complex when bought from Matrix?


Artic Circle: As of January 23, 2013, support for the game has been abandoned by Paradox and Turbo Tape Games, who released a statement saying: "Naval War: Arctic Circle has reached the end of its development, and patches or DLC for the title will no longer be produced under the Paradox Interactive brand. Yep, I have to buy that one right away.

And still, it doesn't cover what CMANO covers. So you missed your own goal posta.

Fleet Command: A game form 1999. Set in the 1990s. Rereleased a couple of times. Once again, you missed.

Il2: An old game far past support. (I have all of them btw. Including CoD, not all that great is that one.) Again, you miss, it is not anywhere near CMANO.

Train Simulator: Really? The only thing in common between the two is that they're software? Another miss.

Steam and Gamersgate: How much money did they spend developing anything? BTW, Unity of Command? Really? What part of "Better yet, show the company that make a game as rich and detailed and complex as Command, for a much lower price. Oh, it must cover the same time frame too." does that fall under?

What part of that has *any* of your choices fall under?

Moving goalposts? You're haven't even got past your own 20 yard line.

You haven't presented *any* data that even comes close to what I asked for over and over.



< Message edited by Aurelian -- 9/30/2013 4:29:24 PM >


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Post #: 740
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 5:14:56 PM   
Alchenar

 

Posts: 360
Joined: 8/2/2010
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You keep changing 'rich and detailed and complex, oh and same time frame' so that unless he can come up with a game that is literally CMANO with a different name you can reject it.

DCS:World and various modules is a game that's easily as rich and detailed and complex and covers weapon systems over the same time frame as CMANO. It is perhaps less broad in some areas, but more detailed than others, given it's rendering realistic air combat in full 3d, which CMANO does not. You can also turn it into a strategy game and include ground combatants (that CMANO does not) with Combined Arms.

Eagle Dynamics charge full AAA prices for all of their modules (and they've broken Flaming Cliffs down so that the individual planes are cheaper but the collection more expensive). And yet they've still gone to Steam and they still participate enthusiastically in sales.

< Message edited by Alchenar -- 9/30/2013 5:16:07 PM >

(in reply to Aurelian)
Post #: 741
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 6:15:52 PM   
flanyboy

 

Posts: 1451
Joined: 11/30/2006
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No point in arguing with a sound factual argument like that.

I state a valid and common reason pricing is different in many products and you respond by completely dismissing that with a personal opinion and no justification other than what you Think and no facts.
quote:

ORIGINAL: Alchenar


quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000
In the meantime, Matrix is selling Unity of Command for 10 dollars more than Steam or Gamersgate or even directly from the developer is. What, pray tell, is the justification for this 10 dollar mark-up? Is UOC suddenly more deep and complex when bought from Matrix?


I'm pretty sure the answer is 'Matrix have so much contempt for you as a customer that they don't think you'll spend 30 seconds searching for a better deal. And by keeping this community insular and isolated from the mainstream they're probably right.'


(in reply to Alchenar)
Post #: 742
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 6:26:20 PM   
Alchenar

 

Posts: 360
Joined: 8/2/2010
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quote:

ORIGINAL: flanyboy

No point in arguing with a sound factual argument like that.

I state a valid and common reason pricing is different in many products and you respond by completely dismissing that with a personal opinion and no justification other than what you Think and no facts.



I wasn't addressing you but you seem to be upset so here we go:

quote:


Also I think another valid concern would be that if Matrix started limited deep discounts they would undercut their entire catalog and while some games might bring in more revenue, other games might lose revenue. Not all games become blockbusters and not all Matrix Games would translate well to the mainstream even if some do. Their fear likely is that if you sell some games dramatically cheaper than others you'll drive those who don't do well in the system away and it will hurt the company on the whole even if a couple of titles do really well. Their segment of developers isn't large enough that it would be wise to risk alienating half their base if the deep discounts don't work.


What you are suggesting here is that the people making good wargames should effectively 'take one for the team' and agree to run cover for the people making bad wargames.

This isn't just unfair and hurts the chances of the people making good wargames being successful, it means more bad wargames.


e: also I'm not going to defend Arctic Circle. It was a bad game and flopped. It shouldn't be in this discussion.

< Message edited by Alchenar -- 9/30/2013 6:27:28 PM >

(in reply to flanyboy)
Post #: 743
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 7:07:54 PM   
flanyboy

 

Posts: 1451
Joined: 11/30/2006
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That's not what I was saying at all. I'm saying that matrix has variety in the games it sells. WITP is a good game IMHO but you'd never convince 90+% of steam users to play it no matter the price. Panzer Corps or Battle Academy would more likely appeal to a wider base and do we at bargain prices. Matrix could risk compromising their catalog by having two different marketing tactics. If they had a catalog of 200 games they could do that but as a smaller producer they likely are not large enough to effectively market and target two totally different customer sets.

(in reply to Alchenar)
Post #: 744
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 7:44:18 PM   
Alchenar

 

Posts: 360
Joined: 8/2/2010
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: flanyboy

That's not what I was saying at all. I'm saying that matrix has variety in the games it sells. WITP is a good game IMHO but you'd never convince 90+% of steam users to play it no matter the price. Panzer Corps or Battle Academy would more likely appeal to a wider base and do we at bargain prices. Matrix could risk compromising their catalog by having two different marketing tactics. If they had a catalog of 200 games they could do that but as a smaller producer they likely are not large enough to effectively market and target two totally different customer sets.


Steam has 50 million users. You need to stop and think about that for a moment because it's a staggering number. Forget the 10% you picked out of a hat, if you only attract the attention of 0.01% of the userbase then that's still 5000 potential sales. That's why virtually everyone except Matrix (and EA, for their own reasons) agrees that getting yourself onto Steam is a game-changing experience in terms of your business.

People have been demanding numbers throughout the thread so I'll steal some of Grandenko's thunder by stealing two articles he sourced (hopefully he'll forgive me because I'm organising another Decisive Campaigns game he's in) and posting them before he can:

Here's an interesting article about Dustforce: http://hitboxteam.com/dustforce-sales-figures

And here's one about about Defender's Quest:
Part 1: http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/168303/defenders_quest_by_the_numbers.php
Part 2: http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/186940/defenders_quest_by_the_numbers_.php

(If you want to be incredibly lazy, as I've noticed of some, then the two big conclusions that come from the data and which Matrix have rejected are:
quote:


Other Stats

Steam provides the most detailed stats of any of our platforms, so let's look at some interesting data from there.

37.6 percent
Steam demo-to-sale conversion rate

This stat means that over 1/3 of all people who have ever played the Steam demo go on to buy the full game. This speaks well of not only our demo, but also the Steam platform itself. Installing and playing a demo on Steam is often just as easy as playing a browser demo on the web -- the player clicks one button, waits for the game to download, and then she's ready to play.


and

quote:

Final Takeaways

Making good games is hard. Selling good games is even harder. So many factors are outside of your control, and even if you do everything right success may still elude you.

I used to believe that if I worked really hard and made something great, an audience would magically find me and we'd make a lot of money. Reality is quite different.

Sales basically comes down to a simple formula:

Eyeballs * Conversion_Rate = Sales

You can't directly control the ebb and flow of the fickle eyeballs of the internet. You can, however, control how many you capture when they show up.

So make your pitch. Tell them what you're about. Give them a free sample. Repeat nice things others have said, and if you're so inclined, tell them if it's okay for their kids. Learn all about what Tadhg Kelly calls the Marketing Story. Be human, be humble, be open, and if fortune is on your side, good things can happen.

And when you're done, come back and share your data with the world! It's scary out there, and the more information we share, the easier it is for the next developers to chart their path.


No they are not literally CANO in all-but-name. But they are indy games with niche appeal and the lessons the developers in those articles talk about probably are at least partially applicable to the wargames genre which consists of lots of small indy developers making something with niche appeal.

< Message edited by Alchenar -- 9/30/2013 7:49:11 PM >

(in reply to flanyboy)
Post #: 745
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 8:37:49 PM   
gradenko_2000

 

Posts: 935
Joined: 12/27/2010
Status: offline
The key takeaways from those two articles are:

1. Release day sales are still a big chunk of revenue: the "people will never buy full price again because they'll all wait for a sale" effect is exaggerated. This is especially true if you offer pre-order (10-15%) sales, yet another thing that Matrix doesn't bother doing.

2. Total revenue always goes up during a sale, even if price-per-unit goes down.

3. Demos are arguably a hit-or-miss thing because you're taking away dev time from just building the whole game period, but they are a viable alternative to selling a game so cheap that a person is willing to jump into it blind ... except for the fact that Matrix does neither - WITE / WITP / CMANO and most of their catalogue is expensive to consider buying if you don't already know that you're going to like a game, yet at the same time only Command Ops has a demo.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Aurelian
Artic Circle: As of January 23, 2013, support for the game has been abandoned by Paradox and Turbo Tape Games, who released a statement saying: "Naval War: Arctic Circle has reached the end of its development, and patches or DLC for the title will no longer be produced under the Paradox Interactive brand. Yep, I have to buy that one right away.

And still, it doesn't cover what CMANO covers. So you missed your own goal posta.

Fleet Command: A game form 1999. Set in the 1990s. Rereleased a couple of times. Once again, you missed.

Il2: An old game far past support. (I have all of them btw. Including CoD, not all that great is that one.) Again, you miss, it is not anywhere near CMANO.

Train Simulator: Really? The only thing in common between the two is that they're software? Another miss.

Steam and Gamersgate: How much money did they spend developing anything? BTW, Unity of Command? Really? What part of "Better yet, show the company that make a game as rich and detailed and complex as Command, for a much lower price. Oh, it must cover the same time frame too." does that fall under?

What part of that has *any* of your choices fall under?

Moving goalposts? You're haven't even got past your own 20 yard line.

You haven't presented *any* data that even comes close to what I asked for over and over.


Are you really going to argue "discontinuation of support" as a point FOR Matrix? You can still buy Naval War and you can still buy IL-2. Matrix just pulls the plug on their older games and refuses to sell them, period.

I mean, wouldn't it be great if the original Highway to the Reich could still be bought for 10 or even 15 dollars as a sort of "crippled" version of the Command Ops engine, to rope people into getting the latest title?

Wouldn't it be nice if War Plan Orange was marketed as a sort of introductory-level version of War in the Pacific to challenge the player towards theaterwide operations before throwing in carriers and strategic bombing and massed amphibious landings, instead of being so expensive that you might as well shell out for WITP:AE right then and there on the off-change that it clicks?

And wouldn't it be just swell if the actual introductory level wargame was actually priced like an introductory level wargame instead of having a 10 dollar mark-up in exchange for worse download service and worse DRM?

(in reply to Aurelian)
Post #: 746
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 11:09:56 PM   
dutchman55555

 

Posts: 139
Joined: 4/21/2013
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000

In the meantime, Matrix is selling Unity of Command for 10 dollars more than Steam or Gamersgate or even directly from the developer is. What, pray tell, is the justification for this 10 dollar mark-up? Is UOC suddenly more deep and complex when bought from Matrix?

Nope.

I'm pretty sure they'd say, with a straight face, that you'd value a copy of UofC less if bought for a price lower than Matrix has it.

Seriously.

(in reply to gradenko_2000)
Post #: 747
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 11:15:46 PM   
dutchman55555

 

Posts: 139
Joined: 4/21/2013
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: flanyboy

Grade here's a problem, maybe there is info I'm not privy to but we have no clue what Arctic Circle or Fleet Command made financially do we?

To extend the premise further, we will have no idea how well Command does financially.

The True Believers demand proof that the discount model works, all the time refusing to admit that they themselves cannot say that it works worse than the model Matrix has in place. They just take a cautious sip of their Kool Aid and declare the Matrix model superior, completely data-free.

(in reply to flanyboy)
Post #: 748
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 11:24:56 PM   
Aurelian

 

Posts: 3978
Joined: 2/26/2007
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: gradenko_2000

The key takeaways from those two articles are:

1. Release day sales are still a big chunk of revenue: the "people will never buy full price again because they'll all wait for a sale" effect is exaggerated. This is especially true if you offer pre-order (10-15%) sales, yet another thing that Matrix doesn't bother doing.

2. Total revenue always goes up during a sale, even if price-per-unit goes down.

3. Demos are arguably a hit-or-miss thing because you're taking away dev time from just building the whole game period, but they are a viable alternative to selling a game so cheap that a person is willing to jump into it blind ... except for the fact that Matrix does neither - WITE / WITP / CMANO and most of their catalogue is expensive to consider buying if you don't already know that you're going to like a game, yet at the same time only Command Ops has a demo.

quote:

ORIGINAL: Aurelian
Artic Circle: As of January 23, 2013, support for the game has been abandoned by Paradox and Turbo Tape Games, who released a statement saying: "Naval War: Arctic Circle has reached the end of its development, and patches or DLC for the title will no longer be produced under the Paradox Interactive brand. Yep, I have to buy that one right away.

And still, it doesn't cover what CMANO covers. So you missed your own goal posta.

Fleet Command: A game form 1999. Set in the 1990s. Rereleased a couple of times. Once again, you missed.

Il2: An old game far past support. (I have all of them btw. Including CoD, not all that great is that one.) Again, you miss, it is not anywhere near CMANO.

Train Simulator: Really? The only thing in common between the two is that they're software? Another miss.

Steam and Gamersgate: How much money did they spend developing anything? BTW, Unity of Command? Really? What part of "Better yet, show the company that make a game as rich and detailed and complex as Command, for a much lower price. Oh, it must cover the same time frame too." does that fall under?

What part of that has *any* of your choices fall under?

Moving goalposts? You're haven't even got past your own 20 yard line.

You haven't presented *any* data that even comes close to what I asked for over and over.


Are you really going to argue "discontinuation of support" as a point FOR Matrix? You can still buy Naval War and you can still buy IL-2. Matrix just pulls the plug on their older games and refuses to sell them, period.



Not my fault you bring up games that are no longer supported. Or have reached the end of their development cycle.

Or do not cover what CMANO covers.

Let's try again.

I'll say it again. They have presented *nothing* to back their position. They have not presented anything that shows this company is on the wrong track.

Make the claim that they're losing sales, let's see the numbers.

Make the claim that they will make more money by cutting the price, let's see the numbers.

Show me what the profit margin is on an $80 game. Then show me how many more they have to sell to make the same amount.

Better yet, show the company that make a game as rich and detailed and complex as Command, for a much lower price. Oh, it must cover the same time frame too. edit: and that means, the same type of game. I didn't think I'd have to specify that considering where this tread started. Oh well.

I don't want to hear about a train simulator, (even though I'm a fan of trains and model railroads. Spent months playing RRT). Nor about games that are no longer supported or developed further.

See, the goal posts haven't been moved, you just can't get close enough to split the uprights. To do that, you have to provide the hard numbers.



_____________________________

Either you love bacon or you're wrong.

(in reply to gradenko_2000)
Post #: 749
RE: Pricing Suggestion - 9/30/2013 11:31:08 PM   
dutchman55555

 

Posts: 139
Joined: 4/21/2013
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: Rtwfreak

The minute Matrixgames starts to give deep discounts it when they will start on the spiral out of business because the smart shopper will start to wait on the bargain bin prices on the majority of products.

Seems to me there are a number of "smart shoppers" who are giving their games a pass all together, and voicing it here, with the current model Matrix uses.

There's no black or white, one model or the other, situation here. Steam has hundreds of games that start off full price ($40-$60), and remain that way for 6, 12, 18 months before there's a significant discount (33% or more). If the only shopper that Steam catered to was the deep discounter, patient waiter type, then these prices would be lower on release, or discounted within weeks. Obviously they're making money on full price sales, but once that "gotta have it" momentum is gone, and you want to sustain sales, discounting is one path to take.

I don't think anyone here is demanding Matrix become a clone of Steam. But Steam works, and works well...surely there are lessons to take from Valve.

Unless you want to see $90 become considered to be a normal, and later a bargain price here. The current Matrix model shows only the capacity for price rises on recent games. Even the discount codes for semi-recent games that loyal customers used to receive in their monthly newsletters have disappeared.

(in reply to Rtwfreak)
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