There was a time, not so long ago, that selling a million of pretty much anything was deemed a huge success. In these days of big budgets and even bigger expectations though, games that don't do considerably better are deemed failures.
No it still is, its only certain fanboys that try and downplay a good games success just because it didn't do 5 million in one day. You all know who I am talking about....
Sales is the only thing a certain group has and therefore they have created the myth that if a game doesn't sell 2 million on day one it's a flop. What these people fail to remember is that the LARGE majority of games never even reach 1 million and if they do it's considered a success. Most Sony exclusive reach 1 million and a lot reach 2 million. That is amazing sales and should not be looked down upon. Besides, sales =/= quality.
"Sales is the only thing a certain group has and therefore they have created the myth that if a game doesn't sell 2 million on day one it's a flop." Some 360 fanboys use sales to determine that 360 exclusives are "better" than PS3 exclusives. However, PS3 fanboys consider any multiplat thats scores under a 9 as a flop. ALL fanboys create dumb myths.. 360 fanboys use sales to determine which game is better PS3 fanboys use reviews
Its all about quality and sustainability, I decide on Quality Bandwagon or follow sales trends is just feeding crappy products, and thats not the message that we should send as consumers.
Take Two's game budgets aren't necessarily the same as everyone else's. What they need to profit, isn't the same for the next guy. Title SHOULD read (But doesn't, being yet another sensationalist headline): "Selling 1 million units isn't enough for Take Two Interactive"
it is clear that the cost of video game development has gone up drastically. As computing power increases by leaps and bounds, it is the software development that cost the most to create. With a factor of 10x more power with each new console generation, it isn't surprising then that video game market is a huge risk. A million copies sold used to be a success, now it is probably closer to the break even point. That is why two of the three console manufacturer strives to make software development cheaper and not more complicated so they can enjoy a ten year life cycle! Kaz Hirai (CEO of SCEA) had this to say: "We don't provide the 'easy to program for' console that (developers) want, because 'easy to program for' means that anybody will be able to take advantage of pretty much what the hardware can do, so then the question is, what do you do for the rest of the nine-and-a-half years?" explained Hirai. source: http://www.offworld.com/200... Say thank you for prolonging your console life-cycle at consumers expense of raised video game prices!!!
so wait, it's better to go by sales than to go by reviews? WTF kind of twisted world is this? UC2 is infinitely better than MW2 yet MW2 sold more. Why? One word: casuals.
Thanks M$ and $ony for jacking up the prices.
"360 fanboys use sales to determine which game is better --->PS3 fanboys use reviews "<---- Using reviews to judge a game is a myth? Logic failed.
What are you talking about, it's always about the sales. /s
Modern warfare sold better for two reasons. It's mulitiplatform, and it's just more fun to most people. Now Uncharted was amazing, I loved it. But the multiplayer is where people are having the most fun. And MW2 is just more fun. Even if it's not better.
"UC2 is infinitely better than MW2 yet MW2 sold more." Yep, thats the problem right there. Ur passing OPINION of as a FACT. Ur saying that EVERYONE has to believe that UC2 is better than MW2 or else their "irrational"? Are u kidding me? If UC2 is the end all be all of gaming then thats YOUR opinion. But you can't say that its better because whats "better" is SUBJECTIVE. Also, whats wrong with enjoying MW2? Many people LOVE the game. If more people bought it then thats because more people wanted it over UC2. So what?! That fact that you need to make fun of another game to bring up another just shows that you are CLEARLY a fanboy. In fact, if you LOVE Uncharted 2 so much, why do you even find the need to MENTION MW2??? "so wait, it's better to go by sales than to go by reviews? WTF kind of twisted world is this?" LOL, its better to go by your PERSONAL OPINION Not by sales Not by reviews Not by awards Not by advertisements You determine what game is better by your own SUBJECTIVE OPINION. I know this may seem crazy to you, but most people actually do this :)
Maybe not in the beginning for the whole Development Cost and all, but after finishing an Engine or bought UE3 to Epic (lol and truth), development costs decrease, since they have the Engine and then they just tweak it and squeeze for a better performance, is not like Devs are creating a new engine for every game they make @IdleLeeSiuLung What's your complain? Multiplats are made with PC/xbox in mind and then ported, is not like a Dev make an Exclusive Engine for PS3 and another for PC/xbox Examples: Square Enix made the "Crystal Tools" Engine that let them create a game for PS3 and then port it to other platforms, again is just 1 Engine that will be used for all the games of this generation IW used a proprietary engine one time with MW, then they used the same Engine tweaked for better performance Think about an "easy to program for" Hardware, you have the best games just from the GO and the console Maxed Out, so the life cycle need to decrease because it's not going to be any difference between the firsts games and the future games and at the end a new Console with more powerful Hardware will need to come out, that's means you'll need to buy another Console
I agree with you and think that game sales is actually the best measure of how good a game is TO THE MAJORITY of the people. If a consumer is willing to buy it over another product, doesn't that suggest that to most consumers that is a better game? Because Wii Fit sold millions, many put it down, but what they don't realize is that to millions of people this game is much more pleasurable to play than the latest Forza 3 or KillZone 2. A review, is frankly an opinion from a specific audience, most likely a hardcore gamer that doesn't represent the gaming market anymore. In my opinion, sales is the number one measure of game quality relative to price. I never played Wii fit and don't really like the Wii, but got to recognize that it has great games just not for me!!! @sikbeta It is the initial investment that make it risky and even then, games like GeoW cost $10-20 million to make excluding the engine. It is ridiculous to intentionally make something more difficult to do, just to extend it's life. If anything, it is decreasing it's life due to lower support if there is a better alternative. PS2 is selling well still, surely it isn't because of it's current high-tech. Because it is easy to program for doesn't mean that you can't unlock more power and because it is hard to use or more complex doesn't mean it is more powerful. It just means it is harder to get that power!!!
The cost of making videogames is rising especially when tech is made from the ground up, that's why many developers opted for U3 this generation. The article isn't the only time this was stated, CEO's and other people from Ubisoft, EA, Midway, etc have said similar things in the past. Keep in mind, once the tech is in place the cost goes down. For Midway for instance they put all this money in the Unreal engine yet they had to build up on it to make the engine worthwhile for their studios. The engine wouldn't accept the changes they wanted so a lot of resources had to go into getting things to work. Because of this the amount of games they had to sell to break even would increase. If Stranglehold failed to meet expectations a game like MK vs. DC would have had to sell 500k more to make up for it. Unfortunately the money especially in this economy never delivered and Midway is essentially gone now. (this was all revealed on the Giant Bomb podcast a few weeks ago for those who want more info) http://www.giantbomb.com/po... That is one extreme example of this but similar examples can be seen in the industry.
Everyone knows this. Popularity is not always justified. Many inferior games movies and songs sell better than superior products due to a number of different factors. If you believe following the masses blindly because you trust in their habits then good luck to you. Phantom Menace is number 5 on the top money makers list. Mediocre movie, average at best. Lil Wayne. Top selling Rapper. Garbage lyrics but his popularity must mean he is great regardless huh. Ford F series #1 seller. Must be better than Lexus, Mercedes and BMW to name a few. Sales are not a good indication of quality at all. Only the nieve believe this.
I agree with you and think that game sales is actually the best measure of how good a game is TO THE MAJORITY of the people. If a consumer is willing to buy it over another product, doesn't that suggest that to most consumers that is a better game? -------- Higher sales indicate a game is more 'desired'. I wouldn't say it means something is considered 'better'. Desire for a game, which usually translates to large upfront sales/pre-orders comes from a number of factors - legacy (if it's a sequal), marketing, popularity of the genre, competition, release date; you name it, really. It doesn't make much sense to say anything beyond the higher selling game has caught consumers interest more at that point in time (and it should be noted up front higher sellers often taper off much more quickly). After all, it's a bit odd to suggest people who buy one game over another game can have any kind of informed opinion on the game they didn't buy and have never played. They can have a preference/prejudice which pushed them towards the higher selling game (and hype, indeed, once it meets a critical mass tends to create another set of roll on sales), but not an informed hands on opinion on the objective quality of a game they've never played.
Isn't it extremely subjective? For example, I think Bayonetta is a quality game because it's fun to play. I actually think it's so much fun that I will replay it as soon as I'm done. Someone else might argue that it's not a quality title because it has no multiplayer component. And the graphics don't look like Uncharted 2. And what if you are more of an action/adventure gamer than a japanese action gamer? Is one of you more quality aware than the other? See how transparent? this is becoming?
If you go back not too long ago, around the ps3 launch and for the next year or so, right here on this site, MANY, MANY sony extremists SWORE OFF REVIEWS as UNFAIR, BIAS, A CONSPIRACY AGAINST PS3, truth was most of sony's launch games just weren't that good. Remember the Lair fiasco. lol SONY FOLLOWERS SAID REVIEWS DONT MATTER AT THAT TIME, its funny 'cause just like now I have always maintained that reviews are good, but just one aspect of a games worth, I didn't hate on reviewers then and I dont hate on them now, I never made them about anything more than what they are an OPINION, but generally speaking, if a game consistently scores highly, I'm willing to accept it must be a great game, no matter if *I* personaly like it or not. Now its quite ironic ps3 has had some really good games as of late and the reviews reflect this accordingly AND NOW SUDDENLY REVIEWS MATTER, not surprised, remember when they use to FLIP FLOP on which sites to hate(they still do this), depending on the score of the latest ps3 exclusive, seriously you would see the same fanboy that was ranting about a particular site being bias, next month now praising the same site for a good review, or worst actually complimenting them for "accurately" scoring a 360 game low, sony loyalists are by far the biggest hypocrites in gaming, hands down. Don't drink the kool-aid, in the real world just because there are a few examples of something that does not go in line with a common rule does not change the premise. Yes Reviews are just part of the overall consensus of what is suppose to be quality. Quality/Value has always been and will always be ultimately determined by the mass public. The vast majority of quality products generally sell better than lower quality products, to be truly considered quality by the majority(consensus opinion) a product must be BOTH HIGHLY REGARDED(reviews) and be financialy successful(sales). High praise without high sales= niche product. High sales without high praise= FAD(no lasting appeal/a few will always sware its the greatest invention since water). Bottom line; Sales do matter alot, and have a great deal to do with quality. Great Reviews, High Sales, Longevity= Quality/Blockbuster hit Great Reviews, Low Sales, No lasting appeal= Flop/Niche game Mediocore/Low Reviews, Avg/High Sales= FAD JOY
sorry but 1 million not a success anymore?? Somebody really needs to go home and try write a real article. it might not make your game AAA but it certinaly makes it AAA. I think somebody jealous that FF13 sold more than 1 million on launch day and its not even on 360 yet!
Don't drink the kool-aid, in the real world just because there are a few examples of something that does not go in line with a common rule does not change the premise. Yes Reviews are just part of the overall consensus of what is suppose to be quality. Quality/Value has always been and will always be ultimately determined by the mass public. The vast majority of quality products generally sell better than lower quality products, to be truly considered quality by the majority(consensus opinion) a product must be BOTH HIGHLY REGARDED(reviews) and be financialy successful(sales). High praise without high sales= niche product. High sales without high praise= FAD(no lasting appeal/a few will always sware its the greatest invention since water). Bottom line; Sales do matter alot, and have a great deal to do with quality. Great Reviews, High Sales, Longevity= Quality/Blockbuster hit Great Reviews, Low Sales, No lasting appeal= Flop/Niche game Mediocore/Low Reviews, Avg/High Sales= FAD JOY ----- I don't disagree, but i think you're overstating and oversimplifying it a bit. For example, what's longevity? In literature, it's say, 150 years plus (even Hemingway etc. are starting to crumble a bit to time and are seen as somewhat too much 'period pieces'). In video games it's...? Is it Halo - less than a decade? Is it Tetris - a few decades? Early Lucasarts games at a bit more than couple of decades (still regarded as the benchmark for dialogue etc in gaming, and making somewhat of a comeback, though never ever selling anywhere near what would be regarded as a modern 'blockbuster' - where do they fit in 'quality/flop/fad' triad?). What about things that feed into other success - emulation being the best form of flattery and all that. Ulysses (James Joyce) is found to be unreadable by a pretty large segment of the 'mass public', but his techniques are used by writers for books that have sold tens of millions to the mass public. Does any credit for dissemination of these new ways of writing belong to Joyce? Relayed to video games, since the elephant in the room i suspect is Uncharted 2 - if the next revolution/trend in video game pretty clearly lifts from this game, and (however you regard it's sales) those games that are more or less 'born' of it sell whatever numbers are considered 'blockbuster', does Uncharted 2 deserve any credit? There's already been a number of comments from other developers - Bungie etc included - that suggest this game has inspired/is inspiring their own take on new potential video games; should this be regarded as part of that games 'legacy' or does it start and end with 'mass public' and hired reviewers of one particular time or another? Seems to me success in life in general and all these things seperated here tend to 'bleed' into one another. You can set up boxes to say what works/doesn't, but they'll be pretty flimsy - and generally constructed for/with alterior motives (to give artificial weight to denouncing/celebrating one thing or another in my experience).
A game doesn't need millions of sales to be considered a great game, 1 million sales may not have been enough at the start of this gen, but it is now as developers have gotten used to the PS3. And those who say Sales = Quality are stupid, Shadow of The Colossus, Ico, Okami and Psychonauts are some of the best games ever made, despite not selling too many copies. however, SOTC and ICO did sell about 2.5 million in total, so obviously it was "enough" because they are making a third game. You can talk all you want of quality being "subjective" or whatever, but when this generation is over, mark my words, Heavy Rain, The Last Guardian and Uncharted 2 will be called the best games last gen.
@ IdleLeeSiuLung I love how you blame the 60 dollar price tag for videogames on Sony and completely neglect to mention that the 360 started that precedent in 2005.
Yes you are correct my analysis is an oversimplification of what Qaulity is suppose to be....however, as you know its a very subjective and complex topic as your examples point out and this is n4g afterall so without writing a "book-like" post you can hardly blame me for trying to keep such a broad topic simple. I make no judgement about UC2's quality, other than on a personal level I believe its a great game, and if it inspires other dev's as you say, I definitely agree that a game which infuences future games is another sign of quality, imitation afterall is the highest form of flattery for a reason. So time will tell where UC2 fits into gaming history. Your post just points out a few finer details that all have something to do with quality and of course as with most ideas/thinking in life the parameters change overtime, but the general concept again has never changed, High Praise from the public+Commercial Success(Sales)+Longevity= Is the closest consensus we will ever have in determining/measuring quality. That will NOT change just because a few people swear their favorite game was the best ever but didn't sale= niche market. The other part to my analysis is HOW much does a game need to sale?, HOW well does it have to be praised/regarded(reviews)? HOW long does it have to remain revelant(longevity)?= To be considered QUALITY, that is something no one right now has the answer to, but again only time will tell where all these games fit in this period of gaming....lol and even then when were playing on our Holographic Digital Distribution Gaming Systems the whole world will remember _____ game as one of those ground breaking genre defining games, and some asshole will scream out that game sucked! lmfao JOY edit: (lol 2 bubbles) Anyway @Sarcasm vvvvv yes micro IS aiming to have greater WW sales, their actually doing pretty well or decent everywhere except Japan, they wouldn't be still TRYING in Japan if they were not aiming at making xbox a WW brand, but micro's failings in Japan have little to do with quality given that the Japanese demographic are highly culturaly sensitive/loyal to homegrown gaming, which puts the xbox brand at a great disadvantage in that territory, its quite evident since even everything western made related to gaming does poorly there, even games like UC2 and so many others do not sale particularly well there, that clearly suggests that micro's success in Japan isn't an arguement of quality its a statement by the Japanese in general that they prefer traditional Japanese gaming. Ask any connoisseur of Cigars, there are many quality to brands that are just as good or better than a "Cuban" but don't dare go to downtown Havanna trying to sell a damm "Diesel"(top rated brand cigar) to Cuban natives, not unless you like fighting. lol
A company should always aim to have greater world wide sales instead of just a few regions. Except MS in Japan.
While the computing power goes up, and the tools get more powerful, the production time goes down because of the more powerful tools. In one of the self-made interviews for Guerrilla Games, one of the developers was talking about how they used to have to do everything by hand, but now the computer does most of it; lowering production time, but raising the production time simultaneously because now more can go into a game. Once an engine is created, though, anything that comes afterwords will happen quickly and more time can be used to push the technology within the engine instead of creating it. That's why Killzone 2 took over five years to make, but the next one may be out next year. That's why Bungie's been pumping out Halo games but is taking their time with their masterpiece on a whole new engine: Halo Reach. That's why Gran Turismo will take a long time, but the next one will be out much sooner. Same thing happened with: Gears of War (GeOW2, UT III, many other games), Little Big Planet (MNR), and others. Once the tech is present, the game will be quicker. If the tech is not present, then the opposite happens. After the first one(s), it will take a little while for the second game to surface: Army of two, Bioshock, Dead Space, and others if the tech isn't invested in, the game will suffer somewhat larger delays because the tech will change: Too Human, Duke Nukem Forever, Alan Wake, and others. It's a little more complicated than "1 million units is no longer enough". Do better Gamepro.
Consider this, though. Almost 90% of games never break the one million mark their entire life. If you needed 1 million to be successful, wouldn't that mean that 90% of games don't make money? I highly doubt that. If 90% of games weren't successful, no one would be making them and that's clearly not the case. There's a bit of a disconnect between this article and reality, methinks.
Oh hell, kid... this is nothing... I was paying $64 for Genesis and SNES games... GENESIS AND SNES GAMES. So this is nothing... @IdleLeeSiuLung "That is why two of the three console manufacturer strives to make software development cheaper and not more complicated so they can enjoy a ten year life cycle! Kaz Hirai (CEO of SCEA) had this to say: "We don't provide the 'easy to program for' console that (developers) want, because 'easy to program for' means that anybody will be able to take advantage of pretty much what the hardware can do, so then the question is, what do you do for the rest of the nine-and-a-half years?" explained Hirai. source: http://www.offworld.com/200... Say thank you for prolonging your console life-cycle at consumers expense of raised video game prices!!!" So what are you saying... that gaming console tech has been sitting idle, spinning it's wheels all these years? Technology advances, regardless of what you want to think. And suprisingly, MANY game devs adapt just fine. My library of PS3 games is proof of that. As for that last comment, well... let's just say I wasn't aware we PS3 owners were paying more for our games than 360 owners. Other than exclusives and collector's editions... exactly what multi-platform ports cost more on PS3?
Profit should still be the defining factor. If you would allow me to oversimplify, you spend $60 million on making the game, and you sell a million (at $60 each), you break even. That's not a success. If you spend $500,000 and you sell a million, that's a huge success. We have this concept of best that only serves the backwards logic of fanboys, but the reality of the situation is very different. We don't need to inflate the "success number" to exclude deserving games. I've said this before: the problem with the game industry is NOT fanboys. It's hateboys.
all these disagreements already mess up xmas
lets say a game was set to sell one million. It costs 20m to develop. The publisher pays 30m for the game. In each $60 copy, $10-12 goes to retailer, $8-$15 royalties, $33-$42 for the publisher. 1m copies = 33m to 42m for the publisher. So the publisher ends up profiting 3m to 12m if the game sells 1m. Sounds pretty good to me
Digital PC publishers profit even more because they cut out the middle man (the retailers) Say EA sells 500,000 copies of Mass Effect 2 on Steam in its first week. That's 25 million made in total, and then EA just gives Valve what ever distribution fee (let's assume that Valve gets about 30-40%) and EA walks away with the rest, or about 14 million. Not bad.
Right now, Activision Blizzard is valued at $14.4 BILLION. You think shareholders want to see net income of $3 million? That's virtually insignificant.
You also forgot marketing costs.
I'm sure a good chunk of that is from World of Warcraft. 11 million subscribers x $15 a month x 12 months = like 2 billion Then you've got sh1t like Call of Duty which sells on its name alone. All in all, Activision is one rich company that doesn't give sh1t-all back to its customers.
Publishers aren't necessarily the developers. How much do the developers get out of that? I know publishers get a fairly good sized chunk of sales money.
People have to understand though, that the "big budget" of games this generation is also largely due to adapting to the new consoles and the development of the engine. After a first game, the budget for game development itself goes down significantly. No matter how huge of an improvement Assassin's Creed 2 is over AC1, and Uncharted 2 over Drake's Fortune, there is no way they cost more than the original games, and more money thus is available for marketing. Killzone 3 will be easily profitable despite the insane engine created (and probably ridiculous amount of money needed). The engine would already be in place and the costs for R&D aren't nearly as high because the IP has already been established. Of course there are some studios out there like Rockstar North and Team ICO that seem to top themselves with each game (GTA IV being the most expensive game of all time, and Team ICO's games use different engines) but they are the exceptions, not the rule. Polyphony Digital, Square Enix and Kojima Productions are also pretty crazy when it comes to game develpoment budgets, as well.
Only according to the resentful, delusional standards of the Xbot fanboys, and why the hell would anyone, anywhere within the gaming industry consider what they say to be a definitive standard? It's simple childish jealousy. Forza 3 hasn't exactly set the gaming world on fire, yet some of them passionately defend that game like if it was another Halo and dare to call Uncharted 2 (with it's undisputed critical and commercial success) a flop.
"See, this is why I don't like bots. Their arguments are stupid and could be made up by a 6 year old. They don't think before typing and they're posts are just irritating. By THEIR logic 99% of all games release this years are flops, INCLUDING Forza 3. That logic is extremely flawed and stupid." I agree with everything you just said. So why do PS3 fanboys make fun of Forza 3 by calling it Flopza 3 nearly every chance they get. Forza 3 gained critical success(just like Uncharted 2) Videogamer-10 Destructoid-10 Games Radar-10 Giant Bomb-10 Kombo-10 Gaming Age-10 Gaming Nexus-10 Gamespot-9.5 IGN-9.4 Why is it okay to praise Uncharted 2 for critical success and not praise Forza 3 for crtical success as well????
Well, the same gaming media that scored L4D2 higher than Resistance 2 and at par with KZ2? Uncharted 2 added much improved graphics, better story, co-op and multiplayer, improved gameplay What does Forza 3 offer over Forza 2 or other games such as Grid? The same 8-car restriction, weak graphics, ageing damage model, etc Forza might be a great game franchise and was needed to give Polyphony a wake-up call - its just that Forza 3 offers far less over Forza 2 in comparison to what Uncharted 2 adds over UC1 And I think its derided because of poor sales. Which may not be fair, but after xbox fans did the same to KZ2, you cant really complain now can you
and yet it's been compared a million times to your precious GT5 ... just the idea that it's comparible should tell you somthing about the graphics ...
Have you seen Forza 2? Forza 3 looks like that, nuff said. Edit: And every time when there's a comparison, GT5P(The Demo) crushes your precious Forza 3(Full game) to dust.
So much asspain in the comment above.
the author got own
Imagine if every game sold 3-5 million copies. Either the recession is over, or fanboys truly became gamers. -End statement
Umm a single game doesn"t make or break a Game developing company.Where do you think the money from the rest of the COD titles and various other games such as Spiderman etc went too. You Really want to believe that Naughty Dog would have sold only about 3 Million copies of the Drake adventures throughout their lifetime , when they also have the incredibly Famous Jak and Daxter series.
See, this is why I don't like bots. Their arguments are stupid and could be made up by a 6 year old. They don't think before typing and they're posts are just irritating. By THEIR logic 99% of all games release this years are flops, INCLUDING Forza 3. That logic is extremely flawed and stupid.
Well it depends on the game itself. Im not gonna mention any games by name but some get a lot of hype behind them and then go on to be sold and only sell 1 million to 2 million which is good don't get me wrong but definitely not what you expected considering the hype it got.
i lol this... games like infamous, killzone 2 , uc2 , resistence 2, is a flop?
For companies like Valve and Stardock, selling a million is more than enough. Say L4D sold 2 million copies on Steam at $50. That's $100,000,000 in Valve's pocket because (assuming for time's sake that we omit all the copies sold on that 1/2 off sale) Valve and Stardock are both self-publishing, and both own their own platforms, which leads to massive profit margins. Something I'm sure EA and Activision are quite envious of.
360 gamers tend to think sales equal the quality of a game... and PS3 gamers think games are amazing even with low sales... all in all, TO ME A game has to be really great to achieve high sales, and to be honest Im baffled why PS3 exclusives just don't do what 360's do as far as sales. Especially with the quality bar being so much higher for PS3! So sales don't make a game good, but wouldn't you expect a great game to sell... GREAT? and the dev. costs of PS3 titles over 360 titles, for resources etc... I would actually imagine PS3 titles not breaking even on money spent on dev. time. Either way I've been buying and enjoying all exclusives between 360 and PS3. Uncharted 2 is the biggest console masterpiece I've seen grace my eyes, this gen! and even I think that game deserves way better sales!
Uh, you do realize that the 360 install base in the U.S. is twice the size of the PS3 install base, right. PS3 games should never sell as much as 360 games because the install base is half the size.
It's the same with music and every other media. Sales don't determine the quality of the product.
It would be plenty for a developer to sell 1 million units. It does depend on how much they actually spent during development, but people have to realize that selling 1 million units doesn't mean making $1 million. That would be approx. $60 million. If a company spends $25 million developing that game, it's $35 million in their pockets as profit. For example, Killzone 2 cost GG $20 million. After a few weeks, GG already surpassed what they spent. It's definitely not enough for fanboys, but I'm sure it's ok for the ones making it. Especially in the sad little soccer mom-ruled, Wii-crazed world we live in.
KZ2 cost is 60+millions Euros. check your facts.
Besides, only the games in US cost 60 bucks. In EU they cost more like 80. GG and Sony made their money with the 2 million copies sold. And the companies has tons of other ways to makemoney besides just selling games. This article is a joke.
I did http://en.wikipedia.org/wik... http://talkplaystation.com/... They're budget was $40 mil USD, they're total cost was 20. Remember, we're talking about development here, not advertising or marketing, etc... where'd you get those numbers??
Not really. Here on N4G and among some of the gaming media(where, remember, the writers are pretty simialr to us here in that they're VERY avid in their interests in the industry and also well read too)hype is noticable and even pushed but the average COD aware punter doesn't even know KZ2 was hyped AT ALL so there was never going to be a hype=sales thing going on for that game which, honestly, was marketed so poorly Sony finally woke up and began making a few ads later this year. Also, with KZ2, GG's position within the Sony gaming section meant that KZ2 wasn't the sole aim when they started development. The emngine was just as important to Sony and won't just be used at GG(unlike, say, at other mp devs)-and besides KZ2 has sold a LOT more than 1million. That some of us expected better sales of a game which, if any mainstream gamers remembered it, had a failed pre-runner anyway, just because of hype masde by particularly avid gamers who read an equally niche and avid press is unreasonable in that it takes no note of the fact we're a tiny part of the gaming world-even among "core" gamers-and if you took the percentage of commenters here(owmninhg a PS3) that bought KZ2 it would be a vastly higher attach rate than in the total number of less interested,less investigatve PS3 owners in the outside world. The only hype most gamers ever see is the kind shipped into their homes on TV and the odd ad on the web-to them hype = marketing and nothing else and very few gamers would know KZ2 was a hyped title before release or since. IMO your average COD buying gamer won't have known much about the game when it landed and thanks to the lack of ads for it(and the misleading, puzzling leader ad)some won't even have known iot existed til they saw it on the shelves. Basically, imo, we have to stop imagining that hype, as seen here or other websites dedicated to gamers as interested as we are has ANY bearing on the sales of a game. Also, if 1million isn't enough why do many games selling fewer copires manage to secure sequels? Why don't ND or Insoomniac aim for way higher numbers when making and marketing their games than they do? Because, imo, it all depends on the individual devs and their publishers and just how greedy they are or what they want from their game-if it's purely to make enough to have a little profit and keep on making great games then 1million is usually a great sales figure-and even better when you consider how many great games get nowhere near it! Clearly, though, if you're T2 or R* making a huge budget mainline GTA it's nowhere near enough-but they know that when they start, have seen the series grow and understand that they just need to keep the quality right up and they ensure massive sales-the same for any big selling existing, known franchise/IP. But, back to Killzone2, if GG/Sony's main aim had been purely sales don't we all think the marketing was so far behind the likes of Halo3(in terms of pure coverage and number of ads)as to infer they should never be in charge of it? IMO it was-but sales wasn't the only development goal and Sony didn't push the hgame hard enough partially as a result of already getting a lot of what they wanted from GG before release. However, I will say that I think Sony massively undersold it anyway and have learned from it. Had it been a 360 exclusive MS would have had ads for it everywhere knowing that their console demographic loves shooters-but Sony's is more split among the genres and that's why more marketing might have felt a pointless risk to the Japanese giants this time round, even if I feel they did regret it a little and take their stronger marketing stance since then as evidence of this. But, whatever.Fact is exclusives selling 1million is different to multis selling it and we shouldn't forget that we aren't representative of gamers in many ways at all-and also that hupe sells more gaming mags and gets more hits on gaming sitres but rarely, if ever, affects mainstream sales-having a known name and marketing does that-that's when real hype builds up as in the MW2 sense as opposed to the game media savvy, real world nonexistant KZ2 hype or Bullshot controversies surrounding other games that reguisters with us-a tiny part of the wider gaming world.
the majority of games on store shelves don't cost $40 million to make. that is a fact. in fact, the budget for most games this generation is $5-$10 million. at $60 (USD) a pop, if a game sells 250,000 copies, it will bring in $15 million (USD). most games don't reach the 400,000 unit sold mark in their entire LIFETIMES, let alone day, week, month 1. don't let the media continue to feed you garbage. at the start of this generation, it WAS expensive, because you had developers jumping over to knew technology and development methods. we are 4+ years into this generation, and developers/publishers have already done the necessary R&D needed for versatile game engines (or using a middleware solution like Unreal Engine 3), so that producing games NOW is a lot cheaper. take for example, Assassin's Creed and Assassin's Creed 2. Assassin's Creed was the first title in the series, and on the hardware. Ubisoft allocated a large budget to the game's development because they had to build an engine from scratch. that took resources/manpower. once the engine was in place, creating Assassin's Creed 2 wouldn't require the same amount of R&D. instead, most of the budget more than likely went to: voice talent, programmers, artists, qa testing, marketing, and manufacturing. please keep in mind that it's not insanely expensive to manufacture the actual game discs and ship them out to retailers. not every game is like Halo 3, with a $30 million marketing budget. many have barely $1 million budgets for marketing. most games with celebrity actors will more than likely have a higher development budget, but don't think that those celebs are commanding million dollar salaries. a game that cost less than $10 million to make doesn't need to sell 1 million units to be profitable. anything over 250,000 is pretty good. if selling less than 1 million units was so bad, there would be a lot less games on the shelves, and a LOT less developers making games. this foolish, irresponsible game "journalism" needs to stop. as i said before, not every game cost $40 million dollars. not even $20 million. this story is just inaccurate. don't get me wrong, there ARE games that cost that much, but they are truly few and far between. it's kind of silly to assume that every developer in the industry (of which there are hundreds) have budgets of $10-$20 million to spend on gaming). outside of companies like EA and Activision, which generally post profits of over $900 million a year, most other developers/publishers are making a modest profit yearly, and are allocating their budgets accordingly. 1 million most certainly won't be enough for game that cost $40 million to make, but 1 million for a $5-$10 million game is more than enough. this article is simply spreading false information to an audience that is quick to believe them because they assume they are experts. i am by no means an expert, but i HAVE worked in the gaming industry for a few years, and have gotten to learn a lot about the development of games, and how budgets are allocated to those games. this article is assuming that every game produced features the same pomp as an EA and Activision title. they have the money to burn on things like marketing, because they produce so many games a year that at least one or two of them is bound to make them a profit. devs like Insomniac, Sucker Punch, Obsidian Entertainment, and others not owned by a particular publisher are a lot more conscientious of how they manage their budgets.
Lets not forget the money that goes to the retailer, and all the other little companies involved in the development. I saw a pie chart that showed a developer on avg gets about 10-15 bucks per unit sold, and from what I hear that it is a lot lower than that for many developers, so I think your figures FAIL
Gamepro u FAIL. Play3beyond
i admit i didn't go into it too much in my long post, but in short, it goes a little something like this: 1) Game Publisher spends $5-$10 million dollars for the production of a video game. this budget covers everything from producers, to designers, to programmers, to qa teams, to marketing to manufacturing. 2) The money has already been allocated. they don't sell the game, and then pay off all of the various people that had something to do with the creation/marketing of the game. they've already spent the $5-$10 million. 3) The sales of the game are simply the publisher's attempt to recoup the money they've already spent on the game. the film industry is the same way. if the publisher doesn't make back, at the LEAST, the $5-$10 million they spent on the production of the game, then that's not a good thing. BUT, if they make MORE than what they spent, then they've netted a profit. again, they don't hold off paying everybody until the project ships. people do the work and they get paid. the point of my earlier post was to illustrate that not all games are costing $40 million to make like a GTAIV or MGS4, and that selling 1 million units isn't vital to the success of a game. it simply increases the margin of profit that a publisher makes. a $10 million game that sells 250,000 units still netted the publisher a profit of $5 million dollars (250,000 times $60 a pop equals $15,000,000 minus the $10 million they spent on the project). lets go back to that 250,000 unit sold number. so the dev has made a profit of $5,000,000. maybe the next game costs $5,000,000 to make instead of $10,000,000 because they have an engine in place that makes development more cost effective, that'd net them a profit of $10,000,000 if it sells 250,000. that'll let them make an additional 2 games. what if they release 5 $5 million games a year (that'd be $25,000,000 budget total for all 5 games) that sell 250,000 units each. total profit for those 5 games is $50,000,000. most publishers out there try to release multiple games a year for that very reason. like i said before, Activision and EA post profits of over $900,000,000 a year because they release a large number of games a year, and many of them are tied to franchises known to sell in the millions, so that any "risky" endeavors like Brutal Legend don't hurt their bottom line. i doubt Brutal Legend cost $40 million to make, but due to the success of licensed games like Harry Potter, and yearly games like Madden, EA could absorb any potential profit loss from Brutal Legend, and i guarantee they still post a hefty profit for 2009 at the end of their fiscal year in March. the same with Activision with Modern Warfare 2 and Guitar Hero franchises. even if you don't factor in the fact that WoW brings in an insane amount of profit for Activision, they'd still post huge earnings next March anyway. the point isn't that these companies pocket the full $60 from a games sell, but that they carefully allocate their budgets so they can maximize profit despite not selling 1, 2, or 3 million units. most games fall into the "under 500,000 units sold" category. mostly franchise series and licensed titles reach the 1 million or more mark. new IPs have a rougher time, although, depending on the timing of their release, they can do surprisingly well (see Assassin's Creed, Dead Space, inFAMOUS, and even Uncharted 1). once those new IPs become franchises, the next title, which will cost significantly less than the original (again, see Assassin's Creed 2 and Uncharted 2), will more than likely have an easier time reaching the 1 million unit mark than it's predecessor, IF the first title even reaches 1 million units at all. it's all about how you position your new IP that will guarantee exposure and therefore, a better chance at netting a large enough audience to help make a profit. Uncharted is a great example, because the first title, despite releasing during the year of PS3 hate that was 2007, garnered decent day one sales. enough to make a profit for Naughty Dog, and warrant a sequel. it took Uncharted 1 a few months to reach 1 million units as word of mouth was slow. Uncharted 2 releases, and sells 1 million units within the first MONTH of release, because the series made a name for itself. considering that we are 4+ years into this generation, and publishers/developers have been making games on the Xbox 360 and PS3 for 4 years now, it's silly to think that producing games has gotten MORE expensive than at the START of the generation, when the history of game development have shown us that development costs get CHEAPER, no matter how advanced the technology at the time is. this article is taking one company KNOWN for producing high profile games (ie, the GTA series and it's generally star studded; read COSTLY; cast), and using it as a means to illustrate how 1 million units sold isn't enough for the industry at large. it's poorly conducted "journalism."
$5-$10 million? you are being VERY VERY generous with how much it takes to develop a game nowadays. The average in my opinion is 15-20 million. Hell Valve spent $10 million on advertising Left 4 Dead ALONE. In Valve's case they probably get 90% percent of all those millions of sales over steam if they developed it. They only have to pay for the bandwidth to let users download their game. I've read around that the pc version outsold the 360 version but without steam sales figures it mostly assumptions. Killzone 2 cost somewhere between 40-50 million to make. I'd imagine GG has just recently broke even on KZ2. 2 million should be considered the success point in AAA titles nowadays.
a developer is a company like ant other company. And companies usually get in the business to make money. Ok a good review is nice but doesn't pay the bills. If they don't make enough money they either have to cut back on certain expenses or close down. It's like, if at work your boss tells you that you're doing a good job (like a game getting good reviews) but doesn't pay you (no one or not enough people buy the game). It just doesn't make sense to keep investing that kind of money if there are no profits to be made.
http://www.forbes.com/2006/... good break down on cost and profit. its a bit old, and like somepeople said, (SwiftShot)"The engine would already be in place and the costs for R&D aren't nearly as high because the IP has already been established". i also would like to add. my god how bad has Gamepro been lately. i have a huge box of old Gamepros dating from 1996-2005. i had more but got thrown away a long time ago. i use to love this mag, but now every time i see a story from them it complete crap.
please ignore this
its sad when good games dont sell.
sometimes i hate being american.they can't beat the wii so they act like it doesnt exist.the playstations better so all the companies that they shower with gifts an exclusive interviews bag on psn. MS sux.so does vista so does 360.that's why i have a ps3 and a macbook.make a better system with better games if you want real gamers and and not mindless bots that would prob pee on ya carpet