Kickstarter and the Elephant in the Room

The issue we currently have with naming the genre is that if we only raise minimum Kickstarter the game actually will be “round” based. If we hit enough stretch goals the game will be semi-persistent combat until one side destroys the opposing side through resource management, strategy, tactics, and the raw skill of its pilots - something more similar to what will be in the MMO. This is largely why we have a crisis of identity with I:B I think. The game we ideally want it to be is closer to how combat will actually work in the MMO but if we don’t raise enough money the game will have much more of an arcade/arena style unless we’re able to raise enough money via on-going pledges after the KS.

What is the difference other than the length of the match?
Minimum won’t have resources and pace will be faster due to faster & more vulnerable ships?

Space stations?

In the minimum funded version the action is restricted to a small “battlescape” within the solar system whereas in the full funded version players have more control over the pace of the game and where/when the action takes place. There will also be more ship types that are available.

Are you guys hoping to make (if you hit your stretch goals) a more in-depth experience? Something a lot more strategic with a short build up period, expansion and resource gathering, exploratory raids and the like? The sort of game where one side can gain inertia and back the other into a corner to beat the crud out of them. Something without a respawn ticker so that the other team still has the ability to get back into the fight if they pull off something special?

Maybe I’m hoping for waaaay too much in terms of the higher-tier stretch-goals when they still amount to a ‘low(ish)-budget’ game (in terms of the sort of money that the big publishers throw around), but something like that would let you get emotionally invested in each and every ‘round’ in a way that throwing yourself into the fight with repeated respawns wouldn’t.

Oh yeah, on a separate point, I really hope none of you try and pitch to Kickstarter backers in the same way as investors. :smile:

Absolutely. The game we really want to build is the game with all stretch goals hit. The big bullet points for our stretch goals (NOTE: still subject to change) are the following:

  1. The entire solar system is a battleground. Players can build (basic) infrastructure such as factories and space stations
  2. Players can control/fly capital ships. Capital ships can act as mobile spawn points.
  3. 2 factions, Star Fold Confederacy (SFC) and Centaurus Oligarchy (CO), instead of just 2 competing corporations within SFC.
  4. Increased gameplay depth due to a greater variety of ships, supporting roles, and weapon types.
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A useful helpful little program: That silly Neverwinter game I was playing to tie me over got a snag in it’s programing some ware. I don’t care enough about it to put much effort into fixing it.

EQ had a “fix it” button that worked so well it fixed problems that weren’t EQ related. It was on the fount page, no need to hunt.

Here’s to hoping I:B can do the same.

Just hoping for the program fixes not the whole Windows mess.

If you don’t mind my asking, why branch the code?

If you set it up to be possible from the get-go, would it be plausible to instead have two full copies of the modules that need to be different in each game? So to speak branch just the attributes of spacecraft, empty functions for modding-support in the MMO, possibly the net code, UI, and LOD-settings, maybe a few other things?

Seems to me that doing so from the beginning could potentially save you time (and money) in the long run, if say you discovered a bunch of bugs and optimizations while programming the MMO and wanted to fix 'em in I:B as well.

Oh yeah and it could make a bunch of resources from the MMO instantly available to modders of I:B, which I’d personally quite like. Spaceship models and the like. Hopefully someone would maintain a mod that accurately mimicked Infinity combat, except for the consequences of loss.

Just a thought. There’s probably a good reason it wouldn’t be plausible that I just haven’t thought of yet.

Isn’t the idea that the MMO would supersede I:B? I-Novae won’t want to use their precious time and resources going back to I:B if they discover something later that could be fixed.

I:B will have a lifespan, then it makes more sense to leave it alone and move on to the next project. Once the MMO is up and running, I imagine the number of people playing I:B would drop (if many of the gameplay elements survive to combat side of the MMO).

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If the MMO gets officially mentioned in the I:B Kickstarter, then I predict that the Kickstarter will fail badly.

No matter how good you are with words, it will just be too complicated/long-winded to simply explain to most would-be backers (who have never even heard of Infinity before). A long/complicated message just means most people won’t understand the message at all (in the short window you have to get their attention before they go elsewhere), so they won’t bother to back I:B. The lack of a simple message will also cause seemingly-contradictory news items on other websites & blogs, as different ‘journalists’ & bloggers will focus on different aspects, again leading to a confused message for people who might visit the Kickstarter.

The concept of I:B needs fit in one paragraph, with subsequent paragraphs (and a shiny video) just explaining the details. If you start explaining possible plans about future semi-unrelated games, it just confuses the message.

Mentioning of the MMO is also very likely to cause all sorts of confusion in the Kickstarter comments, with comments about the MMO being misunderstood to be about I:B, and when people post corrections that will lead to disappointment that I:B doesn’t have the MMO feature(s) being mentioned, leading to people not backing the project.

There is also a major risk of people getting excited by the idea of the MMO, and then realising that a successful Kickstarter WON’T give them the MMO (any time soon) but rather some other thing they are less keen on (and that disappointment meaning they don’t bother to back the Kickstarter). But without knowing of the MMO, you might have been able to convince them that I:B would be cool to get (and so they back it). Human psychology & emotions are strange illogical things.

In short: Sell I:B as hard as you can (on it’s own merits), and don’t mention the MMO at all. If someone else mentions it, then if possible don’t say anything, or else clarify that this Kickstarter is not about that MMO.

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I couldn’t agree more with you Chris.

Chris has a point.
Also, there will be people interested in the space shooter, but not in the MMO ; and that even if the MMO has combat elements. There is a big difference in a perma-loss MMO environment and a consequence-free space shooter where arenas and ships are reset at the beginning of each match.
Hearing that it is “only” a first game before the big MMO will make some of those people think “They won’t put that much effort in an expendable game, that they will throw away once they work on the MMO”, justified or not. People can be irrational like that.

I’ve been arguing Chris’s point since I:B was confirmed.

Battlescape is as close to a clean slate as the devs are going to get. It needs to be treated that way.

That’s why we intend to only launch the Kickstarter for I:B, the MMO won’t be mentioned.


That’s been the plan since day #1.

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I always kind of got the impression that TQFE was going to go unmentioned in the kickstarter, what with Battlescape being a separate product and all. I’m not sure where the concern is coming from. Frankly, the biggest risk in that regard would, or so it seems to me, be game journalists who have maybe paid some attention to TQFE’s development and insist on bringing it up in any article they may write about the Battlescape kickstarter. There isn’t much one can do about that, aside from strongly emphasizing that you’re excited for and committed to Battlescape.

Which, I mean, ain’t nobody in I-Novae stupid, as far as I’ve seen.

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Some people suggested having TQFE as supreme stretchgoal as a compromiss.

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In my morning half awake state, I just accidently poured Iced Tea instead of milk onto my cocoa rice krispies.


The peanut gallery has suggested a lot of things, though. I mean, should we be worried about fin-filled space dildos as a stretch goal, too? (Please say yes, please say yes, please say yes)

Post revised in light of this new evidence.

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You could merge the economy and the accounts, just like how world of tanks and world of warplanes will not crossplay, but the currency is the same and you have the same amount that you do in the other game.