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TIGSource ForumsPlayerGamesTop 6 reasons to support indie RPGs
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Craig Stern
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« on: February 17, 2010, 09:45:33 PM »

I just published an opinion piece on my site listing what I think are the top 6 reasons to support indie RPGs. What do you think? (Feel free to add your own or critique the ones I chose!)
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Valter
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« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2010, 10:08:29 PM »

I think those would generally apply to all indie games.

Also, one of my favorites: Rolling updates.

Indie authors generally keep in contact with the people that play their games, and they don't have to jump through hoops to get patches through. If there are bugs or glitches in the game, indie developers are in a better position to get them out quickly.
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Zaphos
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« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2010, 10:19:50 PM »

Based on your text, I have re-named your reasons:

6. They are more similar to some old games
5. There aren't many decent RPGs released each year so you take what you can get
4. Craig Stern needs money more than bioware
3. People who work at bioware are cylons
2. Buying them will not horribly incapacitate you, so will not render you incapable of purchasing other games (in case that was a concern?)
1. They probably don't have DRM as often

(edit: so, I think this article is a bit silly, and also I am grumpy today.  But wow, some of those drm articles ... I'm not buying any ubisoft games in the future I guess.)
« Last Edit: February 17, 2010, 10:33:03 PM by Zaphos » Logged
Craig Stern
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« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2010, 11:26:01 PM »

Craig Stern needs money more than bioware

God knows that's the truth! Cheesy
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ஒழுக்கின்மை
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« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2010, 11:42:54 PM »

the majority of commercial indie rpgs are made in rpgmaker xp, don't really try anything new, and do use drm. so i think the list doesn't actually apply to most indie rpgs. of course, you could get past that not calling things like the aveyond series indie (because they're on casual portals and sell in the tens of thousands of copies range), but they still kinda are.

the only exceptions i can think of that your list would apply to are your games, spirit engine 2 (now freeware), spiderweb software's games, and cute knight. there are probably more, but that's really all that comes to mind.
« Last Edit: February 17, 2010, 11:46:36 PM by Paul Eres » Logged

Craig Stern
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« Reply #5 on: February 18, 2010, 08:11:52 AM »

How about the Eschalon games, The Three Musketeers, Scars of War, Kivi's Underworld, Depths of Peril, and Knights of the Chalice, for starters?

Note that I wasn't saying we never use DRM--just that it's the reasonable kind that doesn't prevent you from being able to play a game you paid good money for.
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Dragonmaw
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« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2010, 08:46:00 AM »

I generally don't buy indie RPGs because the stories don't interest me all that much. A lot of them have LotR syndrome. Granted, this is also the same reason I generally avoid buying CRPGs in general. It seems like length is more valuable than content to a lot of RPG makers.

That being said, I do pick up RPGs. I just tend to like RPGs that go outside the box a little. Like STALKER, although STALKER really hasn't changed much since SoC. I generally love anything by Nippon Ichi (actually developed by, not just published). I really enjoyed Valkyria Chronicles.

I actually bought DA:O and haven't played it longer than half an hour. Didn't buy Mass Effect 2.
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ஒழுக்கின்மை
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« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2010, 10:13:10 AM »

How about the Eschalon games, The Three Musketeers, Scars of War, Kivi's Underworld, Depths of Peril, and Knights of the Chalice, for starters?

never heard of those games actually -- they need to do more marketing i guess. will look into them. i also only heard of your game because you mentioned it to me. how do commercial indie rpgs expect to sell well if they market themselves so poorly?
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« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2010, 10:17:07 AM »

I've heard of all of them. Haven't heard of many RPG Maker games.
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Zaphos
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« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2010, 10:27:54 AM »

don't really try anything new
fwiw, Craig's list doesn't really say indie rpgs try anything new, just that they're different from current mainstream rpgs because they copy older mainstream rpgs instead.
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Craig Stern
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« Reply #10 on: February 18, 2010, 05:38:11 PM »

@Dragonmaw: Nippon Ichi is the bomb! (Although, with the notable exception of Disgaea, I really don't think writing is their strong suit.) I bet I'd love Valkyria Chronicles too.

I think the LOTR syndrome among indies arises partly because customers overwhelmingly want to play high fantasy games. Let's take Jeff Vogel, for example. Jeff Vogel's high fantasy series Avernum has been his bread and butter. Vogel's much less conventional fantasy/sci-fi series Geneforge has sort of puttered along as an also-ran. Nethergate, his historically based RPG that takes place in England during the Roman invasion, didn't sell well at all. It's almost like there's an inverse relationship between creativity and sales.

Anyway, if you want interesting new concepts among indie RPGs, you should support the games that break formula. That's how I see it, at least. Shrug

how do commercial indie rpgs expect to sell well if they market themselves so poorly?

I don't think any game is likely to sell well without marketing, whether it's indie or mainstream, RPG or FPS. But that's a different list for another time. Smiley
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alspal
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« Reply #11 on: February 18, 2010, 05:47:29 PM »

Mount & Blade didn't have "high fantasy" and that was awesome. Although that game does remind me a lot of LotR.
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jwk5
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« Reply #12 on: February 18, 2010, 11:25:29 PM »

I'd have to say my favorite indie RPGs are The Spirit Engine 2 and the Neophyte series (1,2,3). The Neophyte games are sadly underrated and often overlooked.


Anyways, the biggest issue I tend to have with indie RPGs is they are often clunky and counter-intuitive. When you're not dealing with god awful writing and poor balance issues you're usually putting up with an unfinished plot line. I think the reason people don't tend to support indie RPGs is that unfortunately most just aren't that good. There are definitely the rare gems in the bunch, and I wish they'd get more recognition, but they are the exceptions not the rule. It's a case of people seeing the majority and disregarding the whole despite the minority.

Poor PR work doesn't help things either. Indie RPGs tend to come and go with a whimper.
« Last Edit: February 18, 2010, 11:44:29 PM by jwk5 » Logged
William Broom
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« Reply #13 on: February 18, 2010, 11:37:12 PM »

don't really try anything new
fwiw, Craig's list doesn't really say indie rpgs try anything new
lol, craigslist
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jwk5
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« Reply #14 on: February 19, 2010, 12:55:56 AM »

don't really try anything new
fwiw, Craig's list doesn't really say indie rpgs try anything new
lol, craigslist
I am glad I'm not the only lamer person who found that humorous.
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Derek
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« Reply #15 on: February 19, 2010, 01:37:26 AM »

Those Neophyte RPGs make me want to do another "Classics Week" at TIGS.
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jwk5
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« Reply #16 on: February 19, 2010, 01:42:07 AM »

Those Neophyte RPGs make me want to do another "Classics Week" at TIGS.
Dooooooooo eeeeeeeeeet! Tiger
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Randomasta
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« Reply #17 on: February 19, 2010, 03:22:58 AM »

Ugh. There seem to be a hatred towards RPG Maker Games in the indie gaming world, and I have to blame it to the commercial games, which is almost guaranteed to be a piece of crap. The free ones are actually much much better, and it's a shame that those games under a huge pile of lesser games.

Oh wait, maybe it's just because I'm a huge fan of the genre.

As for the article, I couldn't agree more to no.6. That's the reason a third of the games in my comp is RPG. But there are LOT of indie RPGs released every year(see above)
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ஒழுக்கின்மை
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« Reply #18 on: February 19, 2010, 04:08:15 AM »

i'm a huge fan of rpgs but still don't like most rpgmaker games because 90% of them rip sprites and music instead of being original. even very very good rpgmaker games like the way and exit fate rip graphics and music. it's like some type of culture there that it's okay to not do your own art and music.
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Silbereisen
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« Reply #19 on: February 19, 2010, 05:19:11 AM »

I don't really think it's a "culture" so much as the fact that many RPG Maker developers don't even consider shorter games as a possibility and making assets for a 50+ hour RPG is extremely demanding and time-consuming.

Also, don't forget that RPG Maker is many people's first encounter with game development, so the ratio of bad to good is even higher than with other game making programs, though GM with its flood of bad Mario clones probably comes close.
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