Towns > General Discussions > Topic Details
ragnar119 May 9 @ 1:32pm
Some interesting talk with Xavi and Moebius from VideoGamerTV
Originally posted by Xavi:

1) I guess we should start with the big one. Do you consider the game to be finished?*

- Since we are on Steam we released 6 major patches and 11 minor ones. You can check our patch notes post to check how many new features we added.

http://www.townsgame.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1420

- By the nature of the game always a new feature can be added, so I stopped at some point and call it finished.
- After some talking with people on our forums I decided to hire someone to continue the work.

2) Do you feel a responsibility to the people that purchased your game, to
continue the development of Towns?*

- Of course, and that's what we did. Actually, after all that time working 24/7 (not only the coding, but all a project involves, from email support to paperwork, ...) I decided that I can't continue. But, as said in the previous answer, I wanted to just stop the development but I hired Florian to continue the work.

3) Florian has suggested that he couldn't afford to continue working on the game with the arrangement you had put in place. You've just stated that "SMP can't pay a full-time dev salary". After grossing $2 million dollars, why is that the case?*

- After vendors (30%), taxes (50%+), splits, fees and the conversion to euros that number is not as fancy. The majority of that money was done on the first months on Steam, at that time we were still developing the game and the money was not needed. Each of us spent it in personal use, mostly bills.

- Actually our sales are not spectacular, so, we are not in disposition to pay a full salary.

4) Do you still believe in Early Access as a concept?

- When we released on Steam the Early Access was not available. We released the game with a warning in the description saying we was still developing it. It's true that it took us 1 week to put that warning, mostly because burocracy, at that time the publishers didn't had the access to modify the Steam store page by themselves.
- So, Early Access and/or crowfunding sites. I think is a good way to finance a project, the problem behind that is that an indie project, normally, doesn't need too much money to be done. You just need a computer and some spare time to code the game.

5) What does the future look like for Towns? Will development continue?

- Actually I am searching for a solution that likes everybody, I do not plan to give up.

Originally posted by Moebius:
Hi Chris,

Just to clearify things: I was the lead dev of Towns just for the last two months.

1) Could you provide a little more detail as to why the development of Towns had to stop?

Basically I never said that the development has stoped at all. I just said that I can't work on the project anymore because I get paid a percentage of the current revenue that is made selling the game. And because the sells went down a lot below what was promised to me to be the minimum ever, I had to quit.

2) The game has reportedly sold over 200,000 copies and has made more than $2 million in gross revenue. Have those funds been reinvested into development?

If you mean by reinvested that they have been used to pay me for the development? Then no, the 200k copies have been sold before I joined SMP.

3) Many of the people that purchased Towns will have been under the assumption that the game would eventually be completed. Do you think they've been treated unfairly?

My problem answering this question properly is that I don't really know what SMP promised that people when they bought the game. But I'm under the impression that a lot of people have the feeling that they have been treated unfairly and that is of course bad. Games are about bringing fun and joy to people and not anger and hatered.

4) Do you believe they deserve compensation for their purchase?

In a way I think they should get what they paid for, so if you count the on going development or the releasing of the source as compensation, then yes, they should get that kind of compensation. But if you think they should get their money back, then I'm not really sure. Basically I consider investing in an Early Access game as some kind of risk investment. You can never be sure about the outcome. But if you knew that it was just an alpha or beta version back when you bought the game, then I think you are very well aware of the fact that the game can turn out in a way that might not be what you expected. Only thing that I'm not entirely sure of is if that was done when Towns was initially released as the whole Early Access program was quite new or not even there if I understood that correctly.

5)You mentioned the possibility of Towns 2 in your statement. Why do you think a new game is necessary?

From my point of view as getting only paid when we continue to sell the game, I thought this would be a good idea. As I mentioned earlier, I just got 15% of what was made in the months of March and April, selling the game. I think I can tell you that this is less than what I would have earned when I worked the same time at a super market. So the only way I thought we could continue like this is if we created a new game, at least that was my opinion back then. Now I know this announcement made it even worse. Because the people don't really see my position, they see the $2M that SMP made and that in their eyes the game is not finished, and I can certainly understand that this causes them to get angry.

6) Will backers of the original title need to purchase Towns 2?

At the moment I can't even say if Towns 2 will ever be a reality. Maybe it will be better, as Xavi mentioned in the forums, when SMP sells the game to a company that is willing to invest money in its further development until all customers are happy with finished game.

7) Has this experience changed your approach to game development and/or early access as a concept?
Not really, I still believe in the concept of early access as a way to help ambitious indie projects to become a reality. I invested in a lot of games like that in the past, not only on Steam but also on Kickstarter and I will continue to do so in the future.

Thanks for giving me the opportunity to clearify some things.

Best regards,
Florian
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oen-TZGGEjw
Last edited by ragnar119; May 9 @ 1:33pm
Showing 1-15 of 32 comments
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sgt.greywar May 9 @ 8:08pm 
Not interesting at all. Just self serving ♥♥♥-covering. I actually like Florian and he even comes off badly oblivious by agreeing to sign on without a clue about sales figures or what it would take to continue or 8increase* sales numbers this deep into a fradulent gae release. Jesus, a 5 minute you tube for "business 101" would have shown him that pulling this piece of garbage out of an asymptotic curve was exactly 0. As for Xavi? That fat knob gobbler deserves prison time for fraud. Fascinating to see the bloody legion of fanboys raving about how this game would "absolutely finish" dwindle away to nothing.
Camoceltic May 10 @ 4:43pm 
Xavi's response to the second question is complete ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥. Someone working "24/7" on a game would make more than 17 updates. I know of a couple of games that have been made by one person that have had more updates in about half a year than this game has in the past year and a half.
Time And Roguelike Dimensions May 11 @ 12:15am 
It's funny that moebius says he didn't say development had stopped. He actually said the game was abandoned. That was the exact word he used. He said it wasn't cancelled though so maybe there's a language barrier there.
Cloak&dagger Inc. May 11 @ 1:22am 
Maybe it works different elsewhere, but you don't pay taxes of gross revenue here. You pay tax from actual income. The money left after expenses are paid. Unless the dev did not make a limited liability company or similar and kept development within his own personal budget but nobody would be that daft. Would they?!
NeoCat May 11 @ 7:20am 
"- When we released on Steam the Early Access was not available. We released the game with a warning in the description saying we was still developing it. It's true that it took us 1 week to put that warning, mostly because burocracy,"

What complete ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ nowhere NOWHERE on the store page dose it say this.
Originally posted by NeoCat:
"- When we released on Steam the Early Access was not available. We released the game with a warning in the description saying we was still developing it. It's true that it took us 1 week to put that warning, mostly because burocracy,"

What complete ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ nowhere NOWHERE on the store page dose it say this.

Maybe they took it out now that they aren't developing it.
NeoCat May 11 @ 7:57am 
So the 1 week to sift though the burocracy of steamworks is also a lie then? It hasent been a week since they anounced the game is cancled.
Last edited by NeoCat; May 11 @ 8:06am
ragnar119 May 11 @ 8:02am 
Originally posted by NeoCat:
So the 1 week to sift though the burocracy of steamworks is also a lie then? It hasent been a week since that annoucement.
That 1 week happened in 2012, when it was released on steam. Thats what they are talking about, and it took around week or two before they added small changes to steam page, like the game will still be updated and similar. In february this year they removed it
Last edited by ragnar119; May 11 @ 8:03am
NeoCat May 11 @ 8:04am 
Originally posted by ragnar119:
Originally posted by NeoCat:
So the 1 week to sift though the burocracy of steamworks is also a lie then? It hasent been a week since that annoucement.
That 1 week happened in 2012, when it was released on steam. Thats what they are talking about
I was referencing 1 week since may 6th when the last dev they hired abandoned the project.
ragnar119 May 11 @ 8:07am 
Originally posted by NeoCat:
Originally posted by ragnar119:
That 1 week happened in 2012, when it was released on steam. Thats what they are talking about
I was referencing 1 week since may 6th when the last dev they hired abandoned the project.
What has last dev to do with xavi comment on what happened on steam release? They are not talking about that, but what happened when the game was first time released on steam.
Last edited by ragnar119; May 11 @ 8:07am
NeoCat May 11 @ 8:12am 
The last dev to work on the project was Moebius. Those 2 interviews were prompted because of the game being abandoned. Not its release on steam.
ragnar119 May 11 @ 8:18am 
Originally posted by NeoCat:
The last dev to work on the project was Moebius. Those 2 interviews were prompted because of the game being abandoned. Not its release on steam.

"- When we released on Steam the Early Access was not available. We released the game with a warning in the description saying we was still developing it. It's true that it took us 1 week to put that warning, mostly because burocracy,"

This is directly about when the game was released for the first time on steam. There is nothing in it about moebius the last dev that left. So I am not sure what you are talking about. There where no changes to steam page when moebius joined, or when he left. The 1 week that xavi is talking about is what happened back in 2012, and is not related to thing that happened now..
NeoCat May 11 @ 8:28am 
Whoops I see were we misscommunicated.
Back when I bought the game about a year and a half or so ago there was nothing on the store page that said the game was in development etc dispite the fact that it blatenly was. Thats why I said they never changed the store page.

Graspee suggesting that any "In development" wording was removed because the project was cancled on May 6th. To which I said "So the 1 week bit was a total lie then" if they removed In development on the 6th

Basicly if it took them a week to get steam to warn purchases that the game is in development then how did it get removed in less time starting may 6th when the project was dropped.
Solo Solitaire (Banned) May 11 @ 12:02pm 
There was never a warning. They added a lie to promote sales and indicate the game would be finished. The game was never continually updated and that statement stayed on the page for 6 months after the last update.
ragnar119 May 11 @ 12:03pm 
Originally posted by NeoCat:
Whoops I see were we misscommunicated.
Back when I bought the game about a year and a half or so ago there was nothing on the store page that said the game was in development etc dispite the fact that it blatenly was. Thats why I said they never changed the store page.

Graspee suggesting that any "In development" wording was removed because the project was cancled on May 6th. To which I said "So the 1 week bit was a total lie then" if they removed In development on the 6th

Basicly if it took them a week to get steam to warn purchases that the game is in development then how did it get removed in less time starting may 6th when the project was dropped.
Aha, I understand you now. No, there was nothing changed in steam description in May after moebius left. And there was no description "in development" on steam page. The thing that he put back in 2012 was something like "we will continue to update the game to bring your best experience possible" or something like that, dont remember now. Then in february when he decided to abandon the game and when Ben left (the first dev that left... actually technically speaking its second or third one xD that left SMP), he removed that sentence,because there was no plan to do any more updates for the game.
Last edited by ragnar119; May 11 @ 12:04pm
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