Brad Wardell's site for talking about the customization of Windows.

Greeeeeeeeeeeeetings my friends!

This post is more for indie developers who want to know how much money things make. 

First some basics on game budgeting:

  1. Every person on your game you should budget at $10,000 per month. It’s a good rule of thumb. 
  2. You should target a 25% “profit” on your game to cover the unexpected as well as for future growth
  3. Steady State income represents the gross income of your game without sales, promotions, new releases, etc.
  4. Steady state takes 6 months to eliminate the “new game” anomaly.
  5. You need to take opportunity cost into account when budgeting (am I better off working on this versus that?)
  6. Opportunity cost is hard to calculate and is what kills most studios long-term.

The steady state of LH is $40,000 per month.

That doesn’t mean its annual income is $480,000 a year because there are lots of events that cause income spiking (Christmas is a 4X spike, Thanksgiving is a 2X spike, and the Steam July sale is a 3X spike.

For LH, that means I could justify 3 resources on it before taking opportunity costs into account.  Once I consider opportunity costs, the number declines to 1 because those other 2 resources are better off on Galactic Civilizations III or Star Control or “Elemental 3” or what have you.

Before anyone poo-poos 1 resource, bear in mind that I made the original Galactic Civilizations by myself. So 1 person can still get a lot done. But that’s where we are.  1 person means that the game can continue to evolve.  Some months it might be an artist. Another month a developer.  In January, it was Charles (programmer) fixing bugs and tweaking.  In February it was Kael doing new balance changes.  In March it’ll probably be me (I have anger management issues with the game’s pathfinding). 

The main funding source: DLC

DLC is really the funding source.  The base game is doing $25k and DLC is picking up the remaining $15k.  In effect, DLC purchases are providing the $10k resource and the $5k profit necessary to keep the game going.

The next DLC: Spouses

For those of you reading this, the next DLC is going to allow players to have spouses. Kael has meticulously designed a spouse for each player (and to be honest, they’re way cooler than the sovereigns because Kael got to really go crazy with these).

The one AFTER Spouses will probably (but not certainly) be Random Map expansion. That is, a lot more “interesting” stuff for random maps. I plan to do this one myself as I’d like to see random maps made a lot more interesting and I’ve had a lot of practice in the past year in my own “for fun” mods.

Cheers!


Comments (Page 1)
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on Mar 09, 2014

Thank you for the insight into financials of games.  And the news about spouses.  Now, will children also be possible, and the creation of family lines? 

on Mar 09, 2014

Quick request for Spouses DLC. If you're going to let us have children, and those children inherit traits from their parents, can we have a tag that disallows certain traits from getting inherited? I have a lot of traits in Children of Storm that should definitely not be inheritable - having consumed the Ambrosia to become Immortal, finding a sworn dragon egg and becoming a Dragon rider, being turned undead, having dual bloodlines and so on and so forth.

 

Or maybe the system is going to be completely different, like how spouses are handled in Total war series or King Arthur the RP Wargame. You get to select them from a pool and each provides a special boon.

Looking forward to this!

on Mar 09, 2014

You just reminded of the "Guild" series.

 

on Mar 09, 2014

Heavenfall

Quick request for Spouses DLC. If you're going to let us have children, and those children inherit traits from their parents, can we have a tag that disallows certain traits from getting inherited?

 

Sure lets just add ''In vitro fertilization'' and '' Gametic selection'' to the research tree, that will do it.

on Mar 09, 2014

For those of you reading this, the next DLC is going to allow players to have spouses. Kael has meticulously designed a spouse for each player (and to be honest, they’re way cooler than the sovereigns because Kael got to really go crazy with these).

It would be reeeally sweet if the sovereigns got some love with the DLC as well. 

Also, will the AI be able to handle the spouse thing?  It still has issues dealing with some core features, so I have my doubts that it will magically know what to do with another new game mechanic.

on Mar 09, 2014

This is incredibly sweet, I was sure dynasties were never coming. Can't wait to play around with this. And keep the game funded, of course.

on Mar 09, 2014

davrovana
This is incredibly sweet, I was sure dynasties wee never coming.

Hmmm maybe i'm just being pessimistic, but Frogboy doesn't ever actually mention dynasties or children, only "spouses".  Just doesn't seem very clear exactly what this will all include.

I would be surprised if there is anything close to a dynasty system included as DLC because I would have thought it would require a heap of coding.

Happy to be wrong though.

 

Edit....

BTW interesting post Frogboy thanks for the insight.

on Mar 09, 2014

abob101

 Frogboy doesn't ever actually mention dynasties or children, only "spouses".  Just doesn't seem very clear exactly what this will all include.

Well I am assuming some form of dynasties. I hope I didn't put words in frogboy's mouth.

But since children are already in the code (lets just say I messed with something in elementaldefs.xml, and there's a certain cheat keystroke, and have had units in my game that I am pretty sure were children), if spouses are coming I assumed I could have LEGITIMATE URXEN BABIES at last.

Even if it's spouses only, I'm still very excited to see what Kael has planned.

on Mar 09, 2014

Spouses DLC?  Sounds good to me.  Could weave a really good story around that.

on Mar 10, 2014

Q: are you separating updates from DLC in this discussion?

 

I.e. does the 1 resource strictly work on core LH , or is it shared between that and DLC production?

on Mar 10, 2014

I guess I'm the only one here that's indifferent to spouses/children/dynasties.

Especially with the current mechanics, in this game, sovereigns never die, so you could have several generations running around togther indefinity.

And that would reduce the need for heros...

on Mar 10, 2014

Borg999
I guess I'm the only one here that's indifferent to spouses/children/dynasties.

Nah, i'm indifferent too  Not sure the dynasty thing fits LH myself. 

But good to see LH continuing to get worked on regardless.

on Mar 10, 2014

Borg999
I guess I'm the only one here that's indifferent to spouses/children/dynasties.

I am as well, I'm just hoping the DLC isn't going to include something really cool, that will make me want the DLC despite the dynasty/spouse/children thing. Not really to worried yet, I'll wait til it's released and see if I have anything to actually worry or bitch about.

 

 

on Mar 10, 2014

You definately didn't need to share that information....so I appreciate you doing so. It's good to know that DLC support is required to continue developing FELH.


The next DLC: Spouses

For those of you reading this, the next DLC is going to allow players to have spouses. Kael has meticulously designed a spouse for each player (and to be honest, they’re way cooler than the sovereigns because Kael got to really go crazy with these).

The one AFTER Spouses will probably (but not certainly) be Random Map expansion. That is, a lot more “interesting” stuff for random maps. I plan to do this one myself as I’d like to see random maps made a lot more interesting and I’ve had a lot of practice in the past year in my own “for fun” mods.

Cheers!

By 'designed a spouce for each player', do you actually mean each race type? (Only because customer sovereigns will want spouces too.) A little leary that spouces will be more fancy than the sovereign's themselves...they should add to the flavor...not be the flavor.

Woot! Random Map DLC. Presumably that includes additional strategic map stamps?

Looking forward to the releases.

on Mar 10, 2014

I love the fact that there will be spouses next, a little sad I can't have Ceresa as my wifey though but you can't win them all. Looking forward to this!

 

Thanks!

 

 

 

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