Monaco Dev: Xbox 360 Delays Hurt Sales, So Did Demo

Karloff

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Monaco Dev: Xbox 360 Delays Hurt Sales, So Did Demo



Xbox was never supposed to be the primary revenue generator, but even so, 360 sales are disappointing.

"The 360 delay unquestionably hurt our sales," says Monaco [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/editorials/reviews/10331-Monaco-Whats-Yours-is-Mine-Review] developer and Pocketwatch Games founder Andy Schatz. When Monaco: What's Yours Is Mine launched on PC and Xbox 360, the ideal situation would have been a simultaneous roll-out, thus keeping momentum strong, but bugs - only occurring on the retail boxes - killed that idea. It didn't help that, in order to fix the issue, Pocketwatch had to work blind since it couldn't test to reproduce the problem on dev kits. Pocketwatch was never expecting the Xbox 360 to be its primary source of cash, but Monaco's 360 issues turned out to be a real disappointment.

The demo didn't help. "I don't think the demo was particularly strong," says Schatz, "so it could be that the game wouldn't have done better on Xbox even if it had a simultaneous launch." Schatz doesn't think so, but anything's possible. He's still sore about the whole thing, since Pocketwatch put a ton of work into porting its heist-em-up to console. To have that work pretty much wasted isn't his idea of fun. Nor was he willing to talk about Microsoft's treatment of Pocketwatch during the development process, though from the hints dropped he's not much of a Microsoft fan. But Pocketwatch's publisher Majesco had been the go-between and Schatz doesn't want to "piss in the pool, so whatever complaints I have I think it's best I keep them between me, Majesco and Microsoft."

Monaco, the co-op title that has you stealing your way through cunningly crafted levels in order to break out of the city, is currently available on PC and Mac via Steam, as well as Xbox 360.

Source: Reddit [http://www.reddit.com/r/Steam/comments/1ibdx3/monaco_the_greatest_coop_ever_will_be_up_for/cb2yut8]


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Andy Shandy

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Jun 7, 2010
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I also think, in combination with the demo at least, the price point might've put people off. 1200 Microsoft Points is a bit steep for something like Monaco. I think 800 MP would've been perfect for it, it would be a low enough price for impulse buys I would think. 1200 should only be for "big" arcade titles.

I'll look at picking this up if it goes on sale at some point though, as the idea seems interesting.
 

Comocat

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Andy Shandy said:
I also think, in combination with the demo at least, the price point might've put people off. 1200 Microsoft Points is a bit steep for something like Monaco. I think 800 MP would've been perfect for it, it would be a low enough price for impulse buys I would think. 1200 should only be for "big" arcade titles.

I'll look at picking this up if it goes on sale at some point though, as the idea seems interesting.
Pricing yourself above the 800 point bundle or below the 1600 point bundle seems like a great way to kill sales. It makes me angry when I see stuff priced in such a way I need to buy more points than I really need.
 

Megacherv

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Sep 24, 2008
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As someone who is on their way to becoming a developer, it seems that every other news post about an indie studio makes me less and less willing to work with Microsoft.
 

AzrealMaximillion

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Megacherv said:
As someone who is on their way to becoming a developer, it seems that every other news post about an indie studio makes me less and less willing to work with Microsoft.
I honestly don't know why any indie developer does at this point.
 

Dr.Awkward

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At least they are willing to admit that a bad demo does put off people on buying their game - Most companies just say that a demo hurts sales without even considering the quality of said demos. If you're going to make a demo, you've got to give it the same treatment as you do with making the whole game for it to be effective.
 

RicoADF

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Jun 2, 2009
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Megacherv said:
As someone who is on their way to becoming a developer, it seems that every other news post about an indie studio makes me less and less willing to work with Microsoft.
Honestly by this point I have no sympathy for anyone dumb enough to jump in bed with MS, I guess if they release their game on every system I have some since their trying to do the right thing but cases like this where it's PC and Xbox I have little to none. Either release it on both consoles and PC or just do PC (or do PC and PS3), the Xbox isn't worth it.
 

Weaver

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Why would you even bother? There have been dozens of indies at this point in time who have said that console development and the revenue you generate is just not worth the cost at all.

Didn't Zeboyd say they made more money with 1 week on steam then they did in an entire year on XBL?
 

Vaccine

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AzrealMaximillion said:
Megacherv said:
As someone who is on their way to becoming a developer, it seems that every other news post about an indie studio makes me less and less willing to work with Microsoft.
I honestly don't know why any indie developer does at this point.
I find myself wondering why they -do- bother at this point, highest bar for entry yet every time a game disappoints its creators on that fudging platform I feel like taking a megaphone and screaming "DUUUURRRRRRR" into their ears.
 

Owyn_Merrilin

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I've got to give him props for saying the demo hurt things because the demo itself was bad, and not because it showed people how bad the game itself was. I have no sympathy for devs who complain about how a demo that is representative of the game hurts sales. All that means is they made a bad game.
 

AzrealMaximillion

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RicoADF said:
Megacherv said:
As someone who is on their way to becoming a developer, it seems that every other news post about an indie studio makes me less and less willing to work with Microsoft.
Honestly by this point I have no sympathy for anyone dumb enough to jump in bed with MS, I guess if they release their game on every system I have some since their trying to do the right thing but cases like this where it's PC and Xbox I have little to none. Either release it on both consoles and PC or just do PC (or do PC and PS3), the Xbox isn't worth it.
Doing PC and Xbox isn't an option. Part of jumping into bed with MS is that they get to have a timed exclusive release of your game.

Watch when State of Decay hits PC. It will make the developers kick themselves for letting having that market wait, just like Zeboyd games, Jonothan Blow, and that douchebag Phil Fish.
 

WouldYouKindly

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Apr 17, 2011
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Andy Shandy said:
I also think, in combination with the demo at least, the price point might've put people off. 1200 Microsoft Points is a bit steep for something like Monaco. I think 800 MP would've been perfect for it, it would be a low enough price for impulse buys I would think. 1200 should only be for "big" arcade titles.

I'll look at picking this up if it goes on sale at some point though, as the idea seems interesting.
If you've got a computer that doesn't run on wood, you can pick it up for cheaper on the PC.