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    Donator Marketplace = Financial support of Dev + free community expansion!


    [My nooby sketch of a funding market place entry with asset preview and funding bar to show the remaining $ to unlock it]

    As much as I'm amazed by the decision to start a new official UT, I'm equally afraid it might become a DLC/Season Pass/Microtransactions F2P game like every other with the proclaimed financial model.
    It's factually F2P if you'd have to buy lots of custom stuff to be able to play on the popular custom servers with your friends, nevertheless the core game might be free.

    Having a free and infinite expansion of the game by (at first) unpayed freetime work of the community is a big crucial part of UT's identity for me.
    That's why I've given a suggestion to provide a market place that lets donators 'unlock' content for EVERY UT player once the (optional) price is paid, instead of every game account having to purchase every item (in this thread).

    Critique to that idea can be obviously: It isn't comparable profitable to sell a custom asset for a one time price than rather for each player account.
    By adding a funding possibility, also higher prices could be achieved due to multiple donators over time!

    Developers who created custom content for the game can put their work onto the market place deciding whether the asset is free or set a price for it.
    Buyers could pay the whole price to unlock the asset entirely themselves or only pay an amount they can afford/are willing to pay for the asset so the remaining price is getting less and less and other people are motivated to contribute aswell.
    I think such a funding method promotes custom development, community donations to support it while at the same time keeping the free infinite expansion character of every UT.
    The advantage ingame would be enormous. You wouldn't be restricted to play on certain servers you have all the assets but could join and download everything like it used to be!

    I still think it would be additionally good to have a UT-Dev-Only UE4 license (for only UT fan hobby devs) aswell as an affordable game price instead of it being entirely free (we all would love to pay 20-80$ for a great UT4), but a market place who doesn't turn the game factually into a F2P would be my dearest wish.


    • EITHER
      with the suggested funding/unlocking market place we would have unlimited access to any server and could download everything right on joining (as it used to be in every UT)!

      Developers can still set prices for their assets and sponsors can pay (down) to unlock the assets for all UT player seats! This way you still can but aren't forced to buy things from the market place to join a certain server.
      If new assets got unlocked, they did by (single or funded) donation(s) of its sponsor(s) and became available to every UT player for free from then on!


      I'd be often entering the market place when I see the little + indicating there is more unlocked content I haven't installed yet and can get.
      I'd feel encouraged to give back something to the community by donating myself an amount to a still locked asset, especially if I even can perpetuate my nick name as its sponsor.



    • OR
      With a per-seat market place, every custom server using paid assets is restricted, you are forced to buy the required assets before joining! UT would be P2P for custom assets, no more free community expansion.

      Imho such would be very unsafe to succeed and not very inviting to further investments. I'd have to buy only the very necessary and probably could not try out many unknown custom servers to keep my costs within limit, since I'd have to buy all required assets before being able to play.

      Do you want to see this when trying to follow a friend onto a new custom server?


    The suggested UT scenario (even with a final UT game price to balance eventual deficiency in receipts) would outweigh the second scenario by so far imo in terms of attractiveness for the infinitely expanding game (THE traditional & exceptional quality of every UT) and promote and reward community development incredibly with the unlock & fund market place. I fear a P2P restricted custom UT which results from a per-seat market place model might not at all do so well.

    I hope my concerns and suggestion are received as the constructive critics of a hardcore UT fan that they are. If you agree with mine or have similar concerns, support my idea or make alternative suggestions!
    If Epic show my concerns to be without cause, even better of course!

    P.S.: I used CaSCade's Menu concept for the demonstrational purpose. Compliments for the clean server browser go to him.
    Last edited by TheoRiginal; 12-11-2014, 03:34 PM.

    My views on the new UT in a nutshell │ Social MarketplaceModern UT4 AllNew Dynamic StandardsMore iconic U and the 4 neededUE4 Free - I Epic

    #2
    Except Epic isnt doing a market place so that developers can make money and sell mods, they are doing a market place so that they can make money. Why would Epic willingly give up their profits? This is how they intend to make a return on investment for creating this game and supporting it. Its a neat idea and if Epic wasnt taking a share of profits from the market place I could see this very easily becoming a thing. However since Epic needs to make money off the sale of mods, I dont see them ever supporting it.

    Ive said it before, but I really dont think the market place will be a big thing for the average user in terms of costs. Most map makers and small scale content creators will release their products for free anyways, I know I will release any maps I make for free, thats just the sprite of UT. It also doesnt make sense for small time hobbyist such as myself to try and make money off my content. I make content because I enjoy it and I want other people to enjoy what I have created. Its a pride thing to see people playing on your map in regular rotation. By giving content away you are sacrificing a small amount of money but exposing your content to a much larger crowd base. The vast majority of the UT aftermarket falls into this category, small hobbyist who just want to make something fun for UT and share it.

    The only real people who will be selling content will be groups of people or companies who make major modification content to the game. The ones where teams of people develop a thousands of hours of content that drastically changes the game. Again at that point in time, why would they give it away for free? They are doing this for a business.
    PayBack

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      #3
      Originally posted by -jay- View Post
      Why would Epic willingly give up their profits? This is how they intend to make a return on investment for creating this game and supporting it. Its a neat idea and if Epic wasnt taking a share of profits from the market place I could see this very easily becoming a thing. However since Epic needs to make money off the sale of mods, I dont see them ever supporting it.
      Why would you think with my suggested donators marketplace, Epic would not get any money? They would still be able to take their share from every funding payment.
      If you dont want any consideration for your content creation you can give it out directly to be unlocked for UT without any costs of course, but being able to set a price on one's creations can encourage more people to develop for UT.

      You cannot know now whether devs will generally provide their content for free anyway, just because it used to be the case. It's the most crucial thing about UT that it gets community expanded by the community without season pass or DLC to purchase which would be lost even if only very few decide to take money for a custom asset. Any server using such would be Pay2Play and restricted to buyers. It doesn't help much if the core is free if most hosts use some restricted custom content.

      If not only devs (as authors) but also donators are mentioned in the assets' info text, it would furthermore promote donating.
      I am a voluntary UT3 mapper aswell but I cant afford 19$ each month to spend much time mapping for UT4. I totally would jump on if there's a one-time UT-dev-only UE4 license and I also am quite sure not 1 registered member on these forums wouldn't pay something for the game (if profits from a funding market place would be estimated to be much lower than a market place with single seat sales).

      P.S:
      Actually, if you were right and UT devs all dont take any money out of conviction of free custom expansion, Epic would also get no share! So even in your imagined scenario the donator unlocked market place would be more beneficial.
      Last edited by TheoRiginal; 09-29-2014, 05:21 PM. Reason: P.S.

      My views on the new UT in a nutshell │ Social MarketplaceModern UT4 AllNew Dynamic StandardsMore iconic U and the 4 neededUE4 Free - I Epic

      Comment


        #4
        Let me see if I understand the OP by attempting to summarize:



        If payment is demanded from each user for multiplayer-designed content, then only the rarest such projects will ever achieve the critical mass necessary to be entertaining for the paying customers over the long term.

        So, mimic the "Kickstarter" model — creators propose a project, "backers" pledge/pay, then iff the funding goal is met, the content is produced and released to everyone for "free". In return backers get: (1) exclusive swag/flair, (2) their anticipated content (maybe a short period of early access as well), and (3) a potentially viable user-base with whom to play.


        Does that sound right? If so then I think that's a fine idea indeed.

        Comment


          #5
          Totally agree with original poster. It should be possible for UT4 map makers who have it as a hobby project to pay a one time fee. It should be a low price or free, considered we're going to limit our projects to none proffit map making only. We are not going to make our own games or anything like that. All we want is a level editor that can make a level with BSP , static meshes and learn the new UDK features that can benefit UT4 maps. Stuff like dynamic lighting, shadows and simple blueprints.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Veggie_D View Post
            If payment is demanded from each user for multiplayer-designed content, then only the rarest such projects will ever achieve the critical mass necessary to be entertaining for the paying customers over the long term.
            Edit: Oh now I think I understand it. I mentioned the risk of having not populated enough servers with the single-seat custom content sale model because of the resulting restricted custom content servers for buyers only in the other thread I think, yes. Excuse my bad English if I write unclear or misunderstand you.

            Originally posted by Veggie_D View Post
            So, mimic the "Kickstarter" model — creators propose a project, "backers" pledge/pay, then iff the funding goal is met, the content is produced and released to everyone for "free".
            That's more of a summary, except kickstarters collect money to then just start their project, which can fail to achieve the demanded amount which would result in investors who get nothing. There is no finished product yet at kickstarters, whereas my idea of the donator funding UT market place would collect money from various "investors" (donators/sponsors) for an already finished custom content release! The product is finished and it's just a matter of time untill the price is fully reached so the content would get unlocked.
            The author of it could freely set his price. Epic set their interest on payments and could set boundary limits of a price for this custom content release or any form of quality control they would want. Sponsors contribute how much they are willing to pay to get an asset (closer to be) unlocked and in return will get mentioned permantly as (one of) its sponsor(s).

            The only possibility donators would get nothing (except being mentioned under sponsors) and an asset would never get unlocked is if the full price can never be reached, which is unlikely if it's not an outrageous price and Epic sets the quality control and possible price boundaries for the asset. The author (or Epic) could also lower the price after long time funding stagnation for example. Unlocked custom content assets can be downloaded by every UT player account for free. This secures the main reason behind all of that, "the soul of UT's community dev" imo: No P2P custom UT servers, No DLCs, no SeasonPass, no restricted acces to custom content servers without purchase! Connect, download and play as a player to any server as it always used to be. Enjoy the free community driven game expansion (all unlocked assets) and support it by sponsoring some bucks to unlock even more in the market place or start developing custom content yourself which you can offer to the UT community!

            Originally posted by Veggie_D View Post
            In return backers get: (1) exclusive swag/flair, (2) their anticipated content (maybe a short period of early access as well), and (3) a potentially viable user-base with whom to play.
            Exclusive swag, hilarious but then perhaps too "F2P like" again if you would get exclusive ingame benefits. But of couse we could think of other benefits to sponsors aswell, my idea only implemented to be mentioned in the assets info text under sponsors. If the asset was released for free by the author, he would be aswell its only sponsor.
            Last edited by TheoRiginal; 09-29-2014, 08:37 PM.

            My views on the new UT in a nutshell │ Social MarketplaceModern UT4 AllNew Dynamic StandardsMore iconic U and the 4 neededUE4 Free - I Epic

            Comment


              #7
              Hm, yea, I had entertained such an idea for Free Software development in general. The nice thing about such model is that it's fair and in the end results in freely viewable and modifiable code (just like all mods were in previous UTs and Unreals). The author gets a set amount of money to cover the costs of developing it, instead of relying on the ever-going profits (which leads to stagnation, since they're getting money even if they're not doing anything any more).

              A complimentary idea I had when thinking about it is to have a sort of "marketplace credit". You put some money into your Marketplace account, then "pledge" an amount you can to support the project. It should be pretty high, the highest you can possibly afford to pay. Others then also pledge, then funding is successful and the content creator gets the pay. But that's not over, everyone still has to buy the content going forward still, but instead of buying from the content creator, they buy from the other pledgers, with the cost thus going down each time and the money being refunded for the early birds. For instance:

              A weapon pack is being developed, and the developer wants to get $1000 in total for it. Ten people pledge $100 each, and the developer gets the pay. From then, the cost of getting it becomes $91. Once the 11th person pledges $91, each of the previous pledgers receives $9 as a refund in store credit, something they can use to pledge on more projects. For the 12th pledger the cost is then $83, which again goes to refund the price difference to all of the previous pledgers. Then once 100 people have purchased it, it only costs $10, and it had costed everyone $10 in the first place as the difference got refunded.

              I'm not sure if that would work in practice, but it's something to think about.
              Unreal Tournament 4 eXpanded MultiPlayer (UT4XMP) efforts
              My website, listing all my Unreal series mods and mutators

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                #8
                My thought was not that you were saying Epic wouldnt make money, but that they are limiting the potential profit. If someone makes a map and says once i make 100 dollars its free, but the map could have made 1,000 dollars just being sold, Epic would lose a substantial amount of money. I am also sure the game will have a developers kit that doesnt cost 20 bucks a month or is a one time purchase. The 20 bucks a month right now is for the full EU4 engine, thats not needed for 90% of the community making content.
                PayBack

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                  #9
                  Originally posted by GreatEmerald View Post
                  Hm, yea, I had entertained such an idea for Free Software development in general. The nice thing about such model is that it's fair and in the end results in freely viewable and modifiable code (just like all mods were in previous UTs and Unreals). The author gets a set amount of money to cover the costs of developing it, instead of relying on the ever-going profits (which leads to stagnation, since they're getting money even if they're not doing anything any more).

                  A complimentary idea I had when thinking about it is to have a sort of "marketplace credit". You put some money into your Marketplace account, then "pledge" an amount you can to support the project. It should be pretty high, the highest you can possibly afford to pay. Others then also pledge, then funding is successful and the content creator gets the pay. But that's not over, everyone still has to buy the content going forward still, but instead of buying from the content creator, they buy from the other pledgers, with the cost thus going down each time and the money being refunded for the early birds. For instance:

                  A weapon pack is being developed, and the developer wants to get $1000 in total for it. Ten people pledge $100 each, and the developer gets the pay. From then, the cost of getting it becomes $91. Once the 11th person pledges $91, each of the previous pledgers receives $9 as a refund in store credit, something they can use to pledge on more projects. For the 12th pledger the cost is then $83, which again goes to refund the price difference to all of the previous pledgers. Then once 100 people have purchased it, it only costs $10, and it had costed everyone $10 in the first place as the difference got refunded.

                  I'm not sure if that would work in practice, but it's something to think about.
                  That is an unnecessarily complicated method of distribution. Seeing how most gamers tend to be finicky about purchases (looking at platform and game sales histories) a simple plan is usually far more successful. Let modders charge for their products if they choose to risk it. I say risk because you never know how popular at item might be. For those modders who want to distribute their products for free, they also pose additional risk to those who sell their products. If a modder makes ****, nobody will buy it. Even if the content is fairly decent, but a free version comes along, it isn't rocket science to guess which one will fair better. All this an be explained in one word: competition.

                  You mention the idea that the game's developer keeps pulling in revenues even though development of the game is stopped once it is finalized and distributed. I don't think this will be the case for this UT, as Epic has re-iterated that development will be ongoing even after the release, possibly for years.
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                    #10
                    @GreatEmerald: Interesting idea of lowering prices over time, sure worth exploring more. But it wouldn't secure UT's free community expansion soul if everyone must purchase all custom content individually. I want all paid custom content to be unlocked for all UT accounts, so the community (devs + sponsors) expands UT together, for everyone!

                    @-Jay-: Certainly it's a question whether such a funding market place model is bearable for Epic. I can imagine it's less profitable with high price 1 time unlocking for everyone instead of cheaper single seat buys like Google app store where all have to pay 0.99$ individually. But given a small game price additionally and the more appealing game expansion model could be attracting more players so it could be even more lucrative.
                    The app store model with single seat sales model would be too much giving up UT's advantages and turn custom UT factually into P2P.

                    My views on the new UT in a nutshell │ Social MarketplaceModern UT4 AllNew Dynamic StandardsMore iconic U and the 4 neededUE4 Free - I Epic

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                      #11
                      It seems to me you guys are looking at this from solely within UT. I think somebody is a bit misguided here. Could be me, but I see UT as being a carrot that brings more indy developers in to build up the marketplace, and that the marketplace is about a whole lot more than just UT. What you are suggesting might have damaging repercussions to indy devs whose content will not be connected to the UT project. How do you plan to rectify that?
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                        #12
                        Originally posted by Crotale View Post
                        It seems to me you guys are looking at this from solely within UT. I think somebody is a bit misguided here. Could be me, but I see UT as being a carrot that brings more indy developers in to build up the marketplace, and that the marketplace is about a whole lot more than just UT. What you are suggesting might have damaging repercussions to indy devs whose content will not be connected to the UT project. How do you plan to rectify that?
                        Afaik Epic stated in their stream the UT market place would be totally seperate from the UE4 market place, so it can be 2 totally different market place models.

                        Having them seperated is much better imo, because the funding market place makes only sense for UT:
                        We are one game community which would expand our custom content together, every donation serves all players equally and there wont be any restricted servers you'd have to go purchase every asset used on it first yourself. You can simply download everything directly on connecting to any custom server because what can be hosted is all unlocked custom content for all UT accounts.

                        For the UE4 market place, a funding unlocking market place model makes no sense of course. As a dev you want to sell your creations individually, one seat. Aswell as the customer is interested to buy the asset exclusively for himself and not that every game dev can use it from then on for his own projects.
                        Last edited by TheoRiginal; 09-30-2014, 11:31 AM. Reason: arguments for seperate market places

                        My views on the new UT in a nutshell │ Social MarketplaceModern UT4 AllNew Dynamic StandardsMore iconic U and the 4 neededUE4 Free - I Epic

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Doesn't matter if the two are separate, they are still part of Epic's financial model. What I gather from your concept, you want those who are willing to pay to fund those are not willing to pay. This might work well if the entire affair was a concerted effort by all involved in creation of content, but we are talking individual developers who want to push their content on its own merits and may not want to be tied to such a system.

                          Don't get me wrong, I'm not trying to squash your creativity. I just think you are jumping the gun a bit. I mean, Epic doesn't even know how they are going to address the server versus client content issue you mentioned. I agree with you that it could get crazy to the point where the game feels like F2P, but I don't get the impression it will happen that way.
                          Last edited by Crotale; 09-30-2014, 11:42 AM.
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                            #14
                            Think about the consequences of each model.

                            If it's also for UT a single seat market place where you buy custom content only for yourself, every server using such is restricted to players who purchased it. It will become very hard for server hosts to justify every new paid custom asset to be hosted on the server and there's the big risk of people not wanting to buy all these assets themselves and thatfor wont ever populate the server. You'll have to pursuade every friend you want to play on a certain custom server with that it's worth to buy all the assets first!

                            With the unlocked funding market place method, custom server hosts must not fear no one could buy the used assets. Every UT player could acces his server and only gamefun decides the popularity, no P2P restrictions menace the server success.

                            For us UT players, server hosts and devs it should be no question that this is advantageous. With a single seat market, devs cannot be sure their asset can be successful even if many players bought it for their single seat, whereas devs can be sure once the funding price is accumulated, there is no more risk of it being not sold enough to be successfull on a custom server, because there would be no restricted servers to buyers of the asset. Once it's paid, no more financial risks to its success.

                            Even for sponsors, the funding market place would be far more inviting if you know whatever you donate serves all UT players and you can be the guy who sponsored everyone else a cool new custom asset instead of having to purchase every custom item for yourself to be able to play on the restricted P2P custom servers that are hosted. It's a social donation serving all UT players instead of a forced payment to access a restricted server yourself only.

                            My views on the new UT in a nutshell │ Social MarketplaceModern UT4 AllNew Dynamic StandardsMore iconic U and the 4 neededUE4 Free - I Epic

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                              #15
                              Originally posted by Crotale View Post
                              That is an unnecessarily complicated method of distribution. Seeing how most gamers tend to be finicky about purchases (looking at platform and game sales histories) a simple plan is usually far more successful. Let modders charge for their products if they choose to risk it. I say risk because you never know how popular at item might be. For those modders who want to distribute their products for free, they also pose additional risk to those who sell their products. If a modder makes ****, nobody will buy it. Even if the content is fairly decent, but a free version comes along, it isn't rocket science to guess which one will fair better. All this an be explained in one word: competition.
                              And that leads to the proliferation of proprietary closed-source model, where you can neither learn from the mods nor check to see if it's malicious or not. Since everyone has to protect their "trade secrets". That's my biggest concern, really.

                              Originally posted by Crotale View Post
                              You mention the idea that the game's developer keeps pulling in revenues even though development of the game is stopped once it is finalized and distributed. I don't think this will be the case for this UT, as Epic has re-iterated that development will be ongoing even after the release, possibly for years.
                              Obviously. UT4 is also free. The idea I noted was about mods only. It's true that they might also need to be updated to work on newer game versions, but that simply means adding $20 in total (that's $0.20 for 100 people) that wants to use the latest version.
                              Unreal Tournament 4 eXpanded MultiPlayer (UT4XMP) efforts
                              My website, listing all my Unreal series mods and mutators

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