View Full Version : Too much money
August 9th, 2000, 02:09 AM
A too expensive actualization.
I am user (registered) of the Space Empires saga since SE2, and from the first moment I say that it is one of the best games in the gender 4X, comparable to other big ones as MoO2 and Stars!, but with a design of ships and custom superior that, in fact, are the factors that differentiate it. Furthermore, it is a clear example of work of independent programming of quality.
After being expecting for a long time the demo of SE4, I have finally tested it and, for what I can appreciate, the fourth edition of the game consists basically on a graphic bring up to date, supplemented with amplifications in the technological tree and more units and other (quite a lot) improve of detail, keeping the basic concepts of gameplay of the saga. The turns limit impedes to evaluate if the AI has been developed, and this is not a good thing. By the way, What has it happened with the functionality of the mouse's right button?.
In short, as follower of the series I resolve to buy the program so I go to the preorder page and... 19 US$ of shipment costs to Europe! 19 US$? Yes, 19 US$, that are 47.5% of the game's retail price (54% if we consider the offer for preorder). This makes that the total price reaches the 54-59 US$. Too much money.
Here, to the current change rate, the price of the Last published (and translated) games for the big multinational companies it is among the 35-45 US$, the most expensive. And that without saying that there is another group among the 16-22 US$. Group in which we can find games like Tzar, 101 airborne, Mig Alley, Morpheus and other many excellent games.
The conclusion is clear: SE4 is a worthy member of the saga, but the total price of cost puts it outside of the European market of games. This is something that I complain deeply, and I believe that as much Malfador as Sharpnel should meditate in this respect. There is not another way?.
August 9th, 2000, 02:17 AM
Not much we can do about it EXCEPT the eventaul retail deal in Europe, probably next year.
However Chips and Bits does offer cheaper shipping (however with NONE of the security our mailing offers) and does sell our games.
We make nothing on shipping and handling...
Sarge is coming...
Director of Covert Ops
August 9th, 2000, 04:20 PM
I think it is important for everyone to understand what we, Shrapnel Games, are doing. Richard speaks of retail which is a possibility, but in no way a guarantee. What I want to speak to is Shrapnel Games' mission:
Most of our Wargames Fans know what we are doing. We are bringing quality, small developer products to the marketplace. These are products that wouldn't be in the marketplace otherwise - at least not with the larger publishers.
We give our developers the lions share of the money. We do this so that they can hopefully keep bringing you new and excellent products. Since we don't take 75-85% of the money earned on a product, we cannot afford to offer you shipping at a discount. If we had more orders, we would (and will as we grow) get better rates. But we would go out of business if we had to eat the costs of getting the products to Europe or other countries. We actually pay more than we charge on many foreign orders as it stands.
You can support Shrapnel Games and our developers or not. But don't ask us to do something that is going to put us out of business. If you are unhappy with what we charge then don't order.
Just try to remember what we are about: Bringing you quality products that otherwise wouldn't make the marketplace, and keeping our developers in business.
Thank all of you who support our efforts.
August 9th, 2000, 06:46 PM
What about a full Version of the game that you can download, for the same price as the "retail" Version - just without any printed documentation or an acutal copy of the game on cd. That would save all the shipping costs for people outside the US.
August 9th, 2000, 08:08 PM
Uuhhh, not really. First of all, I believe this game is going to come in at over 400MB - makes dl impractical. Plus there is the pirating issues involved in downloadable products. Plus, we have to pay for our bandwidth. Just a for instance: Our demo downloads cost us about $700 Last month and the largest demo is 32MB! Could you imagine what a 400MB download would cost!
I wish there was a better answer. We could ship like one of our competitors and maybe save $5.00, but then we would just get complaints that it takes 45 days to get the game! A true no win situation...
August 9th, 2000, 10:10 PM
I understand you perfectly, because I live in Uruguay ( http://www.shrapnelgames.com/ubb/images/icons/icon7.gif ), and you can be sure that in most of cases, your problem is bigger outside of Europe!
But the truth is that I am already accustomed, and to solve the problem, I was forced to purchase a mail box in Miami... http://www.shrapnelgames.com/ubb/images/icons/icon9.gif
[This message has been edited by Master Belisarius (edited 09 August 2000).]
August 10th, 2000, 06:13 AM
Mhhh, oh well never really thought about it like that. I suppose when the world is wired with cable and dsl lines that might ease the download/bandwith problems. As far as the piracy issues goes right now I think the entire industry is mostly on an "honor" system anyway - people that want to steal by burning a cd or otherwise making illegal copies are going to do it easily and any time they feel like it. I hate to see a return to the day of "decoder wheels" or other such annoying copy right protection devices but someone needs to invent something new. Even Sega's "home brew" format which takes out the ECC on CD's for dreamcast is no longer immunne... Guess my good forutne at living in the US of A got a little better today and saved me some cash 2. For everyone else I guess you will have to hope that Online sales are so outstanding that a retail Version will come out soon... I did my part http://www.shrapnelgames.com/ubb/images/icons/icon7.gif
August 13th, 2000, 11:22 AM
I have to agree with Overseas. I only live in Canada, and with the shipping costs that are tacked on, I am facing a 37% increase in the price of the game considering your flat rate of $13 for shipping to Canada. Now a flat rate of $19 for orders to Europe amounts to a greater than 50% increase in the price of the game. Surely something can be done to reduce this outrageous condition. I was definitly going to buy the game until I saw the total that I was going to have to pay (including your shipping charges). Now I will have to wait until either the shipping charges are reduced or you have more than one (or two) games that I want to order at the same time. I think you seriously have to look at your shipping charges if you consider including the profit potential of your overseas markets.
BTW Tim. I don't want to discourage the intent of Shrapnel Games in order to keep the Game out of the Retail market, but hopefully some sort of arrangement can be made to supply the (obviously) superior games of your company to overseas markets without compromising your stand while at the same time being fair to us - perhaps having overseas distributors for example.
[This message has been edited by Mike Tremblay (edited 13 August 2000).]
August 14th, 2000, 01:07 AM
Well having some sort of "distribution network" overseas MIGHT work in Canada but what about everywhere else? I don't think it is reasonable to set them up in markets unless the sales are going to justify the cost of doing so. But, lets look at things a little bit pragmatically. SG/SE4 has no control over postal charges. Unless they are going to eat the cost of S&H themselves all they are doing is pretty much passing the cost on to you. Asking them to pay for the S&H is going to cut into their margin to the point that it would hinder future development - and no one wants that. It's frustrating but the price is not that unreasonable a copy of Diablo 2 goes for around $60 U.S. if you buy it retail and probably about the same amount if you order it. I'll certainly get more more play time out of SE4 then I will D2. Pre-order now and you can save $5 off you S&H. But, the best idea so far is to order a bunch of games at once and save S&H that way - AOA:WDK2K is another really good game...
August 14th, 2000, 03:01 AM
Stupid question: why Shrapnel doesn't offer cheaper delivery options? As European customer, I'm used to wait 3 to 5 weeks a game to reduce the cost. Not a great enjoyment but a workable one. And for France at least, I never experienced problem with Chips and Bits.
August 14th, 2000, 03:54 AM
It is just not feasible with our setup PLUS with cheaper options we have no tracking and no way to make sure your order gets to you.
However we do sell this very game through Chips and Bits if you like to wait...
Sarge is coming...
Director of Covert Ops
August 17th, 2000, 05:33 PM
Would it be possible to create a "low-overhead" Version only for international shipping? PDF manual on CD, cardboard sleeve instead of jewel box, no game box. Would have to make some sort of dent indelivery costs, even with premium delivery.
Just throwing out ideas,
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