What went wrong for Imperator: Rome?

IsaacCAT

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ThePHD

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Bad launch has to be the main reason. First impressions are everything. Most people seemed to give up on the game early on. You probably could have fixed most of the issues with enough development time but Paradox seems to have decided it wasn't worth the financial risk when barely anyone was still playing. Especially not when other titles are booming and in need of more development resources.
 
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Synen

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Bad launch has to be the main reason. First impressions are everything. Most people seemed to give up on the game early on. You probably could have fixed most of the issues with enough development time but Paradox seems to have decided it wasn't worth the financial risk when barely anyone was still playing. Especially not when other titles are booming and in need of more development resources.
The bad launch and bad first impression didn't kill the game. It certainly did a lot of damage but it didn't kill the game. It was Paradox's strategy/policy of pumping out as many games as quickly as possible that caused the bad launch and first impressions but also more or less killed the game in the end.

Because of this strategy/policy, Paradox decided to pause development long before 2.0 was released without waiting to see if it was succesful so that they could move the devs to new projects. Turns out that 2.0 was succesful and positively received and that it made a good second impression on many people that quit the game after getting a bad first impression.

As a result of the pause on development people stopped playing and buying the game. Almost no one wants to play or buy a game with no development. The pause in development caused a lot of people to give the game bad reviews on steam as well. They didn't leave the bad reviews because 2.0 was bad but simply because of the pause in development. What also didn't help is that they didn't advertise 2.0 at all.

Add insult to injury that all the new projects that the devs were moved to were recently cancelled because Paradox's strategy/policy of pumping out as many games as quickly as possible came at a big cost of quality and quite simply did a lot of damage to peoples faith and trust in the company.

Don't get me wrong, Paradox was 100% right to cancel those projects and change the direction of their strategy/policy to focus on their current games because their old strategy/policy was clearly not working and doing a lot of damage.
 
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Kadanz

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Thank you for following protocol by waiting a full week since the last "why did I:R fail" post.
Who's turn is it next week? mine or yours?
 
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Snow Crystal

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Add insult to injury that all the new projects that the devs were moved to were recently cancelled because Paradox's strategy/policy of pumping out as many games as quickly as possible came at a big cost of quality and quite simply did a lot of damage to peoples faith and trust in the company.
What on earth are you talking about? Have CK3 been cancelled? HOI4? Stellaris? That is where all of the Imperator devs went.

As far as I know none of the cancelled projects were at PDS (Paradox Development Studios in Stockholm, where we primarily make GSGs), but rather at PDX (Paradox Interactive, the publisher of games from many more studios).
 
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lukaslunt

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What on earth are you talking about? Have CK3 been cancelled? HOI4? Stellaris? That is where all of the Imperator devs went.

As far as I know none of the cancelled projects were at PDS (Paradox Development Studios in Stockholm, where we primarily make GSGs), but rather at PDX (Paradox Interactive, the publisher of games from many more studios).
Ah a game developer on an imperator forum. If you could slip a little note at the coffee machine in the morning to the managers, so that they come to speak about imperator (I think that if you know things you cannot tell us yourself) that would be cool. We are a can be abandoned for 6 months.
 
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Herennius

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Ah a game developer on an imperator forum. If you could slip a little note at the coffee machine in the morning to the managers, so that they come to speak about imperator (I think that if you know things you cannot tell us yourself) that would be cool. We are a can be abandoned for 6 months.
While I understand that you, everyone else posting/reading here and me writing this are thirsty for news, both the communicated reasons and the time span ("likely nothing new in 2021") for the development hiatus explain the continuing silence for me - what should they say, if the problem is still the continued lack of development manpower? "We have nothing new to say" Or do we wish that they make their decision now and tell us "Sorry, folks...we didn't found new devs so far and don't see a chance anymore to get new people on board in time, so it's curtains for IR". Everyone has to answer this question him-/herself, but given those two feasible answers (leaving out a 3rd one here: "Get ready, we are back again", as I assume we would already have our info then)...I can cope with the silence and spend my time eagerly waiting for the next Imperator Invictus release or Imperatix Victoria showing up some point...not to speak of other (Paradox) games.
 
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lukaslunt

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While I understand that you, everyone else posting/reading here and me writing this are thirsty for news, both the communicated reasons and the time span ("likely nothing new in 2021") for the development hiatus explain the continuing silence for me - what should they say, if the problem is still the continued lack of development manpower? "We have nothing new to say" Or do we wish that they make their decision now and tell us "Sorry, folks...we didn't found new devs so far and don't see a chance anymore to get new people on board in time, so it's curtains for IR". Everyone has to answer this question him-/herself, but given those two feasible answers (leaving out a 3rd one here: "Get ready, we are back again", as I assume we would already have our info then)...I can cope with the silence and spend my time eagerly waiting for the next Imperator Invictus release or Imperatix Victoria showing up some point...not to speak of other (Paradox) games.
That they speak we will know what they really want. Ok at first we were told there was a shortage of staff, but I looked at the job postings and none of them mentioned imperator and still is. So what do we do ? The imperator forum is the only one where people from paradox no longer come. In all the others they come to speak regularly, but here not. We are abandoning by paradox. To say you turn on the imperator launcher there is no longer a paradox info while for CK3 for example you have links and a discord in links.
I don't know if it can be clearer?
 
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DukeLeto42

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That they speak we will know what they really want. Ok at first we were told there was a shortage of staff, but I looked at the job postings and none of them mentioned imperator and still is. So what do we do ? The imperator forum is the only one where people from paradox no longer come. In all the others they come to speak regularly, but here not. We are abandoning by paradox. To say you turn on the imperator launcher there is no longer a paradox info while for CK3 for example you have links and a discord in links.
I don't know if it can be clearer?
A couple things to note here:
  • I'm not surprised job postings don't mention I:R. Since this isn't a project from the ground up or with an extant team for new hires to move into, it's not really practical to hire individuals directly into I:R ("Welcome to I:R; now go figure it all out on your own" is not a winning strategy). Either they'll put together a team Paradox Tinto-style for it, or build up their manpower and shift a group over.
  • Since there is no development team, there are no devs whose job it is to come to the forums (or could benefit directly from it for ongoing development); the same goes for maintaining links and a Discord server.
These aren't great diagnostics for the future (or lack thereof) for I:R.
 
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lukaslunt

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A couple things to note here:
  • I'm not surprised job postings don't mention I:R. Since this isn't a project from the ground up or with an extant team for new hires to move into, it's not really practical to hire individuals directly into I:R ("Welcome to I:R; now go figure it all out on your own" is not a winning strategy). Either they'll put together a team Paradox Tinto-style for it, or build up their manpower and shift a group over.
  • Since there is no development team, there are no devs whose job it is to come to the forums (or could benefit directly from it for ongoing development); the same goes for maintaining links and a Discord server.
These aren't great diagnostics for the future (or lack thereof) for I:R.
So ok, I can join you on the job offers. In addition it seems that another studio is set up in the Netherlands but I have no information on its future work.
On the other hand for the fact of not speaking on the forum, I join you less. Ok there is no developer, but there are still the communications teams who can talk. I want them to talk, we are already at 6 months and 2022 is in 2 months. If there is nothing advanced to reform a team it stinks a can even for 2022.
 
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Napoleon1971

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"Get ready, we are back again"
I will mark the day in my calendar, when they come back with this sentence about the I:R development!

--------

I concur with you with one caveat, I will not be happy if it is the Ides of March when they say this.
 
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Snow Crystal

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In that case: Et tu, @Snow Crystal? (sorry for pulling you into this^^)

i have been called.gif
 
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bigredsnake

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The honest answer isn't so cut and dry. I don't think it's all Paradox's fault there's a lot of realities right now in the world. I'd argue the classical era isn't really required curriculum in most western countries anymore so you have to pick up that interest yourself anymore. We've been told a lot of that era was over emphasized and isn't as relevant as learning about some native tribe somewhere who got conquered and is only remembered because some anthropologist went and wrote their history down for them because they didn't even have a written language.

Second is unlike say Crusader Kings or EU...the non European countries in game have a harder time talking about their pagan roots or being proud of them in anyway. There's no fantasy what if scenario of kicking the white invaders out or bringing Europe under Islam and they don't have a lot of pride in Babylon, Persia, Ancient Egypt. Tourism yes but remember these are the people who blow up the same things because it's not Islam.

When's the last time you've seen an Egyptian talk about how great Egypt used to be? Or an Iranian talking about their non Muslim days? You'll see western nations who were straight out conquered by Rome still call back to it as almost an honor. But you won't see an Imam in Egypt talking about how bad the country is now and if only they'd have looked back on what Pharaoh did in X situation.

Third and most understandable is I think it needs to be longer or the effects in game need to be compressed. Like AE feels like it's still built for a EU4 timeline. It's harder to conquer the world and actually make it a place worth living in with the economy, AE, etc in game already. Now while I understand there's some real big reasons why they don't go to the start off CK3 and have all games linked maybe they should either adjust the economy and AE and such for a shorter time frame or go further back in antiquity. I can understand why avoiding Jesus, the Jewish Diaspora, the creation of the Roman Catholic church, and the birth of Islam may not be things Paradox wants to touch with a ten foot pole.

As for the rest I think it's actually their most indepth game and has a lot more logic to how the world works than EU4. It's like the bastard child of EU, CK, and Vic and in a lot of ways that makes it that much more complex than them which I think people were expecting something more like EU or CK just reskinned.
 
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honkajoki

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I know that in the current world there is some legislation that prevents for example some symbols in WWII games. And there may be some legislation about defamatory depictions of some things, but would such legislation prevent respectful handling of historical facts, or plausible alternative histories. Are any of the issues mentioned above such, that some legislation somewhere forbids games just for including them?

There certainly are some people who don't like games with some issues in them, and may even boycott whole companies if one of their games includes issues they don't like. But do those people form a significant portion of Paradox's customers, has Paradox done some research on this?

Assuming both of the above are answered negatively, Paradox should just ignore those societal trends and keep making interesting games, set in interesting timeframes, with interesting issues, for those who like to play them and buy them.

I just got Imperator: Rome from the halloween sale. Actually bought it twice before and refunded it when it wouldn't run on my system, something (quite possibly in my distro) has evolved and it works now. It does, however, feel a bit like work in progress. I surely hope Paradox hasn't stopped its development based on some imagined idea that their customers aren't interested in the period or would get too offended be events in an extended timeline. Hope the game gets picked up again for active development, or at least some bugfixes and UI features.
 
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