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shmerl

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Nov 1, 2015
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I just learned about this game, developed by Obsidian. If I understood correctly it won't be crowdfunded unlike Pillars of Eternity.

Do you plan to release it DRM-free for example on GOG? I really like RPGs by Obsidian and enjoyed Pillars Of Eternity quite a bit, but I only buy DRM-free games.

Thanks!

P.S. Sorry if it's the wrong forum section, I was redirected here from Obsidian's forum.
 

Ols

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All Paradox games are DRM free on Steam. Just download them via the Steam store and then move the files elsewhere. They don't need the Steam interface in order to run.
 

shmerl

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I'm not using Steam. A lot of Paradox games aren't sold on GOG (because of Steamworks), that's why I'm asking.

I bought Pillars of Eternity through GOG, but since it's a crowdfunded game which announced DRM-free release in advance, it was expected. For non crowdfunded games it depends on the publisher.
 

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I'm not using Steam. A lot of Paradox games aren't sold on GOG (because of Steamworks), that's why I'm asking.

I bought Pillars of Eternity through GOG, but since it's a crowdfunded game which announced DRM-free release in advance, it was expected. For non crowdfunded games it depends on the publisher.

It's unlikely that Paradox will publish outside the Steam store, so you will probably need to use its interface to download the game.

It sounds like you moved the goalposts here though - the Steam store itself isn't a source of DRM. It's the developer's choice whether to use DRM or not (either through Steam or through a third party client). Paradox does not publish DRMed games on Steam, so using a Steam account to download a game and then turning it offline permanently seems reasonable to me. If you're ideologically opposed to the idea of a store/update client on your computer then no, you probably can't get this game. You can get this game DRM free though - just buy it through the Steam store ;)
 

shmerl

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Nov 1, 2015
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It's unlikely that Paradox will publish outside the Steam store

Why is that exactly? Losing sales is not a good idea, and ignoring other users is not a good treatment. Obsidian already released on GOG, so why would they ignore it now? Unless Paradox will forbid them (and again, that would be why exactly?).

So I'll surely buy the game if it will be released on GOG or other DRM-free store, but I'm not going to start using Steam because of it. I have different reasons to avoid Steam, and the main one is that I prefer to support stores which sell only DRM-free games.
 

Ols

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Why is that exactly? Losing sales is not a good idea, and ignoring other users is not a good treatment. Obsidian already released on GOG, so why would they ignore it now? Unless Paradox will forbid them (and again, that would be why exactly?).

So I'll surely buy the game if it will be released on GOG or other DRM-free store, but I'm not going to start using Steam because of it. I have different reasons to avoid Steam, and the main one is that I prefer to support stores which sell only DRM-free games.

The number of sales they lose is negligible. For Paradox it's a balancing act between appeasing smaller segments of their consumer base and providing a homogenous product that they can support easily. They were asked to do a "DRM-free" release and chose to release on Gamersgate, which turned out to be a total failure even when customers such as yourself were being actively directed there because the sales simply didn't materialise. It required them to make a different build of the game for release on a non-Steam platform (as all Paradox games have a good level of Steam integration now) and divided the playerbase. They eventually decided to stop updating it and give everyone a free Steam copy if they bought the Gamersgate version. They apologised but said that they were losing money making what was rapidly becoming a distinctive game for a tiny playerbase. Obsidian may choose to release on GOG, but it's not an ideal situation to be in if you didn't explicitly promise to.

That's a shame because you can buy the game from DRM free stores and just use Steam as your download client. I'm not sure Steam Store gets any money if you buy directly from Paradox. That said, Paradox has already determined that fighting the tide of download/update clients like Steam isn't possible for mass-market games that they're starting to publish.
 

shmerl

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Nov 1, 2015
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The number of sales they lose is negligible.
Not true. GOG is much bigger than you probably think it is. And it continues growing. Distribution monoculture is not a healthy thing for anyone, like any monopoly really. Your examples with Gamersgate are several years old. Trying to extrapolate anything from them to the current or any future situation is pointless.

The only reason I saw from Paradox about not releasing their games (i.e. from Paradox studio) outside of Steam is because they use Steam lock-in. I.e. network features in Steamworks which prevent them from providing the same functionality for non Steam users (even if they could release the game without those features, like pure singleplayer and such). This argument is pretty weak though, and I never found it acceptable. Lock-in is just bad, there are no two ways about it. Anyway, Obsidian aren't Paradox studio, that's why I'm asking about position of Paradox as publishers here.

Obsidian may choose to release on GOG, but it's not an ideal situation to be in if you didn't explicitly promise to.

Ideal situation for developer is to reach as many users as possible. And limiting sales to one distributor is surely not the way to do it. Exclusive releases don't make any sense for normal developers. They are usually practiced by publishers who have collusion with distribution business (or those who own both, such as MS, Sony, EA and such). For any normal developer who is not part of such publisher / distributor cartel, there is no reason to ever limit distribution.
 
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Ols

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Not true. GOG is much bigger than you probably think it is. And it continues growing. Distribution monoculture is not a healthy thing for anyone, like any monopoly really. Your examples with Gamersgate are several years old. Trying to extrapolate anything from them to the current or any future situation is pointless.

The only reason I saw from Paradox about not releasing their games (i.e. from Paradox studio) outside of Steam is because they use Steam lock-in. I.e. network features in Steamworks which prevent them from providing the same functionality for non Steam users (even if they could release the game without those features, like pure singleplayer and such). This argument is pretty weak though, and I never found it acceptable. Lock-in is just bad, there are no two ways about it.

Based on an experiment with using multiple platforms Paradox assessed that the cost of providing two was greater than the revenue from having slightly more customers, and closed the less profitable store presence. They seem to be pretty confident in that decision.

As I said, you can simply remove your install from the Steam directory and run it as normal. The steam features just appear broken, but don't interfere with your experience. They're moving towards integration with their own native software now.

Ideal situation for developer is to reach as many users as possible. And limiting sales to one distributor is surely not the way to do it. Exclusive releases don't make any sense these days. They are usually practiced by publishers who have collusion with distribution business (or those who own both, such as MS, Sony, EA and such). For any normal developer who is not part of such publisher / distributor cartel, there is no reason to ever limit distribution.

No, not at all. The ideal situation is to make the greatest profit. If there are significant costs involved in reaching a particular market and the consumer base is small then its not worth selling to them, even if they want a modified version of your product.

What you're not appreciating is that developers have to invest time and money integrating their games into different frameworks. Most consumers want heavy steam integration, which makes it a Day 1 feature in all Paradox games now. To then create a game with all of that stripped away and replaced with something else for a very small userbase isn't cost-effective. Collusion isn't really the issue, because Paradox as a PC game publisher can make its own decisions regarding how its games are sold without having to work with closed platforms or distributors.
 

shmerl

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Based on an experiment with using multiple platforms Paradox assessed that the cost of providing two was greater than the revenue from having slightly more customers, and closed the less profitable store presence.

That was when exactly? As I said, you can't extrapolate anything from the past to the present - you need to analyze the market as it is now if you make a claim that market isn't profitable or anything like that.

Most consumers want heavy steam integration,.

Not really. That's what Valve would want you to think of course (since they lock developers into their distribution using this). For games like Obsidian makes (predominantly single player) those features are practically irrelevant anyway.

Collusion isn't really the issue, because Paradox as a PC game publisher can make its own decisions regarding how its games are sold without having to work with closed platforms or distributors.

Great. Then Paradox should have all reasons not to limit their games to Steam. Check out amount of GOG sales and market growth in the latest financial report from CD Projekt Red if you want analysis.
 

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A vast majority of Paradox's sales have come from Steam, that is why they abandoned non-Steam releases a few years ago.

For CK2 at least, it was costing them more money to support the non-Steam version of the game then they were getting out of sales.
 

shmerl

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And reposted recently as a blog
See above, the blogs feature recently returned to the forums, and this was reposted by one of the devs on the 10th (Last Thursday).

I don't see any up to date analysis which explains how it is economically relevant today. Logic from 2 years ago doesn't sound convincing to me (I'd say it was flawed already then market wise, but today it's simply wrong).
 

shmerl

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Nov 1, 2015
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A vast majority of Paradox's sales have come from Steam, that is why they abandoned non-Steam releases a few years ago.

As I said, using numbers from years ago is not useful. Do they have stats for example from Pillars of Eternity? That would be more useful for two reasons. First it was released on many distributors at once at the same time, and second it's fairly recent.

If you know such stats published anywhere - it would be interesting to see (i.e. sales per distributor).
 

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Paradox have made it quite clear both that they are going with Steam-only release (though you can buy the keys in many places), and that they don't put DRM in any of their games.
 

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I don't see any up to date analysis which explains how it is economically relevant today. Logic from 2 years ago doesn't sound convincing to me (I'd say it was flawed already then market wise, but today it's simply wrong).

This was posted last week by @Johan, but if you insist with arguing with PDX's policy, let's wait for the Devs to repeat what I've been saying. @TinyWiking

Or just read through this thread
 

shmerl

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Nov 1, 2015
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Paradox have made it quite clear both that they are going with Steam-only release (though you can buy the keys in many places), and that they don't put DRM in any of their games.
You mean with Tyranny? That's unfortunate, I'll have to skip the game then. Did Paradox give any reasons for such decision?
 

EnvyDemon

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You mean with Tyranny? That's unfortunate, I'll have to skip the game then. Did Paradox give any reasons for such decision?

giphy.gif


If you want to see those reasons, please read the links we've been giving you for the past umpteenth posts.
 
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