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#3494908 - 01/14/12 03:58 PM Steel Beasts business model discussion
Trident Offline
Member

Registered: 01/25/01
Posts: 689
Loc: Germany
To keep Wicked's screenshot thread clean. Do you consider SB Pro PE too expensive? If so, why? Think it is appropriately priced? Explain!

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#3494921 - 01/14/12 04:20 PM Re: Steel Beasts business model discussion [Re: Trident]
Magnum Offline
Lifer

Registered: 01/27/03
Posts: 27382
Loc: Naples, Florida
Appropriately priced ...as mentioned before in detail...


Excellent game that can be played SP, MP, co-op... all in 1 tank, 1 platoon, 1 company...etc etc

Can be played as an RTS in map view, can be played as driver and AI do the rest, as gunner and AI do the rest, as TC and AI do the rest...

Comes with a map editor and a mission editor...

Point is SB Pro PE can be played in many different ways, different configs, different modes... very very versatile game/sim.


Now to compare the price... as mentioned before...

EA Sport game... for example: Tiger Woods Golf... yearly edition 60 bucks, 12 golf courses over a year at 10 bucks each... each year repeat.

Call of Duty game... yearly edition 60 bucks, map packs totaling 3 or 4 in that year at 15 bucks each.

iRacing... 100 bucks a year plus you buy extra cars and tracks...

and so on and so on...

Sure... you can find a game... like ArmA2 that will last for years... 40 bucks, and 3 add-ons so far for a cost. But still within 5 years another version would come, (ArmA3 coming this year).

Any of these dumb pay to play... IE: WoW, WoT, etc etc... hundreds a year probally...


So the bottom line is and what you need to ask yourself... 1) how many other modern armor combat games are out or coming, 2)how much do you plan on playing it 3)will you get your monies worth... if your like me, and many others 125 bucks is a damn good price for what we get... if NOT, if you won't play so often, if you'll get bored of it in 2 months, or the cost is just too much (then what are you playing now anyway?)... then the answer is no.

So no one can tell you if it's worth it... you got to tell yourself if it's worth it by doing research on the product, reading reviews, reading AAR's...etc etc...

BUT just because I, and many like me, think it's worth it... doesn't give anyone a right to #%&*$# and complain about the price in every thread that comes up about it.

Sure, you can come up with good arguments against buying it... then thats fine... your lost of some great gaming... go back too what... Tank Platoon 2 from 10 years ago via GOG?

lol wink

IMO
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#3494944 - 01/14/12 04:45 PM Re: Steel Beasts business model discussion [Re: Trident]
TankHunter Offline
Misanthropic Peon
Senior Member

Registered: 11/17/04
Posts: 3109
I have played the sim for about half a decade now (since it came out), I have played many hundreds, perhaps thousands of hours with it. If you go for a "value per hour" basis then it is rather cheap (even with the updates). The cost is in the realm of cents as opposed to dollars. There are some sims and games out there that cost something like 50 dollars, but where you get only some hours worth of entertainment from it. So in terms of this SB isn't that expensive.

Then there is the realm of cost per vehicle available, which is much lower than with DCS smile
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#3494963 - 01/14/12 05:18 PM Re: Steel Beasts business model discussion [Re: Trident]
strykerpsg Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 931
Loc: Ft Lewis, WA aka JBLM
I too find it appropriately priced, as I too have owned for many years. I can the hesitation by some just getting started, but I find their business model to be commendable. Admittedly, I was hesitant to buy their first patch/add on, as most previous titles offered their patches for free, but after seeing the labor of detail and accuracy, I was from then on hooked on the business model. I find their current practice little different from others DLC offers, but with greater fidelity of detail and more in depth.

My only two complaint, is no campaign, but as has been pointed out, there is the ability to link multiple single scenarios into a quasi campaign of sorts. The other, would be more Soviet crewable armor, to make for some great BLUFOR/OPFOR multiplayer scenarios.

And as Magnum has pointed out, I have thousands of dollars invested in FSX alone. It's beyond a game, it's an indepth simulation. So, $100.00 (or $85.00 for latest discounts) is nothing compared to others. Matter of fact, in World of Tank, I bet I've sunk more than a few hundred dollars.

Matt

Alibi fire....a true Stryker and it's multiude of variants would be really cool too...but I'm biased.
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#3494977 - 01/14/12 05:53 PM Re: Steel Beasts business model discussion [Re: Trident]
Trident Offline
Member

Registered: 01/25/01
Posts: 689
Loc: Germany
I'll paraphrase my post in the other thread for brevity.

Premise: Black Shark, Falcon, A-10C, FSX, Skyrim, COD, CIV 5 are titles which deliver levels of entertainment value and complexity similar to Steel Beasts at sub-$60 prices.

Let's examine these examples in detail. FSX? IIRC cost more like $75 originally and evidently did not generate satisfactory sales, leading Microsoft to disband the development team - Flight will now be based on a completely different business model (free-to-play + paid DLC). Falcon? Put its original developer out of business and is only still alive thanks to non-profit efforts of community enthusiasts. Skyrim, COD, CIV 5? MUCH larger potential market, so development cost can be spread over a vastly bigger number of sales. Black Shark, A-10C? Some may argue with this, but there are indications that the business model which ED planned for the DCS series is simply not working out. Longer than anticipated development cycles appear to have forced them to charge for products which they originally hoped to offer for free and broaden their product range (DCS Flying Legends) so they get revenue on a more regular basis.

All indications are that a price of $60 (let alone less) is unsustainable in the long term for a complex, high-quality game targeted at a niche market (these are TWO separate attributes and both contribute).

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#3494984 - 01/14/12 06:07 PM Re: Steel Beasts business model discussion [Re: Trident]
_michal Offline
poly pusher
Member

Registered: 10/07/07
Posts: 399
Loc: Poland
I think it is appropriately priced. Haven't bought my copy yet, but I'm going to buy it in next few months. They are growing, improving their product, and surviving on the market. That's something.

Ssnake is actively and honestly talking to his community. That's also very important.
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#3495040 - 01/14/12 08:22 PM Re: Steel Beasts business model discussion [Re: Trident]
Ssnake Offline
Virtual Shiva Beast
Hotshot

Registered: 12/16/99
Posts: 5098
Loc: Germoney
I'm not sure if it makes sense to directly compare a title like Skyrim with SB Pro. Of course, if you look at it strictly from an entertainment point of view, it's a valid position, and if you're just looking for pure entertainment, by all means go and buy Skyrim. It's a fantastic deal there - great graphics, just $60.-, and potentially also hundreds of hours of gameplay if you want to discover the entire world there. I had tremendous fun with Fallout 3 (another huge time sink), and I suppose that Skyrim is somewhat comparable in concept (though the setting is totally different etc.).

This is why I say that the value is in the eye of the beholder. Because if you want to educate yourself about contemporary armored combat vehicles, SB Pro is rather unique. While other games may also offer "simulation goodness", none of the examples that you mentioned allow you a first-hand in-detail experience of battle tanks and IFVs. If on the other hand you don't care about what kind of a machine you control as long as it is modern and technical and in a combat environment, one of those flight simulators may be a better deal. I just doubt that there is anyone using these outlandish metrics for purchase decisions.
You want to do some (virtual) flying, so you go and pick a flight sim. Or you're interested in armor, then there's the choice between a number of WW2 tank games, some 1st person shooters that also let you board something that resembles tanks if you squint your eyes real hard, and press your fingers on your ears singing "Nananananana I can't hear you nananananana". Then there's Blaze of War, or Balkans on Fire which I'd consider real contenders even though their focus is different so that they aren't completely interchangeable - but still, probably the titles that come closest to a directly comparable tile if your focus is more on entertainment.

Whatever floats your boat. But I think that SB Pro has a number of world-exclusive elements. Is there any other simulation for infantry fighting vehicles? Or mobile gun systems like the Centauro? How many other titles are there that have a reasonably faithful replication of the Leopard 2 family fire control system? How many other titles are out there that offer a comparable real-time constructive simulation/tactical wargame with contemporary equipment?


If you say that you aren't really that much interested in all this, then I will wholeheartedly agree: Steel Beasts isn't made for you.
Then again, you wrote that you're on the fence for a couple of years, so you probably have some interest in these things. In that case I say, there isn't anything better. It really depends on what metrics you apply to determine the value of SB Pro; only you can know what is important for you, and decide on that basis whether or not eSim Games is offering a sweet deal or not. They could try to pay me for playing "The Sims", I still wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole.

We've decided that we want at least $100.- for SB Pro PE in its current configuration without printed user manual and digital installation file distribution, and up to $125.- with everything. Suppose we would reduce the price to $40.-, I'd still have to enter this very same discussion, just with someone else whose price point would be $30.- or less. We are fully aware that a three-digit price (even at the lower end of the spectrum) is a bit of a deterrence. That's intentional though it may be counter-intuitive. We want customers who are really interested in the subject matter. Everyone with serious interest will still investigate what SB Pro offers.
There will be no impulse buys, yes. But also no negative surprises about what SB Pro is and what it doesn't attempt to be. After having put so much money on the table, people will invest some of their time to work themselves into the subject matter. Which is an absolutely essential prerequisite to actually have a lot of fun with it. Our price point generates fewer, but happier customers. And customer satisfaction is one of the cornerstones on which the company was founded and is still resting. I like to surprise people positively. In a marketing campaign, I will reveal most, but not everything that is new in a new version. So that if people are already convinced that an update is worth the try, they always find something extra that sweetens the deal.

But you have to make that initial leap of faith. I could argue that anyone who already owns a PC for entertainment purposes has demonstrated that he has disposable income for unnecessary luxury items (and let's be honest, computer games are just that, a luxury). And I'm not ashamed to ask for a luxury price. But I will also tell you that I have come from very modest beginnings. I know very well the value of every single dollar. I will never tell you that $100.- are small change even though most of our customers probably make more on a single day's work. Even then, four or five hours of work are nothing to treat with disrespect. All I can say is that we at eSim Games work long hours too, to honor that leap of faith that every one of our customers had to do at least once; to honor it with the very best work that we can possibly deliver. In the last twelve months we created four new jobs, doubled our programming capacity, and invested a six-digit sum into stuff that will help to further boost our productivity and the value of subsequent Steel Beasts releases. I'm not asking you to "support a worthy cause" or to buy SB Pro PE just to send a signal to keep independent developers alive, or some sob story. I'm just asking for an open mind about our product's qualities:

Here's our product. This is what we want for it. I'm here to tell you everything you need to know to make an informed decision, and I will respect a "Thanks but no thanks" as much as I will be happy about a purchase decision. My promise is, that there will be no negative surprises if you care to have a closer look at it. At SteelBeasts.com there is a Tech Support discussion board with all the dirty laundry there is. Look at the customer complaints, look at our responses, and draw your own conclusions. There is nothing that we have to hide.
smile
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#3495201 - 01/15/12 04:25 AM Re: Steel Beasts business model discussion [Re: Trident]
QuickSilver Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/14/10
Posts: 60
Ssnake please do not take this as a personnel attack. But eSim Games does a horrible job of advertising Steel Beast. It is VERY difficult for someone to understand what Steel Beasts offers. You ask us what other sim offers the features Steel Beast offers? ("Is there any other simulation for infantry fighting vehicles? Or mobile gun systems like the Centauro? How many other titles are there that have a reasonably faithful replication of the Leopard 2 family fire control system? How many other titles are out there that offer a comparable real-time constructive simulation/tactical wargame with contemporary equipment?") You don't even tell people YOU guys offer these features. So how can you expect people to make a comparison? Would you buy a car that cost 250 percent of what other cars cost if you did not even know what features the car offered?

This is how Steel Beasts is advertised.

Tank Sim $125.

Not very descriptive is it?

If you really want to communicate what Steel Beasts offers and don't want disappointed impulse buy customers do what makes sense. Offer a demo.

Nothing major. Say 1 tank and a small map.

Or at least make an effort to inform people what Steel Beast is all about.

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#3495203 - 01/15/12 04:38 AM Re: Steel Beasts business model discussion [Re: QuickSilver]
BlueSixGolf Offline
Member

Registered: 07/15/00
Posts: 174
Loc: Mesa, Arizona
Originally Posted By: QuickSilver


Or at least make an effort to inform people what Steel Beast is all about.



http://www.youtube.com/user/eSimGamesDtl

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#3495205 - 01/15/12 04:46 AM Re: Steel Beasts business model discussion [Re: Trident]
Ssnake Offline
Virtual Shiva Beast
Hotshot

Registered: 12/16/99
Posts: 5098
Loc: Germoney
That proposed limited demo - by definition - could not show the full scope. wink ...and my point was, though maybe not eloquently phrased, that SB Pro is about richness; many, many different contemporary military vehicles with high fidelity replications of their fire control systems; many, many scenarios to play; many tactical variables to consider.

How and where did you hear about SB Pro?
What made you think enough about it that you actually bothered enough to come here and tell me that our marketing is horrible?
Have you looked at the Steel Beasts channel at YouTube and checked out the videos that we made?
Did you (gasp) ... google it?
Have you read the reviews here at SimHQ, at Tanksim.com, or even bothered to visit SteelBeasts.com to check out the "Game Info" tab and the corresponding Wiki?
If you did, and if what you saw there didn't change your assessment that Steel Beasts is more than "a tank sim", how could a demo possibly change that impression, especially if it featured one of the more popular vehicles like the M1 or Leopard 2?

You can download and install Steel Beasts Pro PE for free, and if you find another user on the discussion board at SteelBeasts.com to borrow you a license (which is possible), you can play. So there - no demo, but you can try the full game (you just depend on others not pulling the plug while you play).
smile
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