Figured I'd weigh in on this since I spent about a month researching before purchasing it last week. Been playing it quite a bit since, though mostly tutorials and some of the simpler scenarios. I was in your position almost exactly -interest sparked by Black Shark, initially incredulous at the cost, etc.1.How and where did you hear about SB Pro?
SimHQ3.Have you looked at the Steel Beasts channel at YouTube and checked out the videos that we made?
Yes. At initial pass they are not that impressive as the charm of the sim is in the game play and not the graphics. I learned the most about game play from the AARs such as Brave Rifles http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c9tPvJoCZLg
and more recently, the T-72 AAR http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lLIhnjZFQ0M
. Neither of these pops up on the first page when I searched youtube. In fact, I got a collection of some really old, pre-PE stuff and a hodge-podge of three year old stuff of varying quality.
What I would have liked to have seen there was a few short (maybe two minute) video blurbs on what is special about the sim. An example of using the Map view, an overview of the playable vehicles and the unplayable vehicles. Perhaps a 15second teaser for 3 of the best scenarios, with narration.5.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"
actually it took me a little longer than you'd expect for me to figure that out. After all, the videos don't explain that you can command at a higher level, somewhat like the Take Command ACW games, or the complexity and power of the waypoint and route system.
They also don't explain what level of detail you get in the vehicles. Is it switchology like Black Shark? Lighter like IL2? Procedural sim vs Zeitgeist sim? Turns out the technical details of operating the vehicles are mostly glossed over and a lot of the interesting complexity is in the Tank Commandeer and higher role - it's like multiplayer Combat Mission crossed with Red Orchestra, adding on a layer of Take Command Bull Run. how could a demo possibly change that impression, especially if it featured one of the more popular vehicles like the M1 or Leopard 2?
Personally, I think if esim or SimHQ sponsored an 'free' online event once or twice a year that would be better than a demo. You could lend a limited number free licenses for 10 days so people could try the tutorials, then run a noobs online coop game. It really takes doing the tuts and reading the manual to understand the thought behind the game.
You could offer this to SimHQ members only and encourage people to chat on teamspeak to get a grip on the game.6.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)
This is what convinced me to purchase, a fellow simhqer lent me a license for a week. This is a great seller, so long as you have the kind souls around to offer you a borrowed license.
The ability to add up to 7 more licenses at $25 each so friends of mine can play as well was an understated yet essential plus. There was no way I was going to convince them to spend $100 for this, but me offering them a license to borrow might entice them.
I should add Ssnakes detailed responses to my questions showed a high level of support.