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ThunderPeel2001

POLL: Leaking backers content

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If you entered this Project at any stage and thought to yourself:

- The DRM free game will never be leaked. (maybe even the beta, i have no idea how often Steam stuff gets cracked open)

- The Digital PDF will never be leaked.

- Non of the digital Videos will ever get leaked.

- The digital Soundtrack won´t get leaked.

I´ll call you not very aware of the internet. (and yes, i am sure, you - who is reading this right now - are the one and only person that never downloaded any file illegally. You don´t need to inform me about this. ;) )

In my eyes what you exclusivly get for backing this project and no one can take from you:

- The warm and fuzzy feeling of actually making happen what many people wanted but no big company wanted to put a dime behind. (game, docu, linux suport ect.)

- The option to influence development on the private forums.

- The Beta without any hassle of cracking/looking around on shady websites that might carry viruses.

- A bunch of physical collectible items depending on your level as a backer.

This is how it is. There is no question about it.

What now:

- We looose nothing. We still get to see the Docu, it´s not that anyone steels the option to watch it from us.

- DF/2PP dos not loose money because there simply is no more option to buy it.

- People seeing it on the outside will strongly consider backing other kickstarter projects because they see what they are missing on the inside.

- The chance that a fan following outside of the project grows big and generates a big amount of day one sales when the game gets released is big.

- The chance that you end up looking like a dick if you fight this people is given (no one likes the law departments of Sony, Universal, Paramount and so on) therfore you risk that people feel more right about themselves when pirating the game later and give up the free publicety comming with the last point. (since sharing is careing!)

+ I bet my life that more people will buy the game and (if on sale) the documentary if you just turn a blind eye to stuff getting leaked during the next year. Thats how the internet works. I grew up with it the past 20 years. - To be fair to your backers you should not encourage it, but wasting time and money on hunting it down and maybe even sanctioning it... is like willingly takeing an arrow to the knee. And you know the chans of adventure gets very much smaller if you take an arrow to the knee.

Excellent.

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What now:

- We looose nothing. We still get to see the Docu, it´s not that anyone steels the option to watch it from us.

- DF/2PP dos not loose money because there simply is no more option to buy it.

- People seeing it on the outside will strongly consider backing other kickstarter projects because they see what they are missing on the inside.

- The chance that a fan following outside of the project grows big and generates a big amount of day one sales when the game gets released is big.

- The chance that you end up looking like a dick if you fight this people is given (no one likes the law departments of Sony, Universal, Paramount and so on) therfore you risk that people feel more right about themselves when pirating the game later and give up the free publicety comming with the last point. (since sharing is careing!)

+ I bet my life that more people will buy the game and (if on sale) the documentary if you just turn a blind eye to stuff getting leaked during the next year. Thats how the internet works. I grew up with it the past 20 years. - To be fair to your backers you should not encourage it, but wasting time and money on hunting it down and maybe even sanctioning it... is like willingly takeing an arrow to the knee. And you know the chans of adventure gets very much smaller if you take an arrow to the knee.

I'm sorry, but allow me to point out the flaws in your logic. Let's take the following: "People seeing it on the outside will strongly consider backing other Kickstarter projects because they see what they are missing on the inside."

So your logic is: If people get exclusive content without having to be a backer, they will pay to be a backer to get exclusive content. In other words: Nonsense.

I've pointed out the flaws in your argument in other threads, but I'll try one last time:

1. There's a reason that we're only shown selected early versions of games before they're released -- if we saw all the false starts and how shitty it looks in the beginning, it would negatively affect the public's opinion of it. This is why the first you see of big movie coming out is not the behind-the-scenes, not the rushes (if you even know what they are?): It's a meticulously crafted trailer, or approved publicity stills. First impressions are important.

2. Also, as explained in the post above, the leaking of cheap-to-produce extras can only negatively damage future Kickstarter projects. It will force them to offer more tangible rewards, like t-shirts and books, which will eat more into the game's budget, meaning they will have to raise more money to get the same amount of funding.

I don't care how much you "bet your life" on this idea of yours, but every bit of evidence and shred of common sense points to the opposite. I'm not saying that this stuff being leaked is the end of the world, but there's very good reasons why it could be very bad.

Finally: Do you believe you know more about producing games than Double Fine? If they do not wish something to be leaked, something tells me they have VALID reasons, based on decades of experience, for not wanting it to be. You "guarantees" of higher sales if content is leaked means nothing.

Bottom line: We should respect their wishes, and the wishes of the majority of the backers (who paid for this content).

Are you a backer?

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Truth in what MichalM said...

In the mean time: If you stumble acros anything.. just let DF/2pp know like they asked, and they can do whatever they choose too.

In this case, youtube is rather cooperative in resolving copyright issues, and it shouldn't take much effort...

But yeah don't turn it into a witch hunt (unless it's like your hobby or something )

Most importantly, Lets enjoy this awesome project, and the awesome documentary!

And even more so: The game when it is finished!

Literally can't sit and wait for the next update. Fired Psychonauts up again to pass the time :P

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So your logic is: If people get exclusive content without having to be a backer, they will pay to be a backer to get exclusive content. In other words: Nonsense.

The point is that there is still exclusive content they can't get - material goods, access to the backers' forum and so on.

1. There's a reason that we're only shown selected early versions of games before they're released -- if we saw all the false starts and how shitty it looks in the beginning, it would negatively affect the public's opinion of it.

I don't think you can say that's a rule.

2. Also, as explained in the post above, the leaking of cheap-to-produce extras can only negatively damage future Kickstarter projects. It will force them to offer more tangible rewards, like t-shirts and books, which will eat more into the game's budget, meaning they will have to raise more money to get the same amount of funding.

You've got a point there, I think, but it's perhaps not as strong as you suppose - there could still be community-based benefits, for instance.

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The point is that there is still exclusive content they can't get - material goods, access to the backers' forum and so on.

They can see material goods without digital content being leaked. I don't think you understood Michael's point. He's betting his life that leaking things will be GOOD for DFA and for future Kickstarter projects.

I don't think you can say that's a rule.

I never said it was a rule, I said it's what every company does based on decades of experience. First impressions have proven themselves to be incredibly important. Consider The Dark Knight. Did they release test footage first? Designs they rejected? Imagine all of the hundreds of designs they went through before they decided on the final look of the Joker. Some of them would have been AWFUL. If you'd seen them first, they would have created terribly negative word of mouth around the film.

And what about spoilers? Things that DF doesn't want the general public to know before the game is released? How is knowing those things going help sales??

You've got a point there, I think, but it's perhaps not as strong as you suppose - there could still be community-based benefits, for instance.

Yes, there could be community-based benefits, but that's pretty limited. By leaking backer content you're reducing the options available to those wanting funding. It's not a GOOD thing for them.

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I don't think you understood Michael's point. He's betting his life that leaking things will be GOOD for DFA and for future Kickstarter projects.

Well, I might be guilty of a certain amount of skim reading, but I probably invite that sort of thing myself. I'll admit it seems like a stretch to insist that it will be good for DF. But I do think it isn't obvious whether it will do more good or harm overall.

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In all honesty, I do not have an answer to the question. Personally, I am backing the project for several reasons such as:

1) to help bring this awesome adventure game genre back to blossom,

2) to support the persons behind the best adventure games or actually all games ever,

3) to see how these awesome developers work their everyday magic in the office,

4) to help cut some of the middle men who are eating the developers profits the from the equation,

5) to give the developers freedom to do what they think is best without unnecessary constraints and influence,

6) to show that being DRM free gives more interest and sales, and

7) to reconcile my conscience about pirating some of these great adventure games back in the day.

To achieve many of these goals this game needs as much media coverage as possible and the game has to be as good as possible. It should also sell well after being finished to raise more money to DF to do further games and show other developers that there is MONEY to be made with adventure games. I do not know which way to achieve most media hype or sales: by giving free access to everyone, by keeping it secret with some leaks here and there, or keeping it totally secret. Another thing is the future of Kickstarter or similar sites as fund-raising platforms for game developers - how do these different levels of opaquity during the development relate to the future ability to raise money from the crowds. There are also copyrights for the material and commitments to the backers. As a whole, these are complex issues and hard to answer. Who truly knows what the best way is? As a backer, I am not at all concerned about the exclusivity of the content. I just want this thing to FLY AND SOAR TO SUCCESS!

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Whoa, when I stepped away from this last night I really didn't think that this argument would last any longer than a post of two more. It has become a little bit contentious (but not too bad as far as the internet is concerned). I do find this discussion interesting so I will make one final post with some food for thought.

So first, let's take a deep breath and realize that we're all like minded people whom are here because we like Double Fine and enjoy this kickstarter Adventure (double meaning intended :lol: ) we are all on.

The main thrust of my position has been that the more exclusive perks that Double Fine (and others) can offer backers, the more money they are likely to raise. When we, as a community, damage that exclusivity we damage these fine companies' ability to raise money that would have ultimately been used to make great games. And that is something I care about. That is why my ideal poll option would be DON’T LIKE: I don’t want people to see content I’ve paid for free, and to respect DF’s wishes.

Given all of the success and attention this kickstarter campaign has received it is sure to be looked on as the prototype for future kickstarter funded games. This means that we are now in the spotlight and how we comport ourselves matters. Just because leakage has happened in the past or is likely to happen doesn't mean that we shouldn't care when it happens.

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I'd love it because for some reason my transaction didn't work and despite all my efforts to fix it, still doesn't work. So either: They got my money but I don't get anything or They didn't get my money and I don't get the money back.

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87,142 people are backers. If not a single one of those people leaks content it will be quite a momentous thing. With or without an NDA if you think that no content is going to be leaked prematurely, you are living in a dream world.

Best that can be done is discourage it.

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87,142 people are backers. If not a single one of those people leaks content it will be quite a momentous thing. With or without an NDA if you think that no content is going to be leaked prematurely, you are living in a dream world.

Best that can be done is discourage it.

You're most likely right. The discussion is more about whether it's acceptable or not. Some people are arguing that it's a GOOD thing. Some seem to want and try and justify it in other ways. My personal opinion is that it's a bad thing and should be discouraged, and I've laid out many reasons as to why. I'm not saying it'll be the end of the world, though. Its effect might be very minor indeed! Bottom line: We should respect Double Fine's wishes.

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I would like to join the "It would be a d*** move considering that they are already putting extra effort in to reward their fans for supporting them." group.

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Might be worth considering that after the documentary and game are both finished, there is a chance the documentary may become available for others to purchase, be it on it's own or bundled with the game. If we leak this content, whether or not there is any significant consequence now, it may hamper some of DF and 2PP's financial prospects later. Anyway, regardless of how we feel about leaked content, piracy and so on, Double Fine have made it clear that they would like the content to stay private, and wish to know if\when it is leaked. It's hardly a tall order for us to simply enjoy the content and not plaster it all over the internet.

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Instead of hunting down leaked video-messages I think it's more important to generate more revenue for the backers by increasing the value of the forums by reporting even little things in small dev-posts, making polls let and the people take (some small) part if the process. Show in the videos that the there are many more things going on in the private-part of the website and that the video-report is only a small part of the experience.

I think making digital-rewards has proven to be an error and will not be used in kickstarter-projects to come, but you can make the backer-status more important by giving them an active part on the development process.

And maybe instead of the digital addons of the 30+ tiers that now everybody loads for free make some small thank-you-presents that can't spread that easy on the net.

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Well,this is the way I sees it.

Are they going to use these videos to make money later? I could see them maybe making a DVD for a collector's edition,but the options for making money off the on-line videos isn't as good. The only real way to do that would be to either A) charge directly,either for access to the backer video sites or through on-line marketplaces like iTunes or Steam or B) put in ads.

So I don't really care if the vids are leaked personally,but if DF or 2P want to do something money making-wise with it and don't want 'em leaked,I don't mind lending a hand. However,since the vids will be leaked anyway,the best solution might be this.

Backers get to see the vids a week in advance and get the "ad free" site with comments enabled. After a week,they get put up on a site and the companies get ad revenue from these "free" videos and comments are disabled. So if you're a non-backer,you can still see the videos and generate some money for the companies,but you don't get to talk about it there. You can still go to the forum to add your comments,tho. Additionally,once you get to "pre-order" status,you can offer up the ad free backer vids as an extra bonus. Oh,and to get around adblockers,just flag the video itself as an ad (which is technically true) so the adblocker blocks it too. Wanna see the vid without being a backer,gotta sit through the ads.

At least,that's how I sees it.

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There is publicity value in videos spreading around for sure, but perhaps that could be best capitalized on by having much less frequent and less comprehensive videos released to the public every so often, giving non-backers a chance to follow the project, get excited, link to their friends and so on, without devaluing the documentary itself or the longer videos of meetings and whatnot. Realistically there will likely be some amount of leaking, but having some public videos would reduce the perceived need for it as well as provide the marketing benefits that some are citing as reasons to leak content.

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If they wanted a publicity video they would make a publicity video and share it with the whole world. The documentary is a product that costs money to create and thus costs money to watch. The backers paid for it, others could probably pay for it once it is done. Giving it out for free is not a decision some idealist fan can make just as giving the finished game out for free is not ok.

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I'm very happy that i enabled this together with all the other backers and i never spend so much money on a game before. I understand the frustration of those who expected the media to be exclusive as intended. But i think it was foreseeable that this won't be 100% secure and personally i don't mind this much about the leaks as i'm way more interested in that DF concentrates on making a awesome game, please not only a good one, and that i can watch the production process and maybe even participate in some reasonable way.

Certainly it isn't polite to leak data against its intention but it's part of the internet, where one with enough energy can find almost every game/movie/music. On the bright side this shows interest and might just count as some marketing for greater sales afterwards. So, some care seems to be alright but the main focus should clearly be on making the game.

And as a backer you still get more as you have the more comfortable access to the media and that fuzzy feeling that you enabled all this.

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I suggest that Double Fine completely ignore this forum discussion, and allow material to leak as it will, as it can only help marketing. They have done their due diligence to backers with the private Vimeo account, and can be passive about material leaking.

It's amazing how this argument keeps coming back. Yes, what you're saying make sense, until you actually stop and think about it. Then it makes no sense whatsoever. (Do people even read the thread before they post? I guess not.)

Here's something you missed:

There’s a reason that we’re only shown selected early versions of games before they’re released—if we saw all the false starts and how %#$@&! it looks in the beginning, it would negatively affect the public’s opinion of it. This is why the first you see of big movie coming out is not the behind-the-scenes, not the rushes (if you even know what they are?): It’s a meticulously crafted trailer, or approved publicity stills. First impressions are important.

Consider The Dark Knight. Did they release test footage first? Designs they rejected? Imagine all of the hundreds of designs they went through before they decided on the final look of the Joker. Some of them would have been AWFUL. If you’d seen them first, they would have created terribly negative word of mouth around the film.

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I suggest that Double Fine completely ignore this forum discussion, and allow material to leak as it will, as it can only help marketing. They have done their due diligence to backers with the private Vimeo account, and can be passive about material leaking.

It's amazing how this argument keeps coming back. Yes, what you're saying make sense, until you actually stop and think about it. Then it makes no sense whatsoever. (Do people even read the thread before they post? I guess not.)

Here's something you missed:

There’s a reason that we’re only shown selected early versions of games before they’re released—if we saw all the false starts and how %#$@&! it looks in the beginning, it would negatively affect the public’s opinion of it. This is why the first you see of big movie coming out is not the behind-the-scenes, not the rushes (if you even know what they are?): It’s a meticulously crafted trailer, or approved publicity stills. First impressions are important.

Consider The Dark Knight. Did they release test footage first? Designs they rejected? Imagine all of the hundreds of designs they went through before they decided on the final look of the Joker. Some of them would have been AWFUL. If you’d seen them first, they would have created terribly negative word of mouth around the film.

You do realise that both TDK and TDKR have had leaks, some of which were highly publicised, right? I think this is a pretty bad example because they already had a solid character design to modify with the Joker. Often, especially with talented firms, even the concept art is really cool, which is one of the reasons games have concept art in their art books.

Really, sometimes strategic leaks do help with publicity. This is why they have previews. That said, when you preview too much it does tend to hurt hype substantially. It takes the curiosity away. Also, it can misrepresent the final product at early stages. Problem with fan leaks is often perception of material is up to luck, and in most communities people will tear things apart they don't like, especially on the Internet. This is why it's a very good idea to keep leaks to a minimum. I don't see why this is an argument. It's not like leaks are inherently evil, but it's not like they are always good either. It is best for everyone if Double Fine's wishes are honoured and leaks are reported as they happen and just generally not leak, because it will allow Double Fine to keep PR under control and will strengthen their relation with the backer community, and help the team focus on things that matter. They are being really cool with this opportunity and it is best to simply trust them and let them focus their resources on making an excellent game and experience with us and not crowd control.

Lead by example. Help the project how you can, and neither leak or let leaks go unnoticed. If Double Fine thinks something is cool enough to show everyone, they will do so. And the cool part is we may have a say in just what gets shown collectively. Enjoy the fact that you are one of the insiders and that you backed this project not knowing what it would be. Keep the secret and share it's value with the community. There will be a time for transparency. Don't jump the gun. ;)

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Dude. You clearly weren't following The Dark Knight. NOBODY knew what The Joker was going to look like. When the images came out, people were relieved. I have no doubt that there were some AWFUL designs that they had to get out their system, before they found the right path.

Yes, concept art CAN be cool (do you really think I don't know this?), but they only show you the cool stuff. They don't show you the shit. This is especially true of big design companies. Rob Bottin's original RoboCop designs have never been released, for example, because they're supposedly so bad. Even now they could damage people's reputations.

Turning a blind eye, and therefore condoning leaks, could potentially cause all sorts of problems. Most of which have been discussed.

And to repeat myself again: I'm not saying it would definitely be the end of the world, I'm just saying it has the potential to damage the game and affect future KickStarter projects. It will NOT, as you suggested, help with the marketing. If it did, all game studios would reveal the aborted processes... Don't you think?

Bottom line: This is Double Fine's property. It's up to them to decide what to do with it. It's not cool to suggest that by leaking it that people are HELPING Double Fine.

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While studies of the 'spoiler effect' and 'expectation forecasting' would seem, in some cases, to negatively impact sales but positively impact enjoyment [citation needed], there's little evidence on which to evaluate the impact of viewing a segment of a mostly-not-spoiler-filled making-of-documentary on sales.

Sales of what? That's the question. What effect would this have on sales of the documentary?

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I wouldn't condone leaks, but I think you're being rather definitive and harsh about this rather nebulous debate on the theoretical impact of leaks, and the possibility of people that weren't presold on this project seeking them out.

I think the only definite thing that can be said is that it will probably occasionally happen.

While studies of the 'spoiler effect' and 'expectation forecasting' would seem, in some cases, to negatively impact sales but positively impact enjoyment [citation needed], there's little evidence on which to evaluate the impact of viewing a segment of a mostly-not-spoiler-filled making-of-documentary on sales.

If theoretical 'more egregious and systematic' leaks appear, such as a site, thread, or channel somewhere, then this issue should come up again.

My only beef is with people who are saying that it is a GOOD thing for DF and 2PP to leak their property. It's not only unethical, the logic behind it being "good" (usually, "marketing") is utterly absurd and doesn't have an ounce of common sense behind it. The companies involved know how to market their own products, and if they thought sharing these videos would help their sales, they're more than capable of doing it themselves.

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Dude. You clearly weren't following The Dark Knight. NOBODY knew what The Joker was going to look like. When the images came out, people were relieved. I have no doubt that there were some AWFUL designs that they had to get out their system, before they found the right path.

Yes, concept art CAN be cool (do you really think I don't know this?), but they only show you the cool stuff. They don't show you the shit. This is especially true of big design companies. Rob Bottin's original RoboCop designs have never been released, for example, because they're supposedly so bad. Even now they could damage people's reputations.

Turning a blind eye, and therefore condoning leaks, could potentially cause all sorts of problems. Most of which have been discussed.

And to repeat myself again: I'm not saying it would definitely be the end of the world, I'm just saying it has the potential to damage the game and affect future KickStarter projects. It will NOT, as you suggested, help with the marketing. If it did, all game studios would reveal the aborted processes... Don't you think?

Bottom line: This is Double Fine's property. It's up to them to decide what to do with it. It's not cool to suggest that by leaking it that people are HELPING Double Fine.

You assume WAY too much. I was one of the many who participated in the event to unlock the Joker picture on ibelieveinharveydenttoo.com, watching in excitement as pixel by pixel was revealed from the Jokerized Harvey Dent picture to reveal the first picture of Heath Ledger as the Joker. That said, there was still leaked set pictures and a the implosion of the building that was used as Gotham Hospital was well publicised (I saw it in the national news). Also you are completely speculating about the concept character design for the Joker being bad. Considering The Joker is a done-to-death character, It's just as likely, if not more so, they just drew inspiration from the various artist interpretations and already had a solid image of what they wanted him to look like from the get-go.

As for the rest of this, your view is far too one-sided. The games industry is ever-changing and growing and to act like if one thing is successful or unsuccessful for one group that another group should or should not do the same can be, and is in this example, a narrow-minded view. It does have the potential to build hype, especially in a project like this where backer participation is part of the curiosity of the project, a well placed leak can inspire curiosity and hype, which is helpful, so I'm not just suggesting, but I am outright telling you that leaks can be helpful. The problem is that they are also very risky, as they can spoil the final unveiling and excitement or misrepresent the final product in such a way that can disappoint. This is why it is best not to leak anything Double Fine does not want and let them handle their own PR.

Bottom line: Trying to shoot down everyone who points out the advantages of transparency is not going to get you anywhere. There are advantages, and they are very valid advantages. We can agree that it is Double Fine's project and it is probably best for them to handle it's PR, and to report leaks as they happen, but your acting like leaks are totally unhelpful is simply false. They are a gamble and much like gambling can be unnecessarily detrimental for a likely negligible reward. That said, they can also fuel buzz around a project in a positive way.

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Bottom line: Trying to shoot down everyone who points out the advantages of transparency is not going to get you anywhere. There are advantages, and they are very valid advantages. We can agree that it is Double Fine's project and it is probably best for them to handle it's PR, and to report leaks as they happen, but your acting like leaks are totally unhelpful is simply false. They are a gamble and much like gambling can be unnecessarily detrimental for a likely negligible reward. That said, they can also fuel buzz around a project in a positive way.

Sorry, but you're are putting words in my mouth. I've never said that leaks can NEVER be good. I've repeatedly stated that I'm arguing against the idea that leaking backer content is unequivocally good for this project.

Comments like this:

"allow material to leak as it will, as it can only help marketing"

"But why not ? It is free publicity, it will get people interested in the project and eventually they will get more money out of leaks then not."

I previously explained this to you here: http://www.doublefine.com/forums/viewthread/6021/P30/#190481

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