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Old 02-26-2008, 07:56 AM   #61
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When the HoM becomes a democratic process, I'll be sure to say it that way.
I hope you are just joking. Otherwise I really cannot express my grief about that

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You didn't, and there wasn't anything wrong with it for the whole time it was at #1. Only now was it time for a change, and even that was entirely discretionary. I'd have lost no sleep whatsoever keeping it at #1 until release (barring some other new announcement that has more people excited, though I'm not sure such a game is even possible anymore.)
I imagine objectivity isn't the main feature of your character. And of course the time for a change wasn't now just by chance. It was done when you encountered criticism.
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Old 02-26-2008, 08:08 AM   #62
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I think you underestimate the popularity of Sam & Max. Step outside the rather insulated little adventure community, and about the only game(s) you'll hear about regularly are Sam & Max, and usually in very complimentary ways. The episodic thing... well... that may always be a point of contention. I know many people who have come to really look forward to regular, smaller doses. It doesn't have to be monthly, though. The whole series will be released on disc at season's end. That's just as valid a product as any other game.
Yes, I understand the point. It was a personal commentary: I haven't had the chance to play Sam & Max Season 1, and the reasons 'cause I didn't play it are the following.
1) For non-English speakers, the dialogues are way too much difficult, with all the slang: I, for myself, have no problem understanding it, but only with subtitles and a dictionary near the desk, and I haven't the time to do that.
2) The references to American culture are, if you're lucky, enigmatic and - if things turn bad - simply not understandable. Just an example, outside America Amelia Earhart or Dan B. Cooper are just name, without a story behind.

I think the Sam & Max Season 2 is a very "American" choice and less a "universal" choice. I'm not criticizing: I'm explaining what I intended when I said <<that - in difference with S&M season 2 - almost everyone will play, when it's out, Gray Matter>>, 'cause it's less americanized, if you pass me the word.

For the monthly (or so) chapter divisions, I'm not against: but let me do an example. I'm watching the fourth season of "Lost", although it isn't yet finished, but I've to wait another six/seven months to watch "Heroes Volume Three": I'd say that is the latter the one series originating "hype", and not the one currently airing, 'cause my "hype" have to wait only a couple of weeks. Just a thought (and maybe I'm missing some English nuances from the word "hype")
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Old 02-26-2008, 08:17 AM   #63
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And of course the time for a change wasn't now just by chance. It was done when you encountered criticism.
Wrong.

The AG team has been away at GDC this past week, and that week also marked the end of the recent batch of AG releases. The meter is updated during quiet periods, so now is the prime time to update it, as I already mentioned earlier in this thread.
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Old 02-26-2008, 08:34 AM   #64
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I hope you are just joking. Otherwise I really cannot express my grief about that
And yet somehow, life goes on.

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I imagine objectivity isn't the main feature of your character.
Right, because democracy and objectivity are the same things. g_sakil, you're talking crap and simply trolling again. Knock it off.
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Old 02-26-2008, 11:16 AM   #65
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We can discuss it without arguing, just to understand each other's points. So tell me, how do you respond to the many people, like AndreaDraco83 in this thread, who would still list Gray Matter as the game they're most looking forward to? Are you saying those people are simply too few and far between to matter, or that that degree of anticipation is somehow invalidated because there aren't enough updates? I get that YOU lose your enthusiasm when there aren't, but the list is meant to gauge wide(r)spread sentiment, not personal experience.
I'd respond that no matter how excited they personally may be, an objective assessment of GM's position has to take other things into account - such as the rapidly-approaching 'release date', the lack of information released so far, and the almost total lack of updates (or even responses to update requests) for the last six months. Which, to be fair, seems to be exactly what you've done with the latest update.

I appreciate that many people are really, really excited about this game, but you simply cannot keep running on hot air for ever. Obviously there are still plenty of people excited over GM, but I'm also seeing an increasing number of posts asking what the heck is going on and whether it's really likely to be released any time soon. Even the people at Cort-X seem to be losing their enthusiasm somewhat, and after eight months without even a response to their interview questions, I can't really blame them.

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Let's forget about Jensen for a moment... just for a moment. I mean, she's the author, the story-teller, and as such important. But she's not making this game on her own. Actually, her part of the job should more or less be done by now. To the best of my knowledge a company called Tonuzaba is doing the practical developing stuff. There's no mention of Gray Matter at their site and it doesn't look like they're into adventure games at all. Does anybody know for a fact who the developers are?
That's very true, and it's even more reason not to let our hopes run so insanely high. I'm sure JJ has a large degree of creative control, but in the end, a game is only going to be as good as the development team making it. While I'm quite willing to give Tonzuba the benefit of the doubt, we can't automatically assume they'll be as good as the team that made the Gabriel Knight games.
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Old 02-26-2008, 01:07 PM   #66
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Calm down, people.

Tonuzaba Entertainment is developing the game. The development team works under the direction of Jane Jensen, who has stated she is as involved in the development process as she was with the Gabriel Knight games.

A game designer's job does not end until the game is released. It would seem to me fairly obvious that the time a person can spend working on a product is in inverse proportion to the time they can spend talking about it.

Gee, I wonder which we would prefer?

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Old 02-26-2008, 07:31 PM   #67
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I'd respond that no matter how excited they personally may be, an objective assessment of GM's position has to take other things into account - such as the rapidly-approaching 'release date', the lack of information released so far, and the almost total lack of updates (or even responses to update requests) for the last six months. Which, to be fair, seems to be exactly what you've done with the latest update.
Well, that's more an objective measurement of how effectively a game is being marketed, not how much public interest it's generating, perhaps in spite of itself. And it's the latter the HoM attempts to gauge, not the former. Normally they go hand in hand, but not always, or at least not in equal proportion.

I'm still not convinced that any of the new top three have supplanted GM as most-anticipated game, but since at least two of the three have definitive short-term windows before release (or completion), it was time to give them some additional props. Presumably GM will still be around in six weeks or so when it's time to do this all over again.
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Old 02-27-2008, 03:17 AM   #68
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A game designer's job does not end until the game is released. It would seem to me fairly obvious that the time a person can spend working on a product is in inverse proportion to the time they can spend talking about it.

Gee, I wonder which we would prefer?
So they can't even find the time to put up a simple message saying "hang in there, folks?" Come on. I've no problem with games being delayed if more work needs to be done on them; it's the lack of communication that bothers me.

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Well, that's more an objective measurement of how effectively a game is being marketed, not how much public interest it's generating, perhaps in spite of itself. And it's the latter the HoM attempts to gauge, not the former.
I thought it was supposed to measure both, or at least that's the impression I got from the FAQ - besides, I don't think it's really possible to separate one from the other. As I pointed out in my last post, even the staunchest fans will begin to get disspirited after months and months with no new information.
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Old 02-27-2008, 03:29 AM   #69
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Strictly on Gray Matter, I was searching the official forum for some news. In the German one, a user post yesterday the announcement of a new preview by a German adventure site.

I don't know the language, so I can't really figure if the article contains something new or not.

The link is here. Maybe someone can help and maybe we can have some news
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Old 02-27-2008, 05:23 AM   #70
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Maybe someone can help and maybe we can have some news
No, they're going over familiar ground.
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Old 02-27-2008, 05:28 AM   #71
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Tonuzaba Entertainment is developing the game. The development team works under the direction of Jane Jensen, who has stated she is as involved in the development process as she was with the Gabriel Knight games.

A game designer's job does not end until the game is released. It would seem to me fairly obvious that the time a person can spend working on a product is in inverse proportion to the time they can spend talking about it.
What's that got to do with anything...? Jane Jensen has been producing casual games non-stop, so directing the Tonuzaba team can't be very time-consuming. And it's part of the publisher's *job* to keep other people informed about what's going on.
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Old 02-27-2008, 09:51 AM   #72
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The least we can do is assume there is a very good reason for the lack of communication. I think we should just give Jane & co. some room.

Fienepien wrote:
What's that got to do with anything...? Jane Jensen has been producing casual games non-stop, so directing the Tonuzaba team can't be very time-consuming.
Well, you wrote that her part of the job should be more or less done by now, but since the game has yet to be released, I think otherwise. Besides, the planned release dates have been tentative all along, so the "should" is also open to question.
And it's part of the publisher's *job* to keep other people informed about what's going on.
Sez who? The publisher's job is to publish, any PR is optional and not required. We are not entitled to it.

People are actually getting angry because they are not getting a hard enough sell. The product is being made even as we speak. But the industry seems to have done a fine job of creating a positive need for PR.

In the old days people would spend more time on the actual game than related publicity materials. Or reviews and blogs and forum talk, for that matter...

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Old 02-27-2008, 11:21 AM   #73
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What's that got to do with anything...? Jane Jensen has been producing casual games non-stop, so directing the Tonuzaba team can't be very time-consuming. And it's part of the publisher's *job* to keep other people informed about what's going on.
Going by this thread on the dtp/Anaconda website, it doesn't sound like the publishers are at fault - they seem to be as much in the dark as we are. (Note that that thread was started last November, and there's been no more news since then.)

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Sez who? The publisher's job is to publish, any PR is optional and not required. We are not entitled to it.
I'm sorry, Simo, but that is complete and utter rubbish. It is most definitely the publisher's job to market the game, and I've no doubt that this was part of their contract with Jensen and Tonuzaba. Still, as I said above, it doesn't seem to be their fault in this instance.
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Old 02-27-2008, 01:11 PM   #74
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The publisher's job is to publish, any PR is optional and not required. We are not entitled to it.
I don't think you understand the nature of PR.

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In the old days people would spend more time on the actual game than related publicity materials. Or reviews and blogs and forum talk, for that matter...
I've been playing adventures for 22 years and I have a very different recollection of the "old days" and the use of PR. But I can see there's no point in discussing the subject with you.
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Old 02-27-2008, 01:18 PM   #75
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Going by this thread on the dtp/Anaconda website, it doesn't sound like the publishers are at fault - they seem to be as much in the dark as we are. (Note that that thread was started last November, and there's been no more news since then.)
Content and Community Manager dtp Betty may be in the dark, but I find it hard to believe that no-one at Anaconda knows what's going on. Keeping tabs on developers is part of the publisher's job too. Anaconda acted when the developers of Mata Hari went bankrupt...
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Old 02-27-2008, 11:16 PM   #76
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Ksandra wrote:
It is most definitely the publisher's job to market the game, and I've no doubt that this was part of their contract with Jensen and Tonuzaba.
Market as in offer for sale, yes, of course. To promote as in do PR, not necessarily.

I simply claim no knowledge of this contract. I do not know for a fact that they are contractually obligated to promote the game at all, or if so, to what extent. They may well be, but I do not know that. Let me know when you do.

I was responding to Fienepien's comment that it is "part of the publisher's *job* to keep other people informed about what's going on". The definitions of publisher and publish do not include doing publicity or PR, and especially not communicating with private individuals, nice as that is when it happens. You can look this up.

(I did. Regarding the extent of publicity, The Random House Webster's Unabridged Dictionary, Second Edition includes as one of the definitions of the verb publish, "to make publicly or generally known". Which the publisher of Gray Matter clearly has done. That is all the definitions say on the subject of doing publicity.)

Fienepien wrote:
I don't think you understand the nature of PR.
And I think you have an imprecise definition of publisher. I also think you expect me to react to what you mean even when it is not what you say.
I've been playing adventures for 22 years and I have a very different recollection of the "old days" and the use of PR. But I can see there's no point in discussing the subject with you.
A bit harsh. I have nothing personal against you. Too bad you feel differently about me. I have been playing adventures for as long as you have. What does that have to do with anything?

It is also pretty convenient for you to imply that you have something relevant to say on the subject of the old days and the time people spent going through PR materials versus the time they spent playing the game itself, and then end your part of the discussion.

Oh well. Looking forward to Gray Matter.

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Old 02-28-2008, 02:39 AM   #77
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I have nothing personal against you. Too bad you feel differently about me.
Why should I have anything personal against you? I remember you brought up a couple of interesting points in the past. But not this time. I simply don't want to discuss stuff with you which I consider totally irrelevant to anything I said.

PS: I've been earning a living in the publishing business (books, not games) for some 25 years, so it's utterly useless to throw general dictionary definitions of a word at me when I'm talking about the job, the actual work, which definitely includes PR.

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Old 02-28-2008, 02:50 AM   #78
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simply put..though in general (since we do not have an insight into possible contracts)

a publisher FUNDS the game being made, thus it's in it's best interest to do PR. It's not an obligation, because the publisher has to answer to noeone.. not even the designer, since the publisher is the one paying the designer (there might also be an agreement that the designer gets payed with a percentage of sales as a bonus).

so in this case, we can say Anaconda/DTP is not obliged to do an elabourate PR stunt, but probably will (when the time is there) to promote a game they hope can 'make a buck'
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Old 02-28-2008, 04:20 AM   #79
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Fienepien: I still having nothing against you and will be happy to talk with you again. I wish you well.

Nico: You are making perfect sense. I hope you get replies from the publisher or Jane soon. CORT-X is perfect for anyone who wants to keep track of the game's progress, associated articles etc.

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Old 02-28-2008, 05:21 AM   #80
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I was responding to Fienepien's comment that it is "part of the publisher's *job* to keep other people informed about what's going on". The definitions of publisher and publish do not include doing publicity or PR [...]
...except that they do. Even if there's no specific contractual obligation, it is most definitely part of a publisher's job to handle PR - because their job is to sell the product, not just publish it, and that means making sure that it attracts as wide an audience as possible. No offence, Simo, but you're not going to understand the publishing business just by looking up the word 'publish' in a dictionary. Try Googling for articles on 'publishing' instead - such as this one at Wikipedia - and you'll see that marketing is indeed considered an integral part of the publishing process:

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Publishing includes the stages of the development, acquisition, copyediting, graphic design, production Ė printing (and its electronic equivalents), and marketing and distribution of newspapers, magazines, books, literary works, musical works, software and other works dealing with information, including the electronic media.
As for why we should be entitled to expect PR from developers/publishers, the answer is simple: They are trying to sell us a product, not the other way round. Jane Jensen and her team are lucky enough to have a very enthusiastic pre-existing fanbase, but whether or not they realise it, they're actually squandering that goodwill with their dismissive attitude towards fans. Not to mention that Jensen made her last AG nearly ten years ago; there are plenty of younger adventure fans (such as myself) who have never played the GK games, and aren't going to instantly rush out to buy GM just because it's OMG JANE JENSEN.

Just take a look at the comments in the thread I linked to in my last post. Nico spent a good deal of his(?) own time setting up a fan website for GM - providing the developers with free advertising and publicity, in other words - only for them to ignore his questions and not even bother responding to his emails. Short of the entire development team being struck down with the Ebola virus, I fail to see why they can't at least reply to emails from a loyal fan - if only to say, "Sorry, but we can't tell you anything at the moment." Whatever the reason, it leaves an extremely sour taste in the mouth.
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