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Multiplayer-only games a “ballache” to sell, says Gun Monkeys dev

Wednesday, 24th July 2013 05:11 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Size Five Games’ Dan Marshall has gone right off multiplayer games thanks to the developer’s struggle to sell Gun Monkeys.

Speaking to Polygon, Marshall said multiplayer games are a pain.

“They’re a ballache to make, they’re a ballache to test, and it turns out they’re a ballache to sell,” he said.

“At the moment it’s not a gamble I can afford to take, so I’m hopping straight back to single-player for the next game.”

Size Five Games dropped the price of Gun Monkeys significantly today, saying it’s the only way to get the servers populated enough to support those who’ve already purchased the game at its original price of $10.

“Our sense of value is completely out of whack if $10 is ‘too much’ now for a whole, fun, hours-long video game,” Marshall said.

“Ultimately, it’s the people who had bought the game and were enjoying it who were suffering, and that’s just not fair. Hence the price drop in the hopes of encouraging some new players to join in.”

The full interview includes further discussion on how cheap mobile games are devaluing more substantial efforts; click through for Marshall’s thoughts.

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7 Comments

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  1. Vice

    Then here’s a brilliant idea: DON’T MAKE THEM.
    Majority of people prefer single player, go read charts.

    #1 12 months ago
  2. Llewelyn_MT

    Prime example being Call of Duty?

    #2 12 months ago
  3. gomersoul

    I prefer single player as they have a defined beginning and end to an experience whereas multiplayer ceases when you get bored or buy a sequel. also people just expect them to be cheaper as they offer less for your money. you need a lot of players to create a great multiplayer game and you’re not gonna draw them in without a decent single player experience, especially for new ip from a studio without reputation. Titanfall will be a very interesting release for the future of triple a games

    #3 12 months ago
  4. Joe Musashi

    Reads headline. Re-uses ‘seems appropriate’ .gif

    JM

    #4 12 months ago
  5. TheLastDodo

    Problem with multiplayer only games is, shockingly, there needs to be other people playing them.

    I’m not prepared to throw 60, 30, 10 or even $5 at a multiplayer only game if there’s a chance there is no one to play it with.

    Is there a demo where I can test the game? Play vs bots? See the actual player count so I can make an informed decision before I buy?

    I’ve seen one trailer of Gun Monkeys, it looked fun, but I wouldn’t buy it for the reason above, not because my sense of value is “out of whack”.

    #5 12 months ago
  6. silkvg247

    The gobbos in warcraft put it best: “Time is money, friend”.

    Too many games to play these days, especially for those of us with a daily real life grind. It isn’t just about spending money, it’s about a time investment. Is your game worth the time? Would I download and try it even if it were free?

    And here’s the real kicker about time investments and multiplayer..

    Multiplayer games require a substantially larger time investment than single player. Time to learn the skills, learn how to get the edge, learn maps, weapons, how to win, and then play and play and play until eventually you get bored. There is no end to the game. This is why multiplayer especially has a huge time requirement and why to folks like me it can actually be off-putting.

    Too many multiplayer games require you to rank up to be able to do even reasonably well, or for you to keep up to date with new maps and game changes. If it’s a game where I can drop in anytime and have a reasonable chance of not being obliterated just because I didn’t put 20 hours in every week, then that’s not so bad.

    #6 12 months ago
  7. TheWulf

    I think it’s more that the majority of people prefer single-player and co-op games. Hence the incredible popularity of titles like Portal II and Torchlight II.

    What do you get with a competitive game other than potty mouthed kids yelling at you, and lots of snipers? It somehow manages to be both uncouth and tedious at the same time. Most people aren’t good at competitive games. To be honest, I believe they went out with the last, dying breath of the twitch FPS.

    The problem with competitive games today is that they’re designed to nurture the player’s sense of self-preservation.

    Why go out there and be awesome, when you can hide in this window and just cuss when you get shot at by another sniper?

    The true competitive greats were games like Quake, Bomberman, and Tetris Battle Gaiden. The last good competitive game I played was a little indie party title named HOARD, and HOARD was good because it stuck with what once made competitive games great — fun! However, people expect competitive games these days to suck, because of what the mainstream has done to competition. It’s made competitors weak-minded, unskilled, and potty-mouthed.

    Thus, most people have moved on to exclusively single-player and co-op games, since those games are still really fun (see: Portal II).

    And even when an indie game comes along which is fun as a competitive title, as this one might be, no one will buy it because, quite simply, the mainstream has ruined competitive gameplay for everyone. If someone is convinced by years of mainstream titles that competitive games suck, why would they chance their money on an indie title? They wouldn’t know better.

    Just another element of gaming killed by the mainstream, really. One of many.

    This is one area where I feel okay with sounding like an old man: I remember when games were about how well you could use a rocket launcher for jumping and picking off other people at the same time, when run & gun was a thing, and when skill actually mattered. These days, competitive FPS games are basically taking easy, lazy potshots out of a window. You could do that with an app on a cheap smartphone, just touch the screen to win!

    #7 12 months ago