An important lesson

I have these little notebooks in which I write down my thoughts. Every day I fill a couple of pages with new observations, questions and decisions. Whenever a notebook is full, I put it in a drawer, there to stay until the drawer is full at which point I empty the drawer, and put the notebooks in a box. I really don’t know why I bother with it, because I rarely read what I wrote, but I guess it helps me organise my thoughts. It also makes it look like I’m paying attention in meetings I’m not particularly interested in 😉

If you’d take the notebook that says January 2013, you’d see that I listed as major tasks for 2013, the organising Divinity: Original Sin’s kickstarter, releasing Dragon Commander and releasing Divinity: Original Sin. At that time, I only had hopes and aspirations and I really didn’t have a clue whether or not my plans were going to work.

Taking risks is of course part of the metier of running a game development studio, and there’s only that much that you can do to cover your bets. You know certain things will go wrong, you hope more things will go right. So last night, I started thinking about how we were doing compared to what I hoped for at the start of 2013…

I mention Dragon Commander a lot in this blog. If you don’t know what the game is about, it was released on August 6th 2013, and we made this fancy trailer to explain the game

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The good, the bad and the unexpected

Oh boy oh boy oh boy.

How can a good thing be a bad thing? And how can a bad thing be a good thing ?

This game should be releasing any moment now on www.gog.com/divinity, and yes it is LMK!

Those are two questions that have been stressing me for the last few days, and if you read my last entry, you already know that I wasn’t exactly in a state of zen to begin with. So what happened this time?

Well, let me start with the easy part, and to be fair, also the part that occupied me the least because it turned out to be a good thing.

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Hatching the Anthology

The Divinity Anthology in all its glory!

I got an email today from a very good creative producer I’ve known for years, commenting on the price point of the Divinity Anthology which we released today.

.”..30 bucks for either digital or boxed?! Are you fucking NUTS? I mean, you/Divinity should receive presents on its birthday, it shouldn’t give away any…  I gotta ask what your margin is – and you surely don’t have to answer that.   ;)”

The man has a point. But really, it’s been a crazy month, and you’re not going to believe the business logic we’ve been applying… While I don’t know what the end of this story is yet , I can tell you how we got to where we are today and what our hopes and aspirations are. Whether or not these will prove to be vain, we’re about to figure out…

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Who do you pay when buying a game?

How much do you think this retailer gets when he sells one of my games?

I’ve seen some debate about some of my posts on the publishing side of the business and I noticed that a lot of people don’t understand the economics behind a game. Sadly, that includes a lot of developers too.

I’ll keep the overview very short but I think it might be helpful to have some numbers in place for future reference when I’ll discuss some of the finer aspects of royalty report manipulation I’ve seen.

So if you want to know how much you pay to who when buying a game, read on.

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