MadCowDisease2 wrote:I doubt it's possible for a company of that small size to sue 100+ players for playing a free game, so I don't think much will happen.
Who said anything about a lawsuit?
MadCowDisease2 wrote:I doubt it's possible for a company of that small size to sue 100+ players for playing a free game, so I don't think much will happen.
crash7800: Hello and Welcome to the InstantAction podcast. We’re reporting to you from Cologne, Germany – Gamescom. 250,000 gamers. It’s crazy awesome. Can’t believe it, it’s a sea of people – a sea of interesting smelling people. Crash7800, DrWiley and Louis Castle here with us, CEO of InstantAction. Lou, you’re insanely busy but you’ve very, very graciously offered to sit down and talk with the InstantAction community and answer some of the common questions we get. Everything from where’s the site going to kind of briefly mentioning what Instant Jam is and, the question that’s on everyone’s mind of course, which is when are the games coming back.
Lou: So, first of all, when’s the site coming back. Technically, the new InstantAction, of course, is up and running we did put the Monkey Island game out there and now we have Instant Jam, and Instant Jam actually uses most of the stuff that we need to get some of your favorite games back on line, so we’re getting there. So it just turns out that we had to rebuild and awful lot of stuff so that we could scale so that-
crash7800: A lot of the original InstantAction – people don’t know this – it was kind of place holder. It was never really meant for all of this.
Lou: Well, it was meant to do what it did, but when you start looking at true quality, true console quality games (we’ve always been about that as a mission) but now we actually have the budget and we’re more staffed up that we can do this, and Instant Jam is a great example. We’re actually now in a place where our studio can, slowly, we’re not going to be able to build that many games obviously, slowly but surely we’re going to release really high-quality video games. And, by the way, with the case of Instant Jam we stuck with idea of it being free and I don’t think we’ve talked much about that, but out philosophy for InstantAction is all the games on InstantAction we would like them to be completely free to embed anywhere, completely shareable through new media channels, and something that you play for free and then you’re charged after you’re certain. That’s our sort of philosophical basis. Now, to be able to attract all the publishers that we want to attract we have to be able to not always have this be the case, so apologies in advance if a publisher says, “No, I only want my games on my sight.” So, that’s talking about our technology so that’s kind of a business issue, but as far as all the games that used to be up on InstantAction [Arcade] we are working at upgrading those to be on our new platform, and unfortunately because we have to build games that have a lot of scale and everything, we have to get this done first to test out our systems again and we just don’t have enough resources. But, we’re working with some external developers – tell us which ones you want, be persistent. I’m sorry it’s been so long; we expected them to get there sooner, but we will get there! We know you love them and that’s fantastic and we’re certainly not giving up on them and there’s going to be some new stuff too that we’ll be announcing, coming up at PAX actually. We’ll be showing a couple of the games from Play Greenhouse from Penny Arcade. So we’ll be showing those. You’ll start seeing some stuff coming down a little bit sooner as we start smoothing everything out, so please be patient. We are absolutely working really, really hard. We have over 100 people – 140, 150 people working feverish hours trying to get this done; people have been working really hard. Apologies but it turns out that building two roles: An online platform – an e-commerce platform, a downloadable distribution system and games, and integrating other people’s games that need to be scalable to millions of users – as it turns out, it’s a little tricky to change the world. And we’re sorry that we had to bring the old site down to do this, but frankly the resources it was taking to maintain that – just the sheer physical resources. It wasn’t the money it was just simply to provide this space and site requires constant maintenance and we just didn’t physically have the people as well the other resources.
crash7800: That’s the message we’ve been trying to pass along and I think it’s going to be really great for people to hear you say this. When people say “there was nothing wrong with the old site, why did you take it down!”
Lou: There was nothing wrong with the old site, but we had to take it down to do something bigger and better. Honestly, our philosophies are as community friendly as you can possible get, We believe in community integration in the games, we believe in trying to make every game free – I want to bring you the next Call of Duty, the next Medal of Honor the next Everything for free. I want to give you guys those kinds of games for free in addition to Legions and Ace of Aces and all the other stuff we have. It’s not about just the kind of fun server based games.
crash7800: I think one of the things when – you mentioned this too – it’s about not only maintaining a level of expectation and experience that was befitting of the old games but – I was hoping you could comment on where you think the new technology is going to take us. It’s hard to express and I think it’d be cool to hear it coming from you. For example: Legions. The new technology, the new ideal: how is that going to positively impact the Legions community.
Lou: Right. So, having and entire platform that can do all the various types of monetization, whether it’s subscription based or IA based, obviously it gives us a lot of options so we don’t have to just keep running ads endlessly while people try to find this stuff.
crash7800: A lot of people told us that the ads were…
Lou: Yeah, the ads get in the way. Again my philosophy, and I know this irritates the advertisers, but I’m on the side of the consumers. Look, if they don’t want the ads there then there ought to be some way to pay you back and not have ads. So that’s all part of what we have to develop. And I can’t say that the games are going to be dramatically better when we get them back up and running because we’re not sure what it’s going to take to bring the old ones up, but obviously we have to make a lot of changes to them. So as well as making those changes we’re going to add things, like items purchases, things like that as well. Or, they might just be brought back exactly the same as it was with [support for the new system]
crash7800: I think even small things like Windows 7 support.
Lou: Yeah, of course.
crash7800: Embedding the games.
Lou: Being able to play anywhere, that stuff is huge. Y’know, there’s a lot of things that are really powerful for people and so that’s all part of what we want to do. Just having the infrastructure to handle, because I know sometimes performance is an issue too, so being able to handle that stuff is really important too. Our new homing technology with Java just makes all that stuff so much easier because now you don’t have to always install the IA player, which is nice.
crash7800: Right, because people have been asking, “What happened to the InstantAction plugin. I need it to play Instant Jam.” And I told them, no, you got it. “Right, but I didn’t have to click like four buttons”. Right, we fixed it.
Lou: And that’s been a lot of work. Josh Williams and those guys really killed themselves to get that stuff working. And I don’t want to forget the guys at Gravity Bear and MGT and those guys are all working really hard to help us out so hats off to them too. They’re developers that we work with, but they feel like our community because they help us but they’re also making their own games and they’ve been so good about pulling this stuff off. So, yeah, we’re working hard to make exciting new deals and announce them as things come forward. In the mean time we’re just going to start on Facebook and the PC and start to scale up Instant Jam and once we have all the pieces in place and we have a solid platform we’ll have some more
crash7800: Credence and bandwidth and…
Lou: Yeah, the PGH – Penny Arcade Play Greenhouse stuff at PAX, you’re going to start seeing all that stuff and those games really coming out. And I apologize again – the new games have to come first because the new games were built on the new system and it’s sometimes easier to build around the things you already have and start fresh, but we will getting them.
crash7800: Well, I think that the community can agree that letting us iron our the new system so that we ‘re not just slapping something on there…
Lou: Well, really we couldn’t have gotten there.
- – - –
Lou: You would have never gotten the quality products that you we have, [especially] running it. I know that people say there’s nothing wrong with it, and it’s like, well you know I went back and played Dune 2 through a simulator you know and there was a lot wrong with it. In my minds eye it was perfect, you know? But things have changed. And I think there’s nothing wrong with the games, they’re a great experience and it’s completely an opportunity after games get better graphics. We’re going to take all those opportunities, we’re gonna get there and again philosophically we’re not changing. what I love about the company is the idea that games should be free. Be free to explore
crash7800:: But I have to ask. Everyones been dieing to know – i’ll be remiss if I didn’t ask. There’s been a lot of speculation as to how much we payed for Tribes, where did we get Tribes, did we have to beat anybody up, did we have to trade something… All that doesn’t matter because what you’re going to find out..
Lou: Tribes, we will absolutlely be bringing it back.
crash7800:: Hear that, ABSOLUTELY bringing it back. No question at all.
Lou: There’s a lot of Starsiege besdies tribes. And I can say that every time we look to engage next we always… I promise you that if they will not do very good job we will do it ourselves if we have to. So I’m not sure about all the ideas of Starsiege because there’s some different assumptions about the lagacy issues we were talking about. But certainly Tribes will come back, it’s a great game. I know you guys cannot wait to play it but it’s going to be a lot cooler. I can’t promise that you can play for free forever, but you will definately be able to play it for free. Because that’s our philosophy and if you really like it and really want to play it, then… But it might be average, it might be optional… It’s not going to be crazy. We have to have a little more money to make sure we get it right. Actually whats most important to me is I believe that a lot of games, It’s not that anyone expects you to spend millions of dallars then just give it all away. They have to be able to make salaries and make sure our people are taken care of. Those things are important and have to make money somehow. We’ve give them lots and lots of options, we’ll keep getting more options. So that helps too, I suppose… As long as we’re cleared up we don’t mind doing it for free
crash7800:: No that’s wonderful. I think that everyone’s going to be very happy. I can’t imagine us wanting anything else.
Lou: Okay, and honestly one of the things is I would say, the companies I’ve worked for (since I only worked for one, so that would be rude) can often times spin their community messege and turtle messegeing. We try really, really, hard to just give it to you straight. Crystal clear and transparent. When we screw up and things take longer we say yeah sorry we kind of screwed that up. We’re doing our best. We know no one wants to hear that answer but it’s the truth. So we feel like that’s the right relationship, and so give us the truth tell us how you really feel.
DrWiley:We know they will.
Lou: We’re not sensitive, well we’re a little sensitive. but we’re doing our best and if we don’t hear what you don’t like, we don’t know what to fix. And if we don’t hear what you like we don’t know what to add. So make sure to make it balanced. Tell us what you do like because that’s important. You don’t only tell us what you don’t like. Occasionally we might take away something that you really liked because you said we don’t like this, we don’t like this we don’t like this. Well we’ve got to do this. okay well we didn’t know you were going to do that.
crash7800:: I’ve got to tell everyone that it seems so responsible and natural to do things this way. I have to tell you the friends that I have that are community managers in other companies. That’s not how it works in other companies, guys. So you’re probably one of the most exceptional online communities. James and I love working with you. I think it goes both ways where you guys are extremely fortunate to have someone like Lou. Thank you again. He is so transparent and so engaged. He’s always asking us what you guys think. He’s always asking what we can do differently.
Lou: Hey I get your e-mails
crash7800:: Yes, yes he does.
Lou: You don’t have to just send them to me. I get everything that goes through.
crash7800:: And you get the comics.
Lou: I do, I get the comics. some of them are histerical. Good stuff. … So yeah at the end of the day I really care about the community. Westwood was a fun place I wanted to go to work. And we spent some time with the community. They will tell you what they like and they don’t like. A lot of the time people will tell you what they want. It takes a bit of an analysis to understand. If you’re asking for feature X, you may not actually want feature X. I know that sounds impossible. It’s like somtimes people said yeah I want to play that Dune 2 game again. No you want to feel the same way you felt when you played that Dune 2 game but you don’t reall want to play that game.
DrWiley:Now I need to play it again.
Lou: Trust me. These things have warts – they weren’t perfect. We get better as we grow older as we continue to find things. So we need to know what you like, what you don’t like. We’ll screw up now and again. We don’t mind saying we did… Come straight out and say heres what we did. We kind of screwed this one up. We got that one right. It’s really important to be honest with the people trying to fix it.
crash7800:: Awesome. You’re going to have a lot of questions a lot of the information’s really cool stuff. Post them up. I’m sure you won’t mind us sending them over. If you just want to put them up. But it’s been really excellent having you on the podcast. You’re in Vegas we’re in Portland, we’ve been trying to get this done. Appearently Germany was the place to go to make it happen.
Lou: Every time I’m up in Portland the schedules so full.
crash7800:: Oh we’re always running around yeah. So thank you again for doing this I’ll absolutely have you back again.
Lou: Go in and hit the facebook connect button. Actually you guys already know so check it out.
crash7800:: Give us some feedback give us some love. And also we’re hoping you guys are likeing the new forums. Please do leave your feedback. We’re in Germany which means we’re nine hours ahead of you so if you send us a direct messege to get your account information updated we will get it done, it’s just that maybe we’re spending twelve hours here and we’re nine hours ahead of you so please be patient. We will get your post counts updated. I think that about does it. That’s a lot of information to process so post you’re questions we’ll get you guys some answers. Until then I’m crash7800:.
Lou: Louis Castle.
crash7800:: And we will see you guys in InstantAction.
MadCowDisease2 wrote:I can’t promise that you can play for free forever, but you will definately be able to play it for free.
Perrinoia wrote:Personally, I chose not to bother joining multi-player servers prior to completing each tutorial mission flawlessly. Completed the jump/jet training in one jump, weapons training with no misses, flag capping with no damage, etc...
The funny thing perrin, is that they don't give a flying love about what we want