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 Post subject: Confused...
PostPosted: Mon Dec 05, 2005 11:03 am 

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2004 4:41 pm
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I am a bit confused about your (the developers of MA2) general product development, release and branding strategy. I mean, first there was Massive Assault (retail box type product).

OK, then it was like you decided to make the free to play/downlaod MAN game. OK, I can live with that. It was a new idea.

Then came Domination (why this was not called Massive Assault 2 I don't know). So, I went out and bought it. Lots of single-player stuff. With the same sort of multi-player online stuff that MAN had. So, I said to myself, "OK, now they have done it all right in one product the first time".

Now I see MAN2. I get the beta. Guess what? It is Domination with a different name and the added feature of a time-limit. Seems like the same strategy as you had with MA/MAN.

I am not trying to pick you guys apart here. The reality is that MA/MAN/Domination/MAN2 is one of the best game series that I have ever played. I bought Civ4 but don't play it much because I so love devoting my limited gaming time to Domination (both single-player and online). So, this post is out of love. As a professional software developer myself, it just kinds makes me wince to see some of the product/branding decisions you folks make (or are forced to make for some reason I am not aware of).

My suggestion at this point:

When you release v3.0, make ONE product.

- Call it: Massive Assault 3.0
- Sell it in stores. With that you get all single player stuff along with a 1 year subscription to the online play. Chareg like US$60. I'll pay it, gladly.
- Make it have all of the MAN features in it. DON'T make MA3 and MAN3. Don't do it.
- Make the demo version downloadable from your Web site. Make it so that you can play tutorials, one single-player map and one multiplayer online map.
- If someone wants it they shell out the $60 or whatever but get the game plus a year online.

Think simplicity, simplicity, simplicity. If need be, take some time away from development and spend some time on marketing and overall product line strategies.

Please don't take any of this the wrong way. If you stopped making and supporting this product line I would almost cry. Seriously, you are really onto something here. Keep at it! You guys do for strategy games what Google does for the Web. Take out the crap you don't need and leave you with what you do.

My other MAJOR suggestion for MA3 is to make it moddable. Instead of putting any more development time into the graphics (I turn them all down anyhow - they get in the way) put it into making the base engine moddable. Look at what they did for Civ 4. I for one would love to see the cool mods that could/would be made on the MAN engine. Just somethig as simple as a map, unit and basic rules editor.

Anyhow, enough rant from me. Enjoy the game!

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