The past three years have been a tremendous rollercoaster for indie developer Hello Games. With announcing their latest title in 2013 during VGX then officially by Sony during E3 in 2014, to its release this month, No Man’s Sky gained extremely high notoriety and it appeared that the hype train had no breaks. But, if you ask those who fueled that hype and purchased pre-orders, they were sold a false bill of goods and are out for blood.
The dread keeps coming too: death threats when head developer announced its inevitable delay (practically every game is delayed, get use to it), a redditor compiling a list of everything the team over at Hello Games stated NMS would include complete with source material, PC player base dropping 90 per cent after two weeks of release, or the fact that major retailers like Sony and Amazon are offering full refunds on the game’s purchase.
All of this for one game.
So the question becomes: what happened?
We could discuss if the game really is that bad or if what a game developer says should be considered concrete. As time goes on none of this will matter as the internet will move on to something else to be offended by. So what happened? What could have Hello Games done to stop the hype from getting out of hand and what can you do not to follow in their footsteps?
Communicating with your audience is the only way to keep everyone on the same page. The gaming industry does not need to be kept a secret until release. This isn’t the 1980s anymore. There isn’t a console war going on like the one Sega and Nintendo waged. If you list the features out that your game is planning on having and you have to take something out, then let everyone know. Explain why you’re taking it out and how the game will be impacted by it. Be honest. We are people too. We care and understand. We want to see your dream come to life as much as you do.
They are video games, after all. Something that is suppose to be fun. Remember fun? Sure you do.
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