Author Topic: Re-inventing the Wheel  (Read 60089 times)

Offline Lambonius

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #40 on: August 17, 2010, 07:06:52 PM »
So you would prefer it if Activision just continued to sit on the IP and there was never any actual official work every done on the old Sierra series of adventure games ever again?

How exactly would it be insulting for a group that's able to obtain the permission of both the current owner of the Sierra IP and the blessing of the original creators of these games to pick up where they left off?  I don't see anybody else actually putting forth serious effort to do that.  We're all huge fans of the series too or we wouldnt' be doing what we're doing - and there are quite a few other fans who would likely love to see some of the Sierra franchises expanded after all these years.  We all love remakes of the originals, that's all kinds of fun, but people also love to see new stuff come out, and I hate to break it to you but the original creators are done - they're not going to continue any of those series, and Activision probably isn't going to start making new "x Quest" games on their own.

With all due respect, I don't think he's saying he doesn't want ANYONE to make more Quest games--he just doesn't want to see them re-imagined into something they were never meant to be.   Which is something I can understand, personally.  :-\

Offline wilco64256

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #41 on: August 17, 2010, 07:10:40 PM »
The impression KQ6 leaves on most people is that of a beautiful love story, with the hero overcoming impossible odds to save and be with the one he loves.

Only if you get the "good" ending though.  Get the bad ending and have no idea how to get the good ending, and KQ6 didn't leave you feeling particularly happy.
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Offline wilco64256

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #42 on: August 17, 2010, 07:12:20 PM »
To me, the only ''official'' version of King's Quest would be one written by Roberta, Josh, or Jane; the only official SQ would be one written by Scott, Mark or Josh, etc. No fan game is the official continuation of the story, nor should it attempt to be--It's insulting to other fans, and to the worlds the original creators created. Regardless of how many people support TSL, that still does not make it King's Quest IX. As you said, it's your take--It's in essence as much a reboot as it is a 'sequel.' My problem is with your plan to try and become the official sequel designers. That's where fan-game freedom ends and something else begins.

It certainly comes across that way.  Maybe he could clarify what he actually does mean if that wasn't what he meant.
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Offline waltzdancing

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #43 on: August 17, 2010, 07:15:30 PM »
Who's to say whether or not it's not to be until it is given a chance. This is an adventure game with a deeper story and more twists rather than something that is straight forward. The games of today will never be like those of the past because if you get stuck in the past, you are unable to move forward, it becomes old. A story has to change in order to survive. People resist change, and that is understandable. The safety of something familiar but then you are missing out on all the wonderful things that could be. When something new happens it sparks interest and people what to see it come to it's full potential, bringing old fans and new ones together to enjoy something that is new to everyone.

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #44 on: August 17, 2010, 07:37:27 PM »
Cesar, the problem isn't so much the direction as the fact that you've stated a goal of yours is to get a commercial license for all of Sierra's franchises. That's going beyond a subjective fan project where it's your vision, and making your ''take'' into an official sequel. As someone who grew up with these games, who has loved these games since I was 4 years old, I find that a bit insulting to myself and other fans.

So you would prefer it if Activision just continued to sit on the IP and there was never any actual official work every done on the old Sierra series of adventure games ever again?

How exactly would it be insulting for a group that's able to obtain the permission of both the current owner of the Sierra IP and the blessing of the original creators of these games to pick up where they left off?  I don't see anybody else actually putting forth serious effort to do that.  We're all huge fans of the series too or we wouldnt' be doing what we're doing - and there are quite a few other fans who would likely love to see some of the Sierra franchises expanded after all these years.  We all love remakes of the originals, that's all kinds of fun, but people also love to see new stuff come out, and I hate to break it to you but the original creators are done - they're not going to continue any of those series, and Activision probably isn't going to start making new "x Quest" games on their own.

To be honest, yes. As long as Activision ''sits'' on it, it's fair game for any fan group to make whatever they want really. Why should YOUR game be the official King's Quest X, or Space Quest 7? Why should I want another ''official'' game? What's wrong with a group of fan games--All different visions? Why does it have to be solely YOUR vision as the ''official one"? And let's be honest, they're not exactly ''sitting'' on it-Did they not allow GOG and Steam to re-release quite a few of Sierra's old properties?

As far as the 'blessing of the original creators' Roberta saying she liked Chapter I wasn't exactly her saying, "You guys are my heirs, this is what I wanted, your game is official in my book and is the way I envisioned a KQ9 would be" Why do you solely have to be the ones to create new sequels? And why do you feel the need to put the stamp of ''official'' on any future games in the Sierra franchises you make? There are other people, with other visions and ideas other than Cesar Bittar, but--Screw them, right? You're Phoenix Online, so your games come before all. Yeah, right.

As far as the original creators being done, outside of Roberta, I never saw Josh, or Scott, or Mark come out and say, "I'd never do another X or Y Quest game if I had the chance."

Like I said, without them, to me, it's not official, and I don't see why you need it to be. Why not create fan games? Again, Why does your group have to be the sole creators of sequels? Why not focus on your own games?

Seeing the pretentious attitude here--"Since no one else has made a original fan game yet, we're going to take the license and ensure we'll be the only ones to"-- I would bet good money on you guys stopping other fan groups from creating games if you did get the license.

You are not the heirs of Sierra as much as you want to be. All the hype I think has gone to your heads.



Offline Fierce Deity

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #45 on: August 17, 2010, 07:43:39 PM »
Actually, relatable IS the proper adjective form of relate--for some reason the spell check just doesn't accept it.  ;)

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/relatable

Truly fascinating. Even with my years and experience with creative writing, the very formation of the letters makes it look like it would be misspelled. Regardless, nice find. I feel a little smarter now.  :P
 
While I'm not crazy about the darker tone of TSL (or the overly negative tone of jackinthebox's posts lol), I'm willing to give the rest of the game the benefit of the doubt and at least play it before I put all my marbles in the "down with TSL" camp.   :P

Cheers. That's what I'm doing. I'm refraining from jumping to either side of the debate until Episode 2. Logically, I can understand why the team needed to release something to show good favor in Activision's decision to drop the C&D. However, this is causing a bit of a stir with the debates and arguments that are arising as of late. I'm with you. I will gladly give them the benefit of the doubt and wait for Episode 2. Then I will state how I really feel. Even with my "fanboyish" antics that I may have portrayed in the past, I promise my real opinion will come out when Episode 2's credits roll.

Incidentally, it's funny that the Harry Potter series should come up as an example--I actually thought the books got progressively worse as they got darker--and it was that darker tone that ultimately ruined the series for me, especially the God-awful last book, which removed everything I loved about the earlier books entirely, and focused on one dreary death-ridden slog to the final battle--which itself was the icing on the crap-cake--particularly when
Spoiler (mouse over to reveal):
 The first two books were amazingly witty and charming, and the way the school was portrayed and the creative silliness of the classes and lessons were a real joy to read about.  Going down the dark emo path in book three (and then getting even worse from there) was about the worst decision Rowling could have made, in my opinion.  There are points in the later books where I just wanted to punch Harry in the face, he was so whiny.

I felt like the first two books were the only good entries too. If they really needed to
Spoiler (mouse over to reveal):
I just wished she would have
Spoiler (mouse over to reveal):
Doesn't get more epic than that.  ::)

I just don't understand why people automatically think that for a series to mature, it needs to "go darker."  I don't get it.  Dark does not equal deep.  I just don't understand why people seem to always equate the two.  KQ6 was easily the deepest game in the series, and it really wasn't "dark" at all--at least not in the way the later Harry Potter books were.  The impression KQ6 leaves on most people is that of a beautiful love story, with the hero overcoming impossible odds to save and be with the one he loves.  My wife even teared up during parts of it when I had her first play through it with me (which was an awesome experience BTW, and highly recommended if your wife/girlfriend is at all into games.  :))

The dark theme in a game can create a deep atmosphere, if it's done right. Though, most storytellers end up drowning themselves in a ridiculous, pessimistic cliche. For instance, (I promise I won't elaborate on the topic) Twilight is a Romeo and Juliet with vampires. Nothing more needs to be said. I don't understand how teenagers can fall asleep in class when reading Shakespeare, but then soak up all of these hormone-infested cliches like its tomorrow's news. Not all stories can pull of a dark/deep atmosphere, but seeing as how Phoenix Online has stated that they want to provide closure to the entire series, a climax involving an ultimate evil and an impending fate can benefit from the dark aura. I think they can pull it off (as long as the dark tone is not upheld throughout the entire game with no lighthearted subplots).    
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Offline waltzdancing

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #46 on: August 17, 2010, 07:48:57 PM »
TIME OUT!

I will remind everyone here too that this discussion needs to kept clean and NO straight attacks must be made by any party. We are a family here and we need to treat each everyone with respect.

Who said this was official? I view it as the official one but I'm not speaking of everyone. I read those comments made by Cez and I never saw him as trying to resurrect Sierra but the vision that they had. Good family quality games and he never said that POS should only be the ones making sequels. Remember the The Silver Lining was once a much larger game and that those other chapters could be made if a commercial license was granted. Why not strive for the best you can be. You are allowed to your vision but remember to respect others as well.

Offline Lambonius

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #47 on: August 17, 2010, 07:55:35 PM »
TIME OUT!

I will remind everyone here too that this discussion needs to kept clean and NO straight attacks must be made by any party. We are a family here and we need to treat each everyone with respect.

Who said this was official? I view it as the official one but I'm not speaking of everyone. I read those comments made by Cez and I never saw him as trying to resurrect Sierra but the vision that they had. Good family quality games and he never said that POS should only be the ones making sequels. Remember the The Silver Lining was once a much larger game and that those other chapters could be made if a commercial license was granted. Why not strive for the best you can be. You are allowed to your vision but remember to respect others as well.

To be fair, he did explicitly say in those interviews that the eventual desire was to get official license to produce games based on Sierra IPs commercially.  I really don't see what's so ambiguous about direct quotes.   :P

Offline wilco64256

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #48 on: August 17, 2010, 08:01:15 PM »
Yeah let's try and remain civil here - we're not saying that we're the only group that's doing anything right - we're just absolutely working our butts off and if the opportunity to go commercial with Sierra games became a possibility for us sure we'd go for it (we'd be idiots not to).  And we've never once even hinted at this idea that other groups' work is in any way inferior - personally I would have been more than happy to pay for several of the fan games that I've played.

I'd assume that any group that was doing fan work based on an old game series that was given the opportunity to continue doing that and actually get paid for it would jump all over that opportunity.  Fan games by their very nature take a long time (typically not as long as ours has but we've had some gnarly hoops to jump through) because they're being made for free.  Imagine what a group of fans could accomplish if they could just stick to that full time.  And we're not a closed group of fans at all - we're extremely open to feedback and have already put a huge amount of effort into tweaking some of the gameplay for future episodes based specifically on feedback that we've gotten from other people and groups.
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Offline wilco64256

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #49 on: August 17, 2010, 08:02:29 PM »
TIME OUT!

I will remind everyone here too that this discussion needs to kept clean and NO straight attacks must be made by any party. We are a family here and we need to treat each everyone with respect.

Who said this was official? I view it as the official one but I'm not speaking of everyone. I read those comments made by Cez and I never saw him as trying to resurrect Sierra but the vision that they had. Good family quality games and he never said that POS should only be the ones making sequels. Remember the The Silver Lining was once a much larger game and that those other chapters could be made if a commercial license was granted. Why not strive for the best you can be. You are allowed to your vision but remember to respect others as well.

To be fair, he did explicitly say in those interviews that the eventual desire was to get official license to produce games based on Sierra IPs commercially.  I really don't see what's so ambiguous about direct quotes.   :P

Right, that is something we'd definitely be interested in doing eventually, but it doesn't change the fact that this game is still just an unofficial fan game.
Weldon Hathaway

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #50 on: August 17, 2010, 08:06:52 PM »
TIME OUT!

I will remind everyone here too that this discussion needs to kept clean and NO straight attacks must be made by any party. We are a family here and we need to treat each everyone with respect.

Who said this was official? I view it as the official one but I'm not speaking of everyone. I read those comments made by Cez and I never saw him as trying to resurrect Sierra but the vision that they had. Good family quality games and he never said that POS should only be the ones making sequels. Remember the The Silver Lining was once a much larger game and that those other chapters could be made if a commercial license was granted. Why not strive for the best you can be. You are allowed to your vision but remember to respect others as well.

To be fair, he did explicitly say in those interviews that the eventual desire was to get official license to produce games based on Sierra IPs commercially.  I really don't see what's so ambiguous about direct quotes.   :P

Right. And my issue with that is for a few reasons:

1) If someone came along and let's say made a commercial sequel to the Lord of the Rings, based on his own take--Not anything JRR Tolkien wanted since he's ''retired'' (dead), would that not be a disservice to the fans of the original, for one, and to his original work? Also, let's say you guys develop a Space Quest 7 which examines the traumas that time traveling has left on Roger, and it's released as 'Space Quest (inset number or sub-title here)' in stores--Kids who never played the original games but see a pretty and interesting box cover on a store shelf and buy it will  think THIS is what Space Quest is; In essence, it's trying to re-invent a series in your vision. For a fan game, that's one thing. For a commercial product proclaiming itself to be THE Space Quest 7, that's another, and in my opinion, that's wrong.

Cesar has said openly he INTENTIONALLY decided to do his own version of King's Quest, because his writing style is different; He intentionally made it different then Roberta's style, and instead of it being a fairy tale decided to make it a ''teen fantasy'' story--Why should I have any faith he wouldn't do something more drastic or just as drastic to other Sierra games given money and the ''official'' sequel tag? I don't want to see a cyberpunk Space Quest, or a Diablo-esque version of Quest for Glory. Sorry.

2) I don't see why one needs a commercial license. You guys are giving us your vision of KQ now--You don't need a commercial license to do so. Also, as far as the "other chapters coming out"--Cesar has said that idea was overly ambitious, and that we're being told the whole story anyway.

3) If you guys get the license and become the "official" SQ7, the "official" KQ10, etc, how would that make prospective fans feel about developing their own sequels? ''Well...I wanted to make my vision, but why should I? Phoenix is putting out the 'official' games after all. My game will never be official like theirs.''

Offline waltzdancing

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #51 on: August 17, 2010, 08:22:54 PM »
The times have changed. The world has changed. Cesar's version of King's Quest takes the story of the past and merged it with what the world is today. You cannot live in the past and neither can King's Quest. I don't see it as a teen fantasy story like Harry Potter or Twilight or any other love story. This  is a family struggling to survive for it's right to live and it tells a wonderful story about people coming together to fight for what is right. It shows us how powerful people should be, caring, thoughtful, and considerate people.

Who would care if it held the official sequel or not? I don't. If someone wrote their own version of Lord of the Rings, I'd expect it to be different because it was by someone else. They aren't doing a disservice to anyone or insulting the memory. We had to fight tooth and nail for this game to come out and if we had a commercial license would have made it so much easier and faster for this game to come out to you.

If other people stop making their own fan games because someone else made an official one then they are doing a discredit to themselves and the community. Look at how many books were written about Star Wars. They are all different from what George Lucas wrote but they have a completing story to tell.

Offline Lambonius

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #52 on: August 17, 2010, 08:28:25 PM »
The times have changed. The world has changed. Cesar's version of King's Quest takes the story of the past and merged it with what the world is today.


No offense, but what does that even mean?  We don't need a King's Quest for the post 9/11 world or anything like that.  :P  Seriously--what an odd statement.   ???

If someone wrote their own version of Lord of the Rings, I'd expect it to be different because it was by someone else. They aren't doing a disservice to anyone or insulting the memory.

I couldn't disagree more.  You'd be taking the popularity of the LOTR franchise, something you had no right to and didn't earn for yourself, and then using it to hype up YOUR work--which is absolutely dishonest--ESPECIALLY if you plan on doing something that is completely different than the vision of the original creator.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2010, 08:30:19 PM by Lambonius »

Offline KatieHal

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #53 on: August 17, 2010, 08:31:01 PM »
Maybe I can clarify some things...

Officialness: As it stands right now, no, we are not an official sequel, and we haven't claimed to be. It's a fan-game, unofficial, and that's that.

Future IP-related remarks: This is all stuff that's up in the air. The idea that we've talked about and would like to pursue if it's an option would be to do for Sierra games what TellTale has done for LucasArts games. As for the why us and not someone else....well, honestly, that question simply comes down to a question of ownership and permissions. If we, as opposed to any other group, were the ones to get either ownership of said IPs or permission to create official commercial games, then that's pretty much why us. But that could just as well be anyone else who had the interest, time, capability, and money to make such a thing come to pass. Blunt and un-romantic as it is, the question of "why you/him/her/them" comes down pretty much to money, drive, and opportunity. Why TellTale over anyone else? Because they're the ones who found a way to make it happen.

As for darkness/tone/etc: Personally, for the record, I loved the latter Harry Potter books. :) I love that the series matured along with Harry and his friends, that they grew up and made hard choices, that they loved and lost and had to fight damn hard to win. Fairy tales that are simple and straight forward are nice, and they have their place too, but personally, I like something where it's not quite so easy.

But that's me, not everyone else. We liked the idea of taking the series to a somewhat darker and more mature place, instead of simply doing what had been done before. We wanted to take it that step further, to a place it hadn't really been before, and so we did. You may like it, you may not, and either opinion is fine. "Why?" in this case is, well, because that's we wanted to do.

I find the subject line of this thread interesting, and to me easy to answer. Why reinvent the wheel? The wheel gets you from one place to another, and it's basic design has been the same since it was indeed invented. But those first wheels? Wouldn't really be so good today. They'd be hell to use on cars, bikes, and other machines. They'd be uneven, rough-hewn, and made from very rudimentary materials. The wheel has been reinvented thousands of times over, if you think about it. All manner of revisions, improvements, adjustments to whatever it was specifically needed for, it's constantly being refined even today and it will continue to happen that way.

There are only so many stories out there, and they've all been told a thousand times. What's different is the way in which you tell the story, and this is, simply, how we chose to tell ours.

Katie Hallahan
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Offline Lambonius

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #54 on: August 17, 2010, 08:39:25 PM »
Again though--why does mature have to equal dark??  It takes a lot more skill as a writer to create a mature story without having to resort to dark melodrama and contrived tragedy.  Seriously--it's a lot more of a tired cliche than sticking with the fairytale atmosphere would be.  That's all anyone's saying.  Personally, I get more and more worried about how this game is going to turn out with every comment that I see posted by one of the creators.  "Plot twists that fans might be really unhappy with?"  "Josh Mandel disagreed with the direction of the story?"  Good lord--what are you guys planning??   :o   I'm literally terrified to see what you guys have in store for our beloved royal family.   :P
« Last Edit: August 17, 2010, 09:59:32 PM by Lambonius »

Offline Fierce Deity

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #55 on: August 17, 2010, 08:40:57 PM »
I think people are really blowing this out of proportion. Just because Cesar said one thing that illustrated his passion for Sierra adventure games, people will think this is some kind of mutiny against the classics. If a kid bought Space Quest 7 thinking it is a classic Space Quest game, he'll need to go back to school to learn the numeric system. It'd be like playing Final Fantasy XIII and thinking that the older games are going to be exactly like XIII.

Now, where is the harm in Phoenix Online getting the commercial license for Sierra's adventure games? Phoenix Online is attempting to actually become a successful developer in an industry that is reaching its bounds. If Activision gives Phoenix Online the rights to Sierra's IPs, how are they any different from the hundreds of developers that walk in on another team's original series to create a sequel. Harmonix walked away from Activision and joined with EA to make Rock Band. Yet, Activision was able to find other teams (Neversoft and Vicarious Visions) to carry on the Guitar Hero legacy. Activision had a falling out with Infinity Ward who was known for the Modern Warfare installments in the Call of Duty series. Now Treyarch (known for the rather inferior installments of Call of Duty) will be taking the lead with the Call of Duty franchise and will no longer be sharing the IP with Infinity Ward (although there are rumors that Bungie will be working on Call of Duty since their recent signing with Activision).

What I'm getting at is, this would be a normal transition for any developer and publisher (especially in Activision's case) if it were to happen. You don't need to approve of Phoenix Online's games if they were to make official sequels to Sierra's games, but in the end, not much could be done. If it happens, then their official ("fan-fic" in DMD's opinion) Space Quest 7 will be a legit sequel in the series. Then again, it was Cesar expressing his wishful thinking, so I don't know why people are trying to start a war over it.  :-\
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Offline Lambonius

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #56 on: August 17, 2010, 08:46:49 PM »
No one's starting a war here.  This thread (with a few exceptions) actually has a pretty intelligent and thoughtful debate going, in my opinion.  Where's the harm in discussing differing views on the future of the series?

Offline wilco64256

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #57 on: August 17, 2010, 08:50:24 PM »
Nobody's saying that mature automatically results in dark, but that is sort of the natural direction the King's Quest games would take - as they moved on we continued to see more and more direct attacks on the royal family from evil witches and wizards.  More mature game design generally means a more complex story - the story isn't going to be all that complex if it's all kicks and giggles.  There's definitely some fun stuff that will take place as the episodes continue and plenty of jokes and laughs will be had, but without conflict it wouldn't be a good story at all.  We just very heavily introduced that conflict during the first episode.

I really have to agree with Katie (and not just because I work with her) that it's just a matter of time and opportunity and determination.  Sure, we'd love to make the transition into a full-blown commercial production studio.  I think we're doing an excellent job of showing what we're capable of when we can finally really get down to business, and hopefully we'll see some rewards from that in one way or another as time goes on.
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Offline waltzdancing

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #58 on: August 17, 2010, 08:53:29 PM »
Nobody's saying that mature automatically results in dark, but that is sort of the natural direction the King's Quest games would take - as they moved on we continued to see more and more direct attacks on the royal family from evil witches and wizards.  More mature game design generally means a more complex story - the story isn't going to be all that complex if it's all kicks and giggles.  There's definitely some fun stuff that will take place as the episodes continue and plenty of jokes and laughs will be had, but without conflict it wouldn't be a good story at all.  We just very heavily introduced that conflict during the first episode.

I really have to agree with Katie (and not just because I work with her) that it's just a matter of time and opportunity and determination.  Sure, we'd love to make the transition into a full-blown commercial production studio.  I think we're doing an excellent job of showing what we're capable of when we can finally really get down to business, and hopefully we'll see some rewards from that in one way or another as time goes on.

Well said.

Offline Fierce Deity

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Re: Re-inventing the Wheel
« Reply #59 on: August 17, 2010, 09:23:02 PM »
No one's starting a war here.  This thread (with a few exceptions) actually has a pretty intelligent and thoughtful debate going, in my opinion.  Where's the harm in discussing differing views on the future of the series?

I wasn't referring to the debate. The debate is going swimmingly to be honest. I was directing my post more towards the users who are taking offense towards the team's rebuttal. Specifically, jackinthebox, DMD, and spinz. I can understand being a fan of a series and then seeing it go down an unfamiliar (or rather unwanted) path. It just seems like many of the users are taking this debate personally. I was just trying to establish that what Cesar said in the interview was just talk. Nothing has been decided, nothing is official, yet many are acting bitter towards the team and the entire project just because Cesar expressed his feelings about the future of Phoenix Online and their intentions. I see no reason why they should really be offended unless they actually have something to lose by Phoenix Online gaining a commercial license.

Please, debate away. I was just sidetracked by the "tone" I was getting from peoples' posts. I may be off-base, but some other users were sensing it too.
Freudian Slip - "When you say one thing, but mean your mother."