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Heroes of Umbra on Steam Greenlight

If you haven't been following me on twitter you might be surprised to learn that I'm still working on this and it is almost complete. I know I haven't posted much, but this project means a lot to me because it's the first project I've done from the ground-up. A ton of work was put into the game engine and its assets. I'd love for it to reach a wider audience, so I've submitted it to Steam Greenlight.

This does mean I'd like to sell my work. Making games as a hobby takes a lot of time and effort. With your help the ultimate goal is to fund artists for my main project, Starless Umbra, and speed up the development process tremendously.

If this sounds good to you, please consider voting on Steam Greenlight:

Heroes of Umbra on Steam Greenlight! Click me!

As always, I'm grateful for your support and interest in my projects. Please let me know if you have any questions. Thanks for looking.

Posts

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I absolutely understand that developers want to reach the largest possible audience, and there is nothing fundamentally wrong with trying to make money from creative projects. Yet, I think suddenly telling players they are now expected to pay money for a game that had been marketed as free for such a long time is not a great course of action.

That's not to say I don't want people to support your future work, on the contrary. But if you really decide to tell everyone who has played and enjoyed earlier versions of Heroes of Umbra that the final product they have been hoping to see for so long will now come only with a price tag attached to it, I hope you will at least be so fair as to not take down the earlier builds that are available for free here.

Regardless, I wish you best of luck on your endeavours, and I hope everything will go well for you!
dragonheartman
Developer, Starless Umbra / Heroes of Umbra
2516
author=NeverSilent
I absolutely understand that developers want to reach the largest possible audience, and there is nothing fundamentally wrong with trying to make money from creative projects. Yet, I think suddenly telling players they are now expected to pay money for a game that had been marketed as free for such a long time is not a great course of action.

That's not to say I don't want people to support your future work, on the contrary. But if you really decide to tell everyone who has played and enjoyed earlier versions of Heroes of Umbra that the final product they have been hoping to see for so long will now come only with a price tag attached to it, I hope you will at least be so fair as to not take down the earlier builds that are available for free here.

Regardless, I wish you best of luck on your endeavours, and I hope everything will go well for you!

Yes of course. I will keep the existing downloads around. I also have no problem giving away keys to those that have supported the game and played it prior to me putting a price point on it.

It's not so much about earning money as it is being able to afford artists moving forward. This is something I absolutely love doing but doing it by myself and publishing it for free is not very sustainable if I want to release more than one game a decade. This is a new step for me so I appreciate you being vocal with your concerns.
Tau
RMN sex symbol
3272
I have no problem whatsoever with what you're doing. It's like complaining about paying for a game after playing the beta. I'm pretty sure this game was never marketed as free either, more of a learning experience & trial for DHM, having been fed up with rpg makers limitations.

Congrats man & I hope it's green lit!
author=NeverSilent
I absolutely understand that developers want to reach the largest possible audience, and there is nothing fundamentally wrong with trying to make money from creative projects. Yet, I think suddenly telling players they are now expected to pay money for a game that had been marketed as free for such a long time is not a great course of action.


Nah fuck that, there's literally no unspoken rule that I've heard of that implies you can never put up a paid product if it was originally free in some state. Ara Fell's demo was free for like 10 years and no one cared that the finished game was going to be sold on Steam. Nothing should hold people back from wanting to put value on their own art, support your fellow devs.
Considering that Ara Fell was pretty much completely remade specifically for the commercial release, that comparison makes no sense whatsoever. There's a big difference between creating an entirely new version of a project to sell, and finishing an already existing game that could previously be played for free, but making people pay for it now.

I'm all for people supporting their fellow devs, especially in the case of completely custom-built games like this. But first telling your audience you're making a free game for them to play, only to then snatch that away from them again mid-development is misleading at best and an absolute jerk move at worst. Fortunately, it seems that the creator of this game has much more common sense regarding this decision, and even just keeping the free builds available for everyone is at least a pretty fair compromise. So thank you, dragonheartman!
author=NeverSilent
Considering that Ara Fell was pretty much completely remade specifically for the commercial release, that comparison makes no sense whatsoever. There's a big difference between creating an entirely new version of a project to sell, and finishing an already existing game that could previously be played for free, but making people pay for it now.

No they're similar, the degree of change might be different (I have no idea what dhm has added) but you're the one now deciding what threshold a game is allowed to pass before it's allowed to sell itself after being "marketed as free" (which is also vague). Who are you to decide what degree a game has to be "remade" or added to so much that the developer is exempt from guilt?

All your wishy washy principle seems to do is potentially discourage devs from taking the plunge to commercial, especially if circumstances arise. The attitude is just bad and I never heard of it in the indie community. Countless indie devs have shared betas of their game while being undecided of how you'll ultimately acquire it (whether or not its freeware, the price, the platform, going into early access, even the direction of the game itself). You got to play a person's hard work for free and now he decided to put a paywall over it, even in the worst scenario there's nothing wrong with this. Unless he to god promised and signed a contract in blood that the game was going to be free forever MAYBEEEEEEEEE I'd see your point.
Tau
RMN sex symbol
3272
Thanks Darken, saved me the trouble really haha.
Pay our artists so they can continue making great stuff. It's that simple to me. There is a s**t ton of work that goes into game development and art of any kind, and as much as anyone wants to do things just for the passion, it is hard to continue working on things in this world if you aren't tangibly compensated for it.

I have no problem supporting this work financially

(ESPECIALLY IF IT MEANS MORE PROGRESS ON STARLESS UMBRA)
dragonheartman
Developer, Starless Umbra / Heroes of Umbra
2516
author=NeverSilent
But first telling your audience you're making a free game for them to play, only to then snatch that away from them again mid-development is misleading at best and an absolute jerk move at worst.

The vision I had for HoU back when I started it is different than the vision I have for the game now. What started as a vague proof-of-concept project to learn network programming and pixel art is now coming together much better than I had originally planned. I'm simply asking for a bit of support so I can finish this stuff in a timely manner. Please do not confuse this with malice.

I also think this will give me some accountability for delivering a polished product. "lol it's just a free beta" is not an excuse I want to give myself moving forward.

author=zaeran
Pay our artists so they can continue making great stuff. It's that simple to me.

This is truly what it comes down to. I've come to appreciate artists more creating my own content. And I can't wait to work on SU again.
Luiishu535
My name is totes more readable now
3846
As an aspiring developer working hard on my game(s) every day, I definitely support you on going commercial. Best of luck, dude!
Luiishu535
My name is totes more readable now
3846
Please, exterminate this post, Kentona.
author=dragonheartman
I'm simply asking for a bit of support so I can finish this stuff in a timely manner. Please do not confuse this with malice.

That is absolutely not what I intended to imply, and I want to apologise profusely for making my comment sound that way. The more accusing part of my above post was mainly meant to criticise cases where people released something for free, only to then take it down again and suddenly ask for money for pretty much the same thing. Which, since you said you plan to keep the old downloads up, is not what you are doing. So none of that was aimed directly at you, and again, I'm sorry if I made it seem like that.


That being said;
author=Darken
All your wishy washy principle seems to do is potentially discourage devs from taking the plunge to commercial, especially if circumstances arise. The attitude is just bad and I never heard of it in the indie community.

If it were my intention to stop or sabotage commercial game making endeavours, I'd be doing a pretty terrbible job at it, considering I have actively worked on helping out with multiple of them, and still am. But even so, you might perhaps be surprised to learn that, yes, there are indeed people who do not consider the recent hype about "taking the plunge to commercial" to necessarily be a good thing. But even though I may be sceptical about the idea of going commercial, and perhaps would in fact prefer to see fewer people be encouraged to go that route, it is much more important to me to show respect for people's choices if that is what they want to do, and I am not saying that going commercial is bad per se in any way. But I do want to emphasise that if a developer connects to and has worked in in the context of the hobbyist free game making scene, and has received feedback and support on a project from this demographic, it's only fair to treat this audience with some consideration as well, even though they may not 100% overlap with the audience of paying customers you want to seek out in the future.
In my opinion, there is room for both non-commercial and commercial game development on RMN. I simply hope to not see the one audience constantly getting casually tossed aside because the other is now considered more useful or prestigious.


But hey, you know what? If I read this conversation correctly, all the people who have posted here most definitely intend to support dhm by buying the full version of this game once it comes out, correct? If that is indeed the case, then I already consider this discussion a great succes for that reason alone.
author=NeverSilent
But even so, you might perhaps be surprised to learn that, yes, there are indeed people who do not consider the recent hype about "taking the plunge to commercial" to necessarily be a good thing.


Oh I'm sure there are tons of people that think that you're selling out the moment you announce you decided to start selling a game. It's a stigma that's been around in the RM community for quite some time actually.

My issue is, I've never heard of a specific context where someone makes the jump from freeware to commercial in the middle of game development, and a bunch of people are pissed off they don't get access to the playable free game anymore just because the person didn't state what the final access of the game would be. You making it sound like there are unspoken rules that a developer should consider implies that it isn't just your opinion and that it's "common sense" when it clearly isn't. Regardless of the intent, it seems to foster this background idea that going commercial requires making sure your game fulfills all this criteria (making sure a free build is up, making sure you stated it's going to be paid at some point, making sure anyone who has touched your game is compensated in some way, ) which plants a thought seed in the developers mind, limiting their scope on where to take a project they've invested so much time into.

author=NeverSilent
But I do want to emphasise that if a developer connects to and has worked in in the context of the hobbyist free game making scene, and has received feedback and support on a project from this demographic, it's only fair to treat this audience with some consideration as well,


For the most part I think if you make something that's 100% yours (or rights to) you can decide how it gets accessed.. If something is especially in a WIP state, its peoples choice if they want to provide feedback in exchange for the game being free at the time of playing it. There's also the argument that the free version of the game may not reflect the final product or may diminish the likeliness buying it (though I'm mainly arguing why you don't even need a reason to take something down). When you have things like Early Access where people literally pay to give feedback it's even murky on how exactly playtesting should be rewarded given the paradox of testing the enjoyment of something while potentially enjoying it.

There's also a case in RM archival where someone did not want their free game hosted anywhere even on a lost games topic, what then is the agency of the author or the people who play it? It's an interesting topic of discussion in that regard, one I think that principles aren't set in stone for.
Of course you have yes vote from me ! I know this project for so long, even older umbras. U have been for so long in field so I hope you will do good with the project.
…I know I’m preaching to the choir here, but as soon as I saw this come up on steam, I quickly logged in and voted yes.

DragonHeartMan is my hero. He started out with rpgmaker and slowly used the experience he gained from this hobbie
of his to eventually pursue something more. This is who rpgmaker is made for.

It’s really crazy to see how far you’ve come DHM, simply because you’ve stuck to your passions.

Rock On Dude! ❤ I can't wait to see what you do next.
dragonheartman
Developer, Starless Umbra / Heroes of Umbra
2516
Breaking news. This was greenlit! I'll post a blog with details on what's to come when I have a bit more time, but you don't know how excited I am right now. Thanks for the support. It means so much to me.

author=LordBlueRouge
DragonHeartMan is my hero. He started out with rpgmaker and slowly used the experience he gained from this hobbie
of his to eventually pursue something more. This is who rpgmaker is made for.
Thank you for the exceptionally kind words! It's heartwarming hearing I've inspired you.

author=Rebezion
Of course you have yes vote from me ! I know this project for so long, even older umbras...
Thanks for the continued support and patience. Really glad you've stuck with my projects.
Congrats! Godspeed on your endeavors
Wow, that was quick! Congratulations! Please keep us updated on how progress and general reception are going. Good luck on your future plans!
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