Amnesia Postmortem

Amnesia postmortem on the Frictional Games Website reflecting on the first week of availability of the survival horror game from the creators of the Penumbra series (thanks joao). The post outlines a good news/bad news situation. The good news is that, as is reflected by comments in the forums here, the game has been very well received, both by critics, and by gamers, as reviews from both have even exceeded their optimistic expectations. The bad news is that sales of the game are trailing a little below the level they need to remain in business, expressing concern that a day 0 pirate version of the game was available 24 hours before its retail release, as apparently some unscrupulous website leaked their review copy. Here's part of their assessment of this situation: "This is of course not all the income we will make from the game, but is still a bit discouraging when comparing to recent XBLA releases and similar. So why is [sic] not sales [sic] higher? Piracy? People waiting for future massive discounted sales? Game too scary / niched? Right now we have not got a clue, but hopefully it will become clearer further on." Here's their conclusion:
On almost all fronts, we area extremely pleased with this release. It has in many ways exceeded our expectations and it makes all the hard work, pay cuts, etc worth it in the end.

The most distressing thing is the sales though. Even though we are far from complaining, it feels like we do not have the financial security we would like to have, to truly be able to focus on making the best game possible. So what should we do? The things we have discussed include: Increase the cost of the game, doing a console port instead of Linux/Mac, do a less niche title and more. Now is too soon to make a decision though and we have to see how the coming weeks and months go.

Finally, I know I say this a lot but we truly mean it: Thanks to all who have supported us by buying the game, spreading the word, and what not. We hope you all will continue supporting us in the future as well! All of Frictional Games sends their finest regards and thanks for this support!
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104 Replies. 6 pages. Viewing page 2.
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84.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 14:56
84.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 14:56
Sep 20, 2010, 14:56
 
Most petty thing I've seen in ages and you bitch about other people being unfair to the industry

:: sigh ::

Like I said, I'm not the target audience for this. It's a slower paced atmosphere game where you don't have outstanding control over your character (by design, it's part of the atmosphere) so having what seems to be an unnecessarily clunky interface is merely the straw that breaks the camels back.

People here like to complain that menus are overly consoled. Not inventory screens, not things you interact with during the game, but the simple title menu screen. I'm complaining about something you use literally every minute of the game. And it's petty?

For the type of game it is, one I'm at best casually interested in, having to deal with this wasn't worth my while. And, again, I was neither the first nor the last to do so in this thread. I admitted it's a great game. I admitted that, despite this, it's not my cup of tea. And I complained about one piece of the interface that seemed equal parts unnecessary and clunky. I haven't decried the game. I haven't damned it for this. I've said that it was just something that I didn't feel was worth me personally dealing with and that others seem to be saying the same thing.

Yet this is unacceptable to you? It's the most benign criticism possible. I've flat-out said I'm recommending the game to others. Whole-heartedly. But a survival-horror game is going to be a hard sell for me (in fact, the reason why is that these games often feel like the control is overly-complicated in order to make you panic and struggle with even simple tasks. See: early RE games and their tank controls. See: later RE games and their convoluted aiming. See: Alone in the Dark and its tank controls. See: Eternal Darkness and everything. Making the controls as unintuitive as possible is a mechanic in these games and one I've never enjoyed.)
83.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 14:15
83.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 14:15
Sep 20, 2010, 14:15
 
Bought it and loving it. Not sure why all the negativity.
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82.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 14:02
Verno
 
82.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 14:02
Sep 20, 2010, 14:02
 Verno
 
Beamer wrote on Sep 20, 2010, 13:19:
As an aside, that is probably the most bizarre complaint I've seen with the game.

Yet it seems to be the most cited complaint in this thread, aside from "not enough action, needs more BFG." One of those can be easily changed yet keep the game well within the designated niche.

Most petty thing I've seen in ages and you bitch about other people being unfair to the industry. 3 dudes in a thread isn't exactly "citing" something to me but if you want to keep defending this silliness then by all means, enjoy.
Playing: Wildermyth, Mass Effect Legendary, Returnal
Watching: Deadwood, Dune, Evil
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81.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 13:19
El Pit
 
81.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 13:19
Sep 20, 2010, 13:19
 El Pit
 
Jerykk wrote on Sep 20, 2010, 12:35:
Did we play the same game? I recall numerous sequences that forced you to whip out your guns and mow enemies down. DCoE would have been a much better game without the forced action sequences.

Obviously we did play the same game, but FOR YOU it would have been a much better game without FOR YOU "forced" action sequences.

You know, Jerykk, other people, other opinions, other preferences.
"There is no right life in the wrong one." (Theodor W. Adorno, philosopher)
"Only a Sith deals in absolutes." (Obi-Wan Kenobi, Jedi)
80.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 13:19
80.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 13:19
Sep 20, 2010, 13:19
 
As an aside, that is probably the most bizarre complaint I've seen with the game.

Yet it seems to be the most cited complaint in this thread, aside from "not enough action, needs more BFG." One of those can be easily changed yet keep the game well within the designated niche.
79.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 12:46
Cram
 
79.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 12:46
Sep 20, 2010, 12:46
 Cram
 
re: Doors & Mouse

I'm not really sure what's going on with Beamers having to move the mouse so much to open a door. Turn your mouse sensitivity up? I only have to move mine an inch in either direction...

Since you don't really ever get chased early in the game, the doors may not seem to serve a function. Later in the game when you're constantly being chased, you often have a half a second to a second lead over the monster. When you approach a door, you don't know if you have to pull or push. Making the wrong choice, and you're done.

The doors were an excellent feature of this game, at least when your mouse isn't making you pay for it. Mine did not.
78.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 12:41
78.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 12:41
Sep 20, 2010, 12:41
 
A good amount of us that perhaps would have been sales but, given time in the demo and seeing something appear overly complicated without a need for it.

I really don't see how clicking and dragging is overly complicated. It's completely intuitive. If you want to pull, you click, hold and drag down. If you want to push, you click, hold and push up. It's not complicated at all. Amnesia also gives you the option to immediately perform a strong push or pull with the right mouse button.
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77.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 12:35
77.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 12:35
Sep 20, 2010, 12:35
 
I also liked "Call of Cthulhu: Corners of the Earth". Great game. And those developers let me play the way I wanted to, and did not push me to play it the way some developer wanted me to, like in "Amnesia" or "Penumbra" (RUN! RUN! RUN! Don't stomp on the head of the unconscious undead dog! DON'T! LET IT STAND UP AND HUNT YOU AGAIN!).

Did we play the same game? I recall numerous sequences that forced you to whip out your guns and mow enemies down. DCoE would have been a much better game without the forced action sequences.
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76.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 11:47
Verno
 
76.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 11:47
Sep 20, 2010, 11:47
 Verno
 
Beamer wrote on Sep 20, 2010, 10:52:
Again, having played it for only 30 minutes or so I saw no point. I was curious as to whether there was a point. I still think it's overly complicated if it doesn't come into play often, and I think it turns what's already a niche title into a very niche title without particularly adding much use.

It was a niche title with or without the control scheme. Like any other control scheme you can be adjusted to it very quickly and it's quite intuitive for the positions the game places you in. Some things are just not made for you, that doesn't mean they need to be changed. I sincerely doubt the control scheme is what is holding this title back from sudden success.

As an aside, that is probably the most bizarre complaint I've seen with the game. If you were forced to use a gamepad with that control scheme, ok I get that. Instead you can use a mouse which accomplishes the motions as fast or slow as you want. It requires no real effort, certainly not the herculean effort you imply.

This comment was edited on Sep 20, 2010, 12:21.
Playing: Wildermyth, Mass Effect Legendary, Returnal
Watching: Deadwood, Dune, Evil
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75.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 10:52
75.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 10:52
Sep 20, 2010, 10:52
 
It does serve a purpose. There are spots in the game where the player is stuck inside of an object and uses the mechanic to slowly open doors to prevent getting insanity or alerting a monster. You don't think it serves a worthy purpose is what you're saying. I don't really agree but either way, it's there for a reason.

Actually, what I had said was not "there is no point" but "unless there is a point."

Again, having played it for only 30 minutes or so I saw no point. I was curious as to whether there was a point. I still think it's overly complicated if it doesn't come into play often, and I think it turns what's already a niche title into a very niche title without particularly adding much use.

Let's be fair here: a good amount of people are complaining about the mechanic here. A good amount of us that perhaps would have been sales but, given time in the demo and seeing something appear overly complicated without a need for it. The demo should have either displayed the use or the game should give the option of binding a button to opening and closing doors for when you don't want to swing the mouse. The latter is probably the best way, as it would have made the game more accessible without dumbing it down.

74.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 10:28
El Pit
 
74.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 10:28
Sep 20, 2010, 10:28
 El Pit
 
jdreyer wrote on Sep 20, 2010, 04:01:
The scariest moments in video games for me that come immediately to mind: Doom Cyberdemon, HL2 Ravenholm roof runners, and the L4D Tank. The scary elements had a few components: hearing the sound of the Cyberdemon's hooves or the roof runner's clattering or the roar of the tank the first time and thinking, OMG, WTF is THAT?!? Then facing said creatures and finding out they were nearly impossible to hit/kill and did massive damage to you when they did strike you. Having to come up with a new way of dealing with said creatures you had never experienced in the heat of battle added yet another component. For me, the fear comes because my weapons have become emasculated. The game has built me up as a superhero, then takes it all away with these supercreatures.

Scary games? I still remember "Undying". Now, THAT was a great combination of horror and fps.

I also liked "Call of Cthulhu: Corners of the Earth". Great game. And those developers let me play the way I wanted to, and did not push me to play it the way some developer wanted me to, like in "Amnesia" or "Penumbra" (RUN! RUN! RUN! Don't stomp on the head of the unconscious undead dog! DON'T! LET IT STAND UP AND HUNT YOU AGAIN!). No, thanks.

And the first two "Thief" games were also creepy in large parts for me. The atmosphere was great.
"There is no right life in the wrong one." (Theodor W. Adorno, philosopher)
"Only a Sith deals in absolutes." (Obi-Wan Kenobi, Jedi)
73.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 10:12
73.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 10:12
Sep 20, 2010, 10:12
 
ok got it.
I have a nifty blue line!
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72.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 09:48
72.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 09:48
Sep 20, 2010, 09:48
 
Zoom wrote on Sep 20, 2010, 09:24:
InBlack wrote on Sep 20, 2010, 09:16:
While I get the gripe with CoD, just what part of L4D did you find derivative and of what???
I think his point was, we'd rather not play another derivative of L4D or COD.

Yeah, it wasn't aimed specifically at any game but at the state of most games nowadays which are derivative pieces of shit with the very occasional mainstream gem.
71.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 09:24
71.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 09:24
Sep 20, 2010, 09:24
 
InBlack wrote on Sep 20, 2010, 09:16:
While I get the gripe with CoD, just what part of L4D did you find derivative and of what???
I think his point was, we'd rather not play another derivative of L4D or COD.

70.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 09:16
70.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 09:16
Sep 20, 2010, 09:16
 
ASeven wrote on Sep 20, 2010, 06:54:
StingingVelvet wrote on Sep 20, 2010, 01:34:
I love all the people saying if they made Left 4 Dead or Call of Duty they might have sold more.

No shit!

Proof positive that some people aren't happy until they play the latest piece of derivative shit out there.

While I get the gripe with CoD, just what part of L4D did you find derivative and of what???
I have a nifty blue line!
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69.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 09:04
Verno
 
69.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 09:04
Sep 20, 2010, 09:04
 Verno
 
Beamer wrote on Sep 20, 2010, 08:53:
Yes. I already said this in my very first post in this topic.

I'm not sure why you're still posting then.


I downloaded the demo and definitely felt like I was playing Trespasser. It took me a few minutes to realize that the door I was clicking on wasn't locked. I started having to swing the mouse in a wide arc to open doors. Unnecessary. It serves zero purpose.

It does serve a purpose. There are spots in the game where the player is stuck inside of an object and uses the mechanic to slowly open doors to prevent getting insanity or alerting a monster. You don't think it serves a worthy purpose is what you're saying. I don't really agree but either way, it's there for a reason.
Playing: Wildermyth, Mass Effect Legendary, Returnal
Watching: Deadwood, Dune, Evil
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68.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 08:53
68.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 08:53
Sep 20, 2010, 08:53
 
If opening doors in the game using your mouse ruins it for you then I doubt you were the target market of this game in the first place.

Yes. I already said this in my very first post in this topic.

I also answered the above question about whether I'd played it for more than 30 minutes.

I also said I'd highly recommend it to anyone within its target audience.
I also said that I completely support high-quality niche titles, as even when we don't fall into the particular niche it encourages people making games in niches we do.


Here, I'll quote myself to answer the last two posts:

I downloaded the demo and definitely felt like I was playing Trespasser. It took me a few minutes to realize that the door I was clicking on wasn't locked. I started having to swing the mouse in a wide arc to open doors. Unnecessary. It serves zero purpose.

I played the demo up until the invisible water monster. Really dug the atmosphere, wasn't so much into how much the camera wobbles around (I know it's part of the atmosphere, but it was making me dizzy), and just didn't like this part of the game. Jumping from crate to crate wasn't much fun.

Overall I think it's one of the best examples of a genre I'm just not overly huge into. Without having come across a reason to actually require the Trespasser-esque controls, it was enough to turn me away from the full version. I'd highly recommend it to anyone into this kind of game, though.
67.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 08:47
Verno
 
67.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 08:47
Sep 20, 2010, 08:47
 Verno
 
If opening doors in the game using your mouse ruins it for you then I doubt you were the target market of this game in the first place.
Playing: Wildermyth, Mass Effect Legendary, Returnal
Watching: Deadwood, Dune, Evil
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66.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 08:47
66.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 08:47
Sep 20, 2010, 08:47
 
Beamer wrote on Sep 20, 2010, 07:16:
The part of the game you are complaining about is one of my favorite features. Love opening them drawers and doors. I think it is very well done and it adds very much to the immersion. I can't imagine any of their games without it because it is certainly a defining positive feature.

No, I get it for object manipulation, but doors?
Unless there's a point in the game where it makes sense to have to swing my mouse halfway across the mouse pad to open a door, you know, maybe where a door needs to be half opened because of a puzzle or for survival, then adding this is senseless.

To you it's immersion. To me it's simply swinging a mouse wide instead of pushing a button. No more immersive now than it was in Trespasser.

Remarkable difference of opinions here. It will forever surprise me I'm sure.

Have you really played Amnesia unbiased and longer than 30 minutes?

At many points you'll be running towards a door, while holding your breath in real life, while being chased. The reason why those parts of the game were so horribly scary (at some point I was honestly paranoid enough to think that maybe I'd get a heartattack) was because I knew that I couldn't just *click* open that door.. but had to pull it open! Yes! Pull! Because I knew the damn door wouldn't give way to the momentum of my speed! It was scary as shit! So there I was, breaking my momentum to pull that door open while hearing some creature closing up from behind!

*breathes in deep then exhales sharply* Like somebody else here mentioned.. Amnesia was more than just a fun game. It was a goddamn experience beyond anything I've ever felt.
Playing: Skyrim, World of Warcraft.
Future: Dead Space 3.
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65.
 
Re: Amnesia Postmortem
Sep 20, 2010, 07:27
65.
Re: Amnesia Postmortem Sep 20, 2010, 07:27
Sep 20, 2010, 07:27
 
Beamer wrote on Sep 20, 2010, 07:16:
No, I get it for object manipulation, but doors? Unless there's a point in the game where it makes sense to have to swing my mouse halfway across the mouse pad to open a door, you know, maybe where a door needs to be half opened because of a puzzle or for survival, then adding this is senseless.

To you it's immersion. To me it's simply swinging a mouse wide instead of pushing a button. No more immersive now than it was in Trespasser.

One person's immersion has been another person's "DUDE GET ON WITH THE GAME" since games were invented.
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