TwinKerbal

An open letter to Take Two and how they can touch base with the community

Would you like Take Two to host an AMA about the game?  

20 members have voted

  1. 1. Would you like Take Two to host an AMA about the future of the game?

    • Yes
      14
    • No
      6


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First, I think we can all establish that the majority of Kerbal fans dislike Take Two's acquirement of Kerbal Space Program.  It happened right around the GTA V modding fiasco, so there was a lot of paranoia in the first few days about what would happen to mods.  In addition, Take Two has a less than stellar track record of their financial systems, namely the ability to buy in-game skills or equipment with real world money.  Finally, they have not come to the forums to talk with us at all.  So there's been a lot of fear and crazy threads running around.  

I think it would be very beneficial for Take Two to introduce themselves to our community and answer some of our questions that we have posed, namely the modding and pay-to-win fears that have been flying around.  At the very least, it would affirm our fears but keep us certain and no longer in that terrible area known as uncertainty; at the best it could be used as a discussion on what Take Two and the KSP community can do to line up their goals to achieve the best of both worlds.  I will say that Take Two has nothing to lose and everything to gain by talking with us.  

With this, I extend an open hand and ask Take Two to start discussing what their vision of the game is on these forums.  This is a community that has existed for a very long time; it will continue to exist and will be the best place to gather data on what we expect and want from Take Two.  I hope that somewhere, a Take Two employee is reading this and wants to get started on joint collaboration.  We can make this next phase of KSP a monumental one, but only if we have understanding, trust, and communication on both sides.  

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20 hours ago, TwinKerbal said:

First, I think we can all establish that the majority of Kerbal fans dislike Take Two's acquirement of Kerbal Space Program.

I'd like to see some hard data on that, please. "The majority" is a pretty big claim.

20 hours ago, TwinKerbal said:

In addition, Take Two has a less than stellar track record of their financial systems, namely the ability to buy in-game skills or equipment with real world money.  Finally, they have not come to the forums to talk with us at all.  So there's been a lot of fear and crazy threads running around.  

What games exactly? How many? As a percentage of all games T2 published? Because many of them don't, actually. There are certain games where in-game purchasing makes sense, from a monetizing point of view. KSP is not one of those games. 

20 hours ago, TwinKerbal said:

I think it would be very beneficial for Take Two to introduce themselves to our community and answer some of our questions that we have posed, namely the modding and pay-to-win fears that have been flying around.  At the very least, it would affirm our fears but keep us certain and no longer in that terrible area known as uncertainty; at the best it could be used as a discussion on what Take Two and the KSP community can do to line up their goals to achieve the best of both worlds.  I will say that Take Two has nothing to lose and everything to gain by talking with us.  

It's already been stated in the past that it's not T2's intention to change anything around the way KSP is being developed or marketed. Obviously you don't believe that. What is a renewal of that statement going to achieve? If you didn't trust them in the past, why trust them now?

Fears that T2 is focused on "ruining" the game and driving away its community (where the money is) is irrational and doesn't make sense. You might think that Take Two has nothing to lose and everything to gain, experience has taught that no one gains anything by talking to irrational paranoids for whom reason does not exist. Consider this:

  • Take Two has spent a significant amount of money to acquire KSP
  • That money is seen as an investment, not as the entry fee to destroy a game
  • KSP is a niche game, not a block buster like GTA. Niche games come with a specific audience; T2 will have to thread lightly to not lose that audience (and their investment)
  • Given the open nature of the game, in-game micro payments are easy to bypass. Unless, of course, T2 is literally going to rewrite half the game. Consider the cost of that, and the revenue of the micro payments. Does it make sense?
  • The way for T2 to make money is to make more exciting expansion packs like Making History (hopefully) will be.

You might not agree with these point. In fact, you probably don't. That doesn't matter. What matters is this: if you agree with these points, there's no point for T2 to do an AMA. You already know their position. If you don't agree with these points, what's the purpose of an AMA when T2 is going to reiterate that? You're not going to believe them anyway. In either case. T2 will not have a good reason to do an AMA.

Keep in mind that T2 has stated that development remains with Squad. So your "monumental interaction" with the KSP community is already there, as that is happening today as well.

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22 hours ago, TwinKerbal said:

First, I think we can all establish that the majority of Kerbal fans dislike Take Two's acquirement of Kerbal Space Program.

Citation needed.

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12 hours ago, Kerbart said:
  • Take Two has spent a significant amount of money to acquire KSP

is there a specific number yet, or is it not going to be released for reasons unknown?

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15 minutes ago, StupidAndy said:

is there a specific number yet, or is it not going to be released for reasons unknown?

There's no reason for T2 to keep it quiet. But there's plenty of reason for Squad (more specifically: its owners) to do so. Living in Mexico City, for starters. And the fact that ownership is registered in corporate tax haven The Netherlands makes me think there's at least one particular government agency in Mexico that Squad rather keeps in the dark about the exact amount involved.

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On 9/10/2017 at 9:12 AM, StupidAndy said:

is there a specific number yet, or is it not going to be released for reasons unknown?

It's an IP represented by a game that has sold nearly 2 million units on Steam (the only place that I know of where we have hard data), an incredible feat for a supposed indie game with outdated graphics. That 2 million number does not include KSP Store, GOG, or console purchases so it's pretty safe to say that KSP is not only a decent seller but also a pretty promising IP. I mean, sure, it's no Minecraft, but even if you only assume 2 million in sales maximum (it's likely more near 3 million or more) that's a good chunk of change for any company, even at $18~$20 per purchase on sale.

Now Take Two comes along and buys the IP (not Squad, mind you, but the KSP intellectual property), and then says "Hey Squad, can you keep working on this for us? You continue to get a cut, you keep the codebase knowledge, and you get to keep paying the developers who work on this product. Keep it profitable and we're all good." I have no real idea whether that's the deal that actually took place but, on the surface, that seems fairly plausible to me; why throw away experience and a winning formula just because you now own the IP?

Basically all that happened is that the IP owner changed hands. Take Two is likely going to retain Squad as long as Squad remains profitable and they'll take a hands-off approach for the most part (but now Squad has some big guns to pull in if needed). As we've so far seen nothing on the surface has changed: The new DLC is full steam ahead, updates to the base game are being worked on, dev notes still suck since the 1.0 team left for Valve, etc...

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I voted no to the question I think you wanted to ask, which is would I care if they hosted one.

Put me on the "not in the majority" column, as I don't think TT buying the KSP IP is a particularly bad move. Barring any evidence to the contrary, I'm pretty solid in that view.

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