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Publishers – GUMP

GUMP

Member

Posts: 1335
From: Melbourne, FL USA
Registered: 11-09-2002
I've had no experience myself but it seems that there is a problem with getting Christian publishers to take on a project that is any more "threatening" than a puzzle game. I've seen some hints of this in the forums but exactly what did they say and who were these publishers?

Now, if this is a unsurmountable roadblock then why not go to secular publishers with the goal of convincing them that there is a Christian gamer market out there that hasn't really even been touched. If they smell the scent of money they may be interested. The only problem I can see is that the publisher may decide to "edit" the content of your game; completely nullifying the point of making it.

InsanePoet

Member

Posts: 638
From: Vermont, USA
Registered: 03-12-2003
Well, IMHO, the reason why a lot of Christain developers won't taking anything that may be in any way scary or portay any sort of evil is because.

A lot of Christians are mambi-panbi Christians. "Everything is nice and God is all Love. We don't want to hear about evil or sin"

Well, I'm sorry, but that's a wrong attidute.
We are to speak TRUTH, and sometimes we gotta get graphic, vivid and often scary.

*getting more steamed as he writes*

To be honest, i'm quite sick of all of it.
The reason I can into this industry in the first place is because the Christian Gaming Industry is pathetic.

All I see is games that are puzzle games w/ scripture memorization or somthing. Nothing wrong w/ that
But, that ALL I see (save a couple games). If it's not harmless, it's evil.
There is a time for SERIOUS games, that speak truth in the story, and truth can be a shocking and scary thing and I will make no attempt to water it down.

I *HATE* watered down Christianity.

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"I find myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world!"
-C. S. Lewis

Mack

Administrator

Posts: 2779
From:
Registered: 01-20-2001
I've encountered quiet a bit of this and I've been thinking on this topic for sometime now, so lets crack open some things:

+) Christian publishers won't take it because;
+) Christian bookstores won't take it because;
+) Alot of Christians have thier own view of Christianity, which is often wrapped up in lifeless, hollow religion and are floating around in a make-believe candy land of sugar coated everything and slam anything that doesn't fit to what they believe.

Attention: To reach people, we must be better than, we must be more intensive than, we must be more hard hitting than, we must be more dynamic, more creative, more pushing than the secular industry. The church used to be light years ahead 'thousands' of years ago, God has been working through us to start to jump start the industry. The things is, are we going to build games to please Christians, or are we going to build games for God? We need to stop the Bible thumping, We need to stop the judging/critisim, we need to stop the bickering/complaining and we need to embrace/love people for who they are and let God do the work through us! We need to STOP playing God with the situation and end up screwing it over! Also pray for other Christians to release them from religous hold, and also keep us in line so we don't fall back into it. It's a hypnotic, tricky spirit, but nothing can outbeat Christ, so were set.

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It's not seeing is believing, it's believing and then seeing.
http://www.twoguyssoftware.com

GUMP

Member

Posts: 1335
From: Melbourne, FL USA
Registered: 11-09-2002
Mack, what Christian publishers did you talk to anyway? What was the contents of your business presentation and what was their response... if you can remember their wording as close as possible.

EDIT: Just noticed that question was pretty much answered in CCGR interview. Would still like to know the names of the companies you talked to. Hey, maybe you can get a written peition going toward those companies where we ask for these types of games.

[This message has been edited by GUMP (edited November 15, 2002).]

Mack

Administrator

Posts: 2779
From:
Registered: 01-20-2001
I was going to post this previously. However, I backed off a bit and decided to reflect because I was a little steamed. I donít want to point the companies outright and blame it on them. We need to turn our focus off the publisher, they arenít the problem, the main problem is religion and fear. I guess it disheartened me a bit when they didnít try to present it to their main market holders and just said Ďitís not going to happení. We can break through it, but it might end up relying on the developers to go knocking to Christian store chains or whatever to get on the shelves. As for secular publishers there are the risks that they might change the game on you or they might not, for example, the 3d rendered adventure/puzzle game The Key was placed on CD by Activision Value in one of their game packs. So it really depends on what the developing company wants to do, for TGS, we have a path that we are going to take that 'may' involve all three (online, self publishing, international publisher) or just involve one, or two, but everyone will have to wait and see.

The market is so jammy and full of religion and fear it makes me sick inside. While there are games out where you can rip enemies up and see internal organs just for the pleasure of doing it, we canít put out a game that involves purging someone from demons, even though in the Bible we are TOLD to do that! I don't want to point any of the companies we dealt without in public. I will however quote some of the things they said:

quote:
I have taken the opportunity to visit your web site. I am a bit concerned about some of the artwork in the game in that I fear some of our key accounts (Parable Group, Family Christian Stores, etc...) will be turned of by the art. Have you seen the box for the Ominous Horizons game? We had to remove the ghost druid on the back of the box before Family Christian Stores or Parables would agree to carry the game.

Please understand I am not trying to hammer your game. I am on your side. The teens need cool interesting games they can play besides Quake and Soul Reaver. Just know that for seven years now we have been trying to find the balance between appealings to young people and getting stores to stock the items. The two usually don't match up well.


quote:
While there are some things to like about the game (fluid motion, strong game AI, and good sound quality), this is not a game we can pursue. In my opinion the game is too dark to achieve any meaningful acceptance in the Christian book store market which is our primary market. The opening with the young man contemplating suicide is too mature for our market. The creatures, magic, and scary sound effects all combine to make the game extremely difficult to sell in the Christian market. Frankly, we struggle to get stores to carry Ominous Horizons which is far tamer than Eternal War.

quote:
The difficulty that I see is that one must invest hours of game play to get the rest of the story. Most gatekeepers in the Christian market are not that patient. The gatekeepers want quick and obvious morally positive Christian content.

Here is just some of the comments weíve gotten on the game:

quote:
It sounds awesome. I've considered buying other Christian games but I've decided against it cause they don't have multiplayer. But since this one does I'll definetly buy it if I can.

quote:
SOLD!!! I'll take a copy ASAP! I refuse to support those companies that insist on using immoral topics in their games. My son and I are ready to take on the "badies" in your game! We are looking forward to the release of your game.

quote:
the game looks great, keep up the good work!! This is one I will definitely buy now!

(This from the person who said the above posts, after I asked him how he personally liked the game):

quote:
Personally, I enjoyed it.

quote:
Your game looks really slick and I think it will be a great step in advancing the Christian games sector.

quote:
I am extremely enthused about this game. Can't wait!

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It's not seeing is believing, it's believing and then seeing.
http://www.twoguyssoftware.com

[This message has been edited by Mack (edited November 16, 2002).]

Briant

Member

Posts: 742
From: Stony Plain, Alberta, Canada
Registered: 01-20-2001
Why not be your own publisher, selling in on the internet and shipping CDs right from your house?

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Mack

Administrator

Posts: 2779
From:
Registered: 01-20-2001
quote:
Originally posted by Briant:
Why not be your own publisher, selling in on the internet and shipping CDs right from your house?

I'll snag this from my above message and edit it a bit:

So it really depends on what the developing company wants to do, for TGS, we have a path that we are going to take that 'may' involve all three (online, self publishing, international publisher) or just involve one, or two, but everyone will have to wait and see.

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It's not seeing is believing, it's believing and then seeing.
http://www.twoguyssoftware.com

Angel

Member

Posts: 699
From: The Blissful State Of Me?
Registered: 05-21-2001
A lot of people dont want to pay online for things. Then more often then not it takes a large amount of time to build a presence online. What I mean by that is; no one will come to your site unless they know it exist. Shure you can put it on search enguins but that hardly helps. People have to know about you and talk about you.

CCN is known about and talked about a little. It has its own respected amount of people. Still Krylars other site I wager gets far more hits. The reason for that would poblobly be the fact that its subject matter is more popular.

Here the most that ever goes on is arguing about christian prospectives and quot "We need a web page for our game that isnt even one tenth of the way done". Ive seen lots of web pages out for people who say they are working on a game. Ive never seen a team from here actuly have a game complet.

Lots of people from here have made their own games on their own. Still getting people together that agree on one thing and actuly work together is another. There is tallent here no dobt about that. Its just that the will and time to do a great game is hard to gather.

Personly I would like to drop all the seurios game ideas and go for something more child like. Vegi tails did great from that prospective. Their grafix lacked but the subject matter was superb for the most part. A simple scroling game with lots of little puzzles and hummor would probably go a lot farther then a biblical times game with no vilence.

Oh well you peeps do what you will.

~Angel~

PS: just out of curiosity; how many of you think you have the tallent to work on a majer game? Im just wandering. I keep dreaming I become a millionar so I can hire some great people and build a top noch game... still its just a dream. I also want to invest millions into a record company so they can minnister. The only way any of that will happen is if God blesses the works of my hands (my book) far beyond my expectations.

GUMP

Member

Posts: 1335
From: Melbourne, FL USA
Registered: 11-09-2002
When they talk about their "primary market" it seems like they have no clue what the average gamer is like; or what they will accept content-wise. Besides, wouldn't it be best to not just target Christians and go for the secular market? Selling these types of games to only Christians would be like "preaching to the choir". And I doubt the game would do well in the secular market (unless maybe if it was a game targeted to a younger market) if its content practically screamed "This is a game only Christians could love and it's completely inoffensive to boot!".
Mack

Administrator

Posts: 2779
From:
Registered: 01-20-2001
Iím enjoying these discussions. :-) I share a lot of different views, I think we shouldnít focus on a certain genre or style. My personal view is that we need more of a mix, that includes more mature Christian media. Your correct GUMP, Christian publishers need to place Christian games in secular stores and I donít know why they havenít done so before. Maybe theyíre not sure how to properly approach the packaging, or selling, or whatever, something to pray on. Itís difficult to create a Christian evangelistic entertainment medium, you have to perfectly balance out everything in order for it to be effective.

quote:
Ive never seen a team from here actuly have a game complet.

Eternal War: Shadows of Light is completed and were setting up the various ways to have it hit the market.

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It's not seeing is believing, it's believing and then seeing.
http://www.twoguyssoftware.com

GUMP

Member

Posts: 1335
From: Melbourne, FL USA
Registered: 11-09-2002
That is the worst part, I hate to see you guys having spent so much time just to have it languish due to Christian publishers rejecting it. Have you guys checked with any secular publishers yet? What gaming sites have you talked to about doing a review? If you can only sell it online then it may still do pretty good if some major reviewers get it. Maybe talk to fileplanet about hosting the demo. A lot of gamers see the new stuff on there first.
BlazeQ

Member

Posts: 260
From: USA
Registered: 05-11-2002
You might also consider announcing it to http://3dactionplanet.com/ (or Gamespy) besides having it hosted. 'twould get you some plublicity.

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I'm out of my mind... and into the mind of Christ -G.S. Megaphone

Mack

Administrator

Posts: 2779
From:
Registered: 01-20-2001
Thanks for your suggestions guys! We have a bunch of sites we are going to contact when Eternal War hits the page for ordering and also see if we can obtain multiple sites to host the demo.

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It's not seeing is believing, it's believing and then seeing.
http://www.twoguyssoftware.com

GUMP

Member

Posts: 1335
From: Melbourne, FL USA
Registered: 11-09-2002
I could probably talk to the owner, Mike, of Tech-PC to do a game review of Eternal Darkness. He'd probably go for it I'd have to do the review myself and submit it to him. Tech-PC is supposedly in the top 100 for hardware review sites and I've been hanging out with the guys who started it for years.

Email me at gumpngreen@yahoo.com if you want me to do that.

[This message has been edited by Gump (edited November 21, 2002).]

Mack

Administrator

Posts: 2779
From:
Registered: 01-20-2001
quote:
Originally posted by Gump:
I could probably talk to the owner, Mike, of Tech-PC to do a game review of Eternal Darkness.

Correction: Eternal War - Shadows of Light :-)


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It's not seeing is believing, it's believing and then seeing.
http://www.twoguyssoftware.com

[This message has been edited by Mack (edited November 21, 2002).]

GUMP

Member

Posts: 1335
From: Melbourne, FL USA
Registered: 11-09-2002
Oh, right... but are you interested though? If so, I could contact them this evening about doing an article. They'll probably go for it as all their game articles have so far been written by unpaid members... like me.