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Respect Your Gamer

JohanAnderssonPDX | 13 Dec 2013 16:30
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Again, people want to try the game. If there is a demo, most gamers out there will try it out and as long as it gives a good grasp of the game, they will be satisfied and decide if they want to buy the game or not based on it. If there isn't, well... there are a lot of people trying a game as a pirate and then paying, after they pirated it. Yes, our games get pirated; we are not safe from that. But we have also realized that gamers who play our games for more than a short period of time tend to become loyal fans and start spending money, because they loved the gameplay and want to support us so we can keep creating games.

Stop chasing the pirates, focus on rewarding the buyers.

I truly believe that almost everyone who downloads games for free is someone who will pay money for the games, sooner or later. Either straight after pirating and playing the game - because they felt the game was really good - or when they have the money to do so in the future. Of course, there are always a few assholes that will never pay for a game, but you have to focus on the majority of your gamers and you're not going to earn more money by pissing off potential future customers.

Respect your gamer

So here is my simple conclusion: Respect your gamer. Pay attention to your gamer. Make your games DRM free. Give the gamers who buy your games a lot of extra stuff for free, and be nice to your gamers. Without them, you are nothing. And I hate to break it to you, but even the pirates could still be your audience and a potential part of your fan base, and you need to keep that in mind. They really like games. If they had more money, some of them would probably buy more games, and lots of them will. Many gamers will choose to pay for your games if you treat them well, listen to them, respect them, let them try the game with a demo and develop awesome games that you yourself as a gamer truly love.

If you respect your gamers, they will respect you. Gamers are people who love playing games and they should be encouraged to do so. Gamers want to support you if you create good games, so you can make even better games in the future for them to play. We at Paradox Development Studio are completely self-funded, so the money gamers spend on our games goes straight into free updates, new expansions and new games that hopefully will be even better than the previous ones. Without our loyal strategy gamers, we would not be able to make games. And we have fans because we treat them with respect. We share their passion for games and we as game developers are gamers ourselves. We treat our gamers as we ourselves want to be treated when we buy games created by other studios. Respect your gamer.

Johan Andersson is the studio manager at Paradox Development Studio. Paradox Development Studios' latest releases are the critically acclaimed empire-building game Europa Universalis IV and the strategy/RPG Crusader Kings II. The studio has created nearly 20 strategy games and sold millions of copies since it was founded in 1995 which includes award winning strategy franchises such as Hearts of Iron, Victoria, Crusader Kings, and Europa Universalis. Today the Sweden-based studio is the center of a vast community of fans and modders, with a reach that spans the entire globe. Ever since the start, the studio has always been huge supporters of user created content and all games they have ever released are completely moddable.

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