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How to distrubute 50Mb through internet?


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#1 jamesH   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 03 February 2000 - 04:34 PM

Hi, I am wondering how to sell/distribute 50MB game files in the Internet. This size seems too large for Internet distribution, but I want to avoid CD distribution, which would need delivery/packing. If I divide 50MB into several pieces, are people willing to buy the game? I appreciate any opinions.

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#2 kressilac   Members   -  Reputation: 110

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Posted 04 February 2000 - 04:19 AM

I have thought about this as well. The question has been raised can we hire a marketing company and distribute our MMRPG over the internet. If so we can undermine the greedy publisher. In thinking about the problem it required us to add complexity to the program to make it happen.

Add a patch client to the background of the game client. Have the initial download consist of only the things in the game that a newbie would need or see. (All visible objects and sprites, the executable, and starting city zones) When the person connects the first time download only this upon purchase of the software. Use the patch client to get the other zones in the background while the game is running. When the user is idle healing or something like that we could wake up the patch client and request more files. Interestingly enough this solution solves a couple of problems other than a greedy publisher waiting to strip you of everything you own. It also solves the issue I faced when I purchased Everquest. On an ADSL line I had a 1 hour and 20 minute patch update the first time I played the game. The used software was so different than the boxed software, I would have been better off downloading the whole thing anyway. An intelligent patch client in your game could ease the pain of a major download.

Kressilac


#3 DavidRM   Members   -  Reputation: 270

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Posted 04 February 2000 - 08:52 AM

The short answer: At this time, you don''t.

Until high-end bandwidth becomes more standard, that size of a file is going to "turn off" a *huge* percentage of your potential players. Not all of them, just a lot of them.

Some people don''t mind spending hour after hour downloading a game they don''t know if they''ll like. Of course, if they spend that much time downloading it and then don''t like the game, they *will* remember you... ;-)

I would say do your best to make the game fit in less than 10MB (5MB if you can do that). Maybe even split the game so that they don''t have to download the "full" game to play, with the other levels (or sets of levels) as a separate download. Modularize Modularize Modularize. Things like music, or cut scenes, that are [censored] *huge* should definitely be made separate downloads. High-bandwidth players will be more than happy to check them out, and the rest won''t curse your name for making download something they don''t need.


DavidRM
Samu Games


#4 mason   Members   -  Reputation: 128

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Posted 04 February 2000 - 09:30 AM

Agreed with what DavidRM said. 10 MB should be the upper limit on downloadable games. You should shoot for under 5MB.

Of course, if you can''t limbo down that far, then I guess the chic thing to do is to make a little "installer" program that asks the user for their setup options, and then downloads only those files (ala IE5 setup). Needless to say, your installer should support autoresume of files.





Mason McCuskey
Spin Studios - home of Quaternion, 2000 GDC Indie Games Fest Finalist!
www.spin-studios.com

#5 jamesH   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 04 February 2000 - 10:33 AM

Thank you everyone for opinions/suggestions.

I will shrink the size anyway, and try to make a device to
download additional files.

Thanks again.

James

Edited by - jamesh on 2/4/00 4:34:17 PM

#6 Gromit   Members   -  Reputation: 144

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Posted 04 February 2000 - 11:17 AM

Is your game 50 megs in compressed format? If not then do.

If there are alot of sound files then you could either consider lowering the sample rate or the better alternative is to have all of you samples compressed in mp3 format for transfer over the internet then have your install program un-pack it back to wavs.

With most games, the sound files make up half the size.

#7 kressilac   Members   -  Reputation: 110

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Posted 06 February 2000 - 06:25 PM

If your game has an 18 month to two year release on it you can be sure there will be enough high speed access customers. ADSL and Cable installations are rising so fast it is crazy. Oh get this, a company in my area has also started a venture with LG&E(our utility provider for electric and gas) to provide 11MB over your electrical system in the next year. Fast access is here. I am extremely close to declaring 56K out of my market for my game to be released in 2001.

You don't have to be nice to everyone. If the market is large enough you can exclude others.(ie ADSL/Cable vs 56K) Those you include will appreciate it more, and those excluded will probably campaign against you but you will come out ahead in the end if you choose the one that will be there in the future. This same argument applies to Sound cards and video cards and has everything to do with who you think your customer is. If your customer is not ADSL/Cable I agree with David scratch the idea. If your customer is the smaller userbase of ADSL/Cable then it could be possible using a download manager that hides the real size of it.

Kressilac


Edited by - kressilac on 2/7/00 12:26:31 AM

#8 Spiff   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 06 February 2000 - 10:37 PM

I do agree with you people that it''s a little to much with 50MB but most demos I download is 25-100 MB, some even more.
Isn''t this really weird? I mean, demos is supposed to let you see if you like the game or not. So why let the user download LOTS of mb if they don''t like it? BTW, I meself live in Sweden and I pay a little less than one dollar/hour, i.e. it gets really expensive. Thank god for office network and cd-burner =)

Daniel Netz, Sentinel Design




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