Thanks for all the encouragement! To be clear, I didn't post here with the intention of fishing for support or compliments, but it's certainly a nice surprise to have been greeted by such kinda words (: I was really just curious what other people's experiences are.
I agree that a lot of successful teams are inexperienced, but I wouldn't say that's what makes a successful team. Furthermore, the hypersuccessful titles like Minecraft, Amnesia, and Kenshi are devs who have at least worked on other titles, even if they didn't ship. I place a lot of the success of many indie games on the humblebundle's marketing strategy. Not to say they aren't good games on their own, but they don't have the solo marketing experience.
In the same vein, they definitely have yet to experience the number of art assets for an RPG, the number of subsystems to code, the number of AI rules, and the sheer time commitment. I agree we are probably better without them, but I guess we saw this as an opportunity to reach out to individuals we saw as we once were.
I've never heard the '3 other games' rule, but that's a good thing to keep in mind. After this stint we have started talking business and deciding what we want to do in terms of profit. I want to say with confidence we will make it to market before these guys, but I can't be sure. Though I think the fact that we have been around for quite some time already, and have more knowledge of what lies ahead would indicate positive things perhaps. I'd also like to think that the quality of our game will outmatch theirs because we know our stuff already.
Ego was definitely the main problem with negotiations here. I know none of us wanted to step down to being peons if you will, since we work collaboratively on design which may not be the most efficient but since there's only 3 of us, it works. But we were willing to bring more into our circle and make them equals with us, and work in a 5 person collaborative design structure. I think our team fits into the side where we are further down the road, more effectively managed, with the exception that we aren't large, but our team is of higher quality.
It's great to know that this is just a lone experience and that you've had good experiences starbasecitadel. I guess I'll just have to wait until something that works comes along; indiewhite used bide! indiewhite is storing energy!