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Stezka

how much does it cost?

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um. define cost.

it could be done for free over several years by a dedicated team of hobbyists. or it could be done over a shorter product cycle by a dedicated team of professionals.

i'm going to now wildly spout off the specilative part of my brain :

(this assumes you want the game out in a reasonable amt of time an have it be professional in every way. remember, you DID say "like Quake or UT2003")

3-4 programmers: ~ $60,000 / year each.

5-10 modelers - xx,xxx / year each (i assume it's 40K-50K)

couple biz people to get the game sold. at least 70K each

marketing peeps (1 to start at least 2 later) to make your boxes and whatnot look good and promote the crap out of your game.

QA & game testers (often overlooked): i'd say total of 5 probably at 30-40K each.

[EDIT: forgot an SFX person and someone to animate you cutscenes. that would have been a crappy game ]

at least 40 computers for development platforms / test platforms / servers.

at least one dedicated IT guy so you don't have to co-opt programmers to fix network outages and the like.

2-3 licensces to an IDE

5-10 licensces to 3D Studio Max / Photoshop / etc

everyone also needs medical insurance and all the other crap that makes people actually want to work for you (like jellybeans, coffee and soda).

somewhere to work....

ok i'm tired now. sum total, at least 2 million dollars to start your own company and develop a professional quality game. time to hit up that rich uncle.

flame on

-me

[edited by - Palidine on October 2, 2002 2:13:45 PM]

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well, Unreal sold 1 million copies. UT sold more than that. 1 million copies at $50/each. let's assume just a measly $20 profit on each box after CD pressing, manual printing, box printing (probably a gross underestimate). that's $20 million dollars gross from sales of the game.

$20 million - $2 million = $18 million in profit. time to buy that island you always wanted

[EDIT: note that this all goes back to "how much does it approximately cost to develop a 3d action game like Q3 or UT". your results MAY vary ]

-me

[edited by - Palidine on October 2, 2002 2:59:38 PM]

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Sounds nice and what about some tool like 3d benchmark ? I think that the development cost should be lesser compared to the UT I am asking because i am supposed to write a 3d benchmark program for my final exam project. Ofcourse a basic one , not so advanced as 3DMark is and one task is to make a market research. So I have to know how much would a company spend to make such program.

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Absolute minimum, if you want to create a 3D shooter in a reasonable amount of time using a group of professionals, is around $3 million. That does not include licenses and hardware, just salaries, management and logistics. Also don''t forget things like office renting, internet/phone bills, insurances, betatest, loans, etc.

That''s just for the development. Production and marketing costs significantly more.

But if you have a group of really dedicated professionals (not simple amateurs), with experience in teamwork, and an extremely strict organization, and you are working like slaves with just the absolutely minimum pay, then you might be able to pull of a pretty good game with around $500k. But people willing to work under those conditions tend to be hard to find...

Although, if your company had a kind of ''communist structure'' (every employee is a shareholder), then the work might very well pay out - if you manage to pull off a AAA title with 10 people, find a private investor to cover the development and marketing costs, and sell through a distributor (not a game publisher, they will take 90% of the profits), you could all go off with a couple of millions. Not that this is going to be easy to do...

If you''re really interested, there are professional agencies that can evaluate the feasability and develop a full business plan, budget and timing for such a project. Will cost you a couple of thousand $ though.

/ Yann

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Guest Anonymous Poster
the project im on now, a action/platformer for the
ps2/xbox/and gamecube, will end up costing roughly
10 million.

this is including our advertising costs.
so 7 million without our advertising budget.

we have 33 people on the project.

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quote:
Original post by baumep
afaik the production of the new UT2003 engine cost more than $20 million.

I guess they plan to make more money selling the engine itself to other developers than with the game they''re making with it.


pan narrans
Study + Hard Work + Loud Profanity = Good Code

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Christ, and what if that game that was spent many hours making and millions of dollars to develop didn''t even sell a million copies? Wouldn''t a company go bankrupt right off the bat?

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quote:
Original post by Stezka
does anybody have an indea abut that benchmark (see my last reply) ?


10$ maybe , perhaps nothing, depends on the complexity.

http://uk.geocities.com/sloppyturds/kea/kea.html
http://uk.geocities.com/sloppyturds/gotterdammerung.html

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Guest Anonymous Poster
A program like 3dMark probably costs next to nothing to make. I would think that all you need to do is repeatly do things for a set ammount of time and just keep track of the results. Example, print triangles to the screen for 30 seconds and keep a count of the number of triangles. Or do a mathmatical calculation over and over with integers and count the number of times completed. Same with floats. Same with 3d cubes, ect. This could be done by one decent programmer in aa minimal ammount of time. Of course i could be wrong, im no professional... yet.

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just wanted to add in that 20 out of 50 isn''t a gross underestimate.

take your average Xbox, PS2, GameCube title...

the game is being sold to a store for like $42, theres $8 of the cost going to the store that you''re buying it from.

50-8=42

M$ gets $5 for every Xbox game and the other companies get $7 for each of their titles

42-7=35

advertising costs money, lots of money... say the company is shooting for a million copies sold and decide to invest 5 million into advertising....

35-5=30

okay, now on the publiisher''s end, cost of actual production is like $3 per game and the publisher is going to be demanding compensation for publishing and releasing the game. Saying they take $7 isn''t all that unreasonable.

30-3-7=20

The developers then wind up with $20 out of the $50 that you paid for your game.



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quote:
Original post by Furion
Christ, and what if that game that was spent many hours making and millions of dollars to develop didn''t even sell a million copies? Wouldn''t a company go bankrupt right off the bat?



That''s not how it works. A game company like Valve designs a concept for a game. They go to a publisher (like Sierra) who has loads of money. The publisher likes the idea and funds the company. Then the company works on the game. 20 people for 2 years, that''s 4 million dollars the publisher pays. Sometimes a game gets cancelled, the publisher pays. If the game is a success, the publisher gets a cut of the profits. The idea is to front a few million, then make 10 million when the game sells a million copies. At $50 a game, a publisher gets $10, the game company gets $10, the rest goes to costs (boxes, shipping, stores). The stores sell $25 games (bulk price) for $50, they make the money and have almost no risks.

A publisher might foot the bill for 10 games that each cost 4 million, then half gets cancelled, a quarter are duds that never make any money, the remaining quarter is supposed to earn the money back.

No game company except ID can afford to pay for R&D and development themselves, they need to go to the big buys for funding.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
In answer to your original question Peter Molyneux said Black and White cost £4,000,000 to develop - but they sure as hell took their sweet time making it :-)

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