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Tobbe

why is everything so expensive?

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Why is everything so freaking expensive?? 3ds max, photoshop, ms visual studios, books, etc. I dont got a money income so I can't afford much. Do you know why everything is so expensive?

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Quote:
Original post by Gauvir_Mucca
Good question.

50-60 dollars for a book is ridiculous.

THat's ridiculous, yes, but not much compared to some books where I live. all are about 70-150 bucks. and that sucks.
and I think 3ds max is 3000 bucks.

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Because that's what people will pay for them? That's the definition of what something is worth, anyway. Those programs aren't exactly priced to fit the indie, but they're not really developed to support the indie, either. They're made for professional use, and it's the professionals that can pay that price.

Anyway, my advice would be to look at either a) student versions (much cheaper if you're a student) or b) some of the free/cheap/open source alternatives out there. In regards to books, yeah they're often expensive, but sometimes you can find deals. Try looking up your book on Amazon and go to the "Used and new from" link, sometimes you can get hella deals there.

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Many professional packages have many more features then you'll probably need, and you can usually find cheaper alternatives.

Photoshop is one of the best apps to have if you run a professional fine-art printing studio, but for video game graphics, you can often get by with an image editor for less then a hundred dollars, or you can even download Gimp for free. I manage to get by using the software that came free with my scanner.


3-d studio Max and Maya are good if you want to make Toy Story, but you just want to make game models, you can use milkshape (cheep) or use Blender or Anim8or for free.


For sound, rather than buying soundforge, you may just get away with using free programs like audacity and goldwave.


Books are still expensive, but now, almost everything you need to know is written in an internet tutorial somewhere. Usually you can look up any subject and the word "tutorial" on google and it will pop up


finally, there are even free compilers/IDEs out there, so yes the prices on the good stuff can be a little steep, but that doesn't have to shut you out.

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Well good point Instruo, but it's still frustrating when you're making a game that you have to pay hundreds of dollars to do it and learn it.
As for Amazon, I wont go there, since it's hell of a price to get stuff here to sweden ;)

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Kelly G, I have GIMP, and GMAX, and Anim8or, and Dev-C++. And those are fine, however I'm still angry that all stuff is so expensive.
And I know there are tutorials but most of them are in english. I can understand most things in english, just not programming so well.
The sound programs, never heard of any of them. I'm rarely making sounds.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Quote:
Original post by Tobbe
Well good point Instruo, but it's still frustrating when you're making a game that you have to pay hundreds of dollars to do it and learn it.
As for Amazon, I wont go there, since it's hell of a price to get stuff here to sweden ;)


You don't seem to know what you're talking about. Amazon.co.uk is much cheaper than Swedish bookstores, and shipping is around 100 SEK even if you buy 10 books. You can save thousands of SEK by buying from amazon.

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There are free stuff you know. You don't need to 'follow the crowd' and use expensive tools like Visual Studio (an IDE), 3DS MAX (3D), Photoshop (2D).
If you search a bit, you'll find great replacements like Dev-C++ (IDE), Blender3D (3D), GIMP (2D).

For 3D and 2D tools you can take a look in the Visual Arts forum, to be specific: this thread.

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IMO, Bookpool is an excellent place to order technical books online. The books there are regularly 10-40% less than you'd pay at a retail outlet (even Amazon).

As to why things are so expensive, think about how many hours it took to create those pieces of software and to keep them up to date with the newest features. Professional software doesn't write itself. As other people have mentioned, find a low cost or open source alternative. Especially for amature game dev, there is a plethora of free tools out there.

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Yeah, there's some nice stuff in there. Some of the coding links aren't so great, but hopefully it'll help.

If people are looking for language/task-specific tutorials, then your best friend is virtually always going to be the Google Directory.

Consider this a brief tutorial on how to use the Google Directory.

Open the Google Directory in a new browser.

You'll be presented with a list of categories, all of which contain more specific categories dedicated to different areas of information.

Take the Computers category, for example. It contains subcategories of Programming, Software and FreeWare.

By gradually navigating through the subcategories, you can find virtually anything that you'd want, in the form of tutorials, software, articles, reference material and even theory.

I find the category I use most, is Computers->Programming->Languages.

Try it. People shouldn't be afraid (or too lazy) to search, when such a nice user-friendly structure is already in place.

Google really is your friend.

-hellz

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I used to be one of those people who would "skip" payment as it were. Please dont do this as it is illegal, I finally decided that it was time to renounce my ways. Well I ran into the no money problem. Im telling you what, as an addition to that list up there:

sourceforge.net

The best open source site. Find anything, all nicely categorized in the software map, most include source code download for those who are curious. I found a replacement for Maya-Blender3d, Illustrator-Inkscape, Photoshop-GIMP, Visual C++.net-Dev-C++, Audacity, etc.

Granted these programs (in most cases) arent as powerful as the program they replace, but it is free, and you can download and modify the source code, which is a plus for the more advanced users.

As for books, use online resources. I am working on making a complete "Book" of tutorials as a pdf file from several websites on general game dev and programming.

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The big problem with the Maya Learners edition is that you can't produce anything with it. You can only use it to learn how to do graphics and such. But it would probably be a cool thing to learn how to use at some point

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Supply and Demand.

Books and Software have no major "physical" cost - i.e. the cost of printing some pages or pressing a CD is very little. Instead what you have is flat content production costs - the salary it took to pay the programmers or authors to write it in the first place. This means that the price of these products can be set over a very wide range - profit is basically (Units*Price)-Production. So if you sell more units you can charge a lower price and still make back your production costs and have a profit. If you only sell a few copies the price needs to higher in order for there to be a profit. With specialized books and computer software, you already have a very limited market. While there are millions of potential customers for "Excel for dummies", there may only be ten thousand potential customers for "Mud Game Programming". As they would have very similar production values, the price of the second must be higher then the first in order for a profit to be made (you don't want to actually run into debt - the vast majority of new game companies go out of business this way because they can't reach the break even point and go bankrupt)

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Actually if you want to get technical on that side of things it isn't just supply and demand (although that does have an effect).

What we are looking at here is monopolistic pricing (and I don't mean Monopoly in the sense that Microsoft is creating one). But in the sense that the company doesn't follow the same pricing conditions as a competetive firm. There are some long explanations and I don't really want to bore people so I'll stop there. =P

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Quote:
Original post by Terlenth
Actually if you want to get technical on that side of things it isn't just supply and demand (although that does have an effect).

What we are looking at here is monopolistic pricing (and I don't mean Monopoly in the sense that Microsoft is creating one). But in the sense that the company doesn't follow the same pricing conditions as a competetive firm. There are some long explanations and I don't really want to bore people so I'll stop there. =P


I assume you refer to the fact that the content of books are pretty diverse, and that you would have to have a large number of firms writing books about very similar subjects in similar styles for higher competiveness and lower pricing to occur. Of course, this is not going to happen because it is still quite expensive to support the full salary of an author together with marketing and printing costs. Consider how many copies of a specific book about for example neural networks will sell as opposed to some "innovative" drama story that will appeal to most people...

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In both the software and printing market you will not get competitive pricing. This is because of the fact that if you go by competitve pricing then you are going to have to price the product at you marginal cost. Not a very good idea when your marginal cost is close to $1. So even if you went with competetive pricing in this market, way too many firms would leave and you'd end up in the same monopolistic situation that you were in to begin with.

Also, I'm not even talking about competition between firms, because really even in both of the above mentioned markets there are massive amounts of competition between firms. Who will have the best software with the most features. Who can reduce their production costs. This doesn't mean that they will loswer the price of the product, it just means that they will have higher profits.

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If you think that's expensive, wait until you have to hire an artist to use those apps or a publishing company to actually ship the game :l

/me goes back to making stick figure swordsmen

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I suspect it's because that cost isn't very much when you're running a business. "Uberware" is a one-time, up-front cost, where, by contrast, things like salary, electricity, and so forth are all ongoing costs.

It doesn't take long before the cost of the software is dwarfed by those ongoing costs. :)

Of course, it still sucks bigtime if you're just a hobbiest. But, as people have pointed out, there's no shortage of free stuff :)

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Things like computer books are expensive because not many people buy them..........and the author needs to get paid. As with software, same deal, it takes a great deal of staff to create photophop and a relatively low amount of people buy it, compared to computer games.

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