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Vashmofy

A newbie question

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Why are those company need to invest millions dollars to develop a game? Where did the cost go to?

 

Seems like game developer isn't having a very high wage for now.

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I don't (and never did) work at a game company before, and i'm sure others who did can answer this much better than me, but the companies that you're talking about, that invest millions, they have, literally, hundreds of people working on a single game (you have programmers, artists, 3d modelers, animators, designers, script writers, audio editors, voice actors, game testers, marketing staff, business staff, etc), during the spawn of years, as some games take a year to be finished, others take as much as 10 years (games like Skyrim (even though it didn't take 10 years, it still took a long development time compared to annualy games), Starcraft 2, Diablo 3, etc).

 

Then, even though i'm not familiar with it, i'd assume that maintaining a studio of this magnitude (game company, or at least a branch) is costly, even without the game specific staff (things like office maintenance, R&D (i think of R&D here, as researching and developing the technology used for future games/engines, as oposed to direct development of a specific game, though if i'm wrong, please correct me).

 

Like i said i'm no expert in this but i think you can get an idea of how costly it is to run a business this big.

 

Hope it helps.

Edited by __SKYe

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Look at the credits list on major games. The list of people's names just goes on and on and on. Major games have several hundred employed for years. Wages represent the single largest development expense.

Just making the game is one thing, next it gets marketed. Global marketing campaigns for AAA games cost millions by themselves. Television ads on thousands of stations globally, web ads on millions of websites. Industry magazines. If you want a good spot in 300 million printed Toys R Us Christmas catalogs, that costs companies dearly but also results in sales as kids circle the gifts they want from grandma or santa. This is usually the second largest expense, sometimes it even is the largest.

Next for physical discs are manufacture, distribution, floor space, and returns. It surprises many people to learn that publishers generally pay retailers for prominent shelf space and also pay for the weekly ads delivered in the mail. Pressing the discs, stuffing in a printed insert to a package, and shrinkwrapping it is not free. Shipping the plastic around the globe takes money.

There went the millions of dollars.

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I read that Valve has 200 artists. Artists are anything from modelers, concept artists, storyboard art, animators, level designers etc. Now if they were getting a salary of $100k per year(that is a guess) well that 200x100k = $20M a year.  Now then there is software license, they only last a year. So maya can be up to $5-6k per license so that another 100-200 x $5000 = $0.5-1M.

 

Then all the actors salaries, motion capture equipment, other software licenses, hardware upgrades, middleware licences, publishing costs, marketing costs, then all the laywers, accountants, food costs, other costs etc etc.

 

The $millions soon add up.

Edited by ram090

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You played Assasin's Creed? I bet you did. Now imagine if you or someone else can do that game alone! If the answer is no ask yourself if a team that makes a commercial game will ever work for free. You would work for free? Bigger games need bigger teams. Bigger teams need bigger funds.

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Why are those company need to invest millions dollars to develop a game? Where did the cost go to?


Moving this to the Business forum.

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On top of the salaries and software don't forgat to add insurance, desks, chairs, PCs, DevKits, any other hardware, Rent, Internet Access, Electricity, Water, Recruitment Costs (It's usually a few thousand just to hire somebody).

 

Also don't forget that games companies are a buisness and they intend on making proffit.  The money shouldn't just cover the cost of making the game but also leave some in the bank.

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