• Announcements

    • khawk

      Download the Game Design and Indie Game Marketing Freebook   07/19/17

      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Tutorial Doctor

Acquired by _____!(fill in the blank)

27 posts in this topic

Big companies are eating small development teams like that last piece of apple pie!

 

I have used a bunch of software over the years, some you may not have even heard of. Got plenty of viruses too (3,000+ I think). I am starting to see something very annoying these days. 

 

I stumble across a very neat software, something with great potential. Next thing I know... ACQUIRED BY GOOGLE! or BOUGHT BY APPLE! 

 

I wouldn't be surprised at the amount of money these big companies throw at gullible start-ups. Heck, I'd take a nice bill'. 

 

Autodesk has been buying up some nice 3d software and just sitting on them. Let's not even get into the patent wars. 

 

What is really going on in the software industry? Overall? Games are not exempt, but at least for now, they are just looking at indie developers. Watching them like vultures, ready to pounce like Simba from the Lion King. 

 

Meanwhile, I can't find any good software for free like I used to. So now I have shifted my software downloading obsession to App stores. 

 

Didn't someone trademark the word "App?" Or is it APP? or is it aPP? 

 

ehhh...

 

 

 

 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Autodesk has been buying up some nice 3d software and just sitting on them. Let's not even get into the patent wars.
What is really going on in the software industry?

This is business, same rules as in pro-sports, where clubs pay incredible amounts of money for players of other clubs just to send them directly to the bench. The trick: on your own bench he will rott, but atleast he will not be dangerous to your team any longer.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is still plenty of good useful free software. You just have to use Linux.

Also don't assume that these startups are gullible.  For a lot of these startups getting bought by larger companies is their entire buisness model.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


There is still plenty of good useful free software. You just have to use Linux.

... even on Windows smile.png

Btw, try to aquire open source, tools like blender or gimp. Both are really stinging autodesk and adobe, but it is hard to fight them.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gimp and Blender are really awesome tools that cannot be ignored(Blender 2.69 now supports .fbx imports!!!!!!!!!!!!!!). Blender also supports .bvh imports for animation and can export Collada(.dae). Also Open Sourced free game engines(JMonkey, Torque 3D, Ogre3D(rendering) etc.) are many now at days. I have no problems finding free software for Windows.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I used to hate Gimp and Blender but theyve come on leaps and bounds over the past few years and for most people who are not experts or pros (and even some who are) they are just as competant as Max or Photoshop.  Another tool I love using is InkScape.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This just in... business is continuing as it has for the last several centuries.  Investors have been pursuing exit strategies, larger corporations are engaging in mergers and acquisitions, little guys sometimes make good.  Film at 11.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Meanwhile, I can't find any good software for free like I used to.

 

What sort of software for example? Be very surprised if there is anything outside of extreme niche that someone hasn't released free software for.

 

Speaking as someone who's been programming for much longer than there has been an internet, I think we are in a golden age of free content, and the shift towards ad-based revenue rather than retail in entertainment software means this is only going to improve.

 

I remember a time when you HAD to BUY a C++ compiler.

1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Oh, well I have a bunch already, I am thinking about new stuff. Let me see if I can post a list of what I have:

Gimp (no way I'm paying a subscription to use adobe)
Blender(hope they stay free and don't get bought out)
Sculptris(under Autodesk now)
Wings 3d
Google sketchup(sold to Trimble now)
Open Office (liber office on Linux)
Makehuman
Audacity
Winamp(not being developed anymore)
Maratis 3D(open sourced game engine I prefer)
QtCreator(just found out about this awesome IDE)

There are some very cheap software that I like too.

Poser 7 or 8
Touchdraw (cad app for Mac and ipad)
Hype 2(Mac)
Iwork (now free to all!)
Ilife(now free)

My list is much bigger than this though, I need to make a list of it.

Oh, I have a list of niche software too. I will post it later. Haha
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Niche

 

Programming almost has no limits to the type of software that can be created. Don't we program to make things easier? So think of all the things that annoy you when making a game, and think of a program that will solve it. 

 

Audio

So, for the most part, there are bunches of software dedicated to complex graphics manipulation, but not as much attention is dedicated to audio. The most useful audio software I have used was Reason 4.0 because of this:

 

ReasonTech_08-0411.jpg?itok=vLP31aa7

 

Sound manipulation at it's greatest. You can surely use this software to create your own sounds. We have efficient ways of describing shapes, but how do we describe sounds? We have primitive shapes that can be sculpted into any shape imaginable, but are there primitive sounds we can sculpt into the sound of a human laughing? So of course, I have downloaded plenty of text to speech software, and my favorite one right now is the "Speak it" app for the ipad. 

 

DIY Development

Making games is too specialized. I don't think it should be so specialized, because there are plenty of people who can create amazing things, so long as the tools they use are straightforward and easy to grasp. A game engine that makes games amazingly easy, just like Google Sketchup makes modeling  easy. Or just like 3-sweep makes modeling much easier. The reason I am learning programming is to perhaps be able to make my idea of the perfect game engine (high hopes). What about a software that makes making software easier? I really loved that 3DFA software. It stopped development suddenly. This way people can make their own custom software without having to hire developers (I am sure some would not like this idea though.)

 

Think outside the box

So, Marvelous Designer was long overdue. I tried to find alternative software, and found a free one that was good enough, but VF Pro just fell of the map. Fashion has been around so long, so such a software taking advantage of 3D modeling was just a "duh" to me. I can think of other areas where 3D would serve very well. Google sketchup already has the Engineering industry on lock, or should I say "Trimble Sketchup."

 

I don't want to turn this into a diary though. haha. But there are so many areas to be explored, so I don't really see a limit on what can be made. 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


The trick: on your own bench he will rott, but atleast he will not be dangerous to your team any longer.

 

Wow. Why not play him though since you are paying all that money for him?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


For a lot of these startups getting bought by larger companies is their entire buisness model.

 

I am ashamed to say this, but that does sound like a good business model haha. I just want to retire. 

 

However, I think the direction this is headed is to some all powerful big time corporation holding all the chips in their hands and rationing them out as they see fit to the poor.

I guess this applies to governments also. Pitty.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R706isyDrqI

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Gimp (no way I'm paying a subscription to use adobe)
 

Any reason why you don't want to pay a subscription to use adobe's tools? They're awesome tools after all, and you can get Photoshop and Lightroom for less than the average North American spends on coffee in a month.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Niche
 
Programming almost has no limits to the type of software that can be created. Don't we program to make things easier? So think of all the things that annoy you when making a game, and think of a program that will solve it. 
Making games is too specialized. I don't think it should be so specialized, because there are plenty of people who can create amazing things, so long as the tools they use are straightforward and easy to grasp. A game engine that makes games amazingly easy . . .
3-sweep[/url] makes modeling much easier. The reason I am learning programming is to perhaps be able to make my idea of the perfect game engine (high hopes). What about a software that makes making software easier?

my dreams too + making a lot of smart's; Smart { OS, Dev. Environment, Game Engine, etc. (very dreamy goals) ;)
I saw that Maya wasn't an autodesk product until they bought it.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The reason I am learning programming is to perhaps be able to make my idea of the perfect game engine (high hopes).

 

As you (hopefully) develop the skills you'll need to realise this goal, you'll gradually realise why the perfect game engine doesn't exist. Maybe one day you'll write one that has some strengths over others, but if so you will pay for those strengths with weaknesses in other areas.

 

This stuff doesn't not exist just because nobody until you had the idea of making it you know.

Edited by Aardvajk
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Luckless. Before, you bought the software one time fee. With the subscription thing, you end up paying way more over time. It's residual income for them, not just a way to prevent pirating.

And at any time, they can up the fee, just like that stunt Netflix tried to pull. It's like cable.

Unfortunately a lot of big companies want to do the subscription thing. So you end up (if you are like me) looking for decent alternatives. I say, here in America at least, we pay too much for convenience. Photoshop has that "must have feature." One press of a button and presto! I just don't want the world of open sourced software to be crushed by the "money men."
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Blender(hope they stay free and don't get bought out)
Sculptris(under Autodesk now)

Winamp(not being developed anymore)

Blender was the opposite of what you're complaining about. The company making it went bankrupt, so the community raised $100,000 to buy the source code from the company's creditors! The not-for-profit blender foundation was set up to facilitate that transaction, and to continue developing it as an open-source project.

Seeing it's GNU licensed, it would be near impossible for someone to somehow buy out the Blender Foundation and then turn it into a closed source product tongue.png

 

The guy who was making Sculptris joined Pixologic (not Autodesk) and took his project with him there.

 

The copy of Winamp on my PC is dated 2001! What more can you want out of it!? laugh.png

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I know blender does not fall under that, hoping they won't.

As for Winamp, stability issues in the latest version, at least on my pc.

I guess this "merger" business is part of my complaint too. The whole "if you can't beat em join em" thing.
You're right, it's pixilogic.
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Aside from the many recent high-profile social media startups that got acquired (Instagram, Tumblr, and a few dozen others), I haven't noticed an increase.

The social media purchases have been overpriced, and I think we're in another dot-com bubble (or at least a social media bubble).

 

Large companies buying smaller companies? Has been going on for ages... look at the first decade of the 1900s and at Standard Oil and World Steel having bought up all their competitors.

 

One smaller software company that has built themself up to a decent size by aquiring great software is Corel. Basically an ant compared to Apple, Google, Microsoft, Oracle, Amazon, IBM, and co, they are still a very large ant.

 

Corel's entire business is built around, finding (or making) the best alternative of every good production application.

Paint Shop Pro (acquired from Jasc) competes with Photoshop,

Word Perfect (acquired from Novell) competes with Microsoft Word,

They also own WinZip (acquired), and Rovio (disc burning software), and have video editing tools, and etc...

 

Their original internal motto was to be "The Pepsi to Microsoft's Coke".

 

Adobe is kinda similar.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I find that specifically targeting, or dropping blame on larger business' for buying out competition of smaller business' is a bit absurd truthfully.  No one pointed a gun to the smaller studio and told them to sell their company, they willingly did it for a chunk of change - and when it comes down to business - that's all it is - which way the money flows.  I don't see anything wrong with this.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yes, it's obvious they have to sell it, they aren't getting robbed, even I said I might be tempted to do the same if the price is right. I just want to retire. I guess we are suckers for cash.

Thing is though, I can see where it would be a bad thing if every small company had a fee. As I noted, many times the companies buy it to sit on it, not to grow it. That is the part that annoys me.
Good software disappears never to be seen again.

That is why you have all of these patent trolls sprouting everywhere, and the whole software patent debacle. Nowadays you dont have to buy the company, just beat them to the patent office and sue the pants off 'em. You have enough money to handle the court fees. Poor startup gets crushed by the hound dog.

I think this should at least be a concern for indie developers. I mean, Nintendo trying to sue mr flappy bird, and for what?
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, it's obvious they have to sell it, they aren't getting robbed, even I said I might be tempted to do the same if the price is right. I just want to retire. I guess we are suckers for cash.


It's not always for cash. Sometimes these buyouts occur with stock as well. George Lucas sold LucasFilm (to retire, basically), and sold it half for cash (two billion in cash), and two billion worth of Disney stock. He goes from owning 100% of LucasFilm, to Disney owning all of LucasFilm, and George Lucas being the 2nd largest shareholder of Disney (at 2%). The first largest shareholder is Steve Job's widow. Steve Jobs gained his huge share when Disney bought Pixar.

Steve Jobs, when kicked out of Apple, managed to get back in by selling Apple his NeXT Computer company. YouTube was sold to Google for Google stock.

Going farther back in history, William Durant, who founded General Motors, was kicked out by the investors for some bad financial decisions. So Durant co-founded Chevrolet, sold Chevrolet to General Motors, and became the head again.

 

Other reasons for selling include:

 - Your company is losing money and you don't want all your employees to end up on the street.
 - Your company has grown so large that you are no longer the best person to manage it.

 - Your company is now in a more mature and "professional" position, but you no longer enjoy managing it, so you want to get back to startups.

 - The company buying you is one of your favorite companies.

 - You want to use the money to start a new company in a different industry or in the same industry.

 

Thing is though, I can see where it would be a bad thing if every small company had a fee. As I noted, many times the companies buy it to sit on it, not to grow it. That is the part that annoys me.
Good software disappears never to be seen again.


Fine. So let the innovators innovate, cash out, let the giants sit on their purchases without innovating, making room for more innovators to compete. smile.png 
 

That is why you have all of these patent trolls sprouting everywhere,

Patent trolling is an unrelated issue. Companies buying smaller companies is not "why" we have patent trolls.
 

I think this should at least be a concern for indie developers. I mean, Nintendo trying to sue mr flappy bird, and for what?

Nintendo didn't sue Flappy Bird. A bunch of people on the web guessed that Nintendo might've threatened to sue the Flappy Bird developer, and then that guess of a threat to sue became a rumor which became a false "fact" that Nintendo did sue. But it's wrong.

 

Nintendo came out and basically said, 'Uh, no, we aren't sueing him, didn't threaten him, and aren't even remotely bothered by the game.'. Then the author of Flappy Bird came along and said, 'Uh no, nobody threatened to sue me.'

 

That's the internet for ya! biggrin.png

 

As Winston Churchill once said, "A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on."

 

But, if Nintendo did sue (which they did not!), they'd be justified in doing so - because it was clearly capitalizing off of Nintendo's artwork and games and popularity - and the game wasn't a parody, so free speech doesn't apply here. The internet seems to be very "Because I like X, then X needs to be legal." regardless of the consequences and logic and facts behind why X doesn't make sense.

 

We could get into why copyrights are a good thing, but that's a different discussion. wink.png

Copyrights and patents and trademarks being abused doesn't mean copyrights and patents at a basic level don't have benefits for society in general. The abuse needs to be fought, the system needs to be fixed, but the solution isn't to destroy copyrights, patents, or trademarks.

 

The concern for indies need to be: "How can I make the best game possible... using my own creations, and standing on its own merit?"

(instead of playing off other people's or other company's property)

 

Yes, there needs to be some relaxing of what the law considers 'derivative works', but the internet needs to also know that just because I can do something, that doesn't make it right; and just because I like something, that doesn't make it good (where good = "beneficial for larger society (and not just self-focused)" and "beneficial to your own self, in the long-term (and not just short-term gain at long-term cost)").

Edited by Servant of the Lord
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Companies buying smaller companies is not "why" we have patent trolls.

 

It is not the reason why, but just another thing going around that could have been avoided if certain things were seen in advance. Or perhaps they were seen, but weren't dealt with?

 

It isn't blatantly obvious what is going on right now, but I am just calling it out as I see it right now (long term). Something that needs to be fixed before it comes to a head. I mean, why is it that Apple and Google and Samsung and such companies are always in court? Do they hate each other that much? Is it a control war? Yet another issue in software where I can sue you because you perhaps had the same idea as I had (your icon looks vaguely familiar to mine.) Trademarking common words like you invented them? It is more a mockery of the system.

 

It's sorta like the Walmart issue. Walmart drops into town, all the local businesses close down, and sometimes they hire lawyers to handle other "small" issues. These small businesses get stomped on by Walmart. The owners might as well work for Walmart or find another occupation. It is legally, and according to business, fair game. Big fish eats little fish. But from the point of view of the small time business owners..?

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Last I heard WinAmp got bought - so there should be some development on it.

 

Haha!! Turns out AOL bought it from someone else, like Google bought sketchup from someone else. I guess this is like pro sports, but people still mad at Lebron James for leaving his beloved state and city for that mulah! haha. 

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0