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Thread: [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

  1. #1
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    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    [sp_show_poll id="2"]

    We having been talking about this a lot internally recently, but wanted to discuss with you all the possibility of releasing Tabletop Simulator only on Steam. Before you grab your pitch forks, let me explain. We have limited man hours as an indie team and the less time we have to devote to supporting different versions of the game the better we can focus on that version - we already have to worry about the Windows, Mac, and Linux versions. If we do release only on Steam, this would mean the possibility of more features for everyone, like Steam Workshop for mods, Cloud Saves, Server Browser Improvements, Achievements, and more. Also we could get rid our current account system and instead use your steam account. This would allow you to join your friends' games easily, and not have to worry about the hassle of registering with us or logging in.

    These Steam only features will allow us to deliver a better game for you, our players, but at the end of the day itís you, the backers, that have the final say on this. Would you rather see a more feature rich Steam version or would you rather have 2 versions with less of these Steam only features. Itís up to you guys!

    Either way you guys decide. Weíll do our best to give you all the best game possible.

    Thank you all very much, hopefully you understand our dilemma!

    Edit:
    I understand completely where you guys are coming from. I just wanted to let you all know we won't be abandoning our non steam users. If we have to we'll keep the current version just like it is along with a with the new steam version. Maybe we can come up with something more elegant down the road. Thank you all for your great input we really appreciate it!

  2. #2

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    My main interest in this software is to use it to test game builds. Having the game tied to a service like steam is a little concerning long term. Will the game ever be able to function apart from steam far in the future? While this is a concern I still voted to have full steam integration.

  3. #3
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    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    I live in Papua New Guinea, where steam is simply not an option since we have very limited & expensive internet. Please continue to offer the DRM-free windows version.

  4. #4

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    I hate to be selfish when it comes to matters such as this, and I realize that some players would have to go through the hassle of creating a steam account, but I think the pros outweigh the cons. You would get a more feature-rich game with more open-ended possibilities via the steam workshop. You'd also get the friends feature which would make joining people you want to much easier. I think most players would have already created a steam account anyway, leaving it with only benefits to everyone other than the minority of players who don't have steam accounts.
    Thanks for taking into consideration the opinions of the community.

  5. #5

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    The options opened up with a Steam-only release are great. Especially being able to share workshop items, more so if we have the tools to create minifigures or level design tiles, like you have been showing off in the Kickstarter emails, and share those through the workshop. But two interesting questions cross my mind.

    1) The Workshop makes it very easy to share any added content quickly, but in a fictitious scenario, I scan in every card and tile from Catan, and create a Steam Workshop pack of Catan. Now anyone can play without buying the game. Obviously, the owners of Catan get angry and demand it gets pulled from the workshop. Is there any way to prevent scenarios like this without overly-diligent analysis of everything uploaded?

    2) Will those of us who Kickstarted at the right level still get early access for the Steam beta version? While I wouldn't stop you, I would feel cheated a little if you released it as an early access game and kinda gypped us of our "beta" bragging rights.

  6. #6

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    Steam offers easy cross-platform integration (good for people like me who run several operating systems on different computers), in addition to other benefits listed.

  7. #7

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    I think you should Keep a LAN only 1.0 version on your site for portability but keep it feature Frozen, Steam is great.

  8. #8
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    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    irongamer said

    My main interest in this software is to use it to test game builds. Having the game tied to a service like steam is a little concerning long term. Will the game ever be able to function apart from steam far in the future? While this is a concern I still voted to have full steam integration.

    If we end up going to steam only the game will only be able to function with steam down the road, but the chance of steam going down are like none. Currently the games features like account system and server browser are ran off our servers - steams will be much more reliable.

    Chris_Walker said

    I live in Papua New Guinea, where steam is simply not an option since we have very limited & expensive internet. Please continue to offer the DRM-free windows version.

    I really sorry to hear that Chris! But the game will still be the same download size on or off steam - you can even turn off automatic updates if bandwidth is a concern when you don't want to use it.

    TheoRidGEinal said
    1) The Workshop makes it very easy to share any added content quickly, but in a fictitious scenario, I scan in every card and tile from Catan, and create a Steam Workshop pack of Catan. Now anyone can play without buying the game. Obviously, the owners of Catan get angry and demand it gets pulled from the workshop. Is there any way to prevent scenarios like this without overly-diligent analysis of everything uploaded?

    2) Will those of us who Kickstarted at the right level still get early access for the Steam beta version? While I wouldn't stop you, I would feel cheated a little if you released it as an early access game and kinda gypped us of our "beta" bragging rights.

    1.) I don't see why custom content still couldn't be distributed externally without steam workshop. Even with steam only.
    2.) You won't see people that bought release keys or steam buyer playing before the planned to release in April, so beta players at the very least get around a month of playing before everyone else. I can't say yet whether we will do early access at that point or not though, because all the stretch goal won't be done by that point most likely!

  9. #9

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    Thank you for taking the time to open this choice up to those who supported you, though I feel that most of us will pick features over DRM-Free (including myself) at the same time I kinda feel bad for those who came into this on the merits that it was already DRM-Free on top of that you already exceeded your top funding goal it seems a bit odd to have this choice come about now?

    What would have been the needed level of funding to have a fully supported steam version and DRM-Free version? honestly this is something I just assumed was going to happen.

  10. #10

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    I voted for Steam Only.

    I strongly wish this game was able to at least be Steam and GOG but I understand you have a small group.

  11. #11

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    Steam is far from perfect, the Offline often glitches and they cut something like 33% of the profits, but the features they offer are pretty good. Naturally, I support no-DRM, but let's be honest- pirating Unity doesn't take too much effort if someone REALLY doesn't want Steam.

    Features to keep it 'fair', however, would include Steamless play (can load without loading Steam API for singleplay/LAN), LAN play, and non-Workshop content loading available.

    Overall, Steam means easier update pushes, easier account integration, and easier content. If you'd like to do Steam Only for early stages (where pushes are frequent) and open it up to non-Steam much later, that's also an option.

  12. #12
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    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    jay_rab said

    Thank you for taking the time to open this choice up to those who supported you, though I feel that most of us will pick features over DRM-Free (including myself) at the same time I kinda feel bad for those who came into this on the merits that it was already DRM-Free on top of that you already exceeded your top funding goal it seems a bit odd to have this choice come about now?

    What would have been the needed level of funding to have a fully supported steam version and DRM-Free version? honestly this is something I just assumed was going to happen.

    We feel bad about this too that's why we came to you guys on this. We aren't trying to deceive you guys at all as we didn't initially plan on supporting all these Steam features. It was more due to popular demand especially for Workshop support. When we started the Kickstarter we were initially asking for a very small amount to polish up the game and get it out the door for our players. Thankfully, we were wildly successful and did way better than we expected. This has allowed us to expand the game to great extent, but at the same time we want to use the money we raised efficiently.

    It will take more development work to integrate with Steam, but at the same time if we have to worry about having two systems to merge, it would be a logistical nightmare (our account system and Steam accounts working on the same server system). Having feature parity with 2, much more advanced versions of the game than we initially planned, would eat up a lot of the money we plan to use to expand other existing systems (mod support, mobile releases, oculus rift).

    At the end of the day even the DRM-Free version required logging into our servers for authentication in multiplayer. We will still keep a single player version of the game for demo purposes - maybe even a simplified version in web player format!

  13. #13

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    Nintyuk said

    I think you should Keep a LAN only 1.0 version on your site for portability but keep it feature Frozen

    While I voted for the Steam option (I like the ease of using Steam; not having to worry about where to go to get the game and the product key for something I last installed 6 months ago after I format my hard drive, automatic updates, inviting friends of mine to multiplayer games, etc) I can understand the people who want a drm free version. If it's possible to do what Nintyuk said, without losing quality on the first major release, I think it's a good compromise.

  14. #14

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    I am bias towards Steam as it is my life but I think it is, by far and away, the best option.
    Automatic updates and hassle-free installation aren't even the best parts. I have seen concerns about both DRM with Steam and the percentage they take; here are my two cents on those.
    First off, with the DRM, Steam has free accounts and a massive user base that trusts it. The DRM, in this case at least, only protects the developers from people hacking the game and might not limit the single player as it could be posted as a demo. And for the percentage Steam takes, that doesn't really matter here. Beserk Games originally planned to have it as just a download with only their own site selling it. Steam, however, would open the game up to a much larger customer base and that alone would outweigh the percentage taken.
    And last, but most definitely not least, the possibility of the Workshop. All I can think of is great modelers and modders who love the game being able to publish their polished work and have hundreds, if not thousands, of items ready for you to choose from. That though alone makes me shake.

    TLR - I think Steam is the best possible way to help this game.

  15. #15

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    I voted for Steam only...

    I would add that, for my purposes, it would be nice to be able to have a way to share custom games outside of Steam Workshop, even if it's a bit hacky. I've looked through the Steam Workshop TOS and it seems pretty fair in regards to content licensing for user created content. With the exception that Valve or the Third Party Developer has the option to absorb any user created content into the product through legal a mechanism called "distribution in-game" that is not described in detail within the document. Though it seems to indicate that it would be a process of some sort that both parties agree too, it does not state that specifically.

    It does go on to say that the creator of the user generated can remove their content at any time, and that at such time Valve and the developer lose the right to further redistribute said content. This part of the agreement does not apply though to any content that has been incorporated into the game via the "distribution in-game" process.

    Blah Blah Blah, Blah Blah.

    ...

    The point I'm getting to is this, while I love the idea of Steam Workshop it will present two problems.

    1. Those of us who want to create our own game IPs and test them in Tabletop Simulator have the potential of running into rights issues if we ever want to do more with the game we created than just play it in Tabletop Simulator. Like actually publish it, there will be an open question on if Valve or the Developer has rights to the IP due to the nature of Steam Workshop.

    2. DMCA takedowns will likely occur for those of us who want to play a game of Bang! or Magic, or Yugioh with our friends over Tabletop. We already own the cards and just want to play it over the internet for ease of use as it's better than playing over Skype. Other programs allow us, the user, to personally take of the legal risk for doing this but once it's uploaded to a platform it is Valve and the Developer who will be receiving the DMCA notices to take down our decks.

    I think the solution to both these problems is one in the same. It's not to avoid Steam Workshop, or not necessarily to even have an alternative distribution platform. It's just for the program, in addition to Steam Workshop, to in some way allow Peer to Peer sharing of custom game content. Either by the creator of said game content making a ZIP file that everyone downloads, or a XML filled with URLs of where the content is located on the internet (Though this second method is more complicated to set up and maintain for the user). This should protect the Developer, Valve and the User from the issues mentioned previously as there is not relationship between Valve/Developer and the User with user generated content, and in the case of properties owned by an outside entity said content is not made available on a world-wide distribution platform like Steam Workshop.

    ...

    But perhaps taking all this into consideration, Berserk Games would prefer not to get involved in any of these Intellectual Property issues in the first place. Prefering to avoid the headache. That is certainly understandable, though it would reduce the utility of the game. If that were the case though, then Steam Workshop and no other methods would be the way to go.

  16. #16

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    I think as long as there's still an option to play the game in an offline/LAN mode and allow the option to manually import custom content outside of Steam Workshop, the benefits of full Steamworks integration would far outweigh the cons in a game that relies so heavily on multiplayer and community involvement such as this one.

  17. #17
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    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    I can't really say a lot to respond to the above (legal landmine), but I can say we will have a way for you guys to distribute your custom content outside of workshop.

  18. #18

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    How will this work for those of us who cannot make purchases on Steam? Some regions are blocked from this by the Steam system.

    Thanks

  19. #19
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    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    Realm Master K said

    How will this work for those of us who cannot make purchases on Steam? Some regions are blocked from this by the Steam system.

    Thanks

    I didn't even know this existed - that's terrible! Does steam still allow you to use their client if you get the steam key from an external source? Or are you completely barred from the service?

  20. #20

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    I like the idea of all of the Steam feature, but having a steam free version would mean that more of your backers would be able to enjoy the game that they backed. As stated above, Steam does not work in all areas. Perhaps a less feature rich, released later, DRM free version would be a good idea? Hell, after you have made any investment back, release the source code? Might be far fetched, but this is a grate platform for people, and perhaps the modding tools will not be enough for some people. + not having to worry too much about bugs caused by features, as people can fix them for you. Open source aside, please make steam optional somehow.

  21. #21

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    I am fine with Steam but I see others who would be shut out if it was Steam only. I vote for whatever allows the most people access.

  22. #22

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    I voted for the DRM free version, even though it isn't really DRM free, since it requires online authentication.
    I invested in this project with the understanding that I would be getting DRM free copies of this game, and that if and when it made it to steam I would get keys, and that you would continue to fully support both versions.
    I got this so that I could play games with people who generally do not play video games, and therefore this would likely be the only game installed on their computers.
    I find it silly to expect people to install another piece of software (that eats system resources) just to play the game.
    Sorry, but I was actually hoping you would not get greenlit until after release, because I feared something like this might happen.

  23. #23
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    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    We'll try to get something together for you guys that can't get on steam, it won't be as feature rich but we won't abandon you guys!

  24. #24

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    I backed this thinking it would be a stand alone game that I could easily load onto my sons computer, my wife's, my brothers and my computer (I backed the 4 player pack)... I really don't want to create 4 steam accounts. I don't want to worry about what else my son does/can do on steam. I was hoping this would be an easy to install and use program (even if it requires a log in to use)... not needing to go through the steam shell. Maybe that's because I don't use steam very much.

    In summary: if this is only steam, I will have lost the money from my backing, since this product will not be the product I backed; and it will not be a product I use.

  25. #25

    [CLOSED] Please cast your vote!

    Quick question: is the iOS and Android version still planned in either case?

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