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Tunic dev: Xbox Game Pass is "an incredible deal"

The_Mike

Member
https://www.trueachievements.com/n51041/tunic-interview-xbox-game-pass

Tunic was an instant success when it launched into Xbox Game Pass as a surprise addition earlier in the year. We chatted with creator Andrew Shouldice about Tunic's Xbox Game Pass experience.​


Tunic had already been a hotly-anticipated game before its surprise addition to Xbox Game Pass opened the game up to even more players. At the moment, for instance, over 89,000 TrueAchievements members have started the game. "Surprising no one, Game Pass is an incredible deal," Shouldice says.

"It was amazing, really," Shouldice says, talking to the TrueTrophies team at Gamescom 2022 and discussing the experience of bringing Tunic to Xbox Game Pass. "Surprising no one, Game Pass is an incredible deal. I use Game Pass; I'm not ashamed to say it. And it was a bit scary to think — it's like ten million people, or 20 million people have Game Pass; something like that. It's ridiculous, right? And so the idea that it's just like, oh, yeah, that entire audience can play your game now... I just can't even fathom it.

"I think the thing that I liked most about it that I didn't think about at the time is the experience of going to — in Canada — to rent a game," Shouldice continues. "So let's say you're just a kid, you're going into a store, now we have enough time to play a game, but then you had enough money to like rent a game for a weekend. So going in and looking at all of the titles and you look around and, 'hey, that one has a sword on it. That's cool. I'll get that one' — meanwhile, not knowing anything about it. You can't really do that anymore, right? There's enough information in the world and you're probably a discriminating consumer; you're going to like check on what a game is before you buy it. Like, what are the reviews like? What genre is it? The closest thing you can get to that experience now is something like Game Pass, where you're just like, oh, a fox, he's got a sword? Sure. I got an hour. Let's see what this is all about. And you have that experience of walking into something with no expectations."

Shouldice describes a key moment as when you "get to the point where you realize there are secrets in it... That's my favourite moment, suddenly realising that — wait a second, this was here the whole time!? There are secret passages all over this place!? That's thrilling to me. And I hope that that was the experience for at least some people with Game Pass. So yeah, Game Pass. Super awesome." Shouldice also spoke about his excitement about having the game on PS5, and how the PS5's exclusive feature turns Game Hub into a 'couch friend'.
 
game of thrones khaleesi GIF
 

hemo memo

Member
Amazing deal for devs. That's a lot of eyes on your product.
I understand. I meant when the conversation of Gamepass comes up, no one stupid enough to say it is not a great deal for consumers but the discussion always about how it affect devs. It is indeed a great deal for devs as they don't have to stress about their game selling AND they know that their game will be played and appreciated by many. You can argue that some devs will say the amount paid is very low compared to the popularity of their game but you wouldn't know that as the popularity of the game might be the result of it being on Game Pass and also devs can always renegotiate.
 
I think this is common sense if you really think about it. If you're a small indie dev and your game is good, Gamepass is perfect for you. If you're a big dev and your game is good, it's not as clear cut. If your game is bad, regardless of indie or not, Gamepass likely won't work for you (and chances are Microsoft won't accept your game anyway).
 

Topher

Gold Member
I think this is common sense if you really think about it. If you're a small indie dev and your game is good, Gamepass is perfect for you. If you're a big dev and your game is good, it's not as clear cut. If your game is bad, regardless of indie or not, Gamepass likely won't work for you (and chances are Microsoft won't accept your game anyway).

Game Pass is also great for big game devs where sales did not meet expectations. GotG and Avengers come to mind. Games with high sales expectations are not going to consider the service for some time.
 

RoadHazard

Gold Member
It's definitely a good deal for low budget indies. What I'm worried about is the future of high budget single player games, can those be sustained in this model? There's a reason Sony aren't putting theirs on PS++ day 1.
 

BlackTron

Member
And how many of those "rentals" translated into "sales"?

I want to see receipts...

The studio doesn't get paid for rentals, they get paid up front by MS.

We've all seen the kind of money MS throws around for GP titles. It's basically a get off scot-free card whereas otherwise the studio would have to hope and pray they sell enough to break even.

The thing is, after they get all that exposure and money from GP, people might still keep on buying it. Maybe even more than before. Even if they don't, GP has already guaranteed their solvency. So the implication that money has been squandered if this rental doesn't turn into a sale is missing the whole picture.
 
I think it depends on the game and the developer.

A small developer certainly can get more money with this, more people will get it, and receive money, and exposure for future games.

A bigger developers with a game let's say Call Of Duty, I do not think it works well since they will lose money, instead of selling it first and then later down the road be in GamePass.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare sold 4.75m in the first month, which is around 285 million. GamePass is $60 per year. (just using numbers as they are). I do not think Microsft can keep paying the price of a game at $60 for developers since the game is new.

I know there is a lot more behind this and is not simple as my explanation, but you get the idea.
 

The_Mike

Member
Yeah, it's great for games that would sell 2 copies otherwise... :D
Grid Legends
Immortal fenyx rising
Death Stranding
Gr widlands
Watch dogs 2
Yakuza 0 kiwami
Yakuza 2 kiwami 2
Far cry 5
Fifa 22
Total war three kingdoms
AC origins
For honor
Sniper elite 5
Jurassic World evolution
Marvels guardian of the galaxy
Madden nfl 22
Total war warhammer 3
Edge of eternity
Hitman trilogy
Mass effect trilogy
Assassin's Creed Odyssey.

These games seems to be weirdly popular and well known after only having sold 2 copies.
 

Stuart360

Member
I have found a lot of gems on gamepass and I still buy games like Forza to throw money at them even though its on gamepass (plus I want the ultimate version)
Yeah when i play a game on Gamepass i really love, i end up buying it on Steam at some point.
The big advantage for studios, especially AA and Indie studios, is wom. Game are getting seen and played that most people probably wouldnt take a second look at if said game wasnt included with their subscription.
 

graywolf323

Member
Grid Legends
Immortal fenyx rising
Death Stranding
Gr widlands
Watch dogs 2
Yakuza 0 kiwami
Yakuza 2 kiwami 2
Far cry 5
Fifa 22
Total war three kingdoms
AC origins
For honor
Sniper elite 5
Jurassic World evolution
Marvels guardian of the galaxy
Madden nfl 22
Total war warhammer 3
Edge of eternity
Hitman trilogy
Mass effect trilogy
Assassin's Creed Odyssey.

These games seems to be weirdly popular and well known after only having sold 2 copies.
to be fair, how many of those released Day 1 on GP? the Total War Warhammer 3 is the only one to my knowledge

and Edge of Eternity since it’s an indie (it’s the only non-major publisher game on your list)
 

Neo_game

Member
It depends how much Microsoft paid them and how much add on content or mtx you can sell. That is the whole idea of making games available to the subscribers. Many mobile and free to play games make lot of profits using this model.
 

The_Mike

Member
to be fair, how many of those released Day 1 on GP? the Total War Warhammer 3 is the only one to my knowledge

and Edge of Eternity since it’s an indie (it’s the only non-major publisher game on your list)
Did anyone talk about day one besides you?

People don't turn into shit because they are over three months old.
 

graywolf323

Member
Did anyone talk about day one besides you?

People don't turn into shit because they are over three months old.
this thread is about a game that was day one on game pass

edit: to clarify Game Pass has been getting some amazing games which you listed a lot of, there’s a difference though for developers between releasing day 1 and coming later like most of those games did

for example we got the Yakuza ports of 0-6 straight to GamePass but when 7 released it was not on GP day one (thankfully Sega did release it on Xbox day 1 still, heck it came to Series S|X day 1 IIRC but took ~4 months to come to PS5)
 
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SenjutsuSage

Halo TV Series Promoter - Live from: Reach
Yep, he sounds like an oldschool gamer alright. That's how we use to do it in the 80s and 90s and early 2000s. We would walk into a videogame store, or a game rental business, and pick the games we wanted based on how much we liked the cover art and the description of the game. Game Pass provides that exact same oldschool feeling, but on a far grander scale while being way more affordable than it ever was back then.
 

adamsapple

Or is it just one of Phil's balls in my throat?
I know MS probably has them signing NDAs over this stuff, but has any dev ever let on how much they got paid?

I don't think any devs will publicly reveal this kinda info.

There were unconfirmed leaks about Guardians being 5 to 10 million but no one has confirmed or denied that.
 

Ansphn

Banned
It absolutely is a great deal for gamers and there was no doubt about that. The question always was is it a great deal for devs. This dev say yes.
He says yes because only one Developer created this game (Him). I doubt big dev teams looking to make big money would be happy to take the upfront cost instead of betting on themselves, then release it on Gamepass after they exhausted sales at $60-$70. Thats exactly why most of the games coming to Gamepass are older games, and PC ports. That will continue until Xbox finally release games from their 30 studios. Dont know when that day will come.
 

Chukhopops

Member
He says yes because only one Developer created this game (Him). I doubt big dev teams looking to make big money would be happy to take the upfront cost instead of betting on themselves, then release it on Gamepass after they exhausted sales at $60-$70. Thats exactly why most of the games coming to Gamepass are older games, and PC ports. That will continue until Xbox finally release games from their 30 studios. Dont know when that day will come.
Tunic wasn’t made entirely by one person, you can see it in the credits. It’s more around 15-20 people.
 

Paasei

Member
Good deal for a great extra. Just not as good for Pc only users (yet). Mostly great games that most people already have.
 

DaGwaphics

Member
Always great to see positivity from devs about the subscription services. Confirmation of what always seemed like an inevitability, that all the exposure has to help with getting a game known in the minds of gamers, even if the GP users don't buy it.
 

DaGwaphics

Member
Guys would someone tell me whats funny about my post above?. Ezekiel seems to be laughing and i'm a little puzzled as to what i said funny


I'm going to have to move wherever he's at and start doing standup. I'd make bank, apparently I'm the most hilarious thing since sliced bread. :messenger_winking_tongue:

Xbox fans have that special humor I guess.
 
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coffinbirth

Member
this thread is about a game that was day one on game pass

edit: to clarify Game Pass has been getting some amazing games which you listed a lot of, there’s a difference though for developers between releasing day 1 and coming later like most of those games did

for example we got the Yakuza ports of 0-6 straight to GamePass but when 7 released it was not on GP day one (thankfully Sega did release it on Xbox day 1 still, heck it came to Series S|X day 1 IIRC but took ~4 months to come to PS5)
Yeah, but that list was 3rd party AA & AAA games, not an indie game. The upfront cost for a day one AAA from a 3rd party studio/publisher would be pretty spendy, and most publishers of said games would want a normal retail release at first for such things...then that 30% Microsoft made off of them selling it in the store can be put toward paying for it's Game Pass inclusion.
 

jaysius

Member
It's too bad these devs ran out of steam making Tunic and filled the 3rd quarter with pure shit and lazy "retrieve all your gear" quests, also they didn't understand the limitations of their own gameplay design making a few of the later bosses a difficulty spike that makes no sense.
 
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