So we have good news and we have bad news… I suppose its best to format good, then bad then good, in this situation. I fully recommend reading this post at length, so there is no miscommunication on the topic and we see, clearly, everything that is going on.
Good news: We have had consistent stable growth in sales and play time over the past 4 months. With more and more people now noticing the game, and our attention to feedback and play behaviors, things are starting to REALLY look amazing. New terrain is coming online, we had a leak from Azzy (here), lots to do in order to improve it. But, finally, we are free from those blasted sharp angle blocks. Networking is also on its way shortly, and this will be the first time we actually have networking running with a “traditional survival”.
The modding API is looking fantastic, with more and more members from the Minecraft modding community coming over to support us, and more YouTubers now taking notice and sharing the project as well. To those of you that have been helping us push TUG, thank you so much; you know who you are. To those who will not cover TUG because we can’t pay you for coverage… well… something else.
We have been able to REALLY build a lot with the funds we raised from investors, and we have been able to make some RAD content in that process with all the support from our backers and new members of the community. It’s neat to be able to build stuff and share it with you guys and have a platform to talk and interact with one another.
The not so good news: A round of funding, that was to come in, to sustain us clear through the end of this year (January) was held back by an investor. The deal that would have gone through would have lost us all control and ownership and we are not huge fans of being owned by investors like this. Sadly, we need to cut off a few limbs to be able to ensure this does not happen.
With this, we are now on a path to growth to fully support a small team with no outside investor support. And this means we have to cut our team in half… its the hardest thing we have ever had to do, but it’s what we all collectively have agreed is the best move for us, and you, our community. We certainly have had people come and go from this project for many reasons, but this core group is all family… and its heartbreaking.
With these changes, it also means that we will be a few months late on delivering all our promises by January, as we stated we would with the kickstarter goals. I apologize for that on behalf of the team and I am holding myself accountable for NOT having done more diligence on our financial partners to know this was coming. Its a funny situation, whether you do well, or REALLY well, can make the difference of supportive or tyrannical investors. Another important note, to others out there who do raise funds for games and tech… never take money from people who don’t understand games and tech.
The other good news: There are a few large publishers (not scary ones), that may want to give us access to more resources. This would allow us to make the game and tech bigger and better than we could have imagined before. We cannot discuss who they are just yet, but ironically in this situation, it really would mean a chance at ACTUAL freedom and independence. And before we do accept whatever offer from any of them, we will reach out to you, our community, to share what is going on and get some feedback to create dialog around this topic. It could end up that what is put on the table simply is not in our, or your best interests. But we want to make this project everything it can be, so its worth reviewing everything we can.
Still, it is also quite possible that this push with multiplayer, in survival, and new terrain may be able to give us a large enough jump in growth, from revenue, that we can bring our team back fast, and possibly even staff up a bit more. Unlike other games that sell SUPER fast and drop down, our steady growth really has given us amazing opportunities to really understand what we do, and what others do, that impact how the game plays and is perceived.
In closing, please DO note, that this is not us going down… quite the opposite. Its us making the sacrifice needed, now, so that we DON’T go the path of other kickstarters before us. We are doing what it takes to press on, self sustain and do what we have been telling you all since we first started on this together, well over a year ago. This is what we have to do in order to stay independent and free to do what we want to do.
We will be implementing a price hike to $20 on the game when we have Multiplayer and new terrain online in survival, which will be SOMETIME by the end of next month. And with this continued growth and exposure, we will continue to build the game, engine and tools for the modding community. The game will run and look better and better with more time and we are excited to keep working on it.
If you have any questions or comments on the topic, or are generally concerned, you can ask me on twitter @inoritewtf, or on the following reddit post (here) or email me, personally firstname.lastname@example.org and I will do my best to reply to everyone with valid inquiries or thoughts.