FAQ: How did I arrive at the figures for the stretch goals?

You might’ve noticed that the stretch goals are in tidy $3,000 increments. Rather than being an incredible fluke of the budgeting process, this does mean that they are in fact arbitrary numbers. While the features for each goal will cost less that the $3k increment, I will be spending every dollar that I raise working on the game, frequently on things that I haven’t listed in the crowdfunding pitch.

By under-promising in my goals, I have room to improvise new features and fix unforeseen problems during development. Trying to completely fill the budget with promised features means that I have to plan absolutely everything up front, which will lead to a worse game because I won’t be able to respond to feedback and interesting new ideas.┬áLair structures are an example of a feature that I didn’t have planned, but emerged as a really good way to solve a couple of different problems. In my planning I’ve padded things by doubling the budget, so if everything goes to plan I’ll be working 50% on the stated goals and 50% on unforeseen things.

With that said, what’s my best guess of how long it’ll really take me to do the “6 player skills, 3 opponent skills” stretch goal? I’m thinking about just posting my budget spreadsheet, but a back-of-the-envelope calculation is way easier to follow: After tax and OffBeatr’s cut, $3000 gross represents about 6-7 weeks of living expenses for me. That’s 42 days. 21 days with 2x padding.

I’ve listed 9 skills in total to design, code, write text for, test and balance. What happens if some of them turn out to be shitty and no fun? Well, I’ll throw them out and write new ones. From prototyping I know I can try out about 2 skill ideas in a day, so let’s say I throw out half and I’m producing one good skill per day on average.

The prototype has extremely repetitive text in the encounters. I only have between 1 and 3 variations on the skill messages. For the real product, I’d like to have at least 10. Let’s say that contracting writing for this costs an equivalent of half a day’s living expenses. Probably less, but I haven’t contracted any writing yet, so it pays to be conservative.

How long will I spend fixing bugs that are due to the new skill, and how long will it take me to balance it against the other skills? This is really hard to know, but I’m going to say half a day per skill.

This all adds up to 2 days per skill, so we have a total of 18 of the 42 days, working on the stated goal rather than miscellaneous stuff. Add 1 rest day per week on average and that’s 21 days.

11 thoughts on “FAQ: How did I arrive at the figures for the stretch goals?

  1. AsteriskCGY says:

    Hey there. Just gotta say loving the game so far. System looks solid and everything works pretty clean.

    Course after I’m done fapping I’m very interested in the dungeon management side of your game. I guess one thing I’d like to see is random invasion encounters. And then have the invaders drop loot or can be captures for mana. Like being tortured to death (or till of no use and then released).

    Anyway got me thinking about dungeon keeper and how its management goes.

    • 7Anon says:

      Oh hey, yeah, the option of grabbing the invaders instead of killing them sounds like a pretty legit idea.

      That applies especially with the text of the traps, which doesn’t mention killing them in the first place – but indeed, it’d be a cool option even if you defeat them with your own minions instead of using traps.

      I can’t say I’m particularly big on the idea of torturing them, specifically, but getting a few new low-production concubines out of the deal works for me.

      • AsteriskCGY says:

        Well thinking back to Dungeon Keeper demo I played all of like 30 minutes of, you would capture incoming adventurers and throw them into jails, where you would slowly sap them of mana until they died. Course, if you timed it correctly and released them they reduce the timer on new adventurer’s from coming in. But that was a manual process.

        And by torture I mean strapped to a milking device and slowly drain them of their life force. It eventually involves death cause it’s not like you’re a nonlethal demon anyway.

  2. Kamer says:

    Out of curiosity, will fans be able to donate to get the stretch goals in if the offbeatr campaign doesn’t reach them?

    • jackoekaki says:

      Hmm, I’m still figuring out if accepting donations in the wake of a crowdfunding campaign is a good idea. It looks pretty greedy! Maybe once this round of development is drawing to a close.

      If I did do donations during dev, I dunno if stretch goals would be the right way to structure it. As I mentioned in the article, they tend to make it hard to change course. Announcing lots of future goals is a necessary evil when you’re trying to collect a bunch of funds at once, but if I’m collecting funds over time I’d much rather announce goals one by one as I come to them.

      • AsteriskCGY says:

        Eh, keep this window open, cause not everyone may have heard of this, and besides you will need money down the line. Don’t need to push the line, but no need to close it off.

        All you have to do is not fuck up.

      • Wyrd says:

        Perhaps something like Fenoxo of Corruption of Champions does with his donation days; set a small group of items people can donate towards, possibly things like skills or transformations that don’t really have a limit to the amount of time you can spend working on them. That way you don’t end up finishing working on something with donation time spare and feeling like you’ve cheated people out of their money.

  3. SacredPharoh says:

    Got a question and don’t really have any idea where else to ask. I tried to pledge tne bucks to the project on offbeatr.com, and when I got to the “submitting your payment” popup, it just hangs there and doesn’t do anything. Can someone help since there’s only 9 hours left before the deadline?

  4. robin says:

    off topic of donations
    but just wanted to say that this is a very intresting game ^_^

  5. Honoh says:

    I just started playing today and now I can’t unlock unlimited turns, feels bad man ;_; I think that you should have character slots for purchase, so you can have one character unlimited if you register, then can buy a new one for $5 ad infinium. I’d give you like $20 that way

  6. dejitaru says:

    *sighs* I’ll keep up with this game tho till a Paypal link or some such shows up I’m not going to be donating. Seems my bank doesn’t like the UK and really don’t feel like calling again due to them declining my card due to that -_-

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