Project – Battle of Qualon

Game Concept – Battle of Qualon

(This is a work in progress and will be edited and refined)

This is a game idea that I am in love with, but would need resources I don’t have and skills that I don’t possess. My hope is that I have the resources one day, or a game studio who falls in love with it as much as I have and is willing to work together on it.

Platform – PC (web driven using bigpoint as a platform)

Genre – Fantasy MMO

Engine – Unity3d

Graphics – isometric sprite based (2.5D) (with a Secret of Mana feel to them)

Story Concept

The land of Qualon was united as one people for generations. Together they kept the beasts of the wilderness at bay and prospered under their king. Tragedy has struck and the king is dead without naming an heir. His four children refuse to negotiate as each sees themselves as the rightful inheritor of the crown. Retreating their forces to their fortresses, the beasts have returned, taking the wilderness back. War is coming  and adventurers must pick the true future crown.

Mechanics Concept

Players create a character and pick one of four factions all based on the same land-mass. The character will be one of three archetypes (fighter, mage, archer) with the capabilities and descriptions players comfortably associate with these classes. What faction a player chooses determines their starting position on the world map (arranged as per the diagram below). The landmass is then sectioned into provinces that the player can travel to.

Purpose of Provinces

Each province represents an asset to the faction that controls it. The provinces themselves could have specific bonuses to the players belonging to that faction, or random bonuses based on randomly loaded assets into a province.

Example A – A vein of gold is found by the player. They call for miners from their faction and must defend them from adventurers from other factions and from NPC attackers until the vein is depleted.

Example B – A permanent altar is located in the province. Whatever faction holds that province gets a bonus to XP earned.

The farther you get from the starting points, provinces get more dangerous, with larger NPCs and more rewards. It also puts players into PVP with each other. Starting points and a small number of provinces would be restricted to protect new players.

Player Goals

Players can choose to participate in gaining provinces for their faction, or grow their own skills and equipment in side areas. Leader boards would provide a snapshot of the most successful and powerful characters. This could be done alone, in adventuring parties, or in guilds.

Project Team Breakdown

Since I do not have the development skills or graphic design, I’m proposing a breakdown of teamwork that also breaks down profit-sharing once the project gets launched.

Development Team (30 percent of profit from beta launch till final release +9 months with provisions for paid work for patch / ongoing development)

A team of developers will be needed. Developers who have extensive experience with Unity3d, as well as online integration with an account system. Experience with BigPoint (or a good understanding of the APIs used) as well. If development is done by a large group of independent developers the 35 percent of profit would be shared between the developers based on signed in code with a lead developer being the gatekeeper. If it is a development shop, then they would determine sharing within that. The development team can create the frame-work and mechanics well before the graphics are completed using placeholders / rough drafts that can be filled in and improved iteratively. As this is a team project, it will be assumed that developers are using licensed development tools and will not require keys or software from the project itself.

Graphics Team (30 percent of profits from beta launch till final release +9 months with provisions for paid work for ongoing content development)

A team of graphic designers will be needed for the in-game assets, as well as static graphics for promotional / web work. Once the list of assets needed is established, the share of 35 would be earned by signing in assets. Therefore one graphic designer who is prolific could earn a lion share by working on more assets. The creative director would determine assets that are suitable and maintain the list of required assets. As this is a team project, it will be assumed that developers are using licensed development tools and will not require keys or software from the project itself.

Creative Team (30 percent of profits from beta launch till final release +9 months with provisions for continuing evolution of the game)

The creative team, led by the Creative Director will be responsible for overall project leadership and vision of the game. Right now that role is comfortably small enough to be filled by just me. This also will involve finding hosting, server space, and negotiating that access with the budget we have. Any fundraising and dealing with donations. As the project grows, this may require more people.

Where is the last 10%?

The last 10 percent represents an opportunity for those who contribute money to the project. Normally an online game development would cost several hundred thousand dollars. This is due to the long development cycles in larger studios, use of branded material, etc. As well developers do not work for free. With a development team that has ownership in the project with extensive profit-sharing costs can be maintained. However everyone wants to be protected when they are contributing work, and server space / domain space is not free. The last 10 percent would be broken into 10 $1000 slots. This money would first be put into domain space, then legal/business work to protect those who are contributing.

But I have Different Terms!

If your team can handle a lion’s share of the development work, or the graphics design work and you require different terms. If you are unhappy with the limit of 9 months after the game is fully released and wish to work out an agreement for perpetual revenue based on continuous improvement past release then let me know.

Cost to Run

Apart from development costs, the ongoing costs would be domain hosting, server hosting, and any licensing or legal fees for taking revenue. All revenue and costs would be presented with full transparency to all active contributing team members and stake holders.

Revenue Model

The game would be free to play, and provide perks to players who purchase a resource “crystals”. Crystals could be used to purchase in-game resources like gold (dropped by NPCs killed or through daily quests), to speed up advancement, or gain special equipment that would not be available without crystals.  

Sustainability

The issue with MMOs is the growth of characters. Content must be created constantly in non pvp games or players quickly get bored and leave. With a PVP focused game the provinces will be constantly changing hands. New provinces can be added when needed (through underground areas, islands, etc) as needed and the strength of mobs can be changed based on the overall strength of the player base.

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