Fan Created Adventure Games

edited April 2005 in General Chat
I was wondering what people though about fan-created adventure games. I have played games such as Space Quest 0, New Adventures of Zac McCracken, and have been checking out the websites for games like Indiana Jones and the Fountain of Youth, and Hero6 (a Quest for Glory spinoff) and several others that have yet to be developed.

Basically, I think that it is great that so many people have the time to make these adventure games for free. Adventure Gamers has a whole section of their site devoted to these type of games.

Do you guys think it helps the adventure game genre to have these fan created titles floating around? Why don't game developers notice the fact that adventure fans have resorted to this and produce more games along the same lines. These games have shown that adventure game fans love playing the old dos and scumm games - doesn't seem like it would cost game companies that much to put out a few new titles along the same lines.


  • edited March 2005
    I think fan games are great. I think I enjoyed AGD's two King's Quest remakes, Out of Order, and 5 Days a Stranger (and its sequel) more than most commercial games I've played lately. As for why they don't seem to be spurring the industry to make more adventure games, well that's hard. I think a big part of it is that those games are free. It's easy to get someone to download your free game, but it's much more difficult to get them to pay 50 (or even 20) dollars for it. Game making is very risk oriented. If no one buys your game, you go out of business. Arguably the most popular fan game is the King's Quest I remake. To date, it's been downloaded about 500,000 times. That's a hit (for PC games at least). The problem is that all of those people are NOT going to pay full price for the game. The main reason the big companies don't make adventure games is that people don't buy them. The two best adventure games of the past 6 or 7 years (in my humble opinion) are Grim Fandango and The Longest Journey. They were both made after the "Golden Age" of adventure games, and they both flopped.

    Adventure games draw a wider audience than any other genre. It also seems to draw people who are also "casual" gamers. That's why Myst sold so well. They got all the people who didn’t usually buy games. Casual gamers play a lot of games online (keep reading this is going somewhere). If you look at casual gaming portals, you’ll see games with upwards of 20,000 people online at once. That’s great, but how many of those people are paying for the full versions of games? The answer is a lot less. I’ll be (very) generous and say one in four. No let’s go back to our KQ1 example ¼ of 500,000 is 125,000. That’s not so impressive, and that’s assuming that it is a compatible example to the casual games, which usually are priced around $20. At $50 the sales data would be even lower.

    The only way to get the big guys to make adventure games is to show them that there is a profit to be made in Adventure games. They know there’s a big fanbase (the Sam and Max debacle certainly showed that). If Telltale and Autumn Moon shock the world and make tons of money for their games we may see a resurgence. But do we want that? I think that there are plenty of Adventure games on the horizon. And with the fangames that this thread is actually supposed to be about, we have plenty to play in the meantime.
  • edited March 2005
    grim flopped? everything was perfect in that game....except for that cardboard cd case cause my cd's didn't feel protected enough. nice art on it though
  • edited March 2005
    grim flopped? everything was perfect in that game....except for that cardboard cd case cause my cd's didn't feel protected enough. nice art on it though

    Ok, I did a google search and found this at Avault. It says:
    "Products like Battlezone, Grim Fandango and the last Secret of Monkey Island are just a couple games I know off the top of my head that did around 30,000 units." The article is dated June 24, 2002 but doesn't say where the data comes from.

    According to Just Adventure Grim Fandango has sold approximately 95,000 copies since its release. This does not include overseas or online purchases. The numbers came from PC Data according to JA. No date.

    Just Adventure has used PC Data's information to compile adventure games sales lists in the past, too. According this list Grim Fandango sold 16,157 units in 2001 in the United States, online sales excluded.

    In June 2002 year-to-date sales were 8,032.

    The most recent sales data is from March 2003 year-to-date sales being 1,584.

    Thats a flop in my book. Its a shame.
  • edited March 2005
    I love these kind of games and constantly making my friends play them but really, when you think about it, fanmade Adventure games aren't really going to kickstart the adventure industry back into action again.
    Most people who buy games buy them for the shiny box they come in or because it has some pretty graphics. In fact, most people seem to assume that games have to be either shooters, platformers, or 'the sims' (damn, how i hate the sims).
    if they do download games from the interweb it's going to be something counter-strikesque unfortunately. No. I'm afraid the only way adventure games are going to become popular again is through some decent professional games.
    While some people will download these games because the are good and give them vague flashbacks to a better age filled with sprites etc., for the mainstream the games are going to have to be good looking and fairly addictive. as well as having all the things adventure gamers know and love.
    (Might i just add that despite my dissapointment on no Sam and Max 2, Bone is looking pretty sweet)
  • edited March 2005
    speaking of boxes I still have my sam and max one :)
  • edited March 2005
    Today i was lucky enough to find a full copy of Outlaws in the box and everything in Gameplanet in the secondhand box for $5 (something about $2.50 american i think)! Now before you wonder what this has to do with anything, let me just say how awesome it is. Sure, being 10 years old it has pretty crappy graphics (but to me they look awesome), the plot is pretty cool, and the music rocks! So why the hell did Lucasrts feel the need to dop all their old game licenses? Now they seem to ONLY make star wars games! I'm especially mistified seeing as one of the new game is Lego Star Wars. Huh? sorry about this but after playing though Outlaws it seems even clearer than ever that George Lucas has gone insane. Especially after seeing Episodes 1 & 2. *shudder*. Coincidently, does anyone know how they plan to make a new Indiana Jones movie? Harrison Ford is getting a 'little' old now. And if they replace him with someone else, well, that's just stupid.
  • edited March 2005
    why the hell did Lucasrts feel the need to dop all their old game licenses? Now they seem to ONLY make star wars games! I'm especially mistified seeing as one of the new game is Lego Star Wars.
    As strange as this may be to believe, Lego Star Wars is not being developed OR published by LucasArts. If you look on their website, it's not even listed as one of their games. It's actually being published by Eidos, and developed by Traveller's Tales.
  • edited March 2005
    well they did it with bond for years. Jones needs to pass the torch. Kind of like how they were going to do with that other guy until he died. They could have something thats like 3 generations of the jones familiy in the movie or something like that and then let the other guy go off on his own adventure the next movie(s). Speaking of getting old jackie chan is getting old I wonder who will replace him.
  • edited March 2005
    Speaking of getting old jackie chan is getting old I wonder who will replace him.

    Yay for going offtopic. Tony Jaa is the new muay thai jackie chan in my mind. Watch Ong Bak (a great thai movie).
  • edited March 2005
    Nonetheless, urgh... Lego Star Wars... Who was the clever guy who thought up that? Is it just me or does everyone get about 1/3rd of the way through making an adventure game and then get bored? it's happened to me about 3 times now and i was wondering if i have a very small attention span or if it's just one of those things... you know? (Hey! at least i'm trying to get the thread back on topic!)
  • edited March 2005
    It's one sixth for me.
  • edited March 2005
    I think a lot of it comes down to the time you need to invest. I'm working on an rpg right now and I've noticed how easy it is to sink a couple hours into it without much thought. I'll have to get around to playing with that adventure game studio one of these days when I've got more time... along with those books I've been meaning to read and those games I've been meaning to play and that japanese I've been meaning to learn and......... I think we need 42 hour days then there might be enough time to cover what I want to get done
  • edited March 2005
    I think the biggest mistake someone can make when they single handedly create a game, is to set themselves a deadline. I know it kills me when I try to set one.

    Adventure games, (to me), just look like they take alot of time and organisation. I don't have the artistic skills required or the ability to run a team. So if I want to make a adventure game I'd have to join a existing team. I think that's the best way to suceed.

    By the way Alucard, I think your right. Life is a demanding mistress. That's the best thing about game design. You can drop away from reality, from life. She might be knocking at the door all night long, but nobody will be home. Infact, your half way to Peru by the time she busts open the door, knocks over all the precious china, trashes the furniture, throws out your mint condition star wars collectable figurines and screams out, " WHERE IS PUNY MAN!!!!!!!"
  • HeatherleeHeatherlee Telltale Alumni
    edited March 2005
    Burn, I so hear ya on that last one man.


    Anyhow, you are all leading towards a good point. Is there a place where aspiring adventure game makers can meet up and volunteer to work on games together? Is there an amateur/underground adventure game "community"? I'm curious as I was making a MUD once, and there is a good deal of support for that.

    (Also, in case my job here becomes...untenable...then it'd be good to know where to find minions to help me make my next big masterpiece.)
  • edited April 2005
    They aren't all great. I used to work for hero6 but no matter how good the work I submitted it wasn't exactly what they wanted. I was just as good as the admins for art and music and that shiz, but it wasn't the way they perfectly imagined it. It's exhausting and it isn't worth it. Unless you like being unappreciated and treated like soggy cat nipples. =P
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