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  1. #1

    What has happened to Gaslamp Games?

    So Clockwork Empires declared itself released on Steam on Oct 26, 2016 in what is generally considered a buggy state (https://www.rockpapershotgun.com/201...mpires-review/)
    Last update posted to Steam on 19 November. Clockwork twitter goes silent. Gaslamp twitter quiet since Dec 4. Forums are active but devs are absent. It's now the end of February. (https://community.gaslampgames.com/t...he-room.20979/)
    It's possible low sales doomed the company.
    Reviews have gone sharply downwards on Steam as owners try to warn others of the unfinished state and lack of movement.
    I really enjoyed the witty development threads. But ultimately this is still priced at 28 euro (or GP, or what have you). Dwarf Fortress also has strange world-breaking bugs and brain-breaking UI but it's free/by donation.
    So I don't see myself playing unless it gets really cheap, on sale...or some magical unicorn of a patch shows up.

  2. #2
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    Good question, and I'm not seeing any answer. Based on other times this has happened with small devs, the best case scenario is that the lead dev just had a kid or something, that can easily take them out of commission for a few months.

    But more often it's some kind of personal or financial crisis. Which often is basically the end.

    I mean, it's been about four months - that's pretty damn long, but it's not unheard-of for devs to return after that sort of period.

    Still I suspect you're right and they probably ran out of money. Clockwork Empires was very ambitious, and whilst I think it often seems, from a distance, that DF-like games are easy to make, seem to pretty much the sargasso sea of games, leading all devs but Bay 12 to their doom (Rimworld is still kicking, but I suspect he's one very bad decision away from crashing and burning - I do think it helps that it's a solo effort though).

    The sad thing for me re: Clockwork Empires is that, on paper it was exactly my sort of game - but it never reached the level of development that would make it worth the price to me.

  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Zephro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LexW View Post
    from a distance, that DF-like games are easy to make, seem to pretty much the sargasso sea of games, leading all devs but Bay 12 to their doom (Rimworld is still kicking, but I suspect he's one very bad decision away from crashing and burning - I do think it helps that it's a solo effort though).
    Trying to catch up with Dwarf Fortress is optimistic, it's the impossible dream. Or alternately it's Caligula declaring war on neptune and ordering his army to fight the sea.

    God I love Dwarf Fortress.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zephro View Post
    Trying to catch up with Dwarf Fortress is optimistic, it's the impossible dream. Or alternately it's Caligula declaring war on neptune and ordering his army to fight the sea.

    God I love Dwarf Fortress.
    You absolutely could do it and even make something much more accessible and fun, I think.

    You'd just need a budget of at least $10m (preferably quite a lot more), 3-5 years, and maybe a really dedicated core design and programming team who were hand-picked for being into the idea, and weren't just there for their careers or whatever (normally that'd be fine, but not for a game like that). You'd also have to be unafraid to just rip Toady's ideas off when they were good and discard them when bad. It wouldn't be easy, but it could be done.

    Of course Clockwork Empires didn't have any of those things. Poor bastards.

    I think eventually, probably in the next ten to fifteen years, some big developer/publisher will come up with a procedural 3D game that steals an awful lot of Dwarf Fortresses ideas (albeit more Adventure Mode than Dwarf Mode) and makes something incredible. Or just independently comes up with systems to do a lot of the same things. And then they'll all be doing it.

    I would actually be unsurprised, at this point, if that developer was Blizzard.

  5. #5
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Zephro's Avatar
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    Nah. I think the moment it hits the atmosphere of a group of people more than maybe 4-5 it just falls apart, opening it to committee. The perfect Dwarf Fortress style systems, game team is someone who looks like this:


    On there own and locked in a flat with an espresso machine, a lifetime supply of rollies and a Bernard Black attitude to socialising.

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