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Reaching Out: How Telltale Can Show Goodwill to the Community

posted by Rather Dashing on - last edited - Viewed by 548 users

How do you think Telltale can reach out to King's Quest fans, and to the community as a whole? I've thought of a few possibilities, and I want to see what everyone else thinks of them, as well as anything an

1. Actually Communicate through your existing channels

This one is really important, I think, and so far I personally think there has been a major vacuum where this should be. This company has a Blog, a newsletter, a forum, and Facebook/Twitter accounts. They have a means through which they can communicate to the existing fanbase, and so far it has been mostly radio silence. Even if you are holding back information for a big announcement, a mere presence shown by maybe taking ten minutes out of your day to make a few posts would go a long way.

2. Cut the Bullshit

Specifically, the marketing-speak.

We have very little in terms of information about this project, and what we have gotten so far is laden with marketing speak and terminology that comes off like it could mean something very, very bad for fans of this franchise. It makes a person wonder if the reason the company isn't saying anything is because they can't say anything without it coming out badly. So, when you do go ahead and say something, run it through the filter of human experience rather than a series of robotic drones who calculate the offensiveness of key words and feel they've created an algorithm for saying things by saying nothing(known to some as "The Marketing Department"). Marketing-speak can be detected immediately and comes off as less than genuine at best.

Are you including deaths in the game?
Who is the target audience?
What is your puzzle design philosophy?
How are you approaching this project?
Do you feel that you need to change a lot about the company's usual work habits to fit this franchise? What are you changing and why?
Is this going to be a reboot, a sequel without a number, or a numbered sequel?
Etc etc.

These are simple questions and simple bits of trivia that could be delivered through any of the existing channels. Or perhaps you can join discussions about King's Quest as a fan of King's Quest. I mean, you are a fan of King's Quest, aren't you?

3. Reach out to Sierra employees

Involvement by people who worked for Sierra would be great. The more involvement, the better. At least CONTACT Roberta Williams to see if she wants to, for example, chat about King's Quest or look over your early design documents, even for just an hour. Check with as many franchise heads as you can muster. Make their involvement publicly known in a transparent fashion. "Off to have lunch with Roberta Williams" on the Telltale Twitter feed would be nice to see.

4. Reach out to the fan groups

The fan groups have been keeping this series alive. They have access to a wider King's Quest base, and they understand the franchise. Give them an interview(because they know what to ask!), ask them what they think is important, and reach out to these groups in any other way you can.

5. Show us stuff

Anything at all fits in this. Blurry cameraphone pictures of the concept artists' desk. A work schedule. Pieces of early design documents. What you had for lunch the day development started. Anything. This fits into the "an unimportant presence is better than no presence at all" rule. Show the fans anything, and let them speculate. It doesn't have to be super important or the best quality, just show the fans something.

6. Community Events

This is something that Nikki was able to do in a simple and effective way at a fairly low cost. Telltale Tuesdays and the like showed(or at least gave the impression) that the company was actively interested in engaging the community in an active way. Community events are not something that is difficult to organize, and if you're hiring someone for marketing and don't have them working in a way that can be noticed, you're doing it wrong.

Well, that's all I have on my mind right now. What does everyone think? Anyone else have more suggestions?

29 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • Are we necessarily sure people would be interested in a long list of answers like "Havent decided yet", "Have decided, but haven't actually done any concept art or programming yet", "Too busy with that thing with the dinosaurs to worry about that yet" etc?

  • @wilco64256 said: The drawback to communicating with your fans more is that every fan then expects you to do everything it takes to please them. And the old saying about not being able to please everyone really makes a huge mess in that situation. Is it nice to communicate with fans? You bet, we love getting feedback from our fans and from our critics, but it is really tough to sort through everything and try to keep as many people as possible happy sometimes.

    I agree. I have seen this happened with companies who were so close to their fans; eventually, the fans develop this false sense of friendship that the company's CEO or whoever is talking to them as their personal friendship. This makes the fans believe that they know the person talking to them personally, and therefore expects them to listen to their every suggestions. In return, the fan becomes very loyal to the company, ignoring obvious flaws or criticisms. Basically, this transforms the fan into an obsessed fanboy

  • I don't see any particular reason for TTG to post information before they have something meaningful to say beyond "We are making this game." I don't see that happening for at least a few weeks to a month.

  • I think a few of us are really worried about TTG handling the license. For those who are worried, I think you guys should relax. Sure, the result might be what you guys have expected all along, but regardless, we are gettin a new KQ game.

    I remember ppl moan and groan when KQ 7 and KQ* were first announced; for both games, ppl didn't like the direction the storyline and design. After a decade, people accepted both KQ7 and MOE as official KQ canon.

  • @doom saber said: I think a few of us are really worried about TTG handling the license. For those who are worried, I think you guys should relax. Sure, the result might be what you guys have expected all along, but regardless, we are gettin a new KQ game.

    That means nothing to me if it's a horrible game.

    I remember ppl moan and groan when KQ 7 and KQ* were first announced; for both games, ppl didn't like the direction the storyline and design. After a decade, people accepted both KQ7 and MOE as official KQ canon.

    I accept those as canon because Roberta was involved in the creative processes of every single one of them. And they were released by Sierra. And I like MOE.

  • @MusicallyInspired said: That means nothing to me if it's a horrible game.

    I accept those as canon because Roberta was involved in the creative processes of every single one of them. And they were released by Sierra. And I like MOE.

    Roberta's involvement only went so far as basically deciding on very basic story items, and that the game should be Disney inspired. She's not even created as the writer of KQ7; Lorelei Shannon alone is. Roberta was far too focused on Phantas when KQ7 was in development that Lorelei had free reign.

    The credits are as such:
    Directed by: Andy Hoyos, Lorelei Shannon and Roberta Williams
    Designed by Lorelei Shannon and Roberta Williams
    Writing/Dialogue/Story by Lorelei Shannon
    Produced by Mark Seibert
    Based on Characters Created by Roberta Williams

    And KQ8? KQ8 was in Ken Williams' own words "not a Roberta game." In fact, it deviated so far from her vision she asked for her name taken off the game towards the end. Only some negotiation and a few token changes to the name stopped that from happening. Sierra also threatened to sue her because she kept delaying the game, trying to get it back to her vision, and she was forced to hand it over to them.

  • @MusicallyInspired said: That means nothing to me if it's a horrible game.

    I accept those as canon because Roberta was involved in the creative processes of every single one of them. And they were released by Sierra. And I like MOE.

    So a KQ canon game is something made by sierra and by Roberta? What if AGDI somehow gets the King's Quest license and make their own games. Would ya consider them as canon?

  • @Rather Dashing said: 2. Cut the Bullshit

    Specifically, the marketing-speak.

    Marketspeak is the most insulting form of human communication to date.

    It just makes you wanna punch the messenger in the mouth for treating you like a complete retard.

    I mean, I can roll with insults about me and/or my family, I accept being mocked, I can endure being criticized & ridiculed about my looks, lifestyle and/or beliefs, but marketspeak? That's just one step too far.

    At least to the others, I can respond in kind.

    But the day I'll lower myself to such a vile, disgusting & revolting form of communication as marketspeak is the day I become a useless, rancid shitstain in the fabric of this world.

    Cheers!

  • Well, I feel that TTG does not usually release a deluge of info in the form of interviews, screen shots, concept art etc.....until quite a while after the initial announcement. I imagine we will see a more focused effort to promote the game and interact with fans, closer to release. Then again, I have no idea what they will do, that just seems to what they have done with games in the past. I would like to add that last I read, the game isn't due out until sometime in 2012, unless my memory is fuzzy.

  • @Anakin Skywalker said: Roberta's involvement only went so far as basically deciding on very basic story items, and that the game should be Disney inspired. She's not even created as the writer of KQ7; Lorelei Shannon alone is. Roberta was far too focused on Phantas when KQ7 was in development that Lorelei had free reign.

    Be that as it may, she was still involved by coming up with the initial idea (even if it was handed off to other people) and giving the "ok" on the design directions. I understand that with MOE this was not entirely the case, but IIRC she would only allow her name on the box if certain requirements were met? That qualifies for me. But I like MOE so I'll consider it canon if I want to. It's my decision.

    Ah, I just read your other paragraph which stated exactly that.

    @Anakin Skywalker said: So a KQ canon game is something made by sierra and by Roberta? What if AGDI somehow gets the King's Quest license and make their own games. Would ya consider them as canon?

    Like I said, I'll consider canon whatever I want to consider canon. It's my prerogative as a fan. But I'm a little biased because I'm on the AGDI team. But you're free not to. Or to accept Telltale's KQ game as canonical as well.

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