Has it already been a week since we launched Grimm Episode 1?! Man, time flies when you’re releasing weekly episodic content. The response to the first episode has been overwhelmingly positive, with an expected dash of “what the hell is this” criticism tossed in for good measure. All in all a very successful launch of the weirdly innovative little product known as Grimm.
The team here at Spicy Horse has continued to crank on production for upcoming episodes. And now we’re able to start thinking about feedback from YOU, the audience. So, here’s a bunch of random stuff we’re hearing and thinking about:
1. LOTS of confusion over the distribution/pay structure for episodes. Frankly, I think the press outlets are mostly to blame for this. Note how IGN’s Jimmy Thang bungles it when he states, “The first episode of this new adventure series is free on GameTap, but its sequels will not be free.” Wrong. I’ve yet to see more than a handful of reviewers who correctly communicate the model. I don’t know if that’s because they aren’t being fed the right info, or if because the model is so mind-numbingly innovative it causes brain failure. Anyway, the model is this: Episode 1 is TOTALLY FREE FOREVER EVERYWHERE (not just on GameTap). Consider it the Grimm demo. Future episodes are free for 24 HOURS after their initial release on GameTap. Then they become available for a variety of pay methods (subscription to GameTap, single episode purchase, alternate distribution streams, etc). As for how we’re going to repair the “instructions” related to this aspect of their product’s design… only repeated communication of the facts will do the trick. I’d ask that industry press outlets try to help us reinforce the true nature of the distribution model.
2. The game is too EASY, SHORT, CASUAL. The only issue I have with this statement is the “too” – as it creates a subjective opinion. The truth is, the game is designed as a “casual game”. Sure, we used the Unreal 3 engine to develop it, so call it a “next gen casual game” if it makes you feel better. Anyway, the whole point of episodic is to evolve the episodes based on user feedback. So here’s what we’re going to do about “too casual” – in future episodes you’ll see more use of power-ups, areas tuned for more challenging “transformation game play”, and more emphasis on classic platform game mechanics. But try to keep in mind: If you don’t like simple, casual, short games – you might not like Grimm. He won’t like you either. No hard feelings.
3. Much love of the Grimm transformation process, art style, story elements, etc. And some suggestions for improving these aspects of the game and/or linking them more tightly together. We hear you and want you to know: changes should be expected. You’ll see gradual improvements to many aspects of the game art, story, and mechanic over upcoming releases.
If you have thoughts on improving the game or criticism, please post it here in the comments, or head over to the forum on am.com or forum on gt.com to discuss with others. We look forward to your feedback!
OH! And most importantly – Episode 2 is OUT NOW and available for free during the first 24 hours! Go check it out on GameTap. This week: Red Riding Hood
Episode listing update:
A Boy Learns What Fear Is AVAILABLE NOW!
Little Red Riding Hood AVAILABLE NOW
The Fisherman and His Wife Coming August 14
Puss In Boots Coming August 21
The Girl Without Hands Coming August 28
Godfather Death Coming September 4
The Devil and His Three Golden Hairs Coming September 11
Beauty and the Beast Coming September 18