TBS Lecture (in light of recent survey)



  • Chivalry, the concept behind its combat and the groundbreaking ways it was implemented has lent itself to an incredibly rich competitive environment both mechanically and in teamplay.

    However, based on the decisions made by Torn Banner (and this is what I tell most people), you would think that Torn Banner made such an incredible and unique game purely by accident. From what we’ve seen from them in the way of recent marketing decisions, it seems that they intend the game to be a casual hack-em-up cash-n-dash indie game laced with microtransactions, which I guarantee is not why people play the game for any extended period of time. On the current path, the game will simply fade in nonexistence, a one and done cash grab that could even lead to the decline of TB itself (the only way to make consistent money with a marketing scheme like this is to create MANY one-and-done games of this nature and pray that people will buy them and their microtransactions, and, I’m not sure if it’s just me or not, but there seems to be an awful lot of these brand new indie companies starting up and then dropping off the face of the earth like fireflies). You guys have seen the way the playerbase works: ~1000-2000 ongoing players, spiking only when the game goes on sale and during free weekend before going back to its dormant state. And, instead of focusing on player retention and making smart executive decisions, they have in a sense decided to go down with the ship, turning to cash grabs and microtransactions as a source of income. You reap what you sow, and TBS knows that things aren’t looking good.

    But I guarantee you, the first step to getting back on the right track is to create a healthy playerbase. You need to focus on what makes the game UNIQUE and what gives it REPLAY VALUE in order to have decent player retention. In the case of Chivalry, that would be its combat system and in-depth competitive nature. Focus on player retention by advertising the game based off of its competitive appeal, and work towards polishing the game as is. Begin communicating consistently with the few players you have, consulting them before and during gameplay changes or new projects. Cater to competitive play, sponsor tournaments and competitive streamers instead of second string youtube channels. Implement ways for players to access this information such as bringing back proper first person spectating, creating a rankings system (not necessarily a ladder inititally; we all know the issues with that), implementing competitive game modes such as 1v1, 2v2, 3v3, or 5v5 LTS and 6v6 TO, creating leaderboards (possibly for these competitive game modes, or even Official Duel Mode), allowing in-game team/clan creation and track team progress and stats in competitive matches. Take what you have created here, and properly transfer it into UE4.

    Torn Banner, you’ve created something unique and amazing, you just don’t recognize it. The game would have died off long ago if it didn’t have a loyal, albeit small, set of players who can see it for what it really is, and what it is really worth. With the right decisions and support, Chivalry has the potential to stand alone as a unique and competitive game that (with the proper attention and time) could rival even the biggest e-sports giants. But as of now, I’m better off sticking with CS:GO.



  • A big issue is that most of them don’t even play the game often/aren’t that good and they sometimes listen TOO MUCH to the community. The old balance council ruined MW and the beta testers ruined DW before it even released. They listen too much and not enough on different issues and seem to have no clue what ‘should’ be done.



  • @Oy:

    A big issue is that most of them don’t even play the game often/aren’t that good and they sometimes listen TOO MUCH to the community. The old balance council ruined MW and the beta testers ruined DW before it even released. They listen too much and not enough on different issues and seem to have no clue what ‘should’ be done.

    This. It’s so annoying when devs are clueless regarding their own game’s balance.

    Greatsword insta-overheads from a while back come to mind.

    It’s not necessarily a horrible thing to rely on your community for most of the class and weapon balance changes but when you have to receive their feedback in order to implement some decent balance patches, the process becomes slow and frustrating.

    We also wouldn’t have had 5 different workshop mods that all try to bring their own twist to the game’s class and weapon balance.
    Which is also not a bad thing on its own, but when the majority of these mods’ changes overlap with each other then you know the core game is just flawed.



  • Not sure your point, it is an older more difficult engine that they put a lot of sweat into to make what we have today. Hardly a cash grab, they built a company out of it and added a lot of content. Balance is something nobody agrees upon and its fairly decent today - you dont have people posting post after post about how a weapon is overpowered anymore.

    Would fixing some weapons and bugs create a whole new set of sales - I doubt it, the core people who play will play regardless, the people that dont like the game will not. Might add another few hundered concurrent but not a huge difference.

    I never understand why people complain about “microtransactions” it is fluff to change a look and feel, completely optional and if it gives a source of income from their artists work, great. Not like the developers work on the skins or models.

    They are on the next project, lets see what it is. Maybe it is Chiv 2, maybe it is the game before Chiv 2, who knows.

    Certainly a new engine for a Chiv2, and a carefully designed game would be great.

    If you watch the last interview, I think TBS knows exactly what they did and are aware of their “core players” but the core players do not pay the bills but I guess you think your $20 should give you more than 2,000 hours of entertainment.



  • The only reason why CS:GO has such a high player-base is because of all the people sucked in trying to get random drops and get cool “free” stuff.
    I doubt many people would stick around if the gambling simulator was removed except for the loyal, albeit small, hardcore players.

    All chivalry needs is a gambling simulator and there would be heaps of people playing forever.

    This is not a good thing.



  • Chiv is a game with 10 years in the making…. since it started as a humble, FREE, HL2 mod, Age of Chivalry that is still being played today. It was no simple feat going from a rag tag group of medieval fan boys across the planet to put togeter a mod into a full blown Indy game company. There was no great conspiracy to build an indy company just to crank out crap title after title only to make money on DLC. That unfortunately has been the trend of the gaming industry in general. Just watch this South Park http://www.hulu.com/watch/709504

    Point being is that that is the nature of the gaming industry that it has evolved (for the worse) from expensive full games where players could create and exchange skins, mods, maps into freemium games where you pay for micro transactions for upgrades and what used to be free shared mediums. You cannot blame TBS for this evolution and being a small indy company that has sold over 3 million copies, a very small minority were purchased at full price. By the time Steam takes their cut, UDK took their cut, Spike TV took their cut (CDW) off of cheap sales prices, then you have Canadian taxes and studio overhead, employees and on and on. It is not all that much and will only sustain the company for so long without a steady stream of income.

    TBS is a Indy / Steam / UDK success story from a hand full of nerd fan boys to a real company. No easy feat not to mention creating one of the most unique games in the industry that so many are trying to rip off and emulate. So while I too have my disagreements with some devs decisions (archer balance, broken mechanics-kick-chase, bubble and the like) I cut them a break for the above reasons as I have well over 8000 hours of enjoyable game play since 2004 AOC till now for a very cheap price. (Granted I have been hosting servers about that long as well so maybe not that cheap… hehe)



  • “it seems that they intend the game to be a casual hack-em-up cash-n-dash indie game laced with microtransactions”

    That’s quite and assumption to make.



  • @Retsnom Thanks for your measured response . One of the best ones I’ve read on this forum.

    @OP Your thread is a perfect example of why many developers hate gamers and it’s because gamers often spout out bullshit without understanding how it actually is in the games industry .

    I personally think they have done a good job of maintaining a game 3 years old and after Playerhater has begun working at TB ,they have attracted many new players. You say TB should focus on retaining players ,then make Chiv subscription based. Gamers will pay a one time fee for a game and think it’s the company’s responsibility to endlessly give update after update and add feature after feature.But the reality is after you buy the game,unless it’s broken beyond repair they are under no obligation to do anything really. You complain the game had it’s flaws,but so do all games. I can’t tell you how idiotic players look who give the game a negative review after 1000hours! Even for full price 1000 hours is a hell of a bargain,when it comes to entertainment.Unless you still financially support TB you really have no place to demand more. New features take resources to implement and programmers,artists and designers don’t work for free. You think there are players who play Modern Warfare 2 demanding new features? No ,you pay for the game/experience and you could be so lucky to play a game that offers hundreds of hours of entertainment for 1 price.

    That “cash grab” you mention is business. Video game companies are a business,expensive businesses and unless you have capital constantly coming into the company will go under. You think any money they make from the Workshop goes to buy the guys at TB Ferraris? No off course not,it goes towards their next project because a game company is as good as their next project. That’s why I contribute to the Workshop, I love Chivalry,it’s given me hours and hours if fun and if I can help the make Chiv 2 then I am all for it. They have done a great job for an Indy studio and to call them greedy because they want to continue as a game company shows how ignorant many players are about the games INDUSTRY…



  • @Oilystool:

    That “cash grab” you mention is business. Video game companies are a business,expensive businesses and unless you have capital constantly coming into the company will go under. You think any money they make from the Workshop goes to buy the guys at TB Ferraris? No off course not,it goes towards their next project because a game company is as good as their next project. That’s why I contribute to the Workshop, I love Chivalry,it’s given me hours and hours if fun and if I can help the make Chiv 2 then I am all for it. They have done a great job for an Indy studio and to call them greedy because they want to continue as a game company shows how ignorant many players are about the games INDUSTRY…

    I have absolutely no involvement with the inner workings of Torn Banner any more, but I wouldn’t be remotely surprised if one of their biggest priorities for Chivalry 2 were to make everything overall more modular for even more comprehensive workshop integration, because it’s pretty clear once Chivalry had Workshop support it got an enormous boom of great content. Even the most talented development team can’t compare with the creative minds of several thousand modders.


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