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Report article RSS Feed Crunch time nearly over

What began as 4 to 6 weeks of crunch development has extended into 3 months... but the end is near with plenty of work now completed.

Posted by INtense! on Sep 14th, 2010

For a long time a key focus of ours has been the creation of a digital distribution system which is developer and publisher friendly. As the creators of games and mods you wield a lot of power and are the ones who put in the immense amount of effort required to create fun. We feel that by giving you control and a direct link to your customers and fans everyone wins. You don't have to wait for us to keep up with you, and your fans benefit from you engaging them and helping them get all they can out of your game.

It is this focus of ours that has lead to the two year development cycle of Desura, as we are determined to create a powerful interface which enables you to control every element of your games release. Whilst we are not quite there yet, the backend has taken massive steps forward in the past month and we are nearly ready to start inviting more beta testers and developers / publishers onto the platform for the next stage in our growth. Here are some of the features we have added:

Referrer bonus

Say you have released game X on Desura and are promoting it bigtime via your homepage, blog, twitter, facebook etc. You can add all of these URLs to our interface and everytime a user buys via one of these urls you receive a referrer bonus. No ugly "refer code" or anything required, works instantly.

Analytics

The best way to serve your customers is to know what they like and want more of. Via our powerful live reporting system, you can see what content is popular with plenty of graphs and information available.

Financials

Financials also fall under the "analytics" umbrella above with graphs and other information available. In addition to this you can view your live balance, payment history and download CSVs with data should you wish to do your own reporting.

Legal stuff...

Not fun but important. We have worked with our lawyers and finalized the agreement you will need to accept to release on Desura. This is all done online and our aim is to meet your needs and requirements 100%.

Gamers, I know this stuff isn't super exciting for you - just sit tight because we have some big updates to tell you about in the next post. Besides we know you will love our super easy click-to-install mods and games system, so you've already won. So if you are a gamer and want to take part in the next step of the beta, email us for an invite (approx 6 weeks wait). And if you are a developer or publisher and have a game or mod you'd like to discuss releasing on the platform, email us for details.

Finally, for those waiting for access to the beta we are sorry to keep you waiting... not much longer now!

Post comment Comments
Potteh.
Potteh. Sep 14 2010 says:

I lol'd at the gender stats.

+24 votes     reply to comment
Davecheesefish
Davecheesefish Sep 14 2010 says:

Sounds awesome, can't wait to see it for real!

+1 vote     reply to comment
Magrathean
Magrathean Sep 14 2010 says:

1% female. Yup, sounds about right :D

+1 vote     reply to comment
Mkilbride
Mkilbride Sep 14 2010 replied:

Videogames.yahoo.com

"In fact, 38% of console gamers and 43% of PC gamers are women. The stereotype of a gamer as a 14-year-old boy couldn't be further from the truth."

+2 votes     reply to comment
Scriabin
Scriabin Sep 15 2010 replied:

Forbes.com

I guess playing Farmville makes you a "gamer" nowadays.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Katana_
Katana_ Sep 17 2010 replied:

Somehow, it does.

I weep for you, gaming industry. ;_;

+1 vote     reply to comment
INtense! Author
INtense! Sep 14 2010 replied:

these stats are on a VEEEERY small dataset of a few hundred. It'll look more balanced once we actually allow people into the beta

+5 votes   reply to comment
Fxor
Fxor Sep 14 2010 says:

ZOMG! Exciting much!!

+1 vote     reply to comment
Heaney Sep 14 2010 says:

1% of men pretended to be woman :P

+7 votes     reply to comment
Dragonlord
Dragonlord Sep 14 2010 says:

What exactly is included in this release contract of yours? I mean how about licenses? Something causing troubles at other places is if a product non-commercial licenses or otherwise is not "closed". Who actually "owns" the product in the end?

+1 vote     reply to comment
INtense! Author
INtense! Sep 14 2010 replied:

I'm not sure what you are talking about? We take absolutely NO ownership over your IP. You simply license to us the ability to distribute a copy of your game / mod.

+2 votes   reply to comment
Midnitte
Midnitte Sep 14 2010 replied:

I think he means a traditional game license vs something like starcraft. Usually the customer actually owns the game, while games like starcraft are only licensed to the person and can be revoked.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Dragonlord
Dragonlord Sep 14 2010 replied:

I call this the Steam-Principle. They can theoretically ban you from using all your "purchased" games. I'm totally against such a theft. If a customer buys something he owns it. Taking it away (as with Steam) is in my opinion theft and therefore I'm checking out in advance if licenses on a distribution platform to make sure they can not take the ownership away from a developer or the customer.

0 votes     reply to comment
INtense! Author
INtense! Sep 15 2010 replied:

I'm afraid that Steam has set the trend here and we have no option but to cover ourselves with this right.

You see the problem is we release game X. 2 years later game X tells us they don't want to work together anymore and revoke the game. Whilst in our agreement with game X we say you must allow your existing customers to be able to own and play your game, they may dispute this in court and win. In this case we have no other option.

Having said this unlike steam which must be running for your game to run, Desura does not enforce this (it is up to game developers to choose if they want to integrate with our API) so any game you have installed shall continue to work, with or without Desura.

You have to remember that in 6 years of steam they have never revoked any game (i'm assuming this) and nor do they ever intend to. I'm not defending the clause because I dont agree with it either, i'm just saying it is a legal necessity. If you look at android, itunes or anywhere else you will find the same written.

+1 vote   reply to comment
Dragonlord
Dragonlord Sep 15 2010 replied:

There's something I don't get right now on this situation. If the game is not forcefully linked to Desura (which is a good thing) for what exactly is this contract clause then used? I mean Desura gets the right to distribute copies of the game using the platform. So after the copy is sold to the customer the copy belongs to the customer. Let's say the company behind the game does pull back after 2 years. How could the go after Desura anyways? That would be like trying to sue Enter-Your-Game-Store-Here for having sold a copy to me for example. That doesn't make sense to me as in my eyes Desura is (as it stands right now) a Distribution Front-End (plus additional, optional features) not like Steam which is required to play the game. So why is such an ownership clause even required?

+1 vote     reply to comment
Dragonlord
Dragonlord Sep 14 2010 replied:

Just for the records, I'm not asking this mainly for me (my case is anyways special) but especially for others. At other places I'm stepping up to support Desura but for this I have to be sure that there is nothing which can be of a potential problem. So I need clarity in certain positions so I can blast off critics trying to debunk Desura in favor of let's say Steam. So don't get me wrong. I'm convinced Desura is a good thing. I just want to make sure no catch suddenly grew in from under the fences somehow.

+1 vote     reply to comment
INtense! Author
INtense! Sep 23 2010 replied:

Oh its a great question and one i'm happy to answer. The difference between the copy of the game we offer and a hardcopy is that the hardcopy you receive once and that's it. If you break it or lose it it's gone. Kind of like how Apple "sell" you stuff so you own it, but if you delete or lose it too bad.

In our situation however we hopefully enable you to download this content as many times as you want on any devices you own. Because we enable this the publishers of games view us as providing a service, which they can revoke. Of course in our agreement with them even if they revoke we will argue that existing customers can still get their game anytime they want but it is their for legal reasons. The major problem with this clause and say Steam, is because your game is tied to your account if Steam decide to disable it, its gone - you cannot play it anymore. On Desura we make this optional and we hope that most publishers will opt for a DRM free copy (even Desura free copy) which works with or without Desura. Not every game will do this, but i'd say 99% of indies will and we will brand profiles that are "DRM" free.

I know this doesn't quite answer your question and all of your concerns, digital law and ownership is really a tricky thing since their is no "physical product" just copies, hence why licensing is the more popular legal enforcement method.

+1 vote   reply to comment
Dragonlord
Dragonlord Sep 23 2010 replied:

I guess it does answer. Important for me is simple that a game is not required to be linked to Desura using DRM for example or that you can be prevented to have access to the games you own. So if a game is self-sustaining without any Desura links a customer should be able to play the game without Desura running or to make a physical copy of the installer. Best would be if Desura somehow allows to place a copy of the installer on the disk somewhere so it can be burned on a DVD or placed on a USB-HD for backup. After all you don't have Internet on all devices at all time. I don't know if Desura will ever support this scenario but it is already well enough if games can be played independent of Desura if one wishes so.

+1 vote     reply to comment
jack_wade
jack_wade Sep 14 2010 says:

So, the ones who are already in the beta need to send an e-mail in order to get access to the 2nd phase of betatesting or the email-thingie is just for the people who does have no invite?

Because, right now, I can't access to Desura anymore (Closed Beta, can't login)

+2 votes     reply to comment
INtense! Author
INtense! Sep 14 2010 replied:

If you already have access to the beta you should still have access to the beta (and phase 2) and should be able to login fine. Having said this the beta client is about 8 months old and missing many of the more advanced features in the new client which should be rolling out in 4 weeks if all goes to plan!

+1 vote   reply to comment
jack_wade
jack_wade Sep 15 2010 replied:

Cool, thanks for the heads up!

+1 vote     reply to comment
VirusxXx
VirusxXx Sep 14 2010 says:

No norwegians here? :(

+1 vote     reply to comment
jjawinte
jjawinte Sep 14 2010 says:

Great news on Desura's recent developmental progress. You guys are certainly earning your money on this one !

+2 votes     reply to comment
cW#Ravenblood Sep 15 2010 replied:

Oh yeah!
I also think the new steam design ripped some stuff from Desura.

But I lold at the age and gender.
I think you forgot the at least 5% of under 15 (8 years)..

+1 vote     reply to comment
Tharapita
Tharapita Sep 14 2010 says:

Haha the gender statistics.

+1 vote     reply to comment
MrMattWebb
MrMattWebb Sep 14 2010 says:

21 y/o American males ftw

+1 vote     reply to comment
Squiggers
Squiggers Sep 14 2010 says:

Excellent stuff - glad to hear that you've got the legal agreement for publishing people's stuff nailed down as well. :)

+1 vote     reply to comment
hate4uall
hate4uall Sep 14 2010 says:

i see blue come on uk !!

+1 vote     reply to comment
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