Last week’s Crowfall Q&A had Gordon Walton on and he talked about transitioning Crowfall from its crowdfunding stage to the next: marketing it for its release. Today, a week after that Q&A, ArtCraft released a founder’s update. This update lays down the details about the upcoming transition from crowdfunding the game to selling its preorders. While we can argue semantics about how those could be essentially the same thing, the marketing of Crowfall as preorder gives the game the feeling of inevitability and the stigma and risk associated with crowdfunding no longer applies. I’m not saying this stigma no longer applies to Crowfall itself, but the rebranding markets it as such. Marketing is clever and this nomenclature is important to how the company proceeds from here on out.
The specific details of this transition are thoroughly outlined in the founder’s update. This amounts to retiring all current packages priced at $200 and above and replacing them with new ones. The packages may or may not be the exact same as before. One thing to note is that Castles, Mountain Citadels, and Imperial Palaces will no longer be purchasable through the store come 2018, though they can still be earned and crafted in the game. These are affordable options as you can see below (sarcasm), which begs the question of how much in-game resources will these things require considering their real money price tag. Doing the math on equating real money to crafting resources will be interesting when the game releases as I’m sure the price of these monolithic constructions won’t easily be forgotten.
The update before the Founder’s Update was the release of another video in the Murder of Crow’s video series. Murder of Crows is one of the more interesting meet the developer video series out there.These videos are detailed summaries of ArtCraft employees’ careers. They are breaths of transparency into the journeys of the people working hard on a game that’s been in our sights for several years now. The most recent Murder of Crows follows Susi Windeler, software engineer, Warmachine/HORDES player, miniature painter, and a MMORPG veteran. Check out the video below if you’re into that sort of “Adventures in the Life of…” thing.
While update 5.3 still hasn’t hit the LIVE server, Crowfall still feels like it’s picking up momentum as more and more working parts fall into place, or soon will be. Moving from marketing the game for crowdfunding to marketing it for preorder is a smart move, and one that will payoff with player’s perception of the state of the game’s development. Preorder says it’s coming. Crowdfunding says it might. It’s a rebranding, of sorts, like World of Warplanes’s 2.0 update. Except that Crowfall doesn’t have a previous iteration. Or even released. Ok, so maybe it's not that similar to WoWP. But the same marketing technique is being applied. Crowfall is coming. The message is loud and clear.