The HeliOS Project is now.....

The HeliOS Project is now.....
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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Salting the Bones...


We've talked about killing Linux Myths before.

Whether it be security through obscurity or Linux is just not ready for the desktop.

Logic and current unbiased data have proven otherwise. But there is still one that persists...

Linux Users are cheap and Linux Users are not a profitable market for gaming developers.

Ahem...

I think we, at least on some scale, have disproved that. Flash Forward to 2dBoy and Frictional. While we agreed not to divulge some fairly intimate statistics about each company sales, we are able to, and did report at the time, that Linux Users slayed all previous sales records for each game.

See, some myths and even some cultures believe to stop a spirit or ghost from haunting you, someone must unearth their remains and pour salt on their bones...

Demons and Spirits, reportedly, cannot cross a salt barrier. Some say to burn it for good measure.

So metaphorically...we are trying to stop this persistent haunting...

Yeah right helios...initial Linux momentum for sales then the Win and Mac folks resumed their purchasing pace.

Wanna bet?

Please...bet me now. Baby needs a new pair of shoes. She wears a size seven, loves heels and is 38....

nevermind...

I not only want you to look at the numbers here...I want you to do the math.

It's pretty amazing. Now, given some of you are as mathematically-challenged as I am, here is what I am driving at. Taking the market share for Windows, the number of Linux Users both paying the most for this special "name your price" sale and the fact that they remain customers since they discovered 2dboy...

Well, all there is to do now is to salt the bones.

Linux Users will buy games they enjoy....but given DRM and other restrictions, there may be a caveat or two there.

From the 2dboy website (linked by graphic below)

Breakdown By Platform

We were expecting the average price paid to be highest for Linux users and lowest for Windows users, but the gap was larger than we thought it would be…

dailyavg

Also, the per-platform download breakdown was pretty surprising, with Windows accounting for 65%, and Mac and Linux pretty much splitting the remainder evenly:

dlbyplatform

As well, given that many Windows users feel it is fine to steal games and apps, these numbers are not surprising...

And stop it...you know who you are. Anyone who would rather steal a game from these guys than pay a few lousy bucks for it will mug girl scouts without hesitation.

So...is this going to get the attention of companies like EA and other big name game distributors?

Probably not...too bad...

Their loss.

All-Righty then

15 comments:

Gedece said...

This is something I deply suspected when I started the whole "Buy World of Goo for GNU/LInux" back then.

I'm extremelly happy with the results.

A said...

Too bad for EA, UbiSoft, CapCom, Konami...
Very good for Frictional(Penumbra), Koonsolo(Mystic Mines), WolfGames(Lugaru)..

;)

kozmcrae said...

Hey Mr. anonymous, you're late!

Microsoft is using its marketing might and heavy-handed influence to hide a growing body of disenchantment with their company. On the surface it appears that GNU/Linux and Open Source are making steady but "slow" progress into the desktops and homes of Microsoft's guaranteed income. That surface is just a thin skin created with the help of IDC, Gartner and small army of $2500 a pop journalists on demand (don't ask where that figure came from). All that effort is just letting the pressure build up. When the realization hits all the rivets will blow and the truth will hit Microsoft like an 18 wheeler in their living room. Their party is over.

sinaisix said...

Hello guys.First of all I am a Linux user and preacher. However, I am very reluctant to make any pronouncements about the market share of Windows, its profitability or future viability based on some figures from one research firm or the other.

What I know for sure is that MS is a company that has always been underestimated by people especially Linux users. Take a look at what happened to Linux on the netbook when XP was brought back from the dead, or how Google Chrome the browser is faring one year after its release.

Windows is more than a monopoly. It's not just an OS my friends, you have generations of people that have grown up knowing only Windows. It will take a LONG time for Linux to make any SIGNIFICANT dent in the market share of Windows if it keeps doing what it has been doing in the past.

Yes Linux has a future, but let's work in a conscientious manner to make migrating to Linux a worthwhile, simple and pleasant experience for more people. There should be more work done to reduce to the barest minimum all difficulties faced by people when they move to Linux.

This I think will pay us in the long term than relying on some SUBJECTIVE figures to pat ourselves on the back.

Regards.

Michelle Minkin - Seattle WA said...

@ siniasix

OK...post some OBJECTIVE figures and we will be listening.

The numbers presented here are for one game...and are not subjective at all to 2dboy, they are solid figures notating the use and purchases of their game by Linux users....at least the amounts paid for them.

The authors' comments are concerning Linux users and their gaming habits and estimated purchase power. I would suggest Padre that you go back and look at the figures presented by 2dboy and Frictional concerning the amount of purchases made by Linux Users from these two companies.

Sure Microsoft is a Megalith...

But we eat that giant one bite at a time. Your post is somewhat trollish in nature...I've learned to smell one a mile off. May I suggest you conceal yourself by not accentuating the words that give you away.

You have no idea of the inroads Linux is making...

From my professional position, I could provide you some CONCRETE analysis to ruin Microsoft's day, as yours it would seem. Because our growth is silent does not mean it does not exist. But then again, they already know. It's you who seem to remain in the dark.

Chelle

Blog of helios said...

Oh, and to the commenter who posted his response with a simple two words.

You are a sissy-assed little girl.

If you are going to post stuff like that, have the stones enough to truthfully identify yourself. Like I don't know who you are already.

Surprising you can hide your chubby self behind that little keyboard.

h

Jose_X said...

If we compute revenues (using the two graphs), we get approximately: Windows 47%, Linux 29%, Mac 23%.

This says that Linux brought in almost 40% of the revenue Windows brought in! And some say Linux usage is at 2% or even at 1%!

Linux has interesting free games IMO. It's not as if World of Goo is the only game for Linux by a long shot. OTOH, there is more hunger by Linux users and this should die down as the number of titles grows further. OTOOH, most Linux users could access Windows and consoles if they wanted to play games [using Linux doesn't imply you only use Linux]; hence, arguably, Linux users already have greater access to games then Windows-only users. OTOOOH, Linux users may have wanted to make a statement more than would have Windows users.

Linux users get so much for free, so they have much more spending potential. This would apply as well to new users as the Linux community continues to grow.

The short story is that if Microsoft and a few other vendors are taken out of the picture, that leaves **a lot more money** to be spent on things like games. Why? Because Microsoft's monopoly controls in various essential software (the OS and core apps like Office) allows them to soak up most of what the market will bare (the equivalent of water, food, shelter), leaving little for the luxuries.

[FWIW, I did not participate because the PC I'm currently using is weak without a graphics card (the demo effectively didn't run), but I was originally planning on getting a few downloads and paying at least $20. Also, I don't use Windows, period.]

hank said...

I beg your pardon, but I am cheap. And I am proud of it. You should know better than to generalize.

blackhole said...

@Jose_X,

I appreciate you doing those calculations. I haven't bothered to check the calculations for the percentage of revenues by OS, but something did seem a little wrong with the statement that Linux brought in 40% of the revenue MS Windows did. So I plugged your numbers into bc. It tells me that 29/47 = 62%. Maybe you meant to say Linux brought in 40% of the revenues of MS Windows and Mac combined? :-)

sinaisix said...

@Michelle Minkin
First of all, thanks for your so well mannered, matured and educated response to my opinion. It feels good to know there is someone out there who is still living in a Linux utopia.

I don't deal with figures and neither do I need them. I just have to look around the REAL world out there and know that Linux- whether on the field of gaming or whatever- has a long way to go to make a significant dent in the market share of Windows in whatever category.

For 20 years that you have been eating the giant one bite at a time, what impact have you made on its flesh? If you care to know, the fact that I do not blindly and dumbly propagate Linux does not make me a troll.

I have a whole blog dedicated to promoting Linux and Open Source. I am not a fanboy. I believe in calling a spade a spade. If I think something is detrimental to the growth of Linux, I never hesitate to mention it. Linux with shallow minded people like you will never go anywhere.

I have a perfect idea about the inroads Linux is making, not from figures but from the REAL world. I know Linux is making inroads on the netbook market so much so that a resurrected OS is able to beat the devil out of it to hell. Thank you for your offer of spending your prof time to educate me, I am happy with the little I know. If your analysis can ruin MS, it would be best to dedicate it to the larger Linux community which is struggling hard to pass the 5% user mark after 20 years of existence.

Linux is growing, but what blind propagandists like you forget is that Windows is not stagnating, neither is MS sleeping. In all my stupidity, I have learned not rest on my laurels.

Gavin said...

I think now that OpenGL has more or less passed through its recent dark cloud (and pending some more development towards parity with DX11) it will be desireable to use again in A-list titles. This is absolutely necessary if game development studios want to even consider a third PC gaming platform. And of course the graphics for Linux-compatible games need to be respectable if Linux is to be "taken seriously" in the gaming community.

Then again, how many Windows games are actually played on Linux with wine? As Jose_X said, just because someone is a Linux user does not mean they are only a Linux user. I use wine myself for a great many Windows games even though I have access to Windows.

I also do not think that only Linux users are cheap. As mentioned in the blog, how many Windows gamers are illegally acquiring their software? Either their OS or their games?

- Gavin

Anonymous said...

Maybe a bit off-topic: another gem of a game from a small studio is Machinarium (http://www.machinarium.com) from Amanita (the makers of Samorost). I bought the Linux version a few days ago & it's just beautiful. It could well become another Linux gaming success story.

Yeesh said...

Wow, real cool friends you have Helios. Sinaisix makes a comment that isn't 100% in agreement with your post and Michelle Minkin insults him and calls him a troll.

Way to give Linux users a bad name Michelle.

Brian said...

Ha ha ha - These comments are funny.

You're all too busy hating on Microsoft and predicting their demise to formulate any real, long term strategies for overtaking market share. Do you think people are going to abandon Windows for Linux because you griped loudly enough? Or because you dislike Microsoft's business practices/ethics?

And from a purely marketing standpoint, Apple can get away with sounding snobby and self-superior because it fits their demographic. But Linux users just look jealous.

Good luck hating MS to death...

Scott said...

I have a couple of theories on why Linux users would pay more in "name your price" sales and would pirate software less.

The first would be that they have a better understanding of value, and it makes us want to give something back, whether it's to the project, whether it's proselytizing, or whether it's giving our business to those who help further the goals of FOSS (even by developing proprietary apps for it).

The second would be that Windows users have to pay for their OS (directly or indirectly), they have to pay geeks whenever Windows breaks, they have to pay for so many basic applications, and they are used to being treated like criminals by almost all the software vendors who develop for Windows, that not only do they probably have cobwebs in their coinpurses, but they just feel more entitled to steal when given the opportunity.