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Old April 19th, 2013 (5:07 AM).
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Do you think playable demos for games generally increase sales? Do you think that there is more merit for yourself and for companies who allow you to try a video game for free before you actually buy it? Do you think that this is a step in the right direction? Feel free to post any thoughts.

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Old April 19th, 2013 (5:30 AM).
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Originally Posted by tigerBLADE View Post
Do you think playable demos for games generally increase sales? Do you think that there is more merit for yourself and for companies who allow you to try a video game for free before you actually buy it? Do you think that this is a step in the right direction? Feel free to post any thoughts.
Well, in a way, yes. They're a free way to generate sales, so a gamer can get a quick taste of the game, and then they get more interested and end up buying. It's pretty useful imo.

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Old April 19th, 2013 (2:33 PM).
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It's a pretty good way to judge whether or not you'll want to pay for the full release, but the content quality varies so much that it's hard to form a general opinion. There's a balance that needs to be met in order for potential buyers to judge the worth of a game during the demo: It has to be exciting enough to get the player hyped for the full game, but it can't be TOO exciting or it'll make the bulk of the full game look dull. There are some good demos out there - the demo for Fat Princess feels like a full game - but some feel pretty lame because they weren't gripping enough to justify spending a decent amount of money on more of that.
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Old April 19th, 2013 (9:44 PM).
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I've always felt that demos are a good idea, since it gives you a small taste of the game, and if done correctly, they can leave you wanting more. On the flip side, demos that show off really bad or unpolished gameplay can actually hurt sales (or in the case of NBA Elite 11, get cancelled completely).

Generally if I check out a demo, it's because I already know I'm going to get the game and I want to whet my appetite, or I get told to check it out by friends or family. As for the latter, only twice can I actually say that a demo convinced me to by a full version of a game, and that was Gran Turismo for the PS1, and Skate on PS3.
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Old April 19th, 2013 (11:00 PM).
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I wish more studios did demos so that they became more standardized and mainstream. Right now demos can be kind of iffy because I think a lot of companies don't really know how to pick and choose the best parts of a game... do they go with the beginning so that the user gets the full tutorial and is pulled into the game the way the developers intended, or do they throw them in mid-game after a few walls of tutorial screens brokenly teaching the user how to play? I tend to prefer the early game demos, but those don't always work when the game has a really complex control system because it can take a while to build up to a really fun battle system and you're missing out if the full thing isn't in the demo. And games like that, where there are a lot of nuances to the controls that take a while to master, are usually the kinds of games where a lot of people are on the fence about buying and would definitely want to try it out before committing, so I understand it's difficult to decide whether or not to make a demo and if the answer is yes, what to include. I think it's something that will be easier to peg down as demos become more common for all genres.

I like being able to check something out before I make a final decision on buying it. If a game I'm on the fence about has a demo, I will always download it and check it out to see if it's really something I want to get, or maybe something I just want to pick up later on down the road when the game has dropped a bit in price.

I don't understand the companies that make demos and then pull them once the game has been released. I mean... really? If the whole point is to whet peoples' appetites, wouldn't you still be doing that once the game has released at retail? People are always going to be discovering it, I can only imagine that if you were getting sales from the demo before the game went live, you'd still be getting sales from the demo afterwards...
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Old April 20th, 2013 (9:21 AM).
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I think demos are a good thing. They either tell you if the game will be good or if the game won't be good. But some demos are just bad when the actual games are actually a lot better than the demos. I'd prefer having demos that shows the full capability of a game so they wouldn't be alienated from the game itself.

I tried a demo of F.E.A.R 2 and I thought I was playing the beginning of the story and I loved it, so I went ahead and bought F.E.A.R 2 (for 2$ at the dollar store) and it was actually quite different form the demo itself, but I still loved it.

Demos can be good or bad, depending on the demo and how it's representing the game itself.
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