PS3 theme sales won't cover development costs – Q Games

But PixelJunk boss proud of involvement in creating animated backgrounds

Q Games president Dylan Cuthbert has said that the studio will be "lucky" to sell enough Dynamic Themes on the PlayStation Store to cover development costs.

Introduced with the new 3.0 firmware, Dynamic Themes are interactive backgrounds for the PlayStation 3. The developer has just released a theme to promote PixelJunk Monsters, priced USD 2.99.

"Remember that we’ll be lucky to sell even a few thousand themes and so the cost of developing the theme (3-4 weeks of coder/artist time, checking, testing etc) will still far exceed any money we make from it," said Cuthbert, writing on the PS3 blog.

However, Cuthbert said his team was proud to work on themes with Sony, as it has been something they have had a hand in developing.

"We’re proud to say that this is a system we were involved in developing. Sony Computer Entertainment wanted to spice up the background a bit and static pictures just didn’t cut the mustard.

"So we collaborated with them to make a system where developers can display what they want and animate and move them around. This definitely adds a little life to the PS3’s background," he wrote.

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Latest comments (5)

I am glad to say that we broke even on our Premium Theme quite quickly. It really does not take that much work to make and there are not that many hoops to jump though to get it on system. So have to disagree :)
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I figured this would be one area where a developer COULD make some quick/easy cash.

I know that when I'm playing a game (I usually play a game for a month give or take, before it's finished/i get the platinum) I like having that game's theme and that game's theme only, up and displaying - you know.. to represent

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David Wicks Editor / Co-Founder, Gamers Heaven8 years ago
@James you guys have no right to disagree using your theme as an example!

Your theme is not a dynamic one... it's just a standard theme with a pricetag (the first premium theme for EU if i'm not mistaken) and most of those PS3 users who helped you break even would not have bought the theme if they knew it was not dynamic, it was launched very cleverly to generate sales from people mistaking it for the EU's only available Dynamic theme and those people feel very cheated and so they should, it was a very dirty tactic to release a premium theme when everyone was expecting dynamic ones that has obviously worked, now put that cash to use and generate a proper Dynamic theme at a reduced price to the rest of them to make up for the dirty business tactics employed on the standard theme. Gamers remember who treats them well and who doesn't don't piss off your target market, they pay your bills ;)

Standard themes are easy to create, there's even a FREE tool out there that your receptionist could have used to create that theme you have on the store in an hour or so while taking calls at the same time, it's no wonder you broke even it cost next to nothing to create...
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Hi David, Sorry for the crossed wires. We made a “Premium Theme”, precisely as sold in the US. We had no intention of ripping anyone off or using dirty tactics, the Premium Theme had been planned for a very long time and we were one of the first to offer Premium Themes in the EU. You are correct that Dynamic Themes are the next step and we hope to offer that next, and perhaps that will take more effort than we make back in money we shall see.

So. I was wrong, I should not have compared Premium to Dynamic when discussing what effort is required, BUT you should also not cast such aspersions regarding our release of the Premuim Theme as it was sold as such and was never intended to rip anyone off!

If you wish to talk to me directly. Please feel free.

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David Wicks Editor / Co-Founder, Gamers Heaven8 years ago
Hi james, my post was not as hostile as it appears even to me now and i apologise for that, but i was reflecting how we your customers feel. i have 17 people on my PS3 friends list who i know have bought that theme, 16 of them bought it thinking it was a dynamic theme and feel cheated that it wasn't, and at the end of the day 4 of them are happy with the theme either way. that leaves 12 out of 17 still feeling cheated. it's a similar story on the Official Forums a lot of users felt cheated by the timing of the EU's first premium theme.

One thing i would suggest to yourself and other companies is not to use this first offering of premium themes as a benchmark for sales and acceptance of standard Premium themes in the EU a region, if the forums are anything to go by the EU is not ready to accept premium themes at this late stage unless they come with all the bells and whistles of the dynamic themes to be available from this week.
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