[SLOWDOWN] Please be careful who you give business to.

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Jake
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Re: Please be careful with your hard-earned money.

#31 Post by Jake » Sat Jul 24, 2010 9:48 pm

Topagae wrote: no risk of loss of anything but time on the people I'm asking to help me.
And again, you're ignoring pertinent points: time is a limited resource for most people, so - as the old adage says, "time is money". And a lot of people pay to commission art or music for their projects, for that matter.

You're quibbling over words, the point of the thread isn't that you're trying to raid people's piggy banks, nobody thinks that. I've already agreed and will agree again that the title of the thread is probably not worded as well as it should be... but to suggest that one carelessly-used word invalidates the entire thread is a little bit of an exaggeration.
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Re: Please be careful with your hard-earned money.

#32 Post by Topagae » Sat Jul 24, 2010 9:51 pm

@Kinou

You're not a lawyer (I hope), don't go spouting anything about law. It's unwise. What I have already said are NOT contracts until you know. Both parties agree to them, I'm no lawyer, but that is the very definition of a contract, it requires consensual agreement of both parties. At worst you are accusing me of lying. And you know what? Even if I am, that's completely legal.

I am the King of France. The KING. Of. France.
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Re: Please be careful with your hard-earned money.

#33 Post by Topagae » Sat Jul 24, 2010 9:52 pm

Jake wrote:
Topagae wrote: no risk of loss of anything but time on the people I'm asking to help me.
And again, you're ignoring pertinent points: time is a limited resource for most people, so - as the old adage says, "time is money". And a lot of people pay to commission art or music for their projects, for that matter.

You're quibbling over words, the point of the thread isn't that you're trying to raid people's piggy banks, nobody thinks that. I've already agreed and will agree again that the title of the thread is probably not worded as well as it should be... but to suggest that one carelessly-used word invalidates the entire thread is a little bit of an exaggeration.
I never said it invalidated the entire thread, just the statement of one person saying they haven't said anything untrue was. Well. Untrue.
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Re: Please be careful with your hard-earned money.

#34 Post by kinougames » Sat Jul 24, 2010 10:04 pm

Topagae wrote:@Kinou

You're not a lawyer (I hope), don't go spouting anything about law. It's unwise. What I have already said are NOT contracts until you know. Both parties agree to them, I'm no lawyer, but that is the very definition of a contract, it requires consensual agreement of both parties. At worst you are accusing me of lying. And you know what? Even if I am, that's completely legal.

I am the King of France. The KING. Of. France.
Oi.

I am not saying that you have contracts right now. Obviously contracts are not subject to law until they are agreed to. But you are proposing that someone enter a contract with you. What is your title about? It's about licensing. Licensing is contracts. Are you saying that you plan to license work without a contract? If you are proposing a contract, which means a barter or money or time or services in which both parties agree to give one piece in exchange for another, you are liable under contractual law.

I do not need to be a lawyer personally, because I actually went to a lawyer to discuss these things about my own business.

Again. Research. Please. Nothing here is untrue. I'll edit so that there's no implication of handing money over upfront, but the point still stands; if you're getting money for a service, no matter where it comes from, you are being paid!
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Re: Please be careful with your hard-earned money.

#35 Post by Aleema » Sat Jul 24, 2010 10:04 pm

There is nothing wrong with crass. Crass is how you get your point across. There IS a problem with flagrant insults that make little to no sense. I was polite. I asked questions that directly addressed my issues. I even stated that I might've missed something and might've skimmed, because I do tend to do that. Just because you don't like critique doesn't mean that the critique is rude, and that is a fact that too many people do not understand.
The definition of crass is:
coarse; crude; not refined or sensible; materialistic; dense
Please don't tell me you embrace that? Did you want to change your wording? I'll let you.

Polite? Yes, some of your sentences were very polite, you are very good (4-5) boys. I am not referring to you alone. You, fortaat, and Jake combined were a wrecking ball of unnecessary destruction. All before you had the excuses you had now. Your original motivators were picking on the fact that you and others would probably have no use for the service. So ... Why does that make your demands of him the greatest thing of importance ever? "I don't have to use his service and I will tell him publicly ... No to move on with my life. No? Fight about the cut? Fine, he's willing to do it for free. OH, what an ASSBUCKET! *new accounts* *bullying* That's it!! Let's make threads about it, calling him like a scam artist!!"
I didn't say "I can do the same thing you do". I cannot create an engine that does what his does. I, the person who made the first comment there, cannot even do any programming at all. However, I DID go out and find someone for free, very easily, who COULD do the equivalent. It is a reasonable question to ask of someone; "what are you giving me extra that I should pay for when the same work is free across the internet?" If someone said to you: "I have this engine that is kind of like Ren'py, only it doesn't work as well as Ren'py works and doesn't have nearly as many capabilities, but you need to pay me to use it", you'd probably run and hard.
That's not what he was offering. And whether or not YOU said you could do it, you said your service is not necessary because of [people who can do it], and the others in the thread did go out of their way to say that they could do it. I'm using you as a poster boy for everyone, so I apologize for that and that alone.
The game my group and I are working on now is 100% portable and has full language support. So far, the VNs I have seen in English that get sold are also portable. I'm not sure why a VN engine that does the same thing would be useful in those cases...
You misinterpreted his service as porting for profit, and you were offended that someone would take a whole 50% chunk from your profit, oh my! People that do less than that take 50% or more. Do you know how much get paid in real for this stuff? Certainly not 50% (hint: it's less). The service he was offering was the marketing of the game on more platforms than already reached. If that's an issue for you, say your peace and move on.
Lastly, I do not have a personal stake in your project. Where you decide to take it is up to you, and you alone. Not only does it not affect me, but you "not wanting to work with me/the others" when no one has asked you to doesn't affect us either.
What? Was this directed at me? o_O
I have not thrown any, nor have I said anything untrue. "Topa has poor, scam-like business manner" is not "Topa is a giant peenie head! Everyone hate him now, okay!"
Um, please, look over your two examples again. You'll find they are both just as flagrant and opinion-based. Whether you called me a peenie head or a poor, scam-like whatever, I will react the same, give or take a few words about your mother. If you attack* someone, expect a backlash. Since he's trying to set up a reputation, it is shocking that he gave one, but I don't think you (and the others) didn't deserve it.

* Attack, being defined as continuing pointing out flaws beyond helping.


Now I need some sleep, good luck wanking, guys!

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Re: Please be careful who you give business to.

#36 Post by Topagae » Sat Jul 24, 2010 10:25 pm

@Aleema

Night hun. I've never had a lady-knight in shining armor before. Thanks :3.
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Re: Please be careful who you give business to.

#37 Post by PyTom » Sat Jul 24, 2010 10:50 pm

Rather than simply cutting this thread off, I'm going to put a posting restriction on this thread. From now on, anyone posting in this thread less than 6 hours from their previous post will find the second post deleted by yours truly - regardless of the content of the post. This means that people can make whatever point they want - but they might have to wait to do so.

The restriction starts now - I'm not going to consider posts before this one, but once you post, the 6 hour clock starts.
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Re: Please be careful with your hard-earned money.

#38 Post by kinougames » Sat Jul 24, 2010 10:51 pm

The definition of crass is:
coarse; crude; not refined or sensible; materialistic; dense
I stand by my statement. Coarse wording ("this project doesn't seem to make sense and I can't figure out how the heck it's supposed to work") is not ad hominem, like the attacks you are throwing. "You are all trolls and assholes! Fuck you, you dicks!"
Polite? Yes, some of your sentences were very polite, you are very good (4-5) boys. I am not referring to you alone. You, fortaat, and Jake combined were a wrecking ball of unnecessary destruction. All before you had the excuses you had now. Your original motivators were picking on the fact that you and others would probably have no use for the service. So ... Why does that make your demands of him the greatest thing of importance ever? "I don't have to use his service and I will tell him publicly ... No to move on with my life. No? Fight about the cut? Fine, he's willing to do it for free. OH, what an ASSBUCKET! *new accounts* *bullying* That's it!! Let's make threads about it, calling him like a scam artist!!"
I'm not 100% sure what exactly you're trying to purport here, but I will attempt to address it. I stated my original motivators to be: 1) I'm not sure what this does that can't already be done for free, 2) I would not need this because I happen to have those very things for free, and lastly 3) most people can find this for free on these very forums.

I didn't post a giant load of "HAHAHA I DON'T EVEN NEED YOUR SHITTY SERVICE BECAUSE I AM SO FUCKING AWESOME~~~" I stated plainly that I was interested. Therefore, I wanted to know if there was something that didn't come so commonly offered. I mentioned the other thread in which several people spoke about the abundance of programmers and writers working free, but no artists.

Nowhere did I state that he's an assbucket. That's only you saying this. I certainly didn't call him an assbucket for doing it for free. Because despite doing some of it for free, he's still chatting about all the people totally interested in his paying service. I commended him more than once for offering free work. You should take Jake's advice and actually read the thread for what was actually said.

His actions were reminiscent of scam-like behavior. Whether you care or not, any research into scamming and scammer behavior would make someone worry.
That's not what he was offering. And whether or not YOU said you could do it, you said your service is not necessary because of [people who can do it], and the others in the thread did go out of their way to say that they could do it. I'm using you as a poster boy for everyone, so I apologize for that and that alone.
I did say that. I said that because it is relevant. Most games that are worth making money from are already portable. How did he plan to make any money on a service most games already have? Why was he asking for so much money on a service most sellable games already have? These are good questions. He might've had a special part to HIS engine that outranked already provided services.
You misinterpreted his service as porting for profit, and you were offended that someone would take a whole 50% chunk from your profit, oh my! People that do less than that take 50% or more. Do you know how much get paid in real for this stuff? Certainly not 50% (hint: it's less). The service he was offering was the marketing of the game on more platforms than already reached. If that's an issue for you, say your peace and move on.
I didn't misinterpret anything. The title of his post is "I want to buy/license games." Who is their right mind would look at this and think "oh, this guy is doing it because he loves us"? He only mentioned 2 pages in that he was going to do any free work at all for anyone. It was secondary to his original PAID statements.

I was not offended "that someone would take 50% chunk from my profit". I was wondering what he was ACTUALLY PROVIDING that was worth 50%. You really need to read before speaking. I said earlier "if Nintendo were offering to port my game to the Wii and giving me only 30%, I'd take it in a minute." Nintendo is worth handing over 70% because it has proof of sales and a platform KNOWN to work.

What did Topa show us? A platform that wasn't proven to work, had no marketing values, no values except "we could open this on the iPhone market." Even as far as that, Jake already stated that there seemed to be no way to account for the screen size difference, which would severely limit the enjoyment of VNs.

As I said, I was an interested party to start. Hell yes I want to know what I am getting that isn't already out there, and hell yes I am going to ask about it.
Um, please, look over your two examples again. You'll find they are both just as flagrant and opinion-based. Whether you called me a peenie head or a poor, scam-like whatever, I will react the same, give or take a few words about your mother. If you attack* someone, expect a backlash. Since he's trying to set up a reputation, it is shocking that he gave one, but I don't think you (and the others) didn't deserve it.

* Attack, being defined as continuing pointing out flaws beyond helping.

Now I need some sleep, good luck wanking, guys!
You're completely ridiculous (yes, that is directed at you, personally). The comment that "Topa has poor, scam-like business manner" IS helping, though it's not helping Topa. It's for the benefit of people who might think that he's some kind of cogent businessman.

If you act like a scammer, my caring about your personal feelings on whether or not you are a scammer has reached a standstill. My goal after seeing behavior like that is to warn others away and be helpful to them. I made comments that were for the benefit of his project. They were attacked, and questions were responded to with scam-like behavior. Yes. I am going to warn others.
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Re: Please be careful who you give business to.

#39 Post by sabata2 » Sun Jul 25, 2010 1:33 am

PyTom, I think that the restriction placed here and in the original topic will be a great help to slow this down so it won't get so heated. As such I'ma start my 6 hours now.
Don't kill me boss, I mean no wrong! D: But I'm part of our group too and I don't want to stand on the sidelines when I can atleast play support.

As for what you have a problem with, I see it as a problem with the entrepreneurial business model.
We're trying to have our business take off. We can't pay our workers currently, that's part of the definition/situation of a Start Up.
We need backing, and support. We asked for it today and yesterday in the form of asking for peoples stories and art that they wanted published.
Our in house team is unpaid. We can't work 8 hours a day on our game and survive (in both business and health models).
You ask for something "we've done", and you expect something big. We have something big, just not right now. If you don't believe us, then say you don't and be on your way.
We have a working engine, that can do everything a VN/Datesim requires, it just doesn't have any fluff or pretty clothing (ie. image transitions). But that's enough reason to say we don't have a working engine? If you believe so, then say it and walk away.
If you have questions, then don't hide them inside mounds of snide remarks, or sarcastic statements. Be straightforward. You don't have to be rude, or blunt, or anything else when you ask a question.

As for "scam-like behavior", I'd like to know how you guys know what that is. Did you have some bad experience in life where you were scammed out of money or some item to make you particularly skeptical to ANY newcomer with a deal? Or are you going based off what you THINK a scammer would do/say?
Cause I can almost guarantee you that if someone's trying to scam you, they WOULDN'T get defensive or angry like Topa did. They'd get much MUCH nicer to you. Answer every one of your questions with a well fabricated lie to try and get you to relax. I know, I've run into people like that before. And to have people from the company I work with get related to (insert expletive here) scam artists... I'm surprised he hasn't raged out at you people.

We hold honor and integrity in business very highly in our group. We start off showing everyone the same amount of respect we show everybody else. Only when we are disrespected do we show disrespect back. You claim to have done nothing wrong but I can pinpoint the specific lines that lead up to the blowout: (it all broke down by page 2)
"The service you offer is of very little value. Importing VNs to browsers isn't such a hard job as you make it out to be."
"It really isn't all that complicated..."
"30% for a professional product? You have no idea how much time and effort it costs to make such a product, which usually involves professionals too."
"...you're blowing the coding efforts way out of proportions."
"But that's kind of irrelevant if you're not offering anything like Ren'Py. Didn't you say that you basically had as much functionality as the Phoenix Wright games, only without the courtroom segments? Well, just for an easy example, Monele wrote an emulation of the courtroom segments in Ren'Py ages ago; Ren'Py is incredibly flexible, both with built-in functionality and the option to script in Python."

Every single one of those quotes degrades the person it's directed at.
Not valuable. Not hard. You don't know this. You're exaggerating. We don't need you, we have this.

Every single one of those quotes is EGGING for a fight, seething disrespect, and hardly justified.

The second he got defensive, you defended the people he got defensive against. And now, here we are in a topic where you outright say, not four lines into this topic, "avoid this person and his business".

You have a right to be wary. You have a right to your own opinion. But you do not have a right to degrade someone else or their work because you think you should.

No, we don't have perfect professionalism, because we're LEARNING. Does that mean that when we react to disrespect, we HAVE to be treated with outright revulsion?
*gasp* He's barked at that person stating their opinion, let's argue with him to the point where we're saying he's a scam artist and actively trying to have people avoid him.

EVERYONE'S at fault here. So cut the crap. Let it go. AND LEAVE WELL ENOUGH ALONE.
Topa's already said he's MORE than willing to do all that. It's YOU GUYS who seem to be hell bent on destroying anything any everything of us.

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Re: [SLOWDOWN] Please be careful who you give business to.

#40 Post by lordcloudx » Sun Jul 25, 2010 2:56 am

sabata2 wrote:*gasp* He's barked at that person stating their opinion, let's argue with him to the point where we're saying he's a scam artist and actively trying to have people avoid him.
Off-topic: I agree; also, tangentially related to this, it seems like you can get away with being offensive (in this demographic) as long as it's veiled in thin eloquence and passed off as "personal opinion" or "helpful critique" or any other euphemisms you prefer.

As for Topagae (and sabata2) and his engine I'd be wary of doing business with them myself (if I had any business to do with them) but I don't feel that it's polite or morally upright to start a glorified smear campaign against the guy no matter how corrupt I may find his prospective business practices to be.

I'd suggest (to everyone in general) to just apply the principle of caveat emptor to any online transactions you may choose to make.
How do you make your games? I see. Thank you for the prompt replies, but it is my considered opinion that you're doing it wrong inefficiently because I am a perfushenal professional. Do it my way this way and we can all ascend VN Nirvana together while allowing me to stroke my ego you will improve much faster. Also, please don't forget to thank me for this constructive critique or I will cry and bore you to death respond appropriately with a tl;dr rant discourse of epic adequately lengthy proportions. - Sarcasm Veiled in Euphemism: Secrets of Forum Civility by lordcloudx (Coming soon to an online ebook near you.)

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Re: Please be careful who you give business to.

#41 Post by Wintermoon » Sun Jul 25, 2010 3:48 am

sabata2 wrote:As for what you have a problem with, I see it as a problem with the entrepreneurial business model.
We're trying to have our business take off. We can't pay our workers currently, that's part of the definition/situation of a Start Up.
We need backing, and support. We asked for it today and yesterday in the form of asking for peoples stories and art that they wanted published.
Our in house team is unpaid. We can't work 8 hours a day on our game and survive (in both business and health models).
You ask for something "we've done", and you expect something big. We have something big, just not right now. If you don't believe us, then say you don't and be on your way.
This whole thread could have been avoided if you (and by "you" I mean both you personally and Topagae) had stated as much up front.

So you are beginners. You are still working on your technology. You don't have much to show yet. Fine. There is no shame in that, so long as you are willing to admit it up-front. It's when you make grandiose claims, fail to back up those claims, make weak excuses, and contradict yourselves that people start assuming the worst.

Consider this: you started with a blank slate. Nobody here had any bias against you when you arrived here. Somehow, within the space of one short thread, you managed to turn several potential customers into vocal detractors. Regardless of who's at fault, that's just plain bad business.

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Re: Please be careful who you give business to.

#42 Post by Topagae » Sun Jul 25, 2010 4:24 am

sabata2 wrote:As for what you have a problem with, I see it as a problem with the entrepreneurial business model.
We're trying to have our business take off. We can't pay our workers currently, that's part of the definition/situation of a Start Up.
We need backing, and support. We asked for it today and yesterday in the form of asking for peoples stories and art that they wanted published.
Our in house team is unpaid. We can't work 8 hours a day on our game and survive (in both business and health models).
You ask for something "we've done", and you expect something big. We have something big, just not right now. If you don't believe us, then say you don't and be on your way.
Wintermoon wrote:
This whole thread could have been avoided if you (and by "you" I mean both you personally and Topagae) had stated as much up front.

So you are beginners. You are still working on your technology. You don't have much to show yet. Fine. There is no shame in that, so long as you are willing to admit it up-front. It's when you make grandiose claims, fail to back up those claims, make weak excuses, and contradict yourselves that people start assuming the worst.

Consider this: you started with a blank slate. Nobody here had any bias against you when you arrived here. Somehow, within the space of one short thread, you managed to turn several potential customers into vocal detractors. Regardless of who's at fault, that's just plain bad business.
Stated up front eh? Let's break it down because you seem to have not read. You know, my very first post. Or the name of the thread topic. Strange.

What you say I didn't state up front:

"We're trying to have our business take off. We can't pay our workers currently, that's part of the definition/situation of a Start Up."

Where covered:

"My name is Topagae, and I run an indie game company who is trying very hard to make it easier for regular folk to play visual novels here in the west."

Indie game companies are startups, they usually can't pay their workers to the point of being a stereotype. The only way you could claim I didn't state this up front is if you don't know what an indie game company is. You seem to, so I'm going to move on.


What you say I didn't state up front:

"We need backing, and support. We asked for it today and yesterday in the form of asking for peoples stories and art that they wanted published."

Where covered:

This was the topic name of the thread, the name of the thread and the entire subject of the post was that I am asking for backing/support from people in this forum in the form of letting me port their content.

What you say I didn't state up front:

"Our in house team is unpaid. We can't work 8 hours a day on our game and survive (in both business and health models).

Where covered:

"My name is Topagae, and I run an indie game company who is trying very hard to make it easier for regular folk to play visual novels here in the west."

Again, indie game company, being unpaid is the norm. If you didn't catch onto this I did mention it several times later in the thread.


What you say I didn't state up front:

You ask for something "we've done", and you expect something big. We have something big, just not right now. If you don't believe us, then say you don't and be on your way.

Where covered:

This requires a little thought, but nothing a reasonable person shouldn't be able to see immediately. Now, the entire post was claiming I had the engine (Something big), and we claim that it is big (The engine is nice!). Those are pretty prevalent in my first post. As for the "Just not right now part" that should be OBVIOUS. If I already had a bunch of great games, I wouldn't need to be asking anyone in the forums for them would I?

And there you have it. Everything you specifically say I didn't say up front. I did in fact say, and all I had to do to prove it was read the name of the thread and the very first post of said thread. You can't get more up front then that. And since you claim the whole thread wouldn't exist if I HAD done stated it up front, I'm forced to conclude you must be wrong about that, because the thread DOES exist but obviously for a different reason.

If I had to guess...
Aleema wrote: You, fortaat, and Jake combined were a wrecking ball of unnecessary destruction. All before you had the excuses you had now. Your original motivators were picking on the fact that you and others would probably have no use for the service. So ... Why does that make your demands of him the greatest thing of importance ever? "I don't have to use his service and I will tell him publicly ... No to move on with my life. No? Fight about the cut? Fine, he's willing to do it for free. OH, what an ASSBUCKET! *new accounts* *bullying* That's it!! Let's make threads about it, calling him like a scam artist!!"
I suppose this thread is a logical extension of bullying me and destroying my credibility. That saddens me a lot. I expect better from this place and people. I watched you all for a year. There's so much good in here, a place of people all very helpful and understanding. So many people from so far away, not caring about this at all when I walk around and I see NEIGHBORS that hate each other. And hear I sit. Forced to explain to a person that I'm not lying by quoting the name of my thread and mostly the FIRST sentence of said thread.

Am I really that bad? Why do you hate me so? I'm no saint, but it seems like people want me up against the firing squad for speeding a bit. Sure it'll piss off some people off and get you a ticket, but jeez you guys seem to wanna kill me for it? I'm truly trying to understand how I could accrue so much hate from people that generally are some of the most understanding I've ever seen.

I'm even getting VERY long hate mail from people who couldn't bother to read my entire thread, or even just SKIM it a little. Among other things they claimed I never apologized or admitted I was wrong about something.

Counter-proof
Topagae wrote: My offer is pretty well detailed above and is wholly open to negotiation, and I'm truly sorry if
Topagae wrote: We are in fact, offering to re-code custom scripts into people's games. I'm pretty sure that fits exactly into the definition of "Porting", sorry if that wasn't clear.
Topagae wrote: Much easier on the AB testing and stat tracking. I guess I'm just lazy like that X_x, sorry.
Topagae wrote: I'm sorry if our art is not up to par, sorry.
Topagae wrote: I apologize for not being as experienced in this, or every other field as you expect someone to be, but
Topagae wrote:I apologize I can't thank everyone who supports me, my anger got in the way of appreciating the folk are helping. I'll work on that too.
Topagae wrote: I am especially sorry @Ren, I am discounting you because I don't want to answer ANY questions anymore.
Last edited by Topagae on Sun Jul 25, 2010 6:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Please be careful who you give business to.

#43 Post by kinougames » Sun Jul 25, 2010 5:19 am

sabata2 wrote:PyTom, I think that the restriction placed here and in the original topic will be a great help to slow this down so it won't get so heated. As such I'ma start my 6 hours now.
Don't kill me boss, I mean no wrong! D: But I'm part of our group too and I don't want to stand on the sidelines when I can atleast play support.

As for what you have a problem with, I see it as a problem with the entrepreneurial business model.
We're trying to have our business take off. We can't pay our workers currently, that's part of the definition/situation of a Start Up.
We need backing, and support. We asked for it today and yesterday in the form of asking for peoples stories and art that they wanted published.
Our in house team is unpaid. We can't work 8 hours a day on our game and survive (in both business and health models).
You ask for something "we've done", and you expect something big. We have something big, just not right now. If you don't believe us, then say you don't and be on your way.
We have a working engine, that can do everything a VN/Datesim requires, it just doesn't have any fluff or pretty clothing (ie. image transitions). But that's enough reason to say we don't have a working engine? If you believe so, then say it and walk away.
If you have questions, then don't hide them inside mounds of snide remarks, or sarcastic statements. Be straightforward. You don't have to be rude, or blunt, or anything else when you ask a question.
Topa refused to prove this product exists. It's like Jake says. You might have a great bridge to sell us, but it looks shady as all get out if you show us a crappy bridge first and then say "we must prove trustworthiness by spending more time on the transaction if you want us to see the real bridge." That is scam-like behavior. It's pretty clear in this post. Scientology uses a very similar tactic, by speaking of great things, luring you in, not giving you details, and asking for "trustworthiness" in the form of payment before they can show you these wonderful things they claim exist.

It didn't help that Topa contradicted himself several times. This comparison was given to me:

If I'm going to buy shoes, and I see a pair I like that are unfortunately obviously messed up, and I say "hey, these shoes are messed up, why's that?" and get "Sorry, didn't fix them yet," my next question is going to be "why did you leave them out if they weren't fixed?" Likening this situation to Topa's responses, he'd've said something akin to "oh wait, we meant to leave them out and messed up like that, because we don't want to show you the really great shoes in the back until you like these messed up ones first."

I didn't hide a thing in a mountain of snide remarks. Again. Topa responded perfectly civilly to my first few posts and I had no problem with him until he started throwing insults around. (Which oddly enough, his first snippy comment comes right after fortaat's post. Maybe he should have taken a breath and calmed down before throwing other people into his rage.)
As for "scam-like behavior", I'd like to know how you guys know what that is. Did you have some bad experience in life where you were scammed out of money or some item to make you particularly skeptical to ANY newcomer with a deal? Or are you going based off what you THINK a scammer would do/say?
Cause I can almost guarantee you that if someone's trying to scam you, they WOULDN'T get defensive or angry like Topa did. They'd get much MUCH nicer to you. Answer every one of your questions with a well fabricated lie to try and get you to relax. I know, I've run into people like that before. And to have people from the company I work with get related to (insert expletive here) scam artists... I'm surprised he hasn't raged out at you people.
Research, good sir, will tell you what scammers do and don't do. As a business owner, I read a lot. I make it -my business- to know how it all runs. You already said you made mistakes due to a lack of experience, knowledge, and research, so I would advise that you research common scam tactics. Several websites put up explanations of scammer behavior.

Some scammers are nicer. Other scammers are very harrowing and rush you to go along further into the transaction before giving you the proper details. Even other scammers attempt to garner pity. More scammers besides get angry quickly and then say "well you're the one missing out on this great product that tons of other people are going to invest in" to force your hand (which Topa does several times).
We hold honor and integrity in business very highly in our group. We start off showing everyone the same amount of respect we show everybody else. Only when we are disrespected do we show disrespect back. You claim to have done nothing wrong but I can pinpoint the specific lines that lead up to the blowout: (it all broke down by page 2)
"The service you offer is of very little value. Importing VNs to browsers isn't such a hard job as you make it out to be."
"It really isn't all that complicated..."
"30% for a professional product? You have no idea how much time and effort it costs to make such a product, which usually involves professionals too."
"...you're blowing the coding efforts way out of proportions."
"But that's kind of irrelevant if you're not offering anything like Ren'Py. Didn't you say that you basically had as much functionality as the Phoenix Wright games, only without the courtroom segments? Well, just for an easy example, Monele wrote an emulation of the courtroom segments in Ren'Py ages ago; Ren'Py is incredibly flexible, both with built-in functionality and the option to script in Python."

Every single one of those quotes degrades the person it's directed at.
Not valuable. Not hard. You don't know this. You're exaggerating. We don't need you, we have this.
Mind you, I never made any of those quoted comments. Reading back, no one associated with this name made any of those comments either. In fact, most of those comments are made by fortaat. Why should I be insulted despite not making those comments? Topa's first mistake was to treat everyone who didn't automatically agree with him as one entity. I personally explained my comment of "what is special about your service that I could not get for free/cheap?" because I actually wanted to know what was completely unique to your service, and further explained that I tend to speedread and might've missed the information if it had already been given. There was a lot of "excuse if I was unclear". Topa had no problems with the first few posts I made to him, and then slowly started insulting myself, fortaat, and Jake all at once, when most of your angering comments listed there were not made by all three of us.

Treating three completely different people as some kind of joined entity when none of us know each other got the turn it deserved, a painting of Topa, the project, and all of you. I am not fortaat. I am not Jake. Insulting me for anyone else's comments is going to piss me off the same way you felt pissed off.
Every single one of those quotes is EGGING for a fight, seething disrespect, and hardly justified.

The second he got defensive, you defended the people he got defensive against. And now, here we are in a topic where you outright say, not four lines into this topic, "avoid this person and his business".
I read Jake's initial comments. They were not rude by any stretch. So yes, I defended him. I actually did not read fortaat's original comments until Topa left a pissed off comment to one of them.
You have a right to be wary. You have a right to your own opinion. But you do not have a right to degrade someone else or their work because you think you should.
Again, my personal comments were explained. Stop forcing the responsibility of other people onto me. People who don't agree with you don't all agree with each other, even if I DO agree with fortaat.
No, we don't have perfect professionalism, because we're LEARNING. Does that mean that when we react to disrespect, we HAVE to be treated with outright revulsion?
*gasp* He's barked at that person stating their opinion, let's argue with him to the point where we're saying he's a scam artist and actively trying to have people avoid him.

EVERYONE'S at fault here. So cut the crap. Let it go. AND LEAVE WELL ENOUGH ALONE.
Topa's already said he's MORE than willing to do all that. It's YOU GUYS who seem to be hell bent on destroying anything and everything of us.
If I was hell bent on destroying you, I would not bother to post any amends to this, and leave it exactly the way it was.

You received revulsion from me, not only for the rabid insults and refusal to show viable work, but for lumping me in with comments I didn't make, according to the ones quoted above. From my perspective, you rabidly attacked and didn't pay attention to a lick of anything I said. If you have problems with other people, you address those people. You don't assume people who disagree with you but agree with each other are a hive mind without individuality.

Furthermore, if you want to react to perceived disrespect, avoid going into business. You cannot act that way in business, in public, even if the person insults your mom. Even if I want to include the fact that you're "learning", the first thing you need to "learn" is that attacking a group because of a piece is not only just as rude and disgusting and you probably felt you were being treated, but liable to get you raked over the coals.

The first comment I made that was in defense of something fortaat said, I explicitly said "fortaat isn't nice", acknowledging the OP's feelings. I also tried to give several pieces of hard and straight advice "do research, fix your site, fix your marketing strategy". I then get "oh aren't you high and mighty", and Topa goes into a few posts that sound very "oh maaaaan all this work I am getting, it's like soooooo much and i don't even have time to answer all these stupid questions anymoooooooore" This came off as a very huge "fuck you in the ear for not loving me, because I am so awesome", and I responded that he sounded just as high and mighty as he was blaming me of being, and the very relevant advice of "in business you DO have to prove yourself; that is how business works." You can look back, it's all there.

It only got worse when Topa made his dissenters an entity, and even went as far as being rude to Ren because she had the nerve to agree with us ("You're not trustworthy because you agree with them.") and basically shitting on her and the help she gave you as far as beta testing. So yes. It reached a level that only got worse and worse, and while I will take responsibility for the personal part I played, I will NOT do so for anyone else's part, including Topa's very large, huge, massive part.

This post was deserved, well, based on those actions. A smear campaign is not made up of truths, or opinion based on truths.

This is getting really exhausting and boring, so I will say once more so that it is clear: No, I am not going to use your service, paid, or free. That is my personal choice; the choice of MY company. However, I do not have some personal stake in the entire thing being torn to shreds because I personally won't use you. I dislike the way I was treated, but others were also treated poorly. I am not in the business of lying about people for laughs, no matter who they are.

In that vein: fix the website, put out a working prototype, work on business manner and professionalism, and the product itself (despite putting down the "pretty" that current VN engines use, VISUAL novels are called VISUAL because pretty is what makes them sellable. It's something you need to consider heavily), change your marketing strategy to focus on why your engine is different from existing engines, possibly by adding a lot of extra "pretty" that people can do only with you, research your potential clients and customers, and come back in a few months when this has completely blown over and you have the components to sell, sell, sell.
Topagae wrote:Stated up front eh? Let's break it down because you seem to have not read. You know, my very first post. Or the name of the thread topic. Strange.

What you say I didn't state up front:

"We're trying to have our business take off. We can't pay our workers currently, that's part of the definition/situation of a Start Up."

Where covered:

"My name is Topagae, and I run an indie game company who is trying very hard to make it easier for regular folk to play visual novels here in the west."

Indie game companies are startups, they usually can't pay their workers to the point of being a stereotype. The only way you could claim I didn't state this up front is if you don't know what an indie game company is. You seem to, so I'm going to move on.

Aaaa. I didn't think I'd point out an derailing argument so quickly.

Breaking an argument down into its parts to prove a point clearly not meant by the original post in its entirety is called a derailing argument.

"I am an indie company" does not equal "we do not pay anyone and our work is not refined."

As part of an indie company that DOES pay, and refuses to put out sub par work, I'm going to say now that the definition of indie does not mean "run without business sense." Companies that plan to make it up always have a budget, have something for possible expenses. Sure, we don't hand out full-time salaries, but we make a price and stick to it. Even going beyond that.
What you say I didn't state up front:

"We need backing, and support. We asked for it today and yesterday in the form of asking for peoples stories and art that they wanted published."

Where covered:

Seriously? This was the topic name of the thread, the name of the thread and the entire subject of the post was that I am asking for backing/support from people in this forum in the form of letting me port their content.
"Backing and support" are not what you were looking for in that title. "Looking to buy/license" is not "asking for support". It's asking for a business deal. You wanted people to give you games to sell. You later changed your mind, but your original post was with intent to sell and hopefully make some kind of profit back.
What you say I didn't state up front:

"Our in house team is unpaid. We can't work 8 hours a day on our game and survive (in both business and health models).

Where covered:

"My name is Topagae, and I run an indie game company who is trying very hard to make it easier for regular folk to play visual novels here in the west."
Derailing argument. The point was not that you were being untruthful about "not being able to work all day on the project". It was that you didn't let us know that DUE to that, your product was less amazing than purported.
What you say I didn't state up front:

You ask for something "we've done", and you expect something big. We have something big, just not right now. If you don't believe us, then say you don't and be on your way.

Where covered:

This requires a little thought, but nothing a reasonable person shouldn't be able to see immediately. Now, the entire post was claiming I had the engine (Something big), and we claim that it is big (The engine is nice!). Those are pretty prevalent in my first post. As for the "Just not right now part" that should be OBVIOUS. If I already had a bunch of great games, I wouldn't need to be asking anyone in the forums for them would I?
Again. No one is saying that you had great games already. Please read carefully. Wintermoon states that you claimed to have a great engine. I mentioned that if your engine was amazing, even a crappy game should have worked smoothly. The people who tested it made it very clear that the game did not worth smoothly. You were not upfront about the quality of the ENGINE, games completely aside.
And there you have it. Everything you specifically say I didn't say up front. I did in fact say, and all I had to do to prove it was read the name of the thread and the very first post of said thread. You can't get more up front then that. And since you claim the whole thread shouldn't exist if I HAD done what I just proved I did, I'm guessing you must be wrong about that, because the thread DOES exist but obviously for a different reason.
You didn't prove anything except that you have trouble reading the information actually provided and not warping it to suit your tastes, which is another massive problem I have with your MO.
I suppose this thread is a logical extension of bullying me and destroying my credibility. That saddens me a lot. I expect better from this place and people. I watched you all for a year. There's so much good in here, a place of people all very helpful and understanding. So many people from so far away, not caring about this at all when I walk around and I see NEIGHBORS that hate each other. And hear I sit. Forced to explain to a person that I'm not lying by quoting the name of my thread and FIRST sentence of said thread.

Am I really that bad? Why do you hate me so? I'm no saint, but it seems like people want me up against the firing squad for speeding. Sure it'll piss off some people but jeez, you going to kill me for it? I'm truly trying to understand how I could accrue so much hate from people that generally are some of the most understanding I've ever seen.
Do you think we just picked you out of the blue of "noobs" to bully? You can see my joining date. I joined barely two weeks ago. No one cares that much. Trust me. I didn't post this to be all about you. This was for the actions you made. Actions equal consequences, whether you like it or not, and you clearly are not willing to work anything out by your sob story pity party instead of "wow, you know what, I acted badly. I'm sorry. Let's stop this." When you made comments that bettered your situation, I made note of them. You didn't even throw an OUNCE of acknowledgement at how easily and quickly I was willing to rescind things in this post for your benefit when I felt you were making an effort. Instead, you completely bypass that and make several offtopic, idiotic comments to Aleema who also made quite a spectacle of herself with Jake.

Are you that bad? I don't know you. Did you ACT that badly? Yes. Absolutely. 100%, you acted that badly. You launched your claws willy nilly and you got burned for doing so.
I'm even getting VERY long hate mail from people who couldn't bother to read my entire thread, or even just SKIM it a little. Among other things they claimed I never apologized or admitted I was wrong about something
These people are not me. I'm sorry that people are doing that, but I've never made those claims, and I'm not personally going to take responsibility. Furthermore, they likely mentioned that you didn't apologize for being a DICK to people. You treated her like garbage when she agreed with something YOU didn't like. You apologized later, but you were still nasty to someone for no other reason than them agreeing with someone else. I went and posted an edit that I felt was fair for you, to zero recognition. I've been lumped in with fortaat because why? I agreed that fortaat made a relevant point? I got upset when you called me high and mighty for agreeing with a relevant point and asked you to kindly "please not be offended" because I really thought that the information was relevant to your project? These things piss people off. It makes them mad. If you want people to understand why you're upset, you should share and share alike in that kindness, and had you done so, the questions that arose the very odd scam behavior might've been answered quickly and everyone might've been fine and dandy.
Seriously. I am responding to a post I can disprove is completely false with the first sentence/name of my thread. I then got SEVERAL pages of criticism from someone who can't bother to SKIM my text in a thread. I'm getting ALOT of this and I'm pulling my hair out wondering if I'm just some kind of horrible terrible monster that should be put to death because my mere existence is a crime against humanity. Cause seriously, that was two of about a dozen examples.
You disproved nothing, as I've shown you. Stop the pity party. There is something seriously off with a person who thinks that the proper response to an internet blow out is to assume that people want them put to death. You make several comments about "taking this as a lesson and moving on" and then DON'T MOVE ON. Just do it. Do it. Don't say it. Actions speak louder than words, as a lot of us have tried to make clear to you about your empty business promises. Muling on and on about "everyone hates me, I'm just going to leave, the moderator better come in here and tell me how I shouldn't leave!" is just...poor form in every way. Please spare yourself and do take this emotionally. I am actually worried for your personage right now because this is ALARMING BEHAVIOR.

Also, report the emails or PMs you have received if any, if they are actually volatile enough to be reported and not simply basic critique.
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Re: Please be careful who you give business to.

#44 Post by Jake » Sun Jul 25, 2010 6:42 am

Since I'm only allowed one post, I have to answer three separate people at once. So: long post divided into sections. No reply for KinouGames because I don't disagree with anything he's said strongly enough to warrant one. (For the most part, I agree completely, in fact.)

Aleema
Aleema wrote: You, fortaat, and Jake combined were a wrecking ball of unnecessary destruction. ... Your original motivators were picking on the fact that you and others would probably have no use for the service.
Please, if you're going to make assertions like this, back them up: tell me what exactly I said in that thread which was unnecessary or rude, before Topogae had been plenty rude to me for no reason? I asked questions about the details of his service because I was interested in it. At least, I was interested in it until it became apparent that Topogae clearly was avoiding answering my questions. I don't spend an hour of my time messing around with a site and service that doesn't interest me in the least.

I don't think you'll bother even trying to point out how I've been so rude as you claim, because I've asked you to do the same thing when you told me that all I ever post on this forum was condescending bile and hatred and you couldn't find anything specific to criticise then, either - but honestly, before you make statements like this you should really think how you're going to back them up with facts. If you can't you're just bullying yourself.

Aleema wrote: The service he was offering was the marketing of the game on more platforms than already reached.
Except when asked what that marketing comprised, he basically said "I have no idea". So he wasn't offering anything of the sort, except in terms of pipe dreams.
Aleema wrote: What? Was this directed at me? o_O
Well, you're one of the few people who jumped into that thread and enthusiastically declared it was wonderful without even thinking to look at what the guy actually had to offer, so... it's not entirely beyond the realms of speculation to think that maybe right now, you might be feeling a tad embarrassed about having been so careless, which could be motivating your sudden attack on everyone who was pointing out the flaws in his representation here.


Sabata
sabata2 wrote: As for what you have a problem with, I see it as a problem with the entrepreneurial business model.
Not all entrepreneurs are so reluctant to answer questions about their products.
sabata2 wrote: We have a working engine, that can do everything a VN/Datesim requires, it just doesn't have any fluff or pretty clothing (ie. image transitions). But that's enough reason to say we don't have a working engine? If you believe so, then say it and walk away.
You have a mostly-working engine, but it doesn't do everything that Topagae claimed, which is why he got himself into trouble. If he'd come into the forum and said "hey, look, we're starting to create this online VN engine so it might be possible to play VNs without downloading stuff on mobile platforms, we think it's going to be pretty cool but it's not finished yet", and then when people asked to see the engine working he was straightforward and showed us, I expect the whole thing would have turned out very differently.

sabata2 wrote: As for "scam-like behavior", I'd like to know how you guys know what that is. Did you have some bad experience in life where you were scammed out of money or some item to make you particularly skeptical to ANY newcomer with a deal? Or are you going based off what you THINK a scammer would do/say?
Cause I can almost guarantee you that if someone's trying to scam you, they WOULDN'T get defensive or angry like Topa did.
I think you'll find that most people who use the internet have received at least one Nigerian scam email, for example. The running theme is making grandiose claims and not providing evidence to back them up when asked.

I don't think Topagae is a scammer, and I never did - but he's doing the same kind of thing. "I have this great thing, and I want you to sign up with me to use it, but I won't tell you what it can do or show you it working, you'll just have to trust me that it exists".

And really, I'll agree that this thread started out a bit more alarmist than necessary, but honestly, trying to paint it as an unwarranted smear campaign is disingenuous. It's far more like a bad-eBay-seller warning thread, which you'll see a lot of on forums where trades often take place. It doesn't matter to the general public whether the bad seller is a scammer, or whether he's just really busy with his day job and taking care of his sick mother and his fifteen adopted ex-stray cats - the result is the same, he doesn't send stuff out and people should avoid him.
sabata2 wrote: "But that's kind of irrelevant if you're not offering anything like Ren'Py. Didn't you say that you basically had as much functionality as the Phoenix Wright games, only without the courtroom segments? Well, just for an easy example, Monele wrote an emulation of the courtroom segments in Ren'Py ages ago; Ren'Py is incredibly flexible, both with built-in functionality and the option to script in Python."

Every single one of those quotes degrades the person it's directed at.
I can answer this one, because it's something I wrote myself, and you're completely misinterpreting it if you think it's an attack intended to degrade Topagae and his service. If you go back and read the whole post in context - and bear in mind it's the first post I made in the thread - what I'm saying is this:

- In the paragraph immediately preceeding that one, Fortaat is claiming that someone could port Ren'Py to the browser in a month, making your efforts pretty worthless. I responded saying that this simply wasn't true, Ren'Py couldn't be ported to the browser simply at all. If anything, I'm defending Topagae at this point because I don't think it's fair to belittle his service just because Ren'Py is better; Ren'Py doesn't get delivered via browser.

- In the quoted paragraph, I'm saying that it's not even comparable, because they're totally different beasts. It's not saying "your engine is so shit it's not worth my time", it's saying "you're not trying to sell us a 16-wheeler truck, you're trying to sell us an off-road 4x4, so it's beside the point that your vehicle can't hold five tonnes of meat in a refrigerated atmosphere, that's not its purpose". I left off the "...it can drive all kinds of places a 16-wheeler truck can't" because I thought that was pretty obvious, at the time.


I tend to have the same view of it as KinouGames: it looks very much like Topagae took offence at Fortaat's blunt delivery and started to view everything anyone else said that wasn't "your service is wonderful" as a personal attack as a result. Then he started getting defensive and rude, which gave Kinou and I the same kind of reaction - one of scepticism.

sabata2 wrote: The second he got defensive, you defended the people he got defensive against. And now, here we are in a topic where you outright say, not four lines into this topic, "avoid this person and his business".
I think you'll find that people are being wary of him because he took offence at things that really shouldn't have taken offence from. Like questions about what his engine does that makes it interesting, and how well it handles certain notorious problems.

If you go into a 16-wheeler forum and advertise your off-road 4x4, you're going to have to expect people to say "so what's the storage capacity", because that's the mentality of 16-wheeler people. And when they ask questions like "so it's an off-roader - how strong are the axles and how good's the suspension?", you should have an answer, because that's a relevant thing when you're trying to sell an off-roader.

If Topagae had said "we're not so worried about storage capacity, we're focussing on off-road" it might have been different, but instead he said "our off-roader is awesome, why don't you make one yourself if you're so great" as if that answered the question. And when asked about specific off-road details, he either ignored the questions or responded with "go take a test drive" and pointed us to something which only went off-road if you were very careful and slow.

Topagae
Topagae wrote: Indie game companies are startups, they usually can't pay their workers
Sometimes, but not always. All "indie" means to most people is "doesn't have the backing of an established third-party publisher". So Rockstar Games are not "indie", because they have the backing of Take Two. Popcap Games are "indie", because they self-publish everything, they're not tied to the agenda of some other company.

I'm sure I don't have to tell you that Popcap games are a gigantic company who can easily afford to pay their workers. Indie companies are sometimes as you describe them, but not always.

But this is beside the point, because it's more relevant that your engine is still under development and starting up: had you held the attitude in that thread that you would be open with what you had, show us the current state of your development and let us know that you're aware it's not perfect and it's still being improved and taken critique on-board, I'm willing to bet we would have been more friendly - I know I would have. Instead, you seemed to be under the impression that it's more "proper" or "business-y" to hide everything from everyone and pretend you had this awesome engine that you're just not showing to anyone - in effect, failing to represent that your engine was 'just starting up' at all.

Topagae wrote: I mean how can people MISS this stuff I just detailed?
It has seemed equally bizarre to me pretty much since you started the thread how you can miss the fact that showing us the current version of your engine rather than just assuring us that it exists and it's better than the version online would give you a lot more credibility.
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Re: Please be careful who you give business to.

#45 Post by LVUER » Sun Jul 25, 2010 8:20 am

My very first post here, although I have watched both thread closely from the very first post.
Topagae wrote:I'm even getting VERY long hate mail from people who couldn't bother to read my entire thread, or even just SKIM it a little. Among other things they claimed I never apologized or admitted I was wrong about something.
I guess he was referring to me? Since I was sending him a PM and my PM is very long, although it is not a hate mail, or anything near that. I was discussing about a "businessman manner" for his future reference.

Anyway, if you (Topagae) REALLY thinks that my PM is a hate mail, you have my permission (or I ask for your permission) to paste the PM into this thread.

But if not, well then, you could ignore this post...
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