Bigger budget games?

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Lab Man
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Bigger budget games?

#1 Post by Lab Man » Sat Jan 12, 2019 8:22 pm

Does anybody know a lot about visual novel budgets? I've been working on a game for a while, and I'm almost ready to start a kickstarter, but I have no idea how much a lot of things typically cost.

My game has 8 characters, most of which have multiple poses(usually 2) and about 10-15 faces in total. I feel like that's where most of the money would go, but again, I don't know.

I also have a large number of backgrounds needed, about 30 or so, but many of those are multiples(the same but day/night etc). I can do that myself by taking photos, but of course, I'd prefer to have real art.

I'm also worried about CGs. I've only got about 2 or 3 that absolutely must be in the game, but I'd like a lot more. If I wanted the game to have H-content, which I do, then I'd probably need like 2-4 more CGs per character... All of it is really adding up.

There's also music, but I hear that is cheap, and I've been learning to compose myself in the worse case anyway.

I know that the main thing you're probably thinking here is, "it sounds like you need to scale the project back". Just humor me here and let me play devil's advocate. How much do you think all of this would cost? Does anyone have a lot of experience with this kind of thing? Any help would be appreciated a lot.

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Re: Bigger budget games?

#2 Post by AlteredGem » Sat Jan 12, 2019 10:06 pm

These are very rough estimates, but I can try to help you out.

Sprites generally range from $70-$200 per sprite. You won't get any lower with the amount of expressions and poses you need.
Backgrounds depend on complexity. They range from $50-$250 each depending on who you commission and the complexity of the piece.
CG's range from $50-$500 depending on number of characters in the piece, backgrounds, etc.
Music is about $40-$150 per track.

I hope this helps. Once again, it really depends on who you hire and the complexity and detail of the work in question.

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Re: Bigger budget games?

#3 Post by morinoir » Sun Jan 13, 2019 12:06 am

I think it can be easier to get the numbers if you already have the artist. When you know how much they charge per sprite, pose, and expression, you just need to sum everything up and the numbers will be there. Or alternatively, you can also set the budget from the start. For example you only want to pay $100 max per sprite, so that'll be $800 for all sprite. What you have to do then is find suitable artist who are willing to work with those price.

From what I saw on kickstarter, small basic vn projects usually ask for $5000 and for bigger project, it can go to $20000 or even higher. But mind you that people in general tend to expect more features in the bigger vn project, not just multiple endings and lots of cg, but a bit of gameplay and modification as well.
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Re: Bigger budget games?

#4 Post by Aviala » Sun Jan 13, 2019 2:29 pm

I'd say you'll need about 5000USD if you only want a few CG's, and probably like 6000-7000 if you want more. The minimum you'll need for the sprites is about 1k, and maybe 3k for the backgrounds. You'll probably need around 1k for cg's if you have about 5 of them, and after that probably around 200 USD per extra CG, but it really depends on the artist.

If you're planning on doing a KS campaign, remember that kickstarter takes 10% of the money, so you need to prepare for that. Depending on where you live, you might also need to pay taxes from that money, so the amount you'll actually need to set as your KS goal as might be up to 35% higher than what you'll need for the art assets.

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Re: Bigger budget games?

#5 Post by Lab Man » Sun Jan 13, 2019 10:23 pm

Thanks everyone, all of this advice has been really helpful. There were a lot of things that I hadn't considered, but it looks like I should be able to get enough to do what I want, even if I do end up having to do a lot of it myself. I'll just leave this thread here in case anybody else needs it. Thanks again.

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Re: Bigger budget games?

#6 Post by PeterKmiecik » Sun Jan 20, 2019 5:47 pm

Actually The Friendly Senpai made quite informative video about typicall prices for assets:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_h4QyUfuIVg

But.. from what I heard to date, kickstarter runs at it's own law. There is a lot of nuances to budgeting for crowdfunding. I'd recommend watching some official Kickstarter's videos about running one, theres ton of info there. Hope that helps :)

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Re: Bigger budget games?

#7 Post by Katy133 » Sat Jan 26, 2019 8:56 pm

You may be able to get a more solid idea of VN budgeting by looking through visual novel Kickstarters and looking at their budgeting pie charts. Compare the budgets and look at which Kickstarters finished making their VNs, and how large those projects were. If the developers include their social media links, you may also want to send them questions or ask for advice.
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Re: Bigger budget games?

#8 Post by PeterKmiecik » Mon Feb 04, 2019 8:06 pm

I'd be carefull with KS budgeting though. Theres quite some investment in running succesfull KS, making rewards and fullfilling goals + games often are waaay delayed after being funded.

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