Alexis Kennedy, founder of Failbetter Games, wrote a great piece on the psychology of indie studios as they develop then launch their games. He interweaves his own experience with the presumed mindset at Hello Games, which results in a sound and empathetic take on No Man’s Sky’s launch.
The whole piece is worth a read, but this bit about buying games stuck out to me:
IT HAS NEVER BEEN EASIER TO FIND OUT EXACTLY WHAT A GAME IS LIKE ON LAUNCH DAY, AND IF YOU HAVE ANY DOUBTS, YOU CAN WAIT A WEEK AND YOU CAN BE ABSOLUTELY SURE.
It’s not Kickstarter, it’s not politics, it’s not marriage. You’re not buying land in the Wild West or shares in a startup or payment protection insurance. You’re not being sold drugs or gambling. Whatever you think of Metacritic and the gaming press, a couple of days after launch they had done their job, and you could find out with one Google query that NMS was a 70⁄100, or in English, Buy With Caution If You Like That Sort Of Thing.
Absolutely spot on.