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How Bandai Namco is changing 'Duelyst'

How Bandai Namco is changing 'Duelyst'
From Engadget - July 14, 2017

"Most players do not realize that marketing can take up more than 50 percent of a development team's time and effort," Lee tells Engadget. "This inevitably takes away from core game development, so we are glad these responsibilities are off our plate."

On a meta level, daily life at Counterplay has not changed since the Bandai Namco partnership. The team still holds daily stand-ups, weekly production reviews and other consistent meetings that have been standard since Duelyst's inception.

"We work like a military unit, with clear accountability and a set of escalating protocols," Lee says.

What has changed is the work itself -- Bandai Namco is now handling all of the marketing, promotional campaigns and customer support for Duelyst. This includes behind-the-scenes tasks like writing newsletters, staying active on social media, creating local content, organizing events and communicating with players across a multitude of channels. Now that Counterplay does not have to worry about these things, it can create more -- and more diverse -- content for Duelyst.

"We now get to focus 100 percent on game development, including card design, card balance, play testing, pixel sprites, animation artwork, lore, new game modes and in-game features," Lee says.

This is what makes partnering with a publisher so appealing to so many independent studios. Most developers would rather focus on actually creating, updating and growing their games rather than running Twitter accounts and writing mass emails. That's exactly how publishers can help, alongside financial support.

What keeps some developers away from publishers is a fear of losing control over their creative vision. That's not the case with Bandai Namco, Lee says.

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