Great game, shame no-one’s ever heard of it

Great game, shame no-one’s ever heard of it

Preface: Hello there, you ever growing number of visitors to RepRev. I do believe that I should introduce myself: I'm Jim, and I currently work at as an article writer. Having dithered in the Elixir Studios forum for a while now, I decided to change my allegiance from the RPG / FPS world of Command and Conquer to the completely unknown world of Republic: The Revolution. Will my change-over pay off? Only time will tell...

At present, the audience for this article is limited to a very few people:

  • The 10 or so people who are regular visitors to the Elixir Studios message board
  • Regular visitors to our humble site: RepRev
  • People who accidentally clicked through the banners, thinking they were linking to "Horny Teens"
Which ever group you fall into, please stay; as there is much to talk about. The title of this article: “Great game, shame no-one’s ever heard of it” stems from a comment made by one of the sporadic visitors to the Elixir forums, and in my view; sums up the state of Republic at the moment: When was the last time you saw a feature about it a magazine? Or saw an advert for it on the internet? That's just my point: To date I've seen 2 features about it in PC Gamer. Those previews, for the ever-hungry Republican gathering, is simply not enough: The marketing message has got lost somewhere in between Unreal II and Star Wars Galaxies. The release date on the preview was "Winter 2001": We wish. Yes the photo-realistic screenshots are nice, and sunsets do look sweet: But what use are screenshots if so few people see them? What use is bragging about an infinite polygon engine if it is kept under wraps until release days?

For example: How many people know of the awards Republic won at E3, How many people know about the genius, Demis Hassabis, who is behind the game, How many people have even heard about the game?!? I have no wonder solutions to Elixir's PR woes, I'm a student damn it! However, from my straight jacketed view of the game's industry, I know that a "make-or-break" game such as Republic should be getting more coverage. That jammy bugger Jon's trip to the studio is a good start, but again, this only appeals to the group of people who check RepRev or Elixir's website on a regular basis.

Kieron Gillen of PC Gamer puts Republic in context much better than I can: " it's clear that it's going to be a top ten in our top-100 games, or turn into a running joke" We can only hope that the latter isn't true; we could do without another Daikatana. In this (.rm file, 1.2 meg) interview, Demis talks about how he often works for 16 hours a day; can't he spare 30 minutes of that enormous work-load to talk to a major gaming site:, etc., or be interviewed by a magazine. Let's face it: When you mention  you helped to make Theme Park; you are pretty much welcome anywhere.

My idea of how to market a game comes from the mighty Westwood Studios: The home of Command and Conquer. Westwood set-up  to publicise their latest game: C&C: Renegade, and while parallels could perhaps be drawn with, the fact we are yet to see Novistrana speaks volumes of Elixir's "Laisez Faire" attitude to advertising. Prior to Renegade's launch, Several Webmasters were invited from around the globe to far-off Westwood studios; again, Jon's  junket  trip to Elixir draws some parallels, but the low key-ness of it again shows that Elixir aren't fully committing to their very small fan-base.

Who knows, maybe a huge influx of new visitors will grace the forums in the coming months, maybe Elixir will start to advertise Republic, maybe they'll get an online community manager, and maybe Pigs might even fly:

Only joking Elixir: But please, for our sake and for yours: Get your game noticed!

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Reply from Joe McDonugh, team member at Elixir: (Added by RepRev)

Hi Jim,

First of all, I understand how frustrating it is for you guys have to wait around for this game. Given that we've poured over two years of our lives into making the game we desperately want to play, we know how it feels!

The main reason we've been quiet over the last 12 months is because generating press takes a lot of our time, particularly Demis's time. Getting demos ready for press days also sets the project back, as the team invariably have to hack something together, often working through the night to get it ready in time. A year ago we decided to cut back on this as it was costing us too much time. We decided to concentrate our efforts on making a great game rather than talking a great game.

Though we haven't made any recent announcements, Republic reappeared in the April 2002 PC gamer "Reader's Most Wanted Charts" at number 14, above Halo, Neverwinter Nights, Thief III and Age of Mythology! So don't worry - people want this game. And they'll want it even more if we devote every last ounce of our energy into making the game it should be.

In the meantime hang in there! We'll mke sure you guys are the first to get infomation on the game as we really value all the support you've given us.

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