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anwoke8204

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Reply with quote  #1 
hi, is there anything that says we can't rent out our setup?  like people pay us to come set up our setup and then run it for x number of hours and then tear it down?  as we have been running this at conventions we have several people ask if they could "rent us or hire us" and I wasn't sure what to tell them as I don't know if thats allowed or not with the Artemis Licence.
MarkBell

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Reply with quote  #2 
As far as Thom has always said, once you buy the license, you can do pretty much whatever you want with it except distribute the software.  Charging for Location Based Entertainment (the LBE of the LBE and Custom Bridges section) has always been something he supports, and hasn't asked for kick-back (although I'm sure he wouldn't say no!) [smile]

The LBE and Custom Bridges section might be a good place to ask about how other people have done it, since there are a few folks there who have a similar setup.

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Note - this is in no way intended to be an official position of Thom or Artemis, as I am not an official representative of the creator or game.
Badgeguy

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Reply with quote  #3 
He did have one "request" for that, though.  You just needed to let people know that they could, and where they could, buy the software from for themselves (e.g. a sign showing that you could buy a license for $40 at http://artemis.eochu.com).  I know that I had a lot of people asking about the setup and rentals as well at each of the cons that I have run it for.  I will be starting to ramp that up soon, but I do not expect it to be a full time thing.  I am thinking 4 hours at a time, but I have not come up the fee for it yet.
janx

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Reply with quote  #4 
Just out of curiousity, what exactly are each of you providing if somebody were to rent your system?

delivery of equipment?
setup of equipment on site?
Supervision/training/support during event?
tear down of equipment on site?

When somebody gets the system, what exactly are they getting?
6 PCs with peripherals setup on TV trays

or

main view screen wrapped with front of bridge set-dressing and 5 stations built into set pieces?


Badgeguy

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Reply with quote  #5 
Mine would definitely be the former.  I have folding personal tables (http://www.officemax.com/office-furniture/tables/folding-tables/product-prod3280066?R=20935286) and chairs, along with the 5 laptops and the breadbox server computer, projector, 70" screen and DMX lighting system.  There is a small amount of training, but a lot of the fun of the game comes from people figuring it out and making the occasional mistake (Helm, why are we flying away from DS3 at Warp 4?).  I have always envisioned a true LBE being in a truck, or at a fixed location, such as the back room of a coffee shop.  That is where the real stage set building comes in.
anwoke8204

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Reply with quote  #6 
it would be delivery of equipment, setup of equipment, training, and dedicated GM to run the missions.  the tables would all be skirted (with the exception of our captains platform that all the power and network for our setup runs through), that way the captain sits a bit higher then the rest of the crew.  we are also working on building custom stations for all of the other stations as well.  and eventually we will be adding dmx lighting into the mix.  it would also include our custom programmed LCARS display system that plays all the mission briefings, has various LCARS looks, and displays schedules, as well as added sound effects (we currently have about 80 additional sound effects that are star trek related) that the game master can introduce into the game, as well as other animations on other screens (ie, red alert, intruder alert, borg virus, static screens for damage) all that the game master can control.  it would also include the use of teamspeak for easier communications.  and if they want for a small fee could custom write a mission just for them.  it would also include the screen and LCD projector for the view screen.  our current Artemis setup with all the bells and whistles due to all of the LCARS enhancements for one bridge requires 15 computers (13 computers, but 2 spare incase something goes wrong with the others). all of the stations except for the Captains are still on skirted tables, but we are working on building custom stations for all of the other stations as well.
janx

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Reply with quote  #7 
anwoke's is closer to what I picture as a rented experience.  The closer you make the room and stations look like a "trek" setup, the more you cross the "that's why I'd pay for it" threshold.  The closer a setup is to laptops on tables, the closer you are to "I can do that myself" for most people.

Obviously, there's people who can't/don't do anything for themselves who will pay for laptops on tables. But I think subconsciously, the more trivial the setup, the more a potential client is thinking "My friends and I can do this ourselves"

So differentiating the product with DMX, fancy stations and set dressing is the way you value add and make your product special.

I'd been thinking stations like what Project Draco built for their videos (with touchscreens so all you need to build is a frame and stand).  Something clean, but simple (the alternate consoles with their own buttons is cool, but a touch screen integrates the screen with the input, so it's very efficient to build).
Badgeguy

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Reply with quote  #8 
I agree, the more set dressing, the cooler it looks, but what is the dollar amount that you would pay for 4 hours of game play with that kind of setup being brought into your home or office?  That is the real trick here.
janx

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Reply with quote  #9 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Badgeguy
I agree, the more set dressing, the cooler it looks, but what is the dollar amount that you would pay for 4 hours of game play with that kind of setup being brought into your home or office?  That is the real trick here.


In the office side, a past employer allocated $25 per employee for quarterly events at the departmental level.  This usually covered lunch and a movie or an afternoon at the go-cart park, or adult arcade.

So, for a team of 10-20 employees, that's $250-$500

For somebody looking to host a house party with a "thematic" attraction, that's probably the same budget range.

Just googling bounce houses, the prices vary but are well within that range.  Meaning somebody inclined to spend money for a party will spend that amount or more (including extras like the margarita machine)

The key variables are:

for the kind of person willing to hire out an entertainment package (band, bounce house, LBE), what kind of money are they typically willing to pay?  My guess is $250-500

What is the threshold of expected quality would they expect to decide to buy vs. do it themselves/do without?

For an Artemis game, the simpler your setup is such that it consists of laptops on TV trays, most people would probably consider getting their nerd friend to set that up using everybody's laptops or not even be impressed by it (visuals matter).

This would be why people will pay to play a round in the Battletech Simulator, but not pay to play Halo at a TV with an X-Box connected to it.

I think we all get that "the fancier it looks, the better".

So is $250-500 a reasonable price for a 4 hour event? Remember, that's really 6 hours of work, as you've got travel, setup, running, tear down, travel.  And you probably need a helper to haul gear at least.

In a less secure area (convention), you'll need 3 guys at least.  One guy to stay at the truck. One guy to stay at the deployment area.  And you rotate who carries who stands watch (so it's not just one guy doing all the work)

Contrasting to what a working bar band will gig for, you want to make $100/man to make it worth the time.  that's the basic human threshold for "I could have stayed home and not put up with this crap"

As a side note to the idea of having helpers, consider getting generic jump suits, akin to what we see the no names on Star Trek wear.  In this way, your staff will appear "in character" but won't attract attention if all the players are actually dressed in costume.



 
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