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Very interesting read from @justbiglee‌! Thanks for sharing. When all of this is out in the open and people are free to talk, I do hope we can get explanations to some of your teasings during these last twelve, or so, months. Teasings which, by the way, has been a nice distraction, but a tad frustrating at times! We wanna know! :) 
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In terms of screenshots, why not one day just publish one with no interface, no cars, just a view down a dirty road/track, be a nice teaser with less issues about it's release?!
How long before doing that starts to get thin and annoys people though?
Hmmm... I don't think it would be annoying... A screenshot of a gravel turn, with a small amount of Codies DiRT branding could be great for people to keep guessing what the location is and it would give a small taste of graphics and level of detail.
However, if such screenshots appear 18 months before the actual release then it would not go down that well...

Big thanks for your posts @justbiglee - I'm very happy to see you talk more openly and give us a lot more insight! :)
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Hmm just noticed Gran Turismo have done a deal with Pikes Peak to be a "platinum" sponsor next year https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10152793180232210

I know a truncated version of the hillclimb appeared way back in GT2, but I hope this won't rule out DIRT4 possibly having the famous hillclimb as well...
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As long as no exclusive rights were signed it's always up for negotiations.  That doesn't mean that it would be cheap though.  If Sony laid a big bag of lot on the table that could hinder others from getting a reasonable license though.  

@justbiglee‌ it could depend on how far off, of course, but if there was a regular intervals.  Like a day of the week or day of the month that we could get a single screenshot it could be stretched for a few months.  

I think we have all followed a game that the devs have had a special day of the week for over a year, revealing a screenshot a week with a brief write up of what to expect or what is happening behind the screens.  

It it seems to satisfy some of the curiosity, but it comes with the extra work of some whining too.  Although I think you are getting equally amounts of whining about a real ease of info too.

Again it's great to see you posting what goes on behind the scenes.  

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edit:  I see @VirtuaIceMan posted this already, sorry man! Didn't see it before.  

I got home from work and off my phone to read gaming news.  It seems that Pikes Peak is more than likely off this list, for good!  

excerpt from press release:
"The long-term partnership will see the event officially retitled as The Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb Brought to you by Gran Turismo. Gran Turismo has become the first Platinum Sponsor in the Race to the Clouds’ history as it nears its 100th Anniversary in 2016."

So GT is part of the event name now..  Oh well... BUT this just made my choice easy when I decide to upgrade to a new game console (xbox1 or ps4).
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@justbiglee‌ 

y
https://twitter.com/doc_griffiths/status/530506813889077249


sooo.. ??  if you're all tanked up, tell us what else we can expect, lol

also:

https://twitter.com/dirtfishrally/status/530510068673163264

these guys really need a new DiRT game!

I can see and hope that people will be all over DiRTnext year a SEMA   
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Hey @renejr902,

Thanks for the post, think it might be worth trying to give you an insight into how DiRT has been for the last year or so.

First up, there is no strategy - and I'm not even joking. As it stands at the moment I'm the only person in the marketing department really working on DiRT and its been that way for quite a while. It's not an easy task, and I know that sounds daft because the actual doing it is what just looks like Twitter and Facebook but the trick is not to get people over excited... but still keep them interested.

Now I'll confess I deliberately poke the bear once in a while and I'd like to think a lot of the guys who post on here know that but it's a balancing act, I don't want people to forget DiRT exists and I don't want you guys to vanish into the distance.

Take the DiRT Facebook and Twitter pages this last few weeks, we just released F1 and the expectation is that we'll announce DiRT next - so as not to get peoples hopes up I go quiet. I hate having to go quiet :(

Believe me all I want to do is to be talking about the game, I can't wait to tell you guys what "that car" is and all the other secrets. Part of me thinks I actually could just tell you it all now, even though its not all nailed down I trust that you guys could handle the info like adults. But if I did give up anything, even just a date (or a loose window) it would be up on the gaming news sites and I'd be getting a telling off. 

Personally I don't agree with it, like I said I could talk to death about the game - I would have something different to talk about every day between now and release. I could start now even! But that would start falling down when you guys started wanting to see a trailer, car lists, screenshots, things like that. Those kind of things are controlled by the licensing with the car manufactures and some have very strict rules about what can and can't be shown. Everything has to go through them first.

So we do what we can, we sail pretty close to the wind to give you guys an idea of what we're doing and I like to think that you guys have a pretty good idea of what we're doing (you just don't have confirmation).

So I am sorry to you and to all the others that feel this way, rest assured this week I started work on my actual marketing plan for DiRT, and it will be the last time I start the bloody thing too!

I really hope we do you guys proud and you have my word I'll tell you the story one day.

I'm open to questions on the above or anything related too - just post them up and I'll answer as best I can :)
OK - I'll bite.

I understand where you're position is. I used to work in customer support myself, but in a very different area. 

The biggest problem I see is that CM is stuck pre-2010 in the way it goes about selling and marketing its games. 

Let's take demos for example. I know you can argue that demos take time and cost. But at some point you have to argue how much it is costing you NOT to do a demo. Inviting small numbers of dedicated rally fans to your base to get feedback is good and they might have good ideas that will appeal to the broader user base. But your sales don't come from dedicated rally fans, they come from the million or so odd guys and girls who merely like rally, and the racing genre enough to purchase the game. Most of them will never make it here. How do you reach out to those people ?

The only way is with things like betas and will a drip feed of material that helps you get feedback that you are on the right track. The solution is not to go all the way to market with something like an undesirable handling model that grid 2 has, its to use the user base to nip that sort of error in the bud before it even reaches the marketplace. Because it costs so much to bring a product to market than failure almost can't be considered. As hardware gets more complex and the effort that needs to be put into a game gets more significant, the potential for one bad release to take a company down is only ever going to get worse. Maybe you remember the RB211 ?

To me the point to find out what the user base thinks about the development is not during the 3 month period when it is publicised before release. because then it is almost too late. It's during the 2 year build up to that games release. Sure, you don't want to release all the information. After all if you claim your going to implement dynamics blurbs as part of the game before release that gives something for the competition to aim for. But everyone knows you are working on a new game, Everyone knows that it will have cars and rally, it will have a handling model and locations, so I don't see why releasing more information is a problem. You can save the really interesting stuff that is going to make the big difference just before the release in the three month run up.

Obviously you can't have too long a build up. But I get the impression the industry is moving towards a 12 month build up with 1 or 2 betas along the way to get feedback and build anticipation. This is a much longer timeframe that we see at CM.

I just get the impression that the new markting model most businesses are using is to involve the userbase strongly in the development process from day 1, to constantly evaluate feedback and work with everyone to increase the chances of producing a successful game that everyone wants. You can't do this unless you are willing to provide information. 


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I agree with most of this above, however Codemasters games are not as network/multiplayer heavy as (for example) The Crew (which has had a number of betas), and isn't public funded like Project CARS, so there's less need for them to make betas/demos.

That's not to say that it wouldn't be wise to involve the people most passionate about the games, who spend time bothering to visit these forums, etc, in some of the decision making behind the game.

I've seen various Codemasters team members asking what our favourite rally related things are, this might be a bit of unofficial market research to see if they're on the right track.

I agree that Grid2 didn't go well as it wasn't really what the core audience was looking for. It might have sold well with the various discounts on Steam (etc), but I think they took notice with Autosport to make it much more what the fans wanted.

I do tend to worry when I see what little interaction the F1 team have with the public these days (maybe it's more keeping behind the parapets for safety?!) , in that there's a lot of wise ideas thrown around the forums, yet the F1 team seem set on whatever path they think is appropriate for the game, with no desire to cater for the true fans of the series.

Coming back to Dirt, of course part of the problem is that some fans will say they want just rallying in Dirt4, whilst others would love a bit of rallycross. You might even get some gymkhana fans (although IMHO that should be part of Grid, as it's less "dirty") wanting more of that, so it is hard to appeal to everyone all the time.

I do like it when games companies listen though, we saw it with in-car views/simulation(ish) handling in Autosport (and the PC rear-view mirror), so I'm optimistic about the next Dirt game. But it does seem to be taking a long time to hear anything, I assume there's only so much money has been allocated for development? That said, taking time often leads to a better product in the end...

Anyway that's my afternoon ramble over for now :-)
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I agree with most of this above, however Codemasters games are not as network/multiplayer heavy as (for example) The Crew (which has had a number of betas), and isn't public funded like Project CARS, so there's less need for them to make betas/demos.

That's not to say that it wouldn't be wise to involve the people most passionate about the games, who spend time bothering to visit these forums, etc, in some of the decision making behind the game.

I've seen various Codemasters team members asking what our favourite rally related things are, this might be a bit of unofficial market research to see if they're on the right track.

I agree that Grid2 didn't go well as it wasn't really what the core audience was looking for. It might have sold well with the various discounts on Steam (etc), but I think they took notice with Autosport to make it much more what the fans wanted.

I do tend to worry when I see what little interaction the F1 team have with the public these days (maybe it's more keeping behind the parapets for safety?!) , in that there's a lot of wise ideas thrown around the forums, yet the F1 team seem set on whatever path they think is appropriate for the game, with no desire to cater for the true fans of the series.

Coming back to Dirt, of course part of the problem is that some fans will say they want just rallying in Dirt4, whilst others would love a bit of rallycross. You might even get some gymkhana fans (although IMHO that should be part of Grid, as it's less "dirty") wanting more of that, so it is hard to appeal to everyone all the time.

I do like it when games companies listen though, we saw it with in-car views/simulation(ish) handling in Autosport (and the PC rear-view mirror), so I'm optimistic about the next Dirt game. But it does seem to be taking a long time to hear anything, I assume there's only so much money has been allocated for development? That said, taking time often leads to a better product in the end...

Anyway that's my afternoon ramble over for now :-)
Sadly I think some of the Grid users might disagree with you re betas and testing.

The people who come to this site represent probably 1% of the people who actually buy the game. The issue is to get the feedback from the other 99%.

For things in dirt, yeah, I prefer rally and dont like gymkhana. However I realise gymkhana gives the games broader appeal and allows cm to keep making them. Given the choice between having dirt with gymkhana and no dirt I would rather have gymkhana .... it did grow on me though after a bit !

To think CM don't probably spend literally hours around tables drinking gallons of coffee and eating tons of donuts talking about this sort of stuff is probably wrong. I'm sure they have done it to death. But the net result to me at the moment seems to be one of sticking the head in the sand and continuign with the way things have been done in the past rather than actually admitting the way games are developed in conjunction with the userbase in order to guarantee success is changing and changing rapidly. 




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All good points guys and some fair observations about the way we as a company do stuff, the proof will ultimatly be in the pudding but the DiRT team works in a very different way to the rest of the company - I know you guys might like to think of us as some big mega huge corporation churning out games for money and profit. Games that need to be accessible and have a broad appeal and all of this kind of stuff, Team DiRT don't roll like that if we did we'd be making another DiRT 3 ($$$ wise our biggest ever game). 

We're not doing that, we're determined to get that right and it starts with the car on the track, we nail that and the rest is easy (ish).

As for the "marketing strategy" as a few of you have mentioned - I refer you to my earlier posts :)

As you know I'm working on the plan for that stuff now and I'll be finalising it next week - so you've a weekend to let me know what you want to see us do and how you want us to see us do it. These are the things I have at my disposal: Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Twitch, Instagram, Google+, Blog, Forums, dirtgame.com, reddit and anything else you guys can think of like that. Tell me how you want me to use them :)

 (maybe start an extra thread rather than de-railing this one)
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gfRally said:
I just want to know what Gravel sounds like :). can't help it
The quiet.
The anticipation.
Birds chirping.
The slight breeze in the forest.
The sound of anti-lag.
The sound of the turbos chirps.
The wake of gravel and dirt thrown from under the passing racer.
Sideways.
Grumbles.
Echoing into the distance.

These are the sounds of gravel.
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These words are much more poetic:  

"Colin is still an inspiration to us all. His raw talent, speed and his total commitment to living life to the fullest are key elements in our design ethos for DiRT.

Whatever the next game is called, I believe that if Colin was still with us today, he would be as excited as we are about it."

- Paul Coleman ( @KickUp‌ )

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gfRally said:
I just want to know what Gravel sounds like :). can't help it
The quiet.
The anticipation.
Birds chirping.
The slight breeze in the forest.
The sound of anti-lag.
The sound of the turbos chirps.
The wake of gravel and dirt thrown from under the passing racer.
Sideways.
Grumbles.
Echoing into the distance.

These are the sounds of gravel



That would make a great audio only teaser :)
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doyley101 said:
gfRally said:
I just want to know what Gravel sounds like :). can't help it
The quiet.
The anticipation.
Birds chirping.
The slight breeze in the forest.
The sound of anti-lag.
The sound of the turbos chirps.
The wake of gravel and dirt thrown from under the passing racer.
Sideways.
Grumbles.
Echoing into the distance.

These are the sounds of gravel



That would make a great audio only teaser :)
Lol @justbiglee‌  
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