In an entertaining GDC Europe talk, Chris Taylor talked about his experience creating multiplayer 'defense'-style game Demigod, suggesting that "you can't cut the single player game" out of the title and still expect it to be a massive success.
As part of a rambling, borderline stand-up comedy lecture at the Cologne game development conference, apparently fueled by jet lag and energy drinks, Taylor indicated that the Stardock co-published title is doing decently for Taylor and his colleagues, who self-funded much of it, but is "not a slam dunk."
He cited the success of the Battlefield series as the internal reasoning behind not putting a significant single-player campaign in the PC action title, which is essentially multiplayer-only, but concluded: "You can't cut the single player game out of an experience like this."
Admittedly, Taylor says that he and the other funders "just couldn't afford" to spend another $2 or $3 million to make a really robust single-player mode for the title, but he's found that "people want to play a game by themselves to learn it."
With Demigod, it's largely a jump straight into multiplayer modes against active opponents, and Taylor feels that "you need to put the whole package together" to entice most users.
Nonetheless, the game is doing reasonably well for Taylor and his partner. But the Gas Powered Game founder did admit that he believed the game could be a lot more popular with that facet added, calling it "something I wish I could go back and try to figure out how to fix."