RPG Vault have posted the second part of their Online Worlds Roundtable #6, in which six more developers give their views on making persistent state games with small teams:
Having worked on both large and small teams, I believe I have a very good perspective on the pros and cons of each.
One pro of having a small team is the fact there are few "cooks in the kitchen", which helps the development process to be more clean and efficient. Our programming team had only two programmers, each knowing every aspect of the game technology and toolset. The original development process started off slowly because of the team size, but as we advanced through different stages, things picked up and we were able to be far more efficient than a larger team. Another benefit for having a small team is that our games do not need to make a large number of sales for us to be profitable. For instance, our game Dransik cost about 1/20th of what some other MMOGs have cost to develop. Our team has a burn rate of about 1/10th of traditional teams. Therefore, we need only a small fraction of the number of paying subscribers than more mainstream games would need in order to earn a profit.