The active Kickstarter projects discussion thread.

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ranger_lennier
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Re: The active Kickstarter projects discussion thread.

Post by ranger_lennier »

I wasn't a backer, but the news about Yogventures did bother me when I learned more about it. It seems clear, at least in hindsight, that the game they were promising was way too ambitious to be done for the budget they were asking, and with a pretty inexperienced team no less. The lead developer was trying to head this project while working another full time job, and this took so much of his time that he says his wife filed for a divorce. And when it all came crashing down, Yogscast tried to throw the developers under the bus as if they had nothing to do with the decisions leading up to this. Even while offering a different game, they said they weren't obligated to do anything. Watch GameSpot's Danny O'Dwyer if you want to get worked up about it too.



And I should probably just never read Youtube comments, but I wish people would stop saying that Kickstarter pledges are a donation and project creators have no actual obligation to fulfill their promises. Granted, there is, in practice, a risk of not getting what you paid for. But it is a legally binding contract, and the only way I know of for a company to be legally released from that obligation would be through bankruptcy. Which probably explains why Yogscast is so insistent that the legal responsibility lies solely with the developers.

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matt
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Re: The active Kickstarter projects discussion thread.

Post by matt »

A half a million dollars is a lot of money to lose.... :-/ According to the developer, the Yogscast took $150,000 from the development team... for something? I don't know...

The whole thing seems like a big mess. I think the Yogscast team could have handled the situation better. Hopefully the game they are giving to backers instead ends up being good. :)
-Matt Gilgenbach
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LobsterSundew
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Re: The active Kickstarter projects discussion thread.

Post by LobsterSundew »

Ray's The Dead has its Prefundia up and I'm preparing to post an update to my 2013 Kickstarter guide during their campaign. Gamescom 2014 and another PAX are approaching, so the launch window is becoming less flexible.
http://prefundia.com/projects/view/rays-the-dead/2072/

Jenny LeClue is an adventure game with an animation art style I like.

Vanguard Valkyrie makes the mistake of having gameplay footage, but waiting too long into the pitch video to show it off. The little flash at the start just wastes time. The pitch should have started with the material around the 2 minute 9 seconds mark. That part is energetic. It is a 3rd person rail shooter with cool particle effects being made for Oculus Rift. The project thumbnail and its text made me think it was another junk campaign at first. I keep listening to the title theme and its remix looped. Maybe it is because I liked Strike Suit Zero so much that I want this game to get made. It might need 6,000 to 10,000 backers to just make its goal. Both the timing and the rewards are also looking like it will hold it back. The project is so close to being refined into a fantastic project that it feels almost grating to me that it fell just so short in execution. I'm backing at just $1 for now because Linux is a stretch goal it might not make.

Braven Hearts is a JRPG-style game that also didn't frontload gameplay into the pitch. It has tile-based combat.

An article about Areal is a good read.

Jotun had a well timed launch. It impressed me how well it is doing in the rankings.
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ranger_lennier
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Re: The active Kickstarter projects discussion thread.

Post by ranger_lennier »

Perhaps you've heard about the people who rented a condo for 44 days with Airbnb, then refused to leave. It's turns out they may be scamming people on Kickstarter as well.

http://www.sfgate.com/business/article/ ... 647961.php

I always hate to hear about these sort of things, since it not only hurts those backers, it also makes it harder for legitimate creators to raise funds.

And now even the newspapers are reporting the Kickstarter "donation" misconception. I wrote to the article's author with a link to the actual policy.

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RightClickSaveAs
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Re: The active Kickstarter projects discussion thread.

Post by RightClickSaveAs »

That story has really blown up, which is good because hopefully it will help curb this kind of thing from ever happening. I almost backed Confederate Express, it had some good looking artwork and a tech demo up, but apparently that was something pretty easy to slap together. It's a shame and I hope this doesn't end up hurting legitimate indie Kickstarters, I know it's going to make me be really careful about who I back from now on.

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matt
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Re: The active Kickstarter projects discussion thread.

Post by matt »

It is really a shame that people are abusing kickstarter, but I think to some extent, it is important that backers know the risks. It's NOT really the same as a preorder, so it's important to be careful what projects you back.

There were two articles I read recently, one was never back a kickstarter without a programmer (which I think is a great rule) and another called Will that crowdfunded game ever actually ship.

While both sort of read like advertisements for the respective crowdfunded projects, they have valuable lessons. I think a degree of caution in backers is important because the more people get burned, the more they'll be turned off from legit projects. It's a bit scary that kickstarter is doing LESS moderation, which means that scam projects will have an easier time getting through...
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LobsterSundew
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Re: The active Kickstarter projects discussion thread.

Post by LobsterSundew »

It is good to see that the Kickstarter community is able to spread warnings quickly instead of having trouble.

The re-factored Kickstarter guide is already ballooning to 31 pages. It is suffering from scope creep.

Aegis Defenders was inspired by Nausica and 16-bit games.

Slave Driver is a RTS.

Gryphon Knight Epic has great pixel art, but for a shoot'em up it doesn't look very difficult.

Fritz is a RPG game set in the trenches of WWI with the experience of daily routines of soldiers.

Mundus is a small 2D survival and exploration game set on the curved surface of a small planet and in space. It is PC-only, otherwise I was considering backing.

Vanguard Valkyrie was in an intellectual property dispute so now it is Vanguard V. I did not know IP disputes could change a project's end date. They are now ending on a Saturday morning. It did get a better thumbnail.

Jenny LeClue had a backer promise to add $1,000 to his/her pledge if it completes a challenge. It is also the first live example of a manually time-limited reward of its type I've seen in the wild. A common problem when designing rewards is that too many early-bird slots make a campaign grow too inefficiently per backer early on, but not enough slots makes the traction it gains not really worth it. A potential solution is an early-bird reward that says in its description that at a specific time and date it will be locked down. This has to be manually done by the project creator since the reward time-limit is not built into Kickstarter itself. The campaign then uses that in its prelaunch promotion as incentive for people to pledge early. By showing the project preview around and asking people to click the "Notify me on launch button" it is equivalent to adding a few days onto the campaign. For the last two months at least I've been trying to find a project willing to try that strategy out. Many project creators seem scared to share a project page around even when its already looking like a final version.

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matt
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Re: The active Kickstarter projects discussion thread.

Post by matt »

It's nice to know that game developers aren't the only ones who face scope creep. ;)

Sharing the project page publicly before it releases to maximize launch impact sounds like it could be potentially fruitful. I wonder what the worry is. Do people actually use Prefundia? It seems similar in its purpose, but usually Prefundia pages don't have the same content as the actual kickstarter page.
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LobsterSundew
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Re: The active Kickstarter projects discussion thread.

Post by LobsterSundew »

matt wrote:Sharing the project page publicly before it releases to maximize launch impact sounds like it could be potentially fruitful. I wonder what the worry is. Do people actually use Prefundia? It seems similar in its purpose, but usually Prefundia pages don't have the same content as the actual kickstarter page.
Prefundia is where I first found out about Darkest Dungeon. The platform itself isn't very popular yet, so project creators need to get the link in front of people. I think it should be used more in the future. Something that really stands out from watching campaigns is that the projects with existing followers have an advantage. It is a common piece of advice for good reason. A lot of new additions to my guide have been about pre-launching marketing. A Prefundia campaign is like a band-aid solution for not having maintained a devblog on TIGSource.

Jotun is trying a Thunderclap campaign for its last 72 hours. This tactic might become more popular if it works. Before it launched I was preparing for it to be a long struggle to reach its goal. Since launch it is doing three times better than I expected it would. It was just Greenlit too. I hope to use some things being tested to later help Ray's The Dead.

I am starting to really see potential the tactic of making an Imgur posts like the one I made for Pyrella. It is almost like a pitch video reduced to animated GIFs.

Ray's The Dead has two of its team members relocating from Chicago to Dallas to be with the third member of the team. Their daily driving progress is being tweeted.

There is an expected surge of new Kickstarter campaigns when a new month begins. That isn't a problem. The problem is that August starts on a Friday this year and that there are a lot of new game projects launching. There campaigns are likely wasting part of their first 48 hours on a Saturday when fewer people are around to look at them. Looking at today's data I saw a lot of new good campaigns doing poorly. It feels like the massacre that was the Kickstarter UK launch. I've added a note to my guide that the weekly traffic cycle takes priority over launching with the monthly cycles.

The Hum Game is a Oculus Rift horror game set in a post-alien invasion world. The footage doesn't really impress me because flying through a still 3D enviroment is easy to make. Actual interactions between characters and the environment takes more effort. It had a Prefundia page.

Cavern Kings has a mechanic where powerups keep stacking one on top of each other.

Paperbound was another game I couldn't pledge to because it is PC only. It reminds me of Towerfall. A local multiplayer demo is available.

Tanks Against Tanks sounds like it is using a Megaman song remix.

Engauge! is a platformer with interesting pitch music.

Bolt Riley is making a second attempt.

Unnecessary Sentience is a weird point and click adventure. The project page doesn't look finished, but the game has an interesting style.

Elysian Shadows is a perhaps overambitious RPG with Ouya as a supported platform.

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LobsterSundew
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Re: The active Kickstarter projects discussion thread.

Post by LobsterSundew »

More good campaigns are launching now than I expected there to be.

Hive Jump has relaunched. I'm listening to the pitch video's audio looped in the background as I type this. The devs went all-out with project page graphics.

Woolfe - The Red Hood Diaries is a platformer that has some of the best 3D modeling of the projects that launched recently. No Linux support unfortunately. The pitch video is long, but it uses that time to showcase its art style.

Hard West is an isometric 3D tactics game with a strong teaser trailer.

Comatose is a psychological first-person horror game.

Albino Lullaby is another first person horror game. This one has some interesting level design.

Caverns of Travencore is a 2D action roguelike.

A Rite From The Stars is a 3D adventure game with a demo.

Fallen: A2P Protocol is an X-COM-like game.

Super Galaxy Squadron is a shoot'em-up.

Kôna us a first person survival game set in a Quebec Winter.

The Sun Also Rises is a 3rd person exploration game about soldiers.

Bears Can't Drift is a 3D cart racing game.

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