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July 16th, 2021, 00:57
Originally Posted by daveyd View Post
Yes, I actually heard something which might shed some light on his behavior. But I'm hesitant to say it because for one thing I didn't even hear it direct from the other developers, and I don't wish to spread a rumor. Suffice to say, if it's accurate, it's not a valid excuse IMO.
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July 16th, 2021, 04:08
Originally Posted by rune_74 View Post
It just sucks that they can just walk away and not have any legal responsibility.

Think about if a business just walked off with it's assets from shareholders.

This is real money not play time, if they start a new business I would expect some lawsuits.
Well if Richard Garriott can write his real name, his friends real Seed Invest company, his friends real Neverdie company, his friends real Meretz company name and then they can all legally screw you and walk away with all the money… does it really make a difference whether or not the project was finished or if we knew all the parties real names?
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July 28th, 2021, 18:16
I get that a lot of people feel ripped off by this and other Kickstarters that have failed, been abandoned, or are stuck in some form of development Hell / purgatory.

Kickstarter doesn't do anything in these cases. Perhaps they should. Or perhaps there should be legislation specifically dealing with crowdfunding (which would get pretty complicated considering the majority of backers often reside in a different country from the creator).

But when I think on what it would mean if a KS creator was legally obligated to release something, I don't think it'd really improve the situation. For games it would just lead to developers of failed projects "releasing" whatever buggy tech demo they managed to cobble together. In Realms Beyond's case they could release their combat beta. Which is certainly fun, but a far cry from the epic cRPG they pitched to us.

Now you might say, why not require refunds? But the problem is, if the creator actually needed the money and spent it how they said they were going to (hiring artists, designers, composers, etc.) then the money is gone… so where exactly are they supposed to get refunds from? If Kickstarter had to fork over refunds for every failed project, I suspect they'd jack up their commission to at least 90%.

As has been said many times before, Kickstarter is not a store. Some call it an investment which is a bit more accurate, but still not entirely. Backers don't have the same rights as shareholders. It's more akin to a donation, like one of those pledge drives they do for public television… except the rewards you're supposed to get for a certain pledge amount may not actually exist yet.

As someone who has backed dozens of games on Kickstarter, the best advice I can give is don't back if your money is tight because there's a chance you won't get anything in return for you money. Only back a project if you're OK with that.
Last edited by daveyd; July 28th, 2021 at 23:21.
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July 28th, 2021, 18:26
I agree 100%, back a game only if you can afford to do so, and if you feel that it would be a shame if the developers didn't get a chance to make the game. I personally only currently support games that capture the tabletop rpg experience, because I really enjoy many of them and because with very few exceptions those games only get made if they are crowdfunded.
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July 28th, 2021, 18:30
Oh, how sad. I was looking forward to this.

As for crowd-funding - I'm always 100% aware that I'm taking a risk, and I've been disappointed several times.

Don't really care. I feel good about taking risks in the name of potentially great games.

I'm good at not dwelling on it, I guess.

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July 28th, 2021, 18:46
Yeah, I agree. I'm really happy that some games I've backed got made. Some of those I really enjoyed and I think that they had the chance to get made more than cancells out the ones that failed.
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July 28th, 2021, 21:56
I'm in the same boat, I've helped sponsor hundreds of projects over the years via Kickstarter, from novels, movies, art projects, and computer games. Only three or four I've come to regret, and I try not to let those memories sour me for any future endeavors. And yes, if funds are tight and you cannot afford it, keep the money. Sometimes you just have to rely on good old common sense.
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July 28th, 2021, 22:07
Yeah, even if backer payments were legally clear-cut pre-orders, it wouldn't do you much good if the company went bust. It's always a risky bet. It's a shame there were so many letdowns during the crowdfunding goldrush, as I think a lot of folks felt burned, and it seems way harder to raise sensible budgets these days.
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July 28th, 2021, 22:20
Glad I back most of these projects for just the game and nothing else. If I invested $500 or more then I'd be pissed off as well. I had 5/30 projects fail so not a bad record.
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July 28th, 2021, 23:40
Originally Posted by Couchpotato View Post
Glad I back most of these projects for just the game and nothing else. If I invested $500 or more then I'd be pissed off as well. I had 5/30 projects fail so not a bad record.
Yeah, assuming the KS games you got were lower than the release price, which seems to be the usual case, you probably still came out ahead, too. The majority of games I've backed have either been released or seem to be on track to release in the not too distant future. Some of the released ones were good, some ended up not really being quite like I expected, but that's true of plenty of games that aren't crowdfunded. Either way I was glad to play a small part in helping some indie games get made.
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July 29th, 2021, 01:09
Originally Posted by daveyd View Post
But when I think on what it would mean if a KS creator was legally obligated to release something, I don't think it'd really improve the situation.
No, almost certainly not.

But in a perfect world, what I would like is for the leader of a funded project to be required to show some effort toward fulfilling the promises of their campaign.

This would, of course, get very complicated in many ways: how do you measure that effort? Who keeps track and how it is documented? What would be the schedule of these updates/demonstrations of effort, and who would create it? And so on.

But there are enough egregious examples of people who crowdfunded stuff, got the money, and then flat out disappeared…or worse, moved on to some OTHER crowdfunded project without doing jack shit… that I would prefer there to be consequences for the worst offenders. (Those consequences being, primarily, required refunds and/or no longer being able to use the crowdfunding platform in question)
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July 29th, 2021, 08:49
Nah, I don't really need that. I don't think there's a feasible way.

I'm ok with the whole trust/honor system. In the longer term, it will only become clearer what to back and what not to back.

I think we've all gotten better at picking projects as we've grown more used to this system, or at least I would assume so.

It's still a relatively new concept - and it was inevitable that the early waves would involve a ton of hit and miss, and it's certainly no surprise that a ton of people used it as a convenient source of income rather than an opportunity to create.

But it has also evolved, and I find that a lot of games now do the early access thing - which is a lot easier to get a feel for in terms of "will this thing actually be finished" and "is this a real thing".

Now, for this game - we have a perfect example of what these developers really need to do. They need a demo that represents the final game to a reasonable extent - which I'm 100% certain is the reason this is doing so well - against what the norm would be for such a small project.

Well, there's that and the biggest problem of all: The fact that marketing is what sells - not the actual product.

I have no idea how to handle that. I despise marketing and I despise that so many things in this world is wasted because marketing dominates.

If only there was a way for the cream to rise and the crap to sink - rather than mostly the other way around - and which didn't involve actively lying to your potential audience.

What's worse is that it's such an accepted form of deception - at least in the US, which is still the largest gaming contributor by a country mile.

Maybe if there was a way to do effective marketing that didn't involve money? Some kind of standard we could establish where all marketing was taken out of the hands of the creators (well, the suits funding the creators) - and through some kind of process that was equal for all products?

Well, one can dream

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