Anyone who preordered (my dear friend Bistro included) is supporting the notion that companies take zero risk and get all the rewards ...
Horseshit. I just don't understand all these grand pronouncements: "integrity" ... "risk" ... Jesus wept, so much drama.
I've ordered, and here's the thing: it's really not that complicated why I did. I'm interested in the product; it hits the right nostalgia buttons; it looks like I'll score some harmless extras. I speak for no one else, but I'd really think it's a safe bet that many others who ordered did so for at least two of those reasons.
I am not supporting any fucking "notions." What a load of crap that is. There's no agenda here, other than buying a game — something I've done roughly 12,000 times before. No one is trying to prove some obscure point by ordering a fucking game.
.. while companies that take risks (ZMan, anyone) have a harder time of it and are at greater risk for less reward.
Is there some law stopping Z-Man from using Kickstarter?
You, the people take the risk ...
In terms of the Ogre project ... sorry, but what "risk" are you seeing?
Risk would be throwing money at some random pack of douchebags calling themselves a punk band and trying to raise enough dough for five hours of studio time.
But SJG is an established publisher. Thirty-plus years. They have a design staff. They have a printer. They've released hundreds of products since 1980. Hell, the game itself has been a known quantity for 35 years now. It's not like they're charting the unknown here.
I'm not seeing any "risk" worth mentioning. Sure, maybe one of the boards will be warped or something ... also, maybe I'll get hit hit by a meteorite later today. But I'll risk going outside, anyway. Actually, my biggest worry is that I won't be seeing anything until 2013, since SJG has never hit a release date in its entire history.
P500 is not a loan that pays you back in a product. P500 is a nonbinding pledge to buy to gauge interest. Kickstarter is preordering vaporware.
OK, so we see that SJG's numbers are moving in the right direction...which makes it even more egregious and unprofessional that they're asking THE CUSTOMER to finance production.
Taking risks, putting your reputation and capital on the line...these are things that entrepreneurship, business, and sales are based on. You can pull the Robin Hood argument out all you want about saving business from "suits" and democratizing it, but the bottom line is that when you "back" a Kickstarter project, you are basically responding to a company or an individual that is looking for a loan and doesn't want to invest any money in their own product.
Which means you shouldn't be willing to inveset any money either, regardless of the trinkets they throw your way.
The Tim Shafer thing is interesting to me...people are willing to literally throw money at him on Kickstarter...but apparently they weren't willing to buy Brutal Legend. What if this new game sucks? What if it's a disappointment?
It's funny because you hear all the time "I'll wait for a review", "I want to play it before I buy it", "there's already too many games out there to buy"...but post a couple of countersheets and a picture of the board on Kickstarter and people will give you money with the product all but unseen. All customer caution goes out the window.
But you don't want to miss the next Alien Frontiers, do you?
With Ogre and reprint projects it's a little different because you more or less know what you're buying. But there again, why does a high profile, in-demand product need to be crowdsourced? Oh, that's right...because it's a "new way of doing business".
One that I assure you most professional businesses and industries will stay far away from.
P500 is not a loan that pays you back in a product. P500 is a nonbinding pledge to buy to gauge interest.
I'd bet the farm that more often than not a P500 program does generate a loan. Sure a company like GMT may have the money to pay for the print run up front, but more than likely the company will get a short term loan from a bank while providing the P500 numbers as supporting documentation to make the bank feel all warm and fuzzy about their investment. They can say "On this day we will be charging so we'll have an influx of $X (minus X% which is the average "cancellations")". Then they receive the loan and have a more stable cash-flow.
With Ogre and reprint projects it's a little different because you more or less know what you're buying. But there again, why does a high profile, in-demand product need to be crowdsourced?
I've already stated my piece on why I think Ogre/KS is a good idea and has worked. Chose to pass over that answer if you want.
This is interesting...this is from the developers of Star Command, an IOS Kickstarter project that you can pledge up to A THOUSAND FREAKING DOLLARS on it and still not get a download of the game, apparently.
They've disclosed everything they've spent their $37k of Kickstarter money on. The funny thing is how much of it really has nothing to do with making the game. Example:
Music - $6,000
Attorneys, startup fees, CPA - $4000
Poster art - $2000
iPads - $1000
PAX East - $3000
So at least $4k of the money they borrowed from their customers was spent buying iPads and going to PAX East. Not in actually making or distributing their product.
It's pretty clear that these guys know that they kind of screwed up and underestimated things like taxes, overhead, fees, and whatnot. But what really killed them was not expecting to shell out $10k for prize fulfillment. So over a quarter of the money they borrowed from their customers is going to pay for posters, t-shirts, and shipping.
The punchline is that they still had to take on $50,000 worth of debt to develop the game. Now, this is just one project and not all will have these kinds of issues...but it does show how this "new way of doing business' is largely untested, unreliable, and possibly disasterous.
... but it does show how this "new way of doing business' is largely untested, unreliable, and possibly disasterous.
LOL. No. It only shows that you can cherry-pick an anecdote to support your position.
I could just as easily point to all of the now-closed brick-and-mortar game stores and the dozens of defunct game companies from the last 20 years or so and claim, "See! The traditional model doesn't work!" It would be an equally vapid and meaningless thing to say.
BTW, did someone actually say, "New way of doing business"? Serious question. If so, I missed it ... and the thread is now getting long enough that I'm hesitant to re-read all of it. It seems like an odd way to look at it, though. I mean, yes, it's "new" if the meaning is "got started fairly recently." But if the meaning is supposed to be "so revolutionary that it's going to revamp the system completely," then, no, I'm not buying it. It's a different way to do business, for sure, but it's not a model that's going to work for all companies and/or all situations. The publisher-distributor-retailer model, for all of its many faults, isn't going anywhere any time soon.
This is interesting...this is from the developers of Star Command, an IOS Kickstarter project that you can pledge up to A THOUSAND FREAKING DOLLARS on it and still not get a download of the game, apparently...
They used Kickstarter for promotion and to gauge interest.
They never say that the Kickstarter money will be used for game development. They state the the funds generated from Kickstarter were to be used to:
•Hire extra talent for things like music, sound effects and additional platform development like Android
•Promote and market to help sell the game and fund future expansions and possible sequels
•Localize the game to other regions like Europe and Asia
The Kickstarter itself was promotion and marketing. The $3000 for Pax East is more marketing. They also now have 100 people walking around wearing their T-shirts. They have their poster art done.
They got the music done.
Additonally they got their startup and attorney fees taken care of, and have $4000 left over. They miscalculated a bit, and also didn't plan on the attorney fees etc, so they ended up with less than they expected to put towards Android development, localization, and expansions but those things can be done after the the initial release should it be successful and generate enough profit to make it worth doing.
Finally, if they can raise $36,000 from people interested in the game without even having the game as one of the rewards, they have a pretty good idea that the they will be able to make more than that by actually selling the game.
All in all, I'd say a very successful use of Kickstarter.
Uba WANTS a lot of shitty opinions and HAS a tray of Maker’s Mark
I'd bet the farm that more often than not a P500 program does generate a loan.
I have no idea if this is true; I'd actually be surprised if it was. But even if it is true, the loan is the company's obligation, not the customer's. They're still risking their own capital.
I'll stand by my betting of my hypothetical farm as say this is true. Companies receive lines of credit from banks. The amount of the credit line is largely determined by receivables. That's why you get issued a receipt with an order number and dollar amount. So unless I'm missing some GAAP rule a company could count that as receivables to expand their line of credit. And lines of credit are used to be able to pay large upfront costs for something (like a print run) where you won't receive payments for some weeks or months, but also don't disrupt payroll or day to day expenses.