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Kickstarter is not an ATM

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pandasaurus
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I posted a blog post on BGG the other day, and wanted to get a little discussion on the topic going on this site.

http://boardgamegeek.com/blogpost/8665/kickstarter-is-not-an-atm

This is a cautionary warning more than anything else about the difficulties that you can run into with Kickstarter. A few big kickstarter names jumped into the discussion, but the take-away is: don't think kickstarter is going to make you rich or be easy.

I know most people on this forum are designing games for the joy of it and because there is an idea in their head that they can't get rid of. Just remember that and don't expect kickstarter to solve all of your problems.

I'm going the kickstarter route, and I've found it to be a lot of fun and pretty rewarding. I just want everyone to be duly warned of some of the pitfalls you can run into going this direction. It's a lot of work, funders aren't going to throw money at you just because you ask for it, and you better be able to back up your request for funds with a good looking game. Oh, and it costs money.

Fhizban
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just read this after replying

just read this after replying to the "initial funding" thread

wanted to give this +1, but board software does not allow thumbs up :-)

EDIT: gave it another thumbs up at BGG instead!

pandasaurus
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Thanks :) It's just a funny

Thanks :)

It's just a funny thing. People see 50K raised on kickstarter, but if you have been following the Gunship updates (one of the current massive moneymakers) he is trying to raise 30K more so he can afford a 4K print run, which is the only way he can justify doing linen inset cards.

It's a funny business, and I just want to make sure everyone is well aware that while kickstarter is awesome and can bring games that would be otherwise overlooked to market, and bring in high production values.. it isn't a great way to get rich.

I'm expecting to lose money on my first game. And probably my next 3-4 after that, and my hope is I'll have some kind of built in audience and can turn the corner down the road... but if Tastey Minstrel is still losing money, it really gives me very little hope.

Fhizban
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100% agreed. i also followed

100% agreed.

i also followed the gunship hype and replied to the thread on BGG recently. process is symbolic and it just hits the nail on the head.

as i am in germany, i cannot publish my own projects on kickstarter yet. but i follow the scene since quite a while and came to the same conclusions as you did.

kickstarter is a funny tool, that works exceptionally well for a few gifted projects. and for some top notch projects, that already have high quality artwork, a working prototype and a decent community to back them - its working even better. but for the vast majority its just another hopeless attempt to get some attention (and money) and if done without passion its not just hopeless but senseless and shameful.

i dont consider myself a "pro" - i think of boardgame design as a fun hobby business. but just like any other business, once you switch from "amateur" to the "pro" route - it stops being a hobby for you and becomes more of a job. and this is where creativity ends and the job of a salesman begins. this is also true for the kickstarter phenomenon - halfhearted attempts wont bring you anywhere, but is "beating the marketing drum" really what you imagined doing most of your time, when deciding to design a game?

thanks for increasing board quality!

TalkingBull
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Kickstarter

This is a good post and people should really know what they are getting into if they start a Kickstarter campaign. I recently had a successful campaign and I made a little more than I was looking for ($3,005 made with a goal of $2,500) but that extra money didn't really go into my pocket. I ended up using all of the money to print copies of my game as well as all the other perks and the rest went into my website (Which is why I launched the campaign in the first place). It worked out great for me because I was able to get my site up and running and sell a few dozen copies of my game.

I started another which is currently running in order to find playtesters. The idea was to locate people I don't know to conduct blind playtesting of my current game without incurring the cost myself. I am almost funded so it looks like it may work.

Kickstarter is a great tool but I definitely agree that it is a LOT of work. There is a lot of communication involved and you have to deliver what is promised. I have been very happy with it and will continue to use it whenever I need capital to fund a project.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1952367545/want-to-help-playtest-and...

genericm
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recently posted a summary of

recently posted a summary of the cost surrounding our Exile Sun kickstarter campaign.

http://gameknightgames.com/design-blog/the-true-cost-of-a-kickstarter-pr...

Our initial funding goal would have put us very far in the red, requiring much personal investment. That's a good decision to make on the front end, not one to learn about on the back.

EM

pandasaurus
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To answer an earlier

To answer an earlier question, I did not see myself spending this much time marketing and running the company.

Initially I thought I would publish a couple of my games a year, and maybe some other peoples games that I found interesting. The business side of this has taken over completely and now I'm hoping to put out one of my games every 1-2 years and publish mostly other peoples designs.

Which is an entire other problem, finding people who want to give a new publisher a shot with their game is easier said than done.

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