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Crowdfunding: Kickstarter» Forums » General

Subject: Synergy Indiegogo campaign is now LIVE! rss

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Simon Wilde
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I am Simon Wilde, visual artist, creative writer, and passionate lover of all things 'game'. With many successful 'amateur' board games under my belt, it's time to print one of my creations for the world to enjoy.


Synergy is created based on what I see as the keystone elements of boardgaming excellence: dynamic player interaction; maximum player choice on each turn; and intuitve mechanics.

http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/synergy/x/2955560

https://www.facebook.com/BoardGameSynergy
 
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Matt Wolfe
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Why would you use indiegogo instead of Kickstarter?
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Simon Wilde
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I am In Canada, and it is easier to use for us northern folk.
 
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Richard Morris
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So no details about what the game is, and a video that is 'private' so will not play. Not a good start.
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Matt Wolfe
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Knytemare wrote:
I am In Canada, and it is easier to use for us northern folk.
Kickstarter now allows projects from Canada.

But my point is Kickstarter has much more visibility than indiegogo. You'll have a better chance of funding by using Kickstarter.
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Simon Wilde
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There are details about the game!

But the video was private. .. . thought I had changed it.
Fixed now, thanks for pointing that out to me!
 
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Simon Wilde
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Yeah, I looked at both Indiegogo and Kickstarter. Kickstarter just has a lot of problems if you aren't banking in the USA.

True they have taken steps to lessen these issues, but have not eliminated them completely.
 
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Serge Gagnon
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mattwolfe wrote:
Why would you use indiegogo instead of Kickstarter?
From another post when it was first announced Kickstarter coming to Canada.

JoffW wrote:
tuathail wrote:
Don't forget you have to charge exorbitant extra postage to people in the US
This is one of the biggest hurdles of the UK Kickstarter. The majority of the market resides in the US, so you need to appease the US backers somehow. If you don't get US backing, it is a real uphill struggle to fund.
RPGShop wrote:
Plus they will be charging Canadian Dollars and thus require a different signup for payment and hassles with people not wanting to bother. UK I thik suffers greatly from charging campaigns in pounds.

James
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Richard Morris
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Of course, the opposite happens all the time. US kickstarters ignore the rest of the world: you frequently get "postage paid in the USA, and extra $XX to Europe" where XX makes it simply not worth while. Who is going to spend $25 or $30 to get a game posted to them, and then have to pay customs duties and handling fees on top of that? So whilst they are trying to be a bit more universal, kickstarter will remain a predominantly US thing.
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-=::) Dante (::=-
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Knytemare wrote:
There are details about the game!

But the video was private. .. . thought I had changed it.
Fixed now, thanks for pointing that out to me!
There seems to be quite a disconnect on what defines "details" here.

How many players? How long is the game? What kind of components? What is the actual goal of the game? What are the winning conditions? What are the actual mechanics?

"Fresh", "Interactive", and the like is not details, it's marketing jargon that has no tangible value to a gamer trying to assess whether what you're offering is a good fit.

Please take a look at what other successful crowd sourced games have up on their pages from day one and you'll have a better idea of just what is missing from your own.
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Richard Morris
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Knytemare wrote:
There are details about the game!

But the video was private. .. . thought I had changed it.
Fixed now, thanks for pointing that out to me!
Nothing that I would call details. If I was thinking about buying a game, I want to know all about it. Preferably I want to read the rules. Failing that, I want to hear what people who have played the game think about it, by reading decent reviews, or watch a 'how to play' video.

Here we have, what:

A handful of picture of what looks to be a prototype set of graphics (from someone who positions themself as a visual artist).
A page from the rules which is marketing fluff (and not very fluffy fluff, at that).
A video that explains what the designer thinks is important in a game. That bit is fine, as far as it goes, but there is still nothing that gives me any indication what the game actually IS.

So, what have I missed? Where is these details about the game that you claim to have provided? Where is the game page on BGG? You have been a member for a while (so you are not just some freerider like many we who want to advertise their game but not really contribute to the community). So you must understand the importance of a game page. So where is it? If the game is finished enough that we can seriously be expected to back it, then it is finished enough for there to be a game page. Months ago. And if it isn't, then all we are expected to be buying is marketing fluff with no substance at all.

-----------

Is postage free? To the UK? To Outer Mongolia? You should state these things.
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Simon Wilde
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The game is for 2 to 6 players, the winner of the game is the player who completes the most projects.

The mechanics are simple and also flexible. Players play action cards (called infrastructure cards) and also have access to the most recent cards played by other players. But, use of their opponents cards are restricted by the permission of that player, usually involving some kind of bribe or promise.

The actions on the infrastructure cards are for creating and transforming resources to attempt to collect certain specific sets needed to complete the projects.

A typical game lasts around 60-90 mins.

Any more questions are welcome here and on the Indiegogo page!

http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/synergy
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Simon Wilde
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Thank you for your advice and criticism, I have added more pages from the rule book and more examples of what the game entails to the page.
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Jacq L
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I don't generally use Indiegogo (and I'm in Canada), but if I did, I still wouldn't back this project because most of your video is just slamming other games.

Yeah, Candyland or the Game of Life are stupid. But (imho) it's really unprofessional to talk about how crappy all these other games are. It's fine to describe what your game is NOT via this sort of comparison, but with so little information about what makes your game not like these others, the only impression I get is that you hate roll and move games. Cool, I hate them too. But I'm not asking you for money.

edit: After looking over the rules, I'm a bit confused. You talk about a "game board" but I can't find one, and I can't imagine what it's for or what it looks like. I'd also suggest putting the "cost" of the project cards on the front of the card, unless part of the gameplay is for players to know what the requirements for the "next" project is... Heck, even if that's the case, I think it's annoying to have to flip a card to know what you need to complete it.

The project cards themselves are sort of bland in a doomy-gloomy kind of way. Do the completed projects affect gameplay at all? (e.g. the "obedience" project card allows you to trade 1:1 resources X number of times a hand with another player).

There's typos in the rulebook (multiple instances of "resrouce") and the... something, kerning(?) is really bizarre and hard to read.
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Simon Wilde
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Oh!
Didn't meant for it to sound like I was bashing the other games. Just comparing and contrasting Synergy to those games. Snakes and ladders, and game of life have a place in games for certain and I didn't mean to put them down. I also mention chess and settlers of catan, not to put them down, but to explain a point I am making about choice vs chance. Sorry it rubbed you the wrong way though!

I am looking over the rulebook for typos, but cant find the ones you are pointing out. . .
{EDIT} oh snap, found one. Top of the fourth page. I guess I'll have to re-edit the rule book again. Thanks for pointing this out to me!


The game board is depicted on the first page of the rulebook.

" . . . .and the... something, kerning(?) is really bizarre and hard to read."

what does this mean?

 
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Simon Wilde
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Yeah, just spotted that now. Will fix right away.
 
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Jacq L
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Knytemare wrote:
I am looking over the rulebook for typos, but cant find the ones you are pointing out. . .
 


That's just one piece of one page. There are others (e.g. playen instead of player).

Knytemare wrote:
The game board is depicted on the first page of the rulebook.
I didn't realize that was a board. It looked like stacks of resource cards. Is there nothing that lists the order of turns, or a place for the other cards to go? (If the board is just a layout for hold the different cards, shouldn't it hold ALL the cards?) At the very least, putting a box around it will make it look like a board...

Knytemare wrote:
" . . . .and the... something, kerning(?) is really bizarre and hard to read."

what does this mean?
Kerning refers to the spacing between letters. I'm not sure if that's actually the problem with the rulebook, the font, or if the pages just got stretched weird when uploading, but it looks strange and is hard to read. It might just be me, though.
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Simon Wilde
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Ah! I was not familiar with this word.
Yeah, it was typeset for a 'pamphlet' style, and has since been stretched.
Also, they will most certainly get an edit before any kind of printing. These pages are from the playtest copies.

The order of turns is explained in the rules, and is controlled by the value of the infrastructure card you play each turn.

There are other features to the game board. In addition to showing the layout of the periodic table of resources, it lists the turn phases and game setup steps. There are a few different versions in use right now each with varying amounts of information. But since different playtest copies had different boards, I didn't want the board and the picture of the board in the rulebook to look drastically different. Thus, the rulebook has a stripped down, "just the basics" picture of the board.

In closing, thanks for your attention and critique. Obviously I have never tried a campaign like this and all the tips and help from the community is greatly appreciated. I know at this stage its not the most important thing, but, Synergy is FUN to play, people who play it get involved and enjoy themselves. I just have to communicate that . . . .
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Simon Wilde
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As to the projects affecting play, in an earlier version of the game they did. But it was to difficult to valuate for most players. Also, buying the projects is a victory condition and so is already very valuable. Giving a player extra power for being ahead is not (imho) a good game dynamic.

So, as it stands, the projects are a layer of fluff tied to the victory conditions. They frame the game as a game of corporate greed and power, setting the stage for the wheeling, dealing and double-crossing that emerge during game play.
 
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Andrew Rowse
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Have a look at the sort of information that the successful projects in this geeklist have shown:
http://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/104627/board-game-projects...

Indiegogo is rubbish from a backer's point of view. Unlike Kickstarter, backers can't change a pledge once it is made - so a pledge is a bigger commitment than on KS. And you're simply not showing enough to make a potential backer comfortable about making that irrevocable commitment.
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Simon Wilde
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Planned updates were sample turns and interviews with playtesters. But, I suppose some of those should be rushed out right away!

I have added an update that breaks down gameplay and gives a good sense of the flow of things, I think.

Thank you for your comments and interest!
 
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Andrew Rowse
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It's definitely worth pushing that sort of critical information to the front page, not burying them in an update. Remember that most potential backers will decide whether they're interested in the project based on the main page, and won't go looking at the updates unless they're already hooked (where 'most' is based on some statistics that I just made up).

Honestly, I think the absolute best thing you could do would be to cancel your project and relaunch with a better presentation:

* Focus your video on images of you (so that people invest in you as a person) and of your game (so people can visualise what they'll be getting).

* Remove all negativity from the project, so that viewers do not develop an association between your game and negative things.

* Add images of the game to the project text (so that viewers can understand the project even if they're at work and can't view the video), and include a component manifest so that they can evaluate the value of the game.

* If your card design is placeholder, say so clearly, and include something to let the viewer know what to expect from the final project. If it's not placeholder... what? It's not very compelling at all. In the interest of constructive (though probably not especially welcome) feedback, I wouldn't pay for that.

* Link rules from the main page - don't make viewers go hunting in a gallery.

* Lastly, relaunch on Kickstarter. It might be more hassle for you, but it's a lot less hassle for backers. KS is better trusted than IGG (in part because of IGG's flexible funding model, which thankfully you're not using!) Also, speaking as somebody who has run an IGG campaign, IGG's tools for organising backer information are DREADFUL. In the long run, you will experience more hassle with IGG than KS.

Good luck. I don't think I'm your target market for Synergy, but it's clear that you're passionate about it, and I hope you can make it work!

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Richard Morris
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KAndrw wrote:
---snip ---

Honestly, I think the absolute best thing you could do would be to cancel your project and relaunch with a better presentation:

--- snip ---
Whilst I tend to agree, I suspect, FWIW, that he will have that decision taken out of his hands: without an enormous amount of work it is unlikely to be turned around now. First impressions count, and all that. Even though the amount asked for is quite small by game launch standards, I suspect it will not hit the target. Put it down as a learning experience, and come back again with those lessons learned.

Perhaps on KS, as Andrew says.
 
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