Darian Tucker
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I have wondered for a while now whether the following project might be feasible to undertake. I have pretty much sworn off Kickstarter as a medium for fools with too much money and too little sense to literally throw money at projects of suspect quality that may or may not see the light of day. The decent number of projects that met legal issues or haven't seen the light of day certainly influences this feeling.

However, I am willing to attribute that to the availability heuristic. Therefore, I wonder if it might be possible to invent a site feature where Kickstarted games can have various criteria listed about them that is sortable. For example, it might be important to know the following:

Was the project successful/unsuccessful?
Did the project meet its shipping deadline? If it was late, by how much?
What were the different reward levels? What did they come with?
Has the project ever seen the light of day?
What is the game's rating?
What is the quality of the components in the project? Is it requisite to the level of funding needed to obtain said components?

The last one is quite possibly the trickiest, but is also the one I'd consider the most important to know. In order to break my mental association of Kickstarter with mediocre games, I need to have available a database with this information. To wit, I WANT to Kickstart a game if I think it's worthwhile, but there are too many factors holding me back and/or convincing me it's a waste of time/money.

To put it in perspective, I have bought and received as a gift one game each in the past that I did not know at first was Kickstarted. The game I bought was Alien Frontiers. While it was fun for a few plays, my group quickly tired of it. It just seemed like a half-baked idea. The game I received as a gift was Empires of the Void. We had one aborted play of it before I just ended up selling it. The rules were atrocious: incomplete and full of errors. A second printing was released after I sold the game on that fixed some, but not all, of the issues. However, I was not interested in holding on to a half-baked project.

When it comes right down to it, this is the real issue I see with Kickstarter. It seems to me like the vast majority of projects are cool ideas that really need to be pitched to a game publisher to polish them into marketable products. By skipping this middleman in the value chain, we are not seeing good products that would never otherwise have seen the light of day, but instead a glut of underdeveloped ideas.

Now, I am wholly willing to admit that my supposition could be incorrect. Maybe I just got two bad seeds out of a veritable treasure trove of great game ideas that idiot publishers simply passed on. However, I don't think my opinion is incorrect. Without a database to substantiate it, however, it will simply remain an uninformed opinion. Hence, I return to my point: can a Kickstarter database be created with this important information? If so, I'd relish the chance to see whether or not my anti-Kickstarter stance is borne out by the evidence or unjustifiable.
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Mindy Basi
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Many people would not agree with you that Alien Frontiers was a bad game.

Since it came out in 2010, over 6000 people have rated it for a combined rating of 7.51, which is very high.

So according to any criteria, it would not rate badly as a kickstarter.

The risk of Kickstarter is just that -- you are backing a game in the hopes that it will be a good game for you. It's a gamble, just like any venture capital investment.

Buying any game, kickstarter or no, is a risk that you personally won't enjoy it. Short of playing it before you buy, everyone takes that risk.
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George Ramos
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I'm pretty sure the Alien Frontiers expansion (Factions) was a Kickstarter project initially, but the board game itself was not. So I must assume you're talking about the expansion, because the otherwise excellent Alien Frontiers board game should probably edited out of your post.

While we're on the subject, I can name a few Kickstarter projects that I'm very proud to own: A Study in Emerald, Sails of Glory, The New Science, Loka, 1775: Rebellion, et al. There are only two that I backed but ended up trading: Kings of Air and Steam and Exile Sun. It sounds like you've just had bad luck with Kickstarter.
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Daniel Kearns
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Quote:
I have pretty much sworn off Kickstarter as a medium for fools with too much money and too little sense to literally throw money at projects of suspect quality that may or may not see the light of day.


HEY! I resemble that remark!

Seriously, while totally true about fools and money be aware that most kickstarter games do ship.

We can fight over whether the shipped games are any good or not.

EDIT: I like your idea BTW.
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Tony Go
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greekramos wrote:
I'm pretty sure the Alien Frontiers expansion (Factions) was a Kickstarter project initially, but the board game itself was not. So I must assume you're talking about the expansion, because the otherwise excellent Alien Frontiers board game should probably edited out of your post.

While we're on the subject, I can name a few Kickstarter projects that I'm very proud to own: A Study in Emerald, Sails of Glory, The New Science, Loka, 1775: Rebellion, et al. There are only two that I backed but ended up trading: Kings of Air and Steam and Exile Sun. It sounds like you've just had bad luck with Kickstarter.


The original Alien Frontiers board game was indeed a Kickstarter. The expansion and subsequent reprintings were also kickstarted.

I like the idea that Kickstarter is used to fund other people's dreams and ideas. There is inherent risk, and thinking otherwise is not a fault of kickstarter or its process.

I would also just like to suggest that each Kickstarter should be looked at individually. And if one project leaves a bad taste in your mouth, not to let that experience prevent you from helping someone else out. If a dog bites you, you have every right to be weary of every other dog but not all of them are going to bite you. Some just want to play. laugh
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Matt Brown
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There's also a huge difference between a game on KS that has a publisher versus ones that do not. I find there seems to be a decent correlation in a negative sense between a miniatures company putting out a game and the quality of the rulebook.
 
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Tony Go
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SparkingConduit wrote:


When it comes right down to it, this is the real issue I see with Kickstarter. It seems to me like the vast majority of projects are cool ideas that really need to be pitched to a game publisher to polish them into marketable products. By skipping this middleman in the value chain, we are not seeing good products that would never otherwise have seen the light of day, but instead a glut of underdeveloped ideas.



And yet many games on Kickstarter are actually backed and supported by legitimate publishers who have supposedly "polished them into marketable products".

You still end up with a final product of questionable quality.
 
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George Ramos
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Horror Leader wrote:
The original Alien Frontiers board game was indeed a Kickstarter. The expansion and subsequent reprintings were also kickstarted.


Did not know that. Thanks!
 
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James Wahl
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I remember a list like that. I just googled for it, but didn't have any luck. It followed crowdfunded games and had a table of the active ones, and a table with the expired ones and whether they made their goals. Also a weekly (or monthly, I can't remember) summary of what was going on in crowdfunded games, focusing on how well they were doing rather than the games themselves. Going to keep digging.
 
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