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Shadows of Brimstone: Forbidden Fortress» Forums » General

Subject: Disgruntled KS1 Backers--Now is your time to shine! rss

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Robert Haddon
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I have held off writing a post like this for a long time because I am worried that it will trigger a flame war (please no) and it is generally against my principles to try to persuade people on the Internet to see a different side of an issue because it's usually pointless and often leads back to the aforementioned flames. However, for the sake of the SoB FoFo KS, I'm going to try!

I believe the disgruntled SoB KS1 backers have had a significant negative impact on the current KS, either through abstaining from pledging or scaring off new potential backers. If that group of people can find it within themselves to put aside their anger at the Frogs and give support to the FoFo campaign, it would be a great thing for the entire SoB community.

I've listened to the complaints of the disgruntled and I'd like to talk about the issues they have raised. I want to dismantle those grievances, hopefully without disrespecting anyone's feelings:

* Delivery is way past due. It is important to remember that KS is not a store and delivery dates are always stated as estimates. A successful campaign with lots of SGs and add-ons is a very difficult process to estimate with any level of accuracy, especially for KS rookies like the Frogs were. Heck, even the veterans like CMON, who have KS down to a science, frequently miss their dates. It's not just board games either. I backed Grim Dawn (video game--excellent btw) in 2012! I just got it, about 3.5 years late. I also backed Tides of Numenaria (video game) back in March 2013, it's 2+ years late. I don't care! I have other things to do in the meantime. Humans suck at predicting the future, and the Frogs, giving themselves only 10 months for KS1, were obviously extremely naïve about estimates. However, quality results are usually worth the wait. Look at what Kingdom Death did in their reprint campaign: they said 'we don't know', so count on 4 years for full delivery!

* Retail availability before KS delivery. It makes so much sense for creators to do this, and the Frogs are not alone. CMON, to use them as an example again, do this all the time. It's terrible financial strategy NOT to do it. Creators can't send backers their pledge material in piecemeal fashion unless they charge an enormous sum for shipping that frankly no backer would ever approve. They have to release it in waves in order to control shipping cost (both money and personnel logistics). And when manufacturing components, of course they always make more than what is on order. The economy of scale is simply too good an opportunity to pass up. So what are creators supposed to do in this situation, maintain inventories of product just so they don't hurt the feelings of backers? Impossible. That would be financially ruinous.

* FoFo KS started before KS1 backers receive all their pledges. I'll admit that this looks bad on the surface, but the reasoning is obvious once you think about it. It takes a lot of different skills and responsibilities to push a game of this scale to market, and not all of those are required for the entire duration of the process. At some point the creative workers, the designers and artists for example, are going to be pencils-down on the project and need something new to work on. It's been about three years since KS1; the creative folks have probably been working on FoFo for quite awhile now.

* Bad communication. Yeah, I've got nothing for this. The Frogs really don't engage with the community at all nor do they communicate with backers often enough. Hang out in the Mechs vs Minions forum (the high watermark example)--there is a vibe there of a shared journey with designers and players alike; it's a stark contrast to the SoB forums. I think this is the Frogs' single greatest fault, and if they were better at this then the other problems wouldn't have been as bad. It's baffling to me why they don't do something. Frog HQ isn't too far from where I live, sometimes I feel like heading over there and giving them some friendly advice.

Did I sway anyone? Are virtual flaming tomatoes flying my way?

Disclaimer: I'm a boardgamer and miniature painter. Missed KS1 and have paid way more than "Mine Cart WANTED LEVEL" for a fraction of what that pledge will ultimately include. Thus my motivation for the FoFo campaign to do really great is revealed!
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Klutz
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Sure, I'll bite... I'm bored.



Friedmutant wrote:
* Delivery is way past due.


I know shipping dates are estimates and KS is not a store. But there's a limit on how badly you can be at planning...

In September 2014 - this is after they shipped Wave 1 (iirc) - they said this: "Currently we are estimating that Wave 2 will start shipping out some time next Summer (2015), most likely around August timeframe."

They were hoping to ship out Wave 2 11 months later. Turns out they were off by at least 16 months.

Re-read that. It didn't take 16 months instead of 11... It took 27 months instead of 11.



Friedmutant wrote:
* Retail availability before KS delivery.


Another parallel issue is how FFP developed content not from the KS before they were done developing the KS content.

If the KS funded 3 years worth of retail releases... why the heck are they developing stuff not from the KS? That's time they could've spent working on the KS content.



Friedmutant wrote:
* FoFo KS started before KS1 backers receive all their pledges.


Yes, they need to keep people busy. But did anyone really think that Forbidden Fortress wouldn't fund?

What would've stopped them from continuing work on Forbidden Fortress until wave 2 is shipped out and in backers' hands, and then launching the new KS with a delivery timeline of 2 or 3 months, instead of 7?



Friedmutant wrote:
* Bad communication.


And they don't look like they're getting any better either. I wonder if they'll manage to do worse??



Friedmutant wrote:
Did I sway anyone? Are virtual flaming tomatoes flying my way?


No, and no.
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Robert Haddon
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Hey, thanks for reading and not throwing flaming fruit. I'm glad I caught you bored.

I want to dismiss your first point because it just seems that you are upset about the magnitude of their ineptitude and not the ineptitude itself. Plus I have you beat with a 42 month delay in one of the KS I backed.

I am ignorant of the details around your second point, so I won't comment.

Your third point, however, is very cogent and I don't have a good rebuttal. It does seem like many more of the stand-in sketches could have been sculpted when I look at it your way. Hmm. There could be a lot of reasons for this that I don't want to speculate on.
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Klutz
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Friedmutant wrote:
Your third point, however, is very cogent and I don't have a good rebuttal. It does seem like many more of the stand-in sketches could have been sculpted when I look at it your way. Hmm. There could be a lot of reasons for this that I don't want to speculate on.


I personally would've been more likely to pledge for FoFo if I had my wave 2 stuff in hand.

The quality of minis and enemies in the expansions is supposed to be a lot better than in the core sets. However, I (and many others) only have the core sets. And I would NOT pledge for more stuff of the same quality as the core sets (very "meh" minis, boring monster AI). If I had wave 2 in hand, and I thought all the stuff was OMG amazing!! I might want to pledge more money for more OMG amazing!! content.
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Rick Vinyard
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Friedmutant wrote:
Your third point, however, is very cogent and I don't have a good rebuttal. It does seem like many more of the stand-in sketches could have been sculpted when I look at it your way. Hmm. There could be a lot of reasons for this that I don't want to speculate on.

One reason could be to use the Kickstarter to gauge market interest before putting too much effort into numerous expansions. Running the Kickstarter before getting too deep into expansion development could be used to guide development from this point forward.
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Greg
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As an outsider to the whole SoB experience, I just wanted to say thanks for sharing your perspective. I'm still not sure if I want to pledge or not.

I feel like if I don't get the Shogun level I'm missing out on too much stuff, but I don't really want to pledge more than $100 on a game I might not like, especially when it's too similar to so many other forthcoming games. I'm not overly worried about the company's business practices, as long as the game is good and it's at a price point I can afford.
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Klutz
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Glic2003 wrote:

As an outsider to the whole SoB experience, I just wanted to say thanks for sharing your perspective. I'm still not sure if I want to pledge or not.

I feel like if I don't get the Shogun level I'm missing out on too much stuff, but I don't really want to pledge more than $100 on a game I might not like, especially when it's too similar to so many other forthcoming games. I'm not overly worried about the company's business practices, as long as the game is good and it's at a price point I can afford.


Have you seen this?
https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1673782/just-visual-compari...

If I were pledging Sumo, what I'd feel like I was really missing out on would be the 2 Otherworlds (Temple of Shadows and Forest of the Dead). You can keep the $200, wait and see if you really enjoy the game and then pick up the 2 Otherworlds and a few extra ennemis for with money.

Plus, if the first KS is any indication, some of the enemy packs will get bundled together or upgraded into "deluxe" enemy packs at retail and you can pick up those.


FYI: I pledged at the Outlaw level of the original KS (Sumo equivalent). I do NOT feel like I'll run out of stuff anytime soon, nor do I feel like I missed out or regret not getting the Minecart (Shogun equivalent).
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Robert Haddon
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Glic2003 wrote:

I feel like if I don't get the Shogun level I'm missing out on too much stuff, but I don't really want to pledge more than $100 on a game I might not like


Don't do what you are not comfortable doing. There is still a great deal of content in the Sumo pledge, I can't imagine you'd be disappointed, assuming you like the game. I almost pledged there myself since I have already sunk so much money into SoB...but I have this collection-building (hoarding) problem...so Shogun++ it is for me.
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Klutz
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Now, back to our scheduled programming of Disgruntled Backers, Season 2 episode 6!


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Glenn Propst
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My problems have nothing to do with your highlighted points. Mine come down to this: I do not have 300$ lying around for this.
As it is i can barely store what i have in my tiny apartment. I am not looking forward to figuring out how to store wave 2.
Then throw another base game and all of its stretch goals on top of the heap when ive barely made it through half of the content i do have? Nah, I'm good
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Waggly Bean
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Friedmutant wrote:
Glic2003 wrote:

I feel like if I don't get the Shogun level I'm missing out on too much stuff, but I don't really want to pledge more than $100 on a game I might not like


Don't do what you are not comfortable doing. There is still a great deal of content in the Sumo pledge, I can't imagine you'd be disappointed, assuming you like the game. I almost pledged there myself since I have already sunk so much money into SoB...but I have this collection-building (hoarding) problem...so Shogun++ it is for me.


Sumo backer here, feeling quite content with the amount I'm getting. The Japanese setting doesn't appeal to me as much as Wild West one so I'm happy to not be getting the insane amount of enemies that come from the Shogun pledge. For my $95 I'm more than happy to have Belly of the Best and Japan as Otherworlds for my original SoB, and to throw in a few choice add-owns that aren't specifically Japanese (Flesh Mites and Tongue Demons for instance). Then both of these worlds will be pretty well fleshed out.

If I weren't to back this and were to just buy some enemy packs for original SoB, I would probably only get about 3/4 boxes for before eating through the same amount of money I have pledged here. I am getting a better value of add-ons here than I will likely get anywhere else.
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Jee Fu
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Honestly, we should be starting our own meta-KS that raises money to buy SoB pledges just for Klutz so that he'll keep making awesome content-creation tools for us.

- Jee
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Klutz
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Inspector Jee wrote:
Honestly, we should be starting our own meta-KS that raises money to buy SoB pledges just for Klutz so that he'll keep making awesome content-creation tools for us.

- Jee



Awww shucks
 
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Bernie Roessler
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I am looking forward to using the custom coins he is creating.

P.S. I think we should also be buying pledges for Paddirn and Philbarfly. Am I missing someone else? General Warhammer, you're almost there. You only need to create a character class for FoFo as awesome as the Huckster was.
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Bum Kim
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Friedmutant wrote:
[i]I believe the disgruntled SoB KS1 backers have had a significant negative impact on the current KS, either through abstaining from pledging or scaring off new potential backers. If that group of people can find it within themselves to put aside their anger at the Frogs and give support to the FoFo campaign, it would be a great thing for the entire SoB community.

Robert, good job being diplomatic and extending a dove towards those that are soured by KS1 but I don't know how much the current KS has been hurt by negativity. I mean, it will likely hit $1M which seems pretty fantastic. I know others have debated whether or not this KS has been a success but I'm pretty sure the Frogs are happy. Not as happy as Poots sitting on $5.6M but happy nonetheless. And us backers are happy too as we are getting a pretty good discount at this level.

I for one would actually be a little miffed if those that have been so vocal about their dissatisfaction went ahead and backed FoFo--you lose credibility at that point. I thought this thread was going to be about telling disgruntled backers to not give in last minute and back!
 
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Frank La Terra
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First there was Shock that anybody would have issues with this KS as it was "fantastic value" and any 'issues' with it was nonsense.
Next came panic when there was a slump.
Then came hope as FFP put minecart levels up ("genius move!" some cried) and the funding got a jolt.
Then Followed denial as people insisted that the campaign was a raging success ("It beat it's $50K funding goal, how much success do you want!")
Next came acceptance, with the thread saying people were happy with what they had even if the final tally goes no hire.
And now we seem to be at the Bargaining stage.

I hope Anger isn't the next stage!
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Andrea Florio
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Dragon unlocked!
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Robert Haddon
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Mr Skeletor wrote:

I hope Anger isn't the next stage!


Don't forget Regret. That comes when the impact sinks in that I just spent > $1000 on two board games (KDM & SoB)!

It's a good thing it takes months/years for pledges to deliver--the Regret fades with time.
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Paul Chamberland
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bumyong wrote:
Robert, good job being diplomatic and extending a dove towards those that are soured by KS1 but I don't know how much the current KS has been hurt by negativity. I mean, it will likely hit $1M which seems pretty fantastic. I know others have debated whether or not this KS has been a success but I'm pretty sure the Frogs are happy.

Original KS: 4,727 backers
Current KS: 3,342 backers with 24 hours to go.

Looks like there has been some effect.
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Frank La Terra
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Friedmutant wrote:
Mr Skeletor wrote:

I hope Anger isn't the next stage!


Don't forget Regret. That comes when the impact sinks in that I just spent > $1000 on two board games (KDM & SoB)!

It's a good thing it takes months/years for pledges to deliver--the Regret fades with time.


That's the final stage - acceptance.
 
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Andrea Florio
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Mandor wrote:
bumyong wrote:
Robert, good job being diplomatic and extending a dove towards those that are soured by KS1 but I don't know how much the current KS has been hurt by negativity. I mean, it will likely hit $1M which seems pretty fantastic. I know others have debated whether or not this KS has been a success but I'm pretty sure the Frogs are happy.

Original KS: 4,727 backers
Current KS: 3,342 backers with 24 hours to go.

Looks like there has been some effect.


I think this is more related to the different theme.

I would take Wild West 10 times more rather than Japanese Mythos.
 
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Paul Chamberland
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andvice wrote:
Mandor wrote:
bumyong wrote:
Robert, good job being diplomatic and extending a dove towards those that are soured by KS1 but I don't know how much the current KS has been hurt by negativity. I mean, it will likely hit $1M which seems pretty fantastic. I know others have debated whether or not this KS has been a success but I'm pretty sure the Frogs are happy.

Original KS: 4,727 backers
Current KS: 3,342 backers with 24 hours to go.

Looks like there has been some effect.


I think this is more related to the different theme.

I would take Wild West 10 times more rather than Japanese Mythos.

Theme has some affect, sure. Personally, I like the theme but dislike the fact 70% of the enemies are Japanese Mythos and only 30% are other worlds. It's a tough decision to keep my pledge.

A sequel Kickstarter should see more backers than the original if the game is good. This has about 25% fewer backers. We've seen complaints about theme as well as complaints about the problems with first KS. Both have affected the number of backers. I would speculate the problems with the first KS are having more of an effect on the drop simply due to the number of original backers who have given up on the game while waiting for wave 2 to arrive.
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Klutz
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I strongly doubt that people complaining is what caused the KS to have less backers than the first one.

I think that FFP's behavior (bad communication in 1st KS, launching KS before wave 2 shipped, etc), the quality of the core sets (poor models, repetitive combat), and the less interesting theme are what's to blame.


The negativity didn't hurt the KS's performance. The negativity and the poor performance were both caused by the same things.
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Andrea Florio
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I have to agree with Klutz.

I'm a 1000$ backer btw!

I don't think the negativity affected this kickstarter that much (even KD:M has some negativity you know?)

Frogs should think about hiring a professional kickstarter manager for their kickstarter campaigns.
One that makes videos, super cool updates, knows how to make the kickstarter engaging and appealing.

THAT would help a lot! The more people talk about a thing, the more interest you get for it.


Then the theme. I don't mind about the theme that much because I'm looking at it as a huge "expand the original SoB with an altenrative starting point" thing. But if I had to chose between Wild West and Japan... well, Wild West would win hands down!


In any case, the campaign is thankfully a success. I'm very happy we went past 1 million (I was doubting it), and I'm pretty sure we did it only thanks to the Black and Gold pledges surges. (That was a good move)


It could have been more! Let's hope their third kickstarter will be better managed!
 
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Steve Sena
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andvice wrote:


I think this is more related to the different theme.

I would take Wild West 10 times more rather than Japanese Mythos.


This.

I would have backed this on the first day, but the theme doesn't interest me at all.

I was seriously looking forward to backing this..
 
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