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Subject: New Financing model for Game Designs. rss

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Kev.
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LocknLoad Publishing listed a new alternative to P500 this past weekend. In a move reminiscent of Mr Mark Walker, at his fiery dam the torpedoes best. Walker boldly announced to his fans a new way to obtain games with less guff sooner!

The program relies on two commitments. A cut off date for potential buyers to register interest and a delivery on a specific date once orders are made.

Levels of participation vary from $5 thru to $2,000! The stunningly expensive subscription is for the world wide deluxe package hand delivered by Mark himself, and an in game leader counter with your name & likeness on it, a host of other goodies. Hand delivered by Walker anywhere on planet Earth. Antartica Anyone?

More reasonable levels all include designer signed boxes, subscriber names printed on the box, special counters, additional scenarios only available for those "elite" supporters, a copy of 2 related other modules from the game series amongst other goodies.

An interesting approach to getting more games published sooner!
The downside is (assuming they stick to their guns) if the orders dont hit within the prescribed period the module is dropped and LNL moves on to the next project. Tough love in a tough market.

Has it been successful to date?

In just 5 days over 33% of the required order commitments are in. Each week we can track progress LNL Fund raise tally

Is this an innovation in design/develop/deliver business model?

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Eric Lai
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I wouldn't say innovative, new to the wargaming market yes, but there are several games already in the pipeline using essentially the same system (and many other things already done using the same system):

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/458341761/glory-to-rome-...
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Kev.
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Yes its been done in other markets but not for gaming. I liked the link you sent.

Given this is an expansion the time to market can be quicker and less 'lost 'on development I suppose if it does not carry the day.

Why leave a product on a list for 2-3 years? So much can happen, so many changes in game design, market interests, all sorts of factors.

Is it true that 80% of orders occur early on when first announced?

 
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Mark Mahaffey
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He'd better be careful promising to go ANYWHERE in the world. There's some remote and/or dangerous spots out there!

cool
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Sam Carroll
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It has been done for games recently. For example, Kingdom of Solomon was a Kickstarter project with the deadline in July.
 
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Adam D.
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I actually like what he's trying, but I can also see fatigue setting in for the pledge model, especially if the economy get any worse. But who knows?
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Kent Reuber
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I confused by the funding as it's described:

Quote:

Funding Required: $7,000.

Sep 7: Funding so far -$2,351.63


Why is the funding so far a negative number?
 
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Carl Paradis
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West2 wrote:
He'd better be careful promising to go ANYWHERE in the world. There's some remote and/or dangerous spots out there!

cool


Right... I am sorely tempted by the "$1000 anywhere in the USA" option. I Live in Canada but my summer home is in Upstate NY, just a few hour's drive away. I would have preferred that the games be delivered by Gwyneth Paltrow, but hey, I'm on a budget here!

February 21st is also perhaps not a good date: Not sure that Mark will be able to make it through the snow to my place on the shores of lake Champlain, just the other side of a big mountain unless he drives a large SUV, heh heh heh...
 
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hipshot wrote:
Is it true that 80% of orders occur early on when first announced?
Based on my experience of running the GMT P500 list the past couple of years and being a regular reader of the MMP, Lock and Load, Legion, and Columbia Games lists, when a new game is announced, there's a big initial surge and then a tapering off, and then another mini surge as it gets to production.

Now, as to the size of that initial surge, it depends on too many factors to predict reasonably. For instance, Virgin Queen was announced in March of this year and made the cut right away and is going to production for January or February, which is remarkably and unusually quick.

A better example might be The Supreme Commander where it earned 232 orders when it was first announced in August of 2009, was at 400 three months later, made the cut (over 500) six months later, and in the intervening year and change is now closing in on 700 orders.

"80% of orders" is not really a meaningful number. For The Supreme Commander, the current "80% of orders" number happened 10 months after it was announced, but we don't know the final order number yet as the game hasn't gone to production, so where that 80% number will end up is anybody's guess.

One thing I can say with confidence about wargame pre-order systems is that success begets success.

If a designer has a hit (such as Here I Stand), then their next game in a P500 game will likely get good numbers fast (cf. Virgin Queen). Established series, like the Combat Commander Series, will always do well; the last three or four supplements all went from announced to published in about 12 months.

Certain topics and eras also have seemingly limitless appeal too. Games about the east front in WWII for instance. Normandy to a lesser extent.

What I do know is that when I'm waiting for a game that has broad appeal and big numbers, it's kinda fun because you know it's coming soon (relatively speaking). But when it's a game that's perhaps a little more obscure, the wait can seem interminable. Look at Sekigahara: The Unification of Japan - it was on the GMT P500 for about six years.
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Iain K
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In general terms orders are initially placed at a high but declining rate. The graph spikes but begins to taper off. The preorders enter a long period of slow growth at a low but positive slope before another point of inflection in the curve close to publication when orders spike again at an increasing growth rate. Looking at my MMP lists one sees this preorder graph time and again.

I think this new approach is a symptom of a fundamental dilemma posed by preorder systems. Bottom line, companies must produce new product to exist. They stop publishing and they stop existing. What does a company do if its preorders stop growing? Do they start pulling the trigger on projects that have not met their numbers? Can they? If they depend on the commitments of gamers in order to either decide how to spend available capital or perhaps to raise that capital at all ... what do they do when their preorders don't met their goals in a timely fashion?

It will be interesting to watch how the wargame publishing industry continues to evolve. The fact that they seem to have trouble raising $7K doesn't bode well.
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Carl Paradis
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citizen k wrote:
It will be interesting to watch how the wargame publishing industry continues to evolve. The fact that they seem to have trouble raising $7K doesn't bode well.


IMHO there is far too many games published for the current market. I see quite a few pure wargame companies dissapearing in the near future. some others will drastically reduce their publication runs.

The future will see less games, but better produced in general, with Euro-like physical qualities (smaller and faster-playing). Monster games will also dissapear from view.

I would go as far as to state that at least 50% of all wargames bought are never played. And that's a conservatibe estimate. I'm positive that around 75% are only played once or twice.

And if I look at the attendees at wargame conventions, the majority of the Hobbyists are getting older and older, with very little "new blood" coming in, at least in the USA.

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Enrico Viglino
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licinius wrote:
citizen k wrote:
It will be interesting to watch how the wargame publishing industry continues to evolve. The fact that they seem to have trouble raising $7K doesn't bode well.


IMHO there is far too many games published for the current market. I see quite a few pure wargame companies dissapearing in the near future. some others will drastically reduce their publication runs.

The future will see less games, but better produced in general, with Euro-like physical qualities (smaller and faster-playing). Monster games will also dissapear from view.


I really hope you are wrong. Because I shall (once again) be driven
from regular purchasing if the hobby enters into the kind of
dark age that it was in the '90's, with nothing but simple
crap that was aimed at some lowest common denominator produced
(with a few exceptions).

The current 'glut' is what is finally allowing topics which were
never adequately explored to reach publication with some level of
detail - rather than yet another colorless adaptation of some
over gamed topic.

Quote:
I would go as far as to state that at least 50% of all wargames bought are never played. And that's a conservatibe estimate. I'm positive that around 75% are only played once or twice.


So long as they're bought, who cares?

Quote:
And if I look at the attendees at wargame conventions, the majority of the Hobbyists are getting older and older, with very little "new blood" coming in, at least in the USA.


Yeah - this is the danger. And those who are, are only seeing
the lightest, most commercial games that are associated with
war themes, in general. On the bright side, if the hobby dies
off again, it will be easier to get those games played!

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Carl Paradis
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calandale wrote:
So long as they're bought, who cares?


Right. I care. Games not played = less new players IMHO. This is becoming a collector's market for old people. LOL!

I'll stive to make all my designs as playable as possible as a first priority.
 
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Enrico Viglino
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licinius wrote:
calandale wrote:
So long as they're bought, who cares?


Right. I care. Games not played = less new players IMHO. This is becoming a collector's market for old people. LOL! :p

I'll stive to make all my designs as playable as possible as a first priority.


I strive to play my collection.

Whilst I miss the days when I could find opponents,
having interesting and detailed subjects to explore
has become more important to me than some 'future'
of the hobby.

I can always make new players - I've found I don't
have the discipline to make the designs I enjoy -
though I can pretty much crank out little playable
stuff without the required research.
 
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hipshot wrote:
Yes its been done in other markets but not for gaming.


Yes it has been done in gaming. A lot of board games have been funded on Kickstarter. Here is some successfully funded board games:

http://www.kickstarter.com/discover/categories/games/success...
 
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Kev.
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kentreuber wrote:
I confused by the funding as it's described:

Quote:

Funding Required: $7,000.

Sep 7: Funding so far -$2,351.63


Why is the funding so far a negative number?

Its a dash I believe not a negative sign .lol.
 
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Kev.
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rexbinary wrote:
hipshot wrote:
Yes its been done in other markets but not for gaming.


Yes it has been done in gaming. A lot of board games have been funded on Kickstarter. Here is some successfully funded board games:

http://www.kickstarter.com/discover/categories/games/success...


Thanks for that! I had seen this. Good to see.

 
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Adam D.
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Sooo, where is this at? I couldn't find it on the Lock and Load site, nor in Kickstarter under the various searches I tried. Am I being more dense than usual?
 
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is anyone going to pay $1k or $2k for hand delivery? does this guy have an inflated ego much? he isn't a celebrity or anything. i smell hubris.
 
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Rindu wrote:
is anyone going to pay $1k or $2k for hand delivery? does this guy have an inflated ego much? he isn't a celebrity or anything. i smell hubris.



But what if you could throw a cream pie at him when he comes to your door to deliver?
 
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calandale wrote:
licinius wrote:
calandale wrote:
So long as they're bought, who cares?


Right. I care. Games not played = less new players IMHO. This is becoming a collector's market for old people. LOL!

I'll stive to make all my designs as playable as possible as a first priority.


I strive to play my collection.

Whilst I miss the days when I could find opponents,
having interesting and detailed subjects to explore
has become more important to me than some 'future'
of the hobby.

I can always make new players - I've found I don't
have the discipline to make the designs I enjoy -
though I can pretty much crank out little playable
stuff without the required research.


As a relatively new wargamer I would suggest that this aspect of the discussion is more important than most give it credit for. I love playing VPGs and other quick playing games that have excellent gameplay, quality components but a quick play time. Some days I just want to sit down and play a high quality and enjoyable game like No Retreat.

However, what draws me to the hobby is the think, meaty, thoughtful and detailed apporaches of the largers games of more obscure gaming eras. Having a detailed game of 17c warfare sitting on my desk for 2 months as I slowly pick away at it, meditate on it in my free time at work, makes me continue to have unending interest in this hobby. I will always need a break from my "big game on the table", and when I do I am glad guys like Carl are around to create equally rewarding game experiences for a nice one night break from the monster on my desk. I see they both serve a purpose and I would hate to see one or the other completely take over. Some days I want to play Men of Iron, other days I want to play Carthage!
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Enrico Viglino
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mrc007 wrote:
calandale wrote:
licinius wrote:
calandale wrote:
So long as they're bought, who cares?


Right. I care. Games not played = less new players IMHO. This is becoming a collector's market for old people. LOL! :p

I'll stive to make all my designs as playable as possible as a first priority.


I strive to play my collection.

Whilst I miss the days when I could find opponents,
having interesting and detailed subjects to explore
has become more important to me than some 'future'
of the hobby.

I can always make new players - I've found I don't
have the discipline to make the designs I enjoy -
though I can pretty much crank out little playable
stuff without the required research.


As a relatively new wargamer I would suggest that this aspect of the discussion is more important than most give it credit for. I love playing VPGs and other quick playing games that have excellent gameplay, quality components but a quick play time. Some days I just want to sit down and play a high quality and enjoyable game like No Retreat.

However, what draws me to the hobby is the think, meaty, thoughtful and detailed apporaches of the largers games of more obscure gaming eras. Having a detailed game of 17c warfare sitting on my desk for 2 months as I slowly pick away at it, meditate on it in my free time at work, makes me continue to have unending interest in this hobby. I will always need a break from my "big game on the table", and when I do I am glad guys like Carl are around to create equally rewarding game experiences for a nice one night break from the monster on my desk. I see they both serve a purpose and I would hate to see one or the other completely take over. Some days I want to play Men of Iron, other days I want to play Carthage!


Oh definitely. And I'm not in the least suggesting that the
new lighter stuff is anything like the crap from the worst
days - designers like Carl are putting out some very clever
little games.

But, I spend so little of my time playing really light games.
 
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licinius wrote:
calandale wrote:
So long as they're bought, who cares?


Right. I care. Games not played = less new players IMHO.


How do you figure? Except at the absolute extremes I see little correlation between the two. I have more games than I can likely play due to time constraints. Having less games doesn't give me more time or access to more new players. Those are the limits on my total playing and on my playing with new players not how many other games are on my shelf not getting played.

On the contrary, when I find a potential new wargamer, odds are good I have something on my shelf that will interest them. This is precisely because of all those games many of which I'll otherwise never get to.

I can see no logical way to support games not played = less players. (Again barring the absolute extremes). Less games played might = less new players. But "less games played" is different than "more games not played."
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Ryan Powers
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red black wrote:
wrote:
Games not played = less new players IMHO

Less games played might = less new players. But "less games played" is different than "more games not played."


I'm thoroughly confused.


"Less games played"
Playing less games might (probably does) = less new players.

"more games not played"
But If I have 100 games that don't get played and five that do [95 not played] how does that matter versus if I have five games that all get played [0 not played]? In the former case I have way more games not played, but it in no way reduces the odds of me playing a game with a new player (and I would argue it in fact has the opposite effect)

They are not the same thing. And the second one "games not played" not only doesn't reduce new players, it can be argued that if anything it *potentially* increases the number of plays with new players.

Again, ignoring the pathological case of 100% of ones games not getting played.
 
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Kev.
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LOL well that about does it then!!
 
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