What is Kickstarter
So some amazing stuff has been happening over at Kickstarter. For those of you unaware, Kickstarter is what is called a crowd funding site. It’s a place where content creators can post up a project they need funding for and a target money goal. People pledge money, usually for rewards of some kind, and if the target goal is met within thirty days, the money is collected. It is basically like how charities work, except it isn’t giving money to charity but to a project of some kind. In this way new (and current) designers can get the funding they need to create products without having to go to banks or major corporations to fund them and sell off their designs or such.
I like to personally fund online comics looking to print their books, board games, the occasional documentary that I like, and sometimes video games. Usually I only pay a few extra dollars to get a final version of the product along with some nick-nacks and recognition in the product’s credits.
So Kickstarter has been around for a while and, as such, has a few records it keeps. Like most funded within the span of a day. Most funded over the span of the entire campaign. Most money in category. Most money overall. Records like that. Think of it kinda like world records for the Olympics, except more, or less, impressive depending on your views.
Order of the Stick
So around last week I stumbled upon on of my favorite webcomics, Order of the Stick, hosting a Kickstarter to re-print a lot of their physical volumes of the comic. Since I was missing a few of those books due to a loaning incident, I decided to pledge. What was amazing about this was that the original goal was set at a little over $57,000. They were just shy of that by the first day but by the second day they had broken $96,000, nearly double. It is now nineteen days in, and they are over 1000% funded, sitting at $602,457 with 8,175 backers.
Which is amazing. Utterly and completely amazing. It has put them at the top of their category (comics) by leaps and bounds, (the next highest being a little over $100,000). They would have broken the top five of all time, except for a man you may know the name of called Tim Schafer and his company you’ve likely heard of, Double Fine, deciding to drop into the race.
Their Kickstarter is about creating and documenting a Point and Click adventure game, in similar style of The Secret of Monkey Island or Day of the Tentacle. You know the games all us old-schoolers keep begging him to bring back but modern publishers won’t touch because it simply won’t sell? Well with a lofty goal of $400,000, within twenty-four hours, Tim and Double Fine managed to raise $1,310,745 with 35,871 backers, shattering so many records it wasn’t even funny.
Yes. They raised over a million dollars for a point and click adventure game in less than a day.
Your Support Wanted
Honestly both of these projects should be congratulated. And both should be supported, hence why I’m linking their status pages below.
OotS’s Kickstater is complicated to understand but well worth it if you’re a fan of OotS. I’d love for you to pledge because the next major prize is a new expansion for the board game version of OotS which I would personally like to have. Additionally with each major update, Rich Burlew, the creator, updates a comic containing the OotS characters playing around with the chart that has been mapping the entire money-raising deal and the extra rewards he has been handing out for the over funding. Double Fine’s is a less interactive but simpler Kickstarter Campaign but the video is well worth watching and you’ll receive a highly interactive video game designed by some of the best adventure game minds still alive.
Here’s the video from the Double Fine Kickstarter campaign.
So actually I can’t really talk about this one because it’s already been spoken for. Jennifer Hudock of Goblin Market fame wrote an excellent post regarding the above kickstarter that you should read.
I’ll only add that even though I know the Kickstarter is already funded and was already funded within two hours of launch, dropping money to get copies of the books that will be printed will be worth your time. Don’t believe me? Go listen to the podcast yourself.
Linked by Girl Genius, I decided to go ahead and fund this project after seeing the above video and it’s game play. The game described sounds pretty fun, especially for a iPad game. The donations for this Kickstarter are not as generous as some projects I’ve funded in the past. But the target amount is also rather low and the game is being initially distributed on a fascist operating system like iOS which means it would be hard for them to promise copies of the game, or even discounts, without Apple’s approval. So I won’t hold that against them necessarily.
The big gamble here will be the price point. Since I don’t like to pay more than two or three dollars for apps, and I’ve already backed them five dollars, this will likely be the most expensive app I’ve ever purchased.
I participate in Kickstarter projects from time to time. A Kickstarter is a project that is looking for financial backers to get itself off the ground hosted on the website www.kickstarter.com. A project sets levels of donations and a donation goal, and you pledge an amount. You receive stuff based upon the amount you pledge, however if the project does not meet it’s financial goal, then nobody is charged any money.
It is actually a pretty cool system. Books, games, and all sorts of other projects can get starting capital for printing and the like.
I bring this up because of the following project:
Pogo is a music artist most famously known for mixing up movies and television into really cool sounding songs. You can find most of his work on Youtube. I even linked to one of his videos in a prior post.
His particular project, if you didn’t watch the video above (which you should), is to travel around the world and collect sound samples. With these samples he wants to create tracks and videos that capture the emotion and human spirit of various places of the world. It sounds like a really cool art project and the subscription level for getting some of the tracks is very low (1 or 2 dollars).
So take a look.