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Your (Kickstarter) experience

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First of all just for the records, Unlike Kickstarter , IndieGoGo allows flexible funding if you choose so. Actually "theoretically" you can't have a KS campaign from Netherlands.

 

Then regarding your questions,

 

A successful software campaign needs hype before starting (own network, social network etc) , then needs sizable progress (either in form of proven track record or something acceptable to put on) and a clear goal. Peter Molyneux can get half a million pound for (terrible imo) GODUS relying on his track record.

 

The obvious reason behind games are funded generously is that they actually offer something solid , game itself. But in your situation, crowdfunding $50K to get a playable demo isn't attractive. What's your next move? Finding investors based on this demo? Finishing it sometime? or start another campaign?

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Hey Unduli,

 

Indeed I remember that KS is for America only, or at least can't be used in Europe. Although I'm pretty sure people found workarounds for this (anyone?). Didn't read about IndieGoGo yet, as people told me KS is the most well known location for fund raising, thus in theory the biggest chance on success.

 

I'm well aware that people won't just give money to a project that they A: don't know, and B: can't give any guarantees. I have no clue how "famous" Tower22 is. My guess is "not much", although the project has been around for three years, and the attention comes with ups and downs. When we released two movies before, there was a big spike of traffic, talks about the project, emails, Youtube views, and in a positive way. But you know, people forget quickly, especially on the Internet.

 

 

So obviously, before starting a campaign, we first release another movie and try to contact some local games magazines here. Second, the target won't be sky-high. I've estimated that ~12k would be enough to reach the goal. 7.5k would be for asset production, 2k for the fundraising website, and the other 2.5k for God knows what.

 

And most important, the goal is to deliver something solid indeed; a (free) playable demo. No full game or anything close to it though. But about 15 minutes. A sneak preview of what the actual game could become. How the project continues from that point, is a mystery. Really depends on how people received the demo. Of course the goal is to amaze the players, so that starting a next campaign -on a bigger scake-, or even walking into investors would become more realistic.

 

 

Accepting donations or starting a campaign was never really in my planning, but after these years I've come to the conclusion that there simply is no other way to get things done. At least not for a game with the scale and ambitions T22 has. I know that is a common pitfall far hobby projects, but then again, you'll never win if you don't dare to play :) Either way, if/when doing a campaign, I won't lie and give false expectations. Of course, that will likely lower the income, but it's not my intention to steal another's money for a silly dream project.

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o/ ,

 

It was why I said "theoretically" in double quotes smile.png Not sure of credibility but even there are people giving this service but also afaik you have advantage of being EU Citizen ie chance of having a company at UK. ( I am non-EU enough not to know details, this may be quite wrong smile.png )

 

And yes, KS is definitely far better than IndieGoGo apart from this restriction.

 

But, pity I still keep my reservations regarding public response for funding something less than a playable "game". Actually, once again "theoretically" , you could reach investors with few minutes demo (not really needed to be with high Q assets) instead of going crowdfunding. Or going for few millions for full game but it is quite unrealistic.

 

Sorry to say but I think it is destined to fail with your plan. Didn't have much chance to check details but if Tower22 has no to very low replay value ( story spoiler ) , it is even worse.

 

But still, if I were you, I'd both ask more funding and lower my costs (compromising assets to certain extent if needed) to increase playing time and publish as "Tower22 - Episode I : Towel in the Tower / Whatever" and then involve upcoming episodes to KS campaign. ( Like Broken Sword 5 did) This way people will know that they'll get something more than demo and there is more.

Edited by Unduli

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Having a high replay value would be definitely a booster to success. The most popular Flash-games aren't known for their complexity or lenghty chapters. Only problem is, we're making a horror game. Horror games in general (think about Silent Hill for example) don't have a high replay value. Hence, often they're not even fun to play at all! You watch a movie or play the game to learn the story, wet your pants, and then put the box back in Hell. All in all, not the typical recipe for making the next Angry Birds. The audience will be relative small. Then again, there aren't much truly scary horror games out there, and Amnesia/Penumbra, being underdog Indie games, have become standards when people speak about scary games.
 
 
Horror is all about the experience, and -unless you go for scripted shockers-, it's extremely hard to suck someone in a "uncomfortable-mood" within just a few minutes, or having a minimum amount of environment. That's why I figured the play-time should at least be around 15 minutes (it could be 45 minutes if the game isn't too easy, putting the player on a linear path to the finish-marker).
 
More would be even better, and chopping the game into Episodes as you say was one of the initial plans. I still think we should head that way, but the truth is that creating content for even a single episide (think about ~2 hours gameplay), would take too long. At least, in the current state of our team. I wish it was different, but there are just a few 3D artists that put their scarse time almost randomly on the project. That's not a solid basis for promising (and asking money) for a complete Episode of course. 
 
That sucks, but I can't force people into making things without giving some in return ($ & satisfying results). Looking for more artists is an obvious first step, and we'll do that again as soon as the next movie is finished (should be within some months). But since the quality bar is quite high for T22 -probably a bit too high- finding good artists with time and willing to help for free, is extremely hard. And so is keeping artists. They too want concrete goals, short-term results, progress. Working on a far-away Episode isn't motivating enough for most.
 
 
 
 
This fund-raising plan + playable demo is an attempt to transform the project into more serious proportions. Releasing a not-too-big playable demo is a clear goal for (new joining) artists. Giving small rewards in return for their work, should be a motivator. It's certainly not a month salary, but if you can earn ~125$ extra per month with your hobby, why not? The budget really is to keep the artists going, making realization of the goal a lot more realistic, on a reasonable tempo. I always hoped money wouldn't be needed, that sheer enthusiasm would be enough for fuel. But as explained above, it unfortunately isn't. Not if development gets too big and lengthy.
 
If it all works out, meaning we achieve a playable demo within reasonable time, that is liked by the audience, a bigger next step should certainly be possible. But to reach that phase, the project simply needs a booster. Money would be the glue to keep artists sticking on the project. So the budget is purely for making that demo only, which is why it can be kept low initially. But if people are really willing to donate even that relative low amount... We'll need our charms :)
 
 
Sorry for the looong response hehe

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