Kicking in Forward
As many of you know, we have recently launched our own project, The Wardenclyffe Horror, on Kickstarter. It’s a Kicking it Forward project, and I thought the best way to explain what that is, and why our project embrace’s it is to tell you a little story about how I came to discover Kickstarter and Kicking it Forward.
I was introduced to Kickstarter in March. My friend Eric told me about this great thing called Wasteland 2. We often talked about how much fun some of the classics (Fallout 1 and 2, Arcanum, Torment, ect) were, but how I considered them to basically unplayable on modern computers. According to the description, it was everything I wanted from a certain kind of game: deep, open, interesting, and graphically modern. I had to check it out.
It took me two weeks to make my first Kickstarter pledge. Two weeks of lurking, reading the comments, and public updates. The idea of giving someone money as a group so they could make something too ambitious for the typical funding channels, seemed too good to be true. In the end I gave, and one of the reasons was Kicking it Forward.
What is Kicking it Forward? Well, I’m glad you asked…
(Fund The Wardenclyffe Horror!)
I backed Wasteland 2 in the end, both because I wanted what they we’re selling, and because this act really put the cherry on the idea that they weren’t in it for the money. I mean, sure, they wanted the project to do well, and sell a million copies. I’m sure that Brain Fargo and crew would love for their game to be the fuse that reignited a dead genre (that is remarkably appropriate for the tablet craze), but offering to give profits back to the community in the form of backing projects AFTER they were already successful? That’s a true believer.
As I talked about in a previous post, I’m a big fan of creators that back projects before launching their own. Seeing a creator that has backed half a dozen projects before taking the time to launch their own shows me a lot; it shows that they have taken the time to explore the site and see what it has to offer, and it also shows me that they believe in the process and aren’t just here for a quick score. Of course, not everyone feels the same as me – the worst offender I’ve seen has launched 5 projects while failing to back a single one. Most other creators out there are much more even-handed.
The way I see it, every one of these creators could save their pennies and try to succeed on their own, or invest in each other, and build a richer ecosystem. I’m sure that if my partner and I saved in a concerted way, we could sock away enough money to pay the artist and realize our vision in a year or two, but I don’t think that would be nearly as satisfying as trying to get the community to help us realize our vision, and in turn help them realize theirs; kicking it forward is just a seal of approval for things I already believe in, in this sense.
In the last few days I have also gotten some publicity for The Wardenclyffe Horror. Check out James Yee’s interview at Kickstarter Conversations, and David’s review of the project over at The Newest Rant. We’re also trending well on Reddit in the /r/steampunk and /r/lovecraft subreddits. If you do that sort of thing go and liven up the discussions.