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Thread: This recent kick-starter activity got me thinking...

  1. #1
    verbose douchebag
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: UK

    This recent kick-starter activity got me thinking...

    This could be either a very stupid idea, already done, or something worth pondering, so rather than decide that for myself, I'll speed things up by crowd-sourcing the answer here.

    I thought that a logical extension of the kick-starter phenomenon for cult game revival is to extend the fan drive further towards the fans.

    The recent nostalgia thread includes many highly galvanising statements along the lines of "wouldn't it practically be porn if X game was revived in Y engine" or similar. Couldn't there be some kind of system / poll / website / whatever for fans putting these suggestions in the form of a petition statement and leaving them to either be unpopular, or generate enough interest to get a dev interested in picking it up as a kick-starter.

    Begin refining this idea, suggesting something better or calling me an idiot in the style of an unkempt Hugh Laurie as soon as you get the time.

  2. #2
    Taking a break
    Registered: Dec 2002
    So... you will host a site spending your time and money on it so other people can benefit from it?

    Inconceivable

  3. #3
    verbose douchebag
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: UK
    I don't have the time or ability to set up and run a web-site, but I know people who do. And yes, I would quite happily devote time and energy to something which benefited others, because I like to do good things. Also, if it provides an additional avenue into interesting game development, then it would benefit me indirectly, because I like games.

  4. #4
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2001
    Location: Switzerland
    You don't have particularly strong motivators built into the system. With Kickstarter, the people starting the projects are already fairly passionate about them, so they have an incentive for this to get off the ground; the people who pledge their financial support likewise have a strong stake in this working out - they want a new Wasteland or an adventure by Ron Gilbert and Tim Shafer etc.

    In your model, fans don't have much more of a stake than if they sign a petition, and anyone can do that. There's no inherent link between the number of signatories and the number of people who would actually pay for the game.

    Likewise, developers don't have much of a stake in a project proposed by someone else which happened to get more signatures. They have no strong reason to believe that they'll have a big enough audience to warrant the time, money and energy they're going to invest into the project. If you're going to be developing someone else's ideas, you at least want to make sure that you get paid okay. What reason would developers have to go for this rather than their own ideas?

  5. #5
    verbose douchebag
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: UK
    Quote Originally Posted by Thirith View Post
    You don't have particularly strong motivators built into the system. With Kickstarter, the people starting the projects are already fairly passionate about them, so they have an incentive for this to get off the ground; the people who pledge their financial support likewise have a strong stake in this working out - they want a new Wasteland or an adventure by Ron Gilbert and Tim Shafer etc.
    So far, that's what we have, yes. But if you introduce metrics for demand, then surely there's a chance some of the ideas will coincide with the interests of a dev or two. I'm sure devs are capable of being inspired by a great idea, and it is likely that the more popular ideas will be the more inspired ones.

    In your model, fans don't have much more of a stake than if they sign a petition, and anyone can do that. There's no inherent link between the number of signatories and the number of people who would actually pay for the game.
    Again, true, but as in this forum when people start creaming themselves at "what ifs" they are only going to bother going into a website and signing up if they're genuinely interested. But I take the point that more commitment would be good. What if you could select a hypothetical pledge amount? Devs could browse the site, see which ideas they like and which have a decent looking dollar value resting next to it, then they could opt to begin a kick-starter, which, unless I have not understood how kick-starters work, wouldn't actually commit the dev to doing anything until the requisite amount had been raised.

    Likewise, developers don't have much of a stake in a project proposed by someone else which happened to get more signatures. They have no strong reason to believe that they'll have a big enough audience to warrant the time, money and energy they're going to invest into the project. If you're going to be developing someone else's ideas, you at least want to make sure that you get paid okay. What reason would developers have to go for this rather than their own ideas?
    In my daydream, the devs would be responsible for providing the ideas to flesh out the concept proposed. Example scenario:

    We the undersigned pledge X amount to a suitable developer willing to craft a game which uses a Fallout style sci-fi RPG setting in an engine similar to that used by Silent Storm. The game should feature stats, skills, perks, a dystopian futuristic setting, 3D graphics, destructible scenery..."

    You get the idea. A better idea would likely be more eloquently worded. Devs could perhaps register their interest in some way, thus drawing people towards / away depending on the dev and their credentials. It's obvious I don't know much about the process, I am very much just vomiting ideas here.

  6. #6
    Member
    Registered: Jun 2002
    Location: not anymore :(
    @Thirith: As I understand it, Kickstarter would be the motivator. To me, that sounds like a website hosting a list of potential Kickstarter projects (why restrict to video games?) on which people would want to spend their money. That would help devs gauge whether launching a KS is a realistic idea, plus I'm sure there are a ton of skilled people out there who just lack the impulse to start working on something great. The idea doesn't sound so silly. The thing is, I think it already exists, gotta find it.

    EDIT: Something like Guru.
    Last edited by Briareos H; 19th Apr 2012 at 09:47.

  7. #7
    verbose douchebag
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: UK
    Yeah, of course it wouldn't need to be restricted to anything. You could just go to the site, select the Games category, drill down to the platform of your choice and spout your idea. There could even be a micro-payment incentive for coming up with ideas which result in games being made. Even $0.01 per $10 would be a decent incentive.

    [EDIT] You could even have it as a section on the kickstarter website. There's definitely a target audience for it - how many people have been waiting ages and think they'll be waiting indefinitely for that awesome game idea that someone should have picked up by now? There's also another good thing about Kickstarters, that IP can be de facto bypassed by not using the name and making a spiritual successor implied simply by which devs are involved. If an idea has legs as a kickstarter raised by devs, then I'd imagine that pipedream games can also garner interest provided they coincide with enough people's unscratched itches. Of course it could be an idea too flawed, but that's why it's in here and I'm not stainding in a suit in front of Theo Paphitis looking all defensive and nervous.

  8. #8
    I think someone should start a website where people can discuss the possibility of creating a website for people to suggest kickstarter projects.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Moyer View Post
    I think someone should start a website where people can discuss the possibility of creating a website for people to suggest kickstarter projects.
    Turns out we're discussing the possibility of creating that website where you discuss the possibility of of creating a website where you discuss the possibility of making kickstarter projects.

  10. #10
    verbose douchebag
    Registered: Apr 2002
    Location: UK
    Cool. So you two can handle those then and I'll concentrate on this. Obviously anyone wishing to make subsequent sites discussing those sites should probably start a new thread too. Maybe we can also have a site which makes suggestions for games which have already been made too.

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