Kickstarter. It’s the newest buzzword. And not just in the video game realm, but in every realm. Anyone anywhere that has a dream can take to this crowd-funding service in order to make their pet project a reality, and now artists all over the world (and all over the talent spectrum) are heading there in droves. After Double Fine’s successful Adventure project, Kickstarter was heralded as the savior of the industry, in that it could provide a new method for publishing titles that don’t always get their fair shake. But are people hopping to Kickstarter too quickly on both sides?
A few weeks back, Ben Kuchera had a nice editorial on PA Report about the Ugly Side of Kickstarter, looking at what all goes into a successful Kickstarter venture. Not only are there a ton of fees that supporters (and project leads) are unaware of, but frankly, many of these people don’t understand how to spend your money in the right way. And what happens to the first crowd-funded game that severely disappoints its backers? What then?
There are even other avenues worth considering that are just now starting to crop up, as well — for instance, this Kickstarter sham that tried to steal people’s money, or the fact that 75% of videogame Kickstarters fail. Sure, there are plenty of successful and responsible campaigns such as Wasteland 2 or The Banner Saga, but more often than not these new ideas seem to be just that — ideas, with no proof of concepts or backing to show others.
But on top of all of that, there is the question of Kickstarter and begging. I’ve heard it said by some that Kickstarter projects are just fancy ways of panhandling. I’m not quite sure how I feel about that (I think it depends on the project, honestly), but I do know that lots of well meaning people are trying to jump start projects without any idea how to finish them in a realistic manner. And really, should that person get my money?
What do you guys think about this? Is Kickstarter the savior that people seem to think it is? Are you already tired of hearing about the Kickstarter projects that are going around everywhere? Do people think critically enough about each project? Go!