Friday, April 1, 2011

Kickstarter is pretty cool

I may have mentioned that I successfully raised $48,000 to publish my new game on a website called Kickstarter. Since being turned onto that website sometimes I've noticed some really cool things popping up on there. As yet I haven't backed any projects that have completed, but I'm currently backing 2 projects:

Rolling Freight
Eminent Domain was not the first board game to get funding through Kickstarter, but it may have been the first big success story (actually, I think Alien Frontiers was). Ever since the success of Alien Frontiers and Eminent Domain, a number of board game publishers have turned to this new found source of funding. Right now I'm backing Rolling Freight, partly because I suspect I'd enjoy the game, and partly because I support the Kickstarter format, so while I won't commit to backing just any old game project, since I thought I might want this game I decided to back it despite the fact that it's fairly pricey.

The project has funded already, and I have a couple of days to change my mind if I want to - which I may do because I don't like their pricing tiers. I don't normally buy games at all, and certainly not at full price. Tasty Minstrel Games has offered really good deals for pre-orders and Kickstarter supporters, so I might ought not to support a game that's going for full retail on Kickstarter.

Cosmonaut iPad stylus
Another (non-game) project I'm currently backing is the Cosmonaut - a stylus for the iPad. You can already get a stylus, but they are all shaped like pens. Pens are for writing on paper, but a tablet is more like writing on a dry erase board - it's low fidelity, you can't rest our hand on the tablet, etc. So the theory is that a more appropriate and comfortable form factor for an iPad stylus is a dry erase marker. These guys are raising money to produce a stylus that feels more like a dry erase marker. The same guys raised over $100,000 to make an accessory for the iPhone, and they've already funded this project as well. Seems like useful accessories for popular iDevices is a really smart thing to do, and Kickstarter will get you over the barrier to entry (large startup capital)!

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