Borrowing from the idea of the Pluspora Check-in get some tabletop conversation going. If you have any questions that you want to get on the list to be asked, let me know. Also, if you'd like to be added or taken off the list of participants, let me know.In the old days, large companies were the only ones who could afford to publish games. We've discussed Kickstarter and other crowdfunding, and Patreon and other ways to support individual artists to release the flow of content to the masses. That's, however, a small part of the overall industry, and there are horror stories of different crowdfunding projects that have gone awry. How can we best continue this trend in removing gatekeepers while protecting the consumer from those who would prey on them and by these bad experiences, start to reverse this trend?
I remember my first Kickstarter. It was Greg Stolze for a new idea that he had called Reign. Greg Stolze was not unknown in the industry, and Arc Dream, though still small, had published a few items and had made a name for itself with some Delta Green content. But this was a way to directly fund a project that would not otherwise have been made, with a new system that would go on to power Godlike, Wild Talents, and several more unique products in the industry. Back then, I had no real rhyme or reason why I backed anything, and with a notable few exceptions (Far West), when I look at the projects on my spreadsheet, they are all fulfilled. There was even one that had problems- and they gave me my entire pledge back.
As time went on, and more money began to flow through the platform, it began to change. More people were concerned with the products and the bottom line than the idea- creators and backers included. That idea of removing the gatekeepers became less and less the idea. I know that I look to projects with a more critical eye- and this is from someone that's engaged because I like seeing people's dreams come to life, and hope to one day run my own project and have it greeted with a similar enthusiasm.
I've always wanted to be a writer- and Kickstarter was the manner by which I found my pseudonym on a couple of publications. With the traditional way that things were done, I don't think that would have happened. But the concerns about the platforms and the projects are really important. If we apply a more critical eye to the projects that are being funded, then we just move the gatekeepers to another location. However, there have to be certain safeguards in place- I just can't figure out what they'd look like in the end.
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