Thursday, March 14, 2013

Kicking My Kickstarters

Tenkar is the police of the Kickstarters and does a great job keeping me informed of what's going on.  He's also not shy about calling out someone's bullshit when the smell gets too strong.  I thought I'd post about my experiences with the Kickstarter campaigns that I've backed.

1. Dwimmermount

Yup, my first one.  It's become notorious and a glaring example of how things go wrong.  I plowed $60 into this one.  I wanted the hardback and the separate map book.  I think all mega-dungeons should come with a map book.  It's too hard to flip back and forth and a lot of times the maps are chopped up.  I don't like chopped up maps.  I liked chopped up goblins and owlbears and bards, but not maps.  So the map book knocked my original contribution from the $40 to the $60....*sigh*

2. Barrowmaze

Another megadungeon, but drastically different results than Dwimmermount.  Barrowmaze II was on time.  I went in for $45.  Basically the PDF and hardback.  Looking back I would have probably gotten in on the $65 to get the map poster (see above comments about my loathing of chopped maps). **EDIT**  Greg reported to me that the extra $10 was not for him signing it, but for dice bags. 

3. Appendix N

Up next is Appendix N.  I went in on this one at the $30 level.  I wanted the two printed copies of each adventure.  John has sent out PDFs for the original set I believe, but nothing for the stretch goals that were reached.  Plus no print copies have been sent yet.  I know what I was getting into when I forked over the dough to John.  He started this Kickstarter before he completed the other stuff people ordered.  I'm looking forward to getting them, but when this campaign came out everyone one was hot on DCC as I was, but I haven't played it since the playtesting days.  I'm hoping to get in a couple games when I get them in my paws.

4. Crawler's Companion

An app for DCC.  Seems like I get into these things in pairs.  First off, I don't do apps.  No really.  I am very low tech for the most part.  I don't have a fancy phone, but my phone can knock out a thief and still work to call the police.  Try that with an iPhone.  Wussy phone.  Anyway, Jon delivered on the app.  I have a Nook and it works well.  But, I got in for $50.  I didn't pay $50 for no stinking app.  I wanted the hardback of the three adventures.  I have the first two in PDF.  Can't remember if I received the third.  But I want the hardback.  In the comment section it sounds like that may happen soon.  That will be a good mail day.

5. Tabletop Forge

I thought I would be running a lot of games on-line.  Google+ gung-fu, let's get a game together.  Well that hasn't happened.  And Tabletop Forge blew up.  I feel bad for Josh, after the guys got their money from the campaign they split.  I got a pair of steel toed boots for their temple all ready to go. However, Josh made good on his word.  He plowed all the good stuff into Roll d20.  I plan on learning it so I can practice my Google+ gung-fu.  Waaaaaa.

6. Swords & Wizardry: 1st Edition Play Rules

Swords & Wizardry is my system of choice, although I use them all.  I guess it was the first one I used.  I did not mess around with this one, $125 White Dragon baby.  They've had their delays.  Quite a few actually, BUT unlike the other Kickstarters that ran into trouble because it is a solid company they were able to get what they set out to do done.  However, they keep screwing up my payments and mail address.  I think the Frog God does not like me because apparently I have his missus captive in my backyard.
The scary ass frog in my backyard I posted about a while back.  JD did a adventure contest based off of her.  I think this is why the Frog God takes issue with me.  BUT my Kickstarter package is waiting for me in my mailbox at the post office.  I wonder what's I'll be posting about tomorrow.

7. Tavern Cards

This one was completed recently and is scheduled to be released next month.  I took a personal interest in this one because I've been a fan of Hannah and her Chaotic Shiny Production generators from way back.  My review of her fantastic treasure generator is my all-time hit post.  By far.  I've got a lot of faith in Hannah's ability to get these cards out.  I went in at $60 so I could get six decks.  I was hoping for a pirate deck, but I was glad to see she got her project funded.

8. Dungeon Deck

This Kickstarter is still on-going.  As of this writing there is still 16 days to go in the campaign.  It looks pretty good that it will be funded.  I few years back I met Debbie and Jim at Origins and I bought the deck of quests.  I think its a great idea.  I was using them last week messing with them.  I need to do a post with pictures up by next week.  They are an enthusiastic couple who love their product.  I'm hoping they get a chance to get some of the stretch goals done.  Since I already have the main deck I was very confident about backing this one.  I went in at $40 which will get me another main deck, the companion decks and any stretch goals they reach.

When I go to the post tomorrow and pick up my S&W I will have 3 of 6 completed.  The Tabletop Forge one I consider done even though I believe there is more coming.  The three that remain are all in partial completeness.  I don't see any timeline with Dwimmermount and at this time, have given up on it.  I don't like reading the updates I get.  I know Tavis is trying to make good on it and I don't blame him.  And really, I don't blame James.  It's a very unfortunate situation.  While I am not happy about it I am not going to waste my time blaming anyone.  However, it has made me gun shy about pulling the trigger on new Kickstarters.  Will I get into them in the future, absolutely, but I'll be a lot more selective.

I'm looking for Kickstarters who have the main part completed and would only need to complete the stretch goals.  It makes me think what I would do for a Kickstarter if such an insane thought ever crossed my mind.  But I know whatever I did, it would be written ahead of time.


  1. Yeah. Kickstarter sure has been a mixed bag for gaming. Nice review.

  2. Over the past year, I was an enthusiastic supporter of several Kickstarter projects. I helped fund 37 projects. To date, I've only recieved rewards for 14 of those. Not a good track record. I understand James's situation and really appreciate Tavis staying on top of things and letting the folks know what is going on. For many of the other projects there has been little to no communication (with a few exceptions). So I've cooled on the whole Kickstarter thing quite considerably. Unless a project is from a company that has delivered in the past (such as Frog God, Troll Lords or even Autarch) or is mostly completed with the project, my chances of backing a project is otherwise pretty slim.

  3. I am afraid to do something similar: Evaluate all my Kickstarters. I am sure I have lost money somewhere.

  4. The saddest thing is that, sometimes, even when they deliver, the product is just not up to snuff. The one I recall the most vitriol about was related to Vampire, and was roundly lambasted as half-assed at best.

  5. Wow, you have backed allot! I wonder if I went through and checked to see how many I have backed/received.

  6. I think your comments really deserve an edit. The $10 cost was for the dice bags, not my signature. To be very forward, I think you have misrepresented the campaign and should change it.

  7. I don't really have a dog in this fight, but:

    Crypt Knight
    You will receive the PDF and numbered hardcover of Barrowmaze II. You will also receive a printed poster map (17x21) and the digital maps (classic blue and b/w). This includes shipping to your location in Canada, the United States, or the United Kingdom.

    Barrow Wight
    You will receive the PDF and numbered hardcover of Barrowmaze II. You will also receive a printed poster map (17x21) and the digital maps (classic blue and b/w). Your hardcopy will be signed and inscribed by the author. This includes shipping to your location in Canada, the United States, or the United Kingdom.

    PDF and hardcover - check
    printed map and digital maps - check
    signature of author - aha!

    That to me sure looks like you asked people to pay $10 for your signature.

  8. Just because tou thought you saw something doesn't make it so. Did you take the time to read the entire campaign including the updates? Please be sure before offering casual comments.

    Moreover, any book that passed my hands I signed regardless of funding level...because that's how I roll.

    Oh, and I took a loss to make the dice bags because I thought they were fun.

  9. Unless James signs off on someone else finishing off Dwimmermount, I don't expect to see it completed.

    Judging from Tavis' latest update, I suspect he feels the same.

    Kickstarters are "The devil" as you now know ;)

  10. My bad, I made people mad by expressing my opinion. Ooops.

    I better conform and only speak what the masses approve me to speak of.

  11. I am thinking of doing a Kickstarter for gaming haiku.

  12. Please note that the previous comment was only for the haiku haters. I would stat up the haiku so that you could kill them in your game.

  13. Yeah! A gaming haiku kickstarter!

    I'm in! I'm in! ;)

  14. Bard: You have excellent tastes. I feel validated.

  15. Ken: c'mon and give us some of that good ol'-fashioned haiku-killing goodness!

  16. This is my records:

    DungeonMorph Dice - Done
    ACK - Done
    C&C : Classic Monsters - Done
    Random Dungeon Generator - Done
    Dwimmermount - Never Gonna Happen
    Metamorphosis Alpha - Dwimmermount 2?
    Appendix N - Late but Hopeful
    Bones - Close
    Swords & Wizardry - Done
    Tremulus - Late but Hopeful

    I may end up with an 80% success rate.

  17. You've done a lot of Kickstarters. It's interesting to see how complex a Kickstarter can be. The Tenra kickstarter has really shown me that as the translator has kept us all up-to-date with each delay / success / milestone and even with his dedication it's still been several months since payment and I haven't got the books due to all of the steps in the way. Pretty happy with the Tenra Kickstarter, though, as he's talked us through it. I even feel sorry for him.