Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Kickstarters

How do you feel about Kickstarters, I don't like them. Once again I will probably find myself in a minority, I am not a patient man when it comes to my wargaming and I have fallen foul of this trait a few times. Look at the fifty odd aircraft, all repainted, I have sitting around for Wings of Glory (aka Wings of War) or the numerous star-ships for X-Wing when you can only 'field' at most half a dozen in a dogfight. Not to mention, which is daft because I will, the complete cowboy town of Carefree when a small street was enough. I want my stuff now, not drip fed over several years.

It seems you cannot escape them nowadays, I was under the mistaken impression that the excellent Galloping Major FIW range was complete, but I was wrong, on asking where I could find the French regulars I was told they would be out shortly, as a Kickstarter, as will other additions to the range. I may therefore have to look elsewhere for these figures mean time but will use them when I get around to the SYW project. The Jacobite range which set me on the path to 18C warfare from Flags of War will not be out until October (if on time), and then further Kickstarters will kick in for the rest of the range, which will be very comprehensive, so a very long wait to get everything you want.

A friend pointed me towards a project involving hard plastic figures for the SYW, they want £40,000, I have no idea what it costs to produce a range of figures so have no idea whether that is realistic or not. Like many or all(?)  Kickstarters if the money is not produced neither is the product.

I also wonder at the effect it has on suppliers who do bring out a range of figures for a given period and then find themselves losing out as people buy the bulk from a Kickstarter and the additional odds and ends which are not required in large numbers, but give character and life to an army from a traditional manufacturer, who of course loses out on bulk sales.

Am I wrong but is the thinking, I want to produce something but don't want to take any risk, so I will get the money from other people, if it works then good news for everyone, if not then nothing lost, apart from the people who put money where there mouths are to get something they wanted.

Anyway, I joined two Kickstarters and neither is on time, one may well run over by a year or more.

This is a personal view and no punters egos were harmed in the writing (I hope), all the ideas are copyright to me, were sourced organically and ethically, are allergen free, non-gender specific, blah, blah, blah..............

8 comments:

  1. Kickstarter is big in the boardgaming world but I have always steered clear. I am "of the moment" and the chances are slim that something I desperately want today I will still want in a year or so.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kickstarter or Crowdfunding are everywhere at the moment.

      Delete
  2. I've bought a few games via Kickstarters and all have (kind of) gone well. These have mostly been boardgames but a few have been figures. I've heard the horror stories of companies disappearing with the money etc but everything has been delivered and I've picked up some excellent extras as part of the deals.

    The big issue is always around the completion date. Most of the Kickstarters I've done have been at least 6 months overdue or even longer (a year is my record I think). In fact,apart from the recent Forager Kickstarter by Stand To Games which was bang on time, they've all overrun spectacularly.

    For me, this isn't particularly an issue...I assume a 6 month overrun at a minimum before I commit, but if you're impatient George then I wouldn't recommend it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think I still have a small store of patience for a rainy day but the rest has gone, especially when it comes to wargaming Alistair.

      Delete
  3. I’m a cynic when it comes to the concept of kickstarters. If you don’t believe in your product and don’t have the courage or means to bring it to the market then it can’t be up to much in my opinion. I will stick to what is there from the established firms.

    ReplyDelete
  4. "Am I wrong but is the thinking, I want to produce something but don't want to take any risk, so I will get the money from other people, if it works then good news for everyone, if not then nothing lost, apart from the people who put money where there mouths are to get something they wanted."

    Essentially yes. It's a way of manufacturers getting a commitment from buyers before taking a punt on producing something. Like you say, set up costs for things like the moulds you need for a plastic range can be pretty eye-watering. A small outfit simply wouldn't be able to take that risk without some guarantee that the demand is there.

    Bottom line is that it's a business model that's encouraged a huge amount of creativity and new products, especially from smaller companies and one-man bands.

    The problem is that while it reduces the risk for manufacturers, it increases it for customers. When you make a normal transaction with a supplier you're protected by law. When you back a KS, you haven't got a leg to stand on. The company behind the KS can change the terms, change the product, or just not deliver on some or all of it and there's bugger all you can do.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Take your points Andy but still not convinced.

      Delete