Kickstarter Katchup – 16th June 2012

By John Walker on June 16th, 2012 at 12:00 pm.

Nope, still not improved this.

I dub this week, Success Week. A lot of projects have seen themselves crossing over the finish line with their targets reached, or massively exceeded. As we mentioned last week, Tex Murphy made it, but incredibly it just finished cents away from $600,000 of their $450,000 goal. I wonder if we are already blasé about these figures, but they got an extra one hundred and fifty thousand dollars. Give me that much money and my life is changed forever. And that’s on top of the $450k they asked for. Just incredible amounts of money are out there for the taking, so long as your project is interesting enough, and your promotion canny enough. With perhaps a dash of luck.

Usual reminder. Please email me at the address above with any Kickstarters you think should be on the list. There’s no promise that everything will be featured, and of course, our mentioning a project here is in no way an endorsement that you should give it your money. That’s your call.

The Winners

Tropes Vs. Women In Video Games – Anita Sarkeesian

Unquestionably enormously boosted as a result of the attentions brought by the vile behaviour of many bigots and trolls, the happy ending of the cruel fairy tale is that Sarkeesian’s attempt to raise $6,000 saw a finished total of $158,917. Absolutely incredible. The original small sum was intended to be used to finance the time needed to do a great deal of research and then produce a video series on the representation of women in games, via the most common tropes. It reached this funding within 24 hours, before the noise. The ghastliness that ensued meant instead of bringing her down, instead Sarkeesian is in an amazing position of having a huge amount of money to fund her projects for the foreseeable future. Splendid.

Auro – Keith Burgun

With two weeks still to go, the turn-based strategy has leapt over its $7,500 goal and is now on $9,945. They’ve announced stretch goals, their ambitions now reaching to $20,000 which would see a campaign/puzzle creator being developed alongside the game. But even if they only get to $16,000, that would add a second story campaign to the game.

Two Guys SpaceVenture – Two Guys From Andromeda

The Kickstarter officially finished four days ago, with the target exceeded so late in the day that the Two Guys must have fallen off the edge of their seats when it finally tripped. A big surge saw it reach $539,767, crossing the half million goal, meaning we shall be learning what roll Cluck Y’egger plays in their Space-Quest-ish new adventure.

Lily Looking Through – Geeta Games

The ludicrously pretty adventure has swooped past its $18,000 desires to be on $22,812 with two full weeks still to go. Naturally they’ve introduced stretch goals, so at $26k they’ll add more content, and at $36k they’ll port to tablets. The game looks so lovely I’ll even forgive Steve Hoodgendyk for having worked on bloody Myst 3.

Cult: Awakenings Of The Old Ones

This one didn’t make our list before it already got funded, and is now at nearly double its original $5,000 goal. Procedurally generated worlds, along with generated stories and backgrounds, attempt to create a hybrid of a sandbox world with a meaningful RPG. If that works, that’s a dream project for me. It’s 2.5 years in the making, but quite how he was planning to do anything with $5k minus fees and taxes I’m not sure.

The Crystal Catacombs – Maxwell Jensen

Another newbie to our list that already has its funding is The Crystal Catacombs. At $8,242, exceeding the $7,500 aim, it still has 20 days to go, to fund a procedurally generated rogue-like meets Castlevania. Another enormously ambitious idea for a tiny amount of funding, but stretch goals are in place. $15k to add a map editor, $30k for a “realm contest”, and $45k for co-op multiplayer.

The Losers

Erm, there aren’t any. Well, that’s not quite true. Projects we only found out about during the week that were clearly going to fall enormously short of their goals fell enormously short of their goals, but there’s no point in posting them up to stare at. So, onto those still in progress.

The Runners

Alpha Colony: A Tribute To M.U.L.E. – DreamQuest Games

There’s a good chance you won’t remember 1983′s MULE, because you were only born a minute ago. But DreamQuest Games do, who are planning to do an interesting dual-project. They’re planning to do a faithful remake of the original for phones, while creating a new game inspired by the original for PC, with elements of Settlers Of Katan thrown in for good measure. They’re aiming for a perhaps ambitious $500,000, and with 29 days to go have $9k. A long way to go. Take a look:

CLANG – Subutai Corporation

Well, it looks like people want a game by Neal Stephenson then. In the first week this has made an extraordinary $285,056, well on its way to the massive half million. Realistic sword fighting using augmented peripherals sounds bloody great, and I’d be astonished if this didn’t make and leap over its target. You can read lots more about it here.

Minis With Enemies – Heatwave Interactive

An attempt to bring the feel of tabletop gaming to the PC (and mobile) is asking for $300k, and with 24 days to go has nearly $6,000. Featuring a high quality video, unfortunately it also makes the oh-so-common “JUST TELL ME WHAT THE FUCKING GAME IS!” mistake that SO many KS projects do. Two and a half minutes in, and still no sodding information. Oh, finally, it lets you create and paint 3D minis in-game, with a GM function and the ability to create games with others. It’s a splendid idea, although it’s asking for a really big chunk of change to get there. I’m going to nag Kieron to check this one out.

The Repopulation – The Repopulation

We had a lot of requests for this one to appear on the Katchup. It’s a science fiction MMO that’s only asking for $25k. And it’s definitely going to get it, with 16 days left and the target at the time of writing at $24,471. The game’s been in development for ages, with a decent team on board, and looks pretty impressive. A very awkward video of a man struggling to read at a distance makes it quite hard to follow, but it’s clearly an ambitious game. Again, what difference $25k can make in an MMO I’m not entirely sure, but they’re obviously going to exceed that. Here’s a trailer:

Dead State – DoubleBear Productions

19 days left, I’m pretty sure Dead State’s incredibly ambitious RPG will get to $150,000. And so are they, it seems, having announced a $180,000 stretch goal already. It’s just shy of $120,000 at the moment, with the full game available for the minimum $15 pledge, the release aimed for Christmas 2013.

Haunts – Rick Dakan

The ghosts-vs-humans multiplayer continues its glacial creep toward a $25,000 ambition, another three grand added in the last week to reach $16,672. I bet he’s grateful he went for a massive calendar on this one, with 20 days still to go.

Sam Suede – Wisecrack Games

Even though there are still 29 days left to go, that the not-Al-Lowe adventure has only managed $11,744 of a ridiculous half million target means there’s a ton of work to do, and success is pretty unrealistic. I think scrapping and starting over, with a project launch that doesn’t try to trick people into thinking Lowe’s on board, and a target that isn’t so daft for a team of unknowns making a game based on a distinctly unappealing character, might be the way ahead for this one.

Torchships – John Carl Gillespie

Despite a lot of attention from RPS readers nagging me to mention it, the super-hardcore 3D space combat sim still hasn’t managed to reach $10k of a $40k finish line, and with 42 hours to go is going to have to have a sudden spurt of attention to get there. Disappointingly, I expect we’ll be seeing this one on the Losers list next week.

Zombie Playground – Massive Black

However, one I expect to see on the Winners list is Zombie Playground, the cute-but-not-cute zombie action game that’s now on $87k of its large $100k goal. They’ve done extremely well to reach this, and with 10 days left I’m sure they’ll get there. The sillies have made the mistake of clogging up their front page with updates, so finding out what the game actually is in the text is a confusing mess – they should probably fix that if they want to pick up lots of new donators over the next week.

Word Realms – Asymmetric

Finally the spell-casting spelling game from the Kingdom Of Loathing team has caught, and with five days left has $92.6k of its $100k aim. Surely it’s going to get there now, as they push in the final days. Thankfully the updates are appearing now, and its far more clear they’re passionate about success here than their sparse, seemingly disinterested attitude had first suggested. And to everyone whinging about the graphics – meh, get over it. It’s cartoons, they’re not that bad, and who cares when it’s the spelling game JOHN WANTS.

Ground Branch – BlackFoot Studios

I’m surprised by this one. I was pretty sure the remarkably impressive shooter would fly toward a perhaps too big $425,000 target, after the attention it was receiving. Clearly a ridiculously high goal for a new name, but being made up of ex Red Stormers I thought would boost things. But only $44,500 has been raised so far. There are 20 days left, so there’s obviously plenty of time to get there, but barely clearly 10% isn’t what I was expecting.

Cold Fusion – Dustin Gleaves

A small surge forward for this one, now at 3.7k of its $15k ambitions, with two weeks left on the clock. Steampunk post-apocalyptic RPG sounds good to me, but clearly needs to push itself a bit better if it’s going to make it. Also, I got told after criticising their crappy quality video!

Retrovirus – Cadenza Interactive

What the hell is going on here? The developers of Sol Survivor launch a KS for their awesome-looking six-axis Descent-like shooter, only ask for $75,000 for polish, and make a piddly $4,621 in the first week? HUH? What is wrong with people? This is the one that should be getting all the money! Who doesn’t want this?

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168 Comments »

  1. Richie Shoemaker says:

    Rather sad to see TorchShips burning up in the crowd-mosphere, but I’ve now turned my allegiance and $20 towards Epic 40K-alike Exodus Wars over at Indiegogo, which is just as hardcore and lovely.

    • ReV_VAdAUL says:

      The game looks genuinely awesome but I wish I could hear what the man in the skyscraper is saying. Sure it is nice to project success by showing you have access to such a fancy building but not at the expense of being audible.

      • GR00V3R says:

        @ReV_VAdAUL: That’s the offices at the Interactive Media Fund, a government organisation here in Australia set up to help indies like us. We decided to shoot there in order to use their equipment—camera, audio recording stuff—as it was a handy place to hook up with Tom from Steel Crown Productions. It didn’t occur to us you guys would think that was OUR office—we work out of a house in the suburbs. :D

        We also stuffed up the acoustics shooting the way it did—put that down to lack of experience with audio recording; we’re great at making games, but far from audio pros. :S

        Thanks for the feedback and the interest, though! We were stoked to see that you liked the look of the actual game! :D

        Any questions, feel free to tweet them through to us @membraine_ftw

    • subedii says:

      Is this going to be an “all in one” package, or since it’s (apparently? I don’t know too much about this) based off of a real TT game, are they going to be going the microtransaction route with you paying for additional units to “build” your army?

      Because the latter is something I’m not too interested in I’m afraid.

      The mention of a 5% discount card for future purchases until June 2013 made me curious about that, although they could be talking about actual miniatures I guess.

      • GR00V3R says:

        @subedii: Just to clarify, yes—Fractured Empire is a premium game (what you’ve called “all-inclusive”); not freemium. :)

        The 5% discount til June 2013 relates to Exodus Wars miniatures. Sorry if that’s not clear—I’ll see if I can edit the text to make it more so. :)

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      Trinnet says:

      That looks really promising, although as Rev said, they should probably have filmed somewhere with better acoustics.

      Edit to add:

      I donated, but I should have read the indiegogoterms more carefully – they get our contributions whether or not they make it to their goal. This seems like a terrible idea, since it leads to customers losing their money to projects which didn’t get enough support to be viable.

      • GR00V3R says:

        @Trinnet: Thanks for backing us!

        You’re correct that Indiegogo works differently than Kickstarter, but the funds are not released until the end of the campaign.

        Fractured Empire will be released—what features it offers when it is, though, depends on the Indiegogo campaign’s success. The purpose of the campaign is to demonstrate interest in the game, show that the market exists, and enable us to focus on the game full-time for about 3-4 months in order to complete it to minimum spec and release.

        Even if the campaign fails, the game will be released—you’ll just have to wait longer for it, though, as we’d have to back-burner it somewhat in order to focus on guaranteed-revenue-producing projects, like the casual games we have in our pipe. :)

        If you’re interested in reading about why we went with Indiegogo instead of Kickstarter, I wrote a blog about our experience and thinking on Gamasutra. You’ll find it here: gamasutra.com/blogs/MarkSheppard/20120614/172339/Launching_a_Crowd_Funding_Campaign_When_Nobody_Knows_Who_You_Are.php

    • Consumatopia says:

      Torchships is such a far out idea that it should probably release some kind of public prototype or alpha. Does the concept actually work? Is a space game based on orbital mechanics actually a fun game to play with interesting strategies? I really have no idea unless I see the concept in action. Even a two-dimensional prototype would give me a much better feel for the concept.

      Even more worrying, Gillespie doesn’t even seem to talk about this–as if realism by itself is enough to justify the project.

      I was also a little disappointed that it sounds like each field of play is a planet or asteroid rather than an entire solar system–so, I guess, you can’t do stuff like use one planet’s gravity to slingshot towards another planet.

  2. fiddlesticks says:

    Good to see the Tropes vs Women in Video Games Kickstarter did so well. I wonder what she’s going to use all that money for, considering she only asked for $6000 initially. I suppose there’s always charity.

    I’m also very happy that Cult reached its goal. Such a charming little project.

    • Jimbo says:

      She’s going to buy a pony just to wind everybody up.

    • The Greatness says:

      I’m wondering if she might use the money to turn it into a full, feature-length piece. That would be great to see. It’ll be interesting to hear what her plans are though, for sure.

    • MondSemmel says:

      In one of the other kickstarter threads, someone said that all the money donated to the project has to be used on the project. Is that correct?

      • caddyB says:

        Not really, no.

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        LTK says:

        I’m pretty sure it works like this: The project leader says A: If I receive this sum of pledges, I will make this project happen. And B: If you pledge to me, I will give you a reward based on the amount of your pledge. If they fulfill both these promises, then they can use the rest of the money however they want.

        If this seems selfish, consider this. FTL went over its goal with 2000%. They have over 6000 people who will play their game on release and almost 4000 who can already play it. If they finish the game with half of the pledges still in the bank, is that really such a bad thing? If they make good on all the promises they made their pledgers, I don’t see a problem with it. They made something everyone wants and got lots of money for it. That’s capitalism for you.

    • NathanH says:

      I guess you could sponsor some masters projects or possibly even a phd on the topic.

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      aleander says:

      She can use the funds to swim in margaritas, as far as I’m concerned — she earned that. But judging by the fact that she’s a creative on a mission, she probably has ideas that can consume any amount of funds.

      • LionsPhil says:

        I’m not really sure successfully being funded is “earning” anything. It’s payment up-front—a debt to work off in terms of creative output, on the basis that this way around means you can work on creative output. It’s only been earnt once the backers’ rewards are completed.

        • Phantoon says:

          Yes, I was going to say the same, but in a far bitchier manner- plus, I want to know how she’s going to make a video about “positive female characters” when she doesn’t like ANY of them. She seems to forget Peach runs a kingdom, is loved by her subjects, and is a stronger character than Mario in Super Smash Bros.

          Also, there’s a metric tonne of valid complaints you can make about Metroid- Samus not wearing the Power Armor at all times is NOT one of them. (Other M being a crime against everything, including being completely sexist, you could say. But everyone already knows this.)

          • bladedsmoke says:

            BWAHAHAHA, you’re saying *Peach* is a strong female character? Are you fucking mental? The literal physical embodiment of the helpless “damsel in distress” in dozens upon dozens of games?

            Sure thing, dude. And black-face minstrels in the 1930s were a culturally sensitive exploration of racial profiling which only served to empower black people everywhere.

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      Jackablade says:

      Man, over 26 times the goal. One wonders whether we’ll now see others try to harness the roiling maelstrom of hate and stupidity that is 4Chan for their own personal goals.

      Not to suggest that’s what Sarkeesian did, but you have to imagine there’s some economist types stroking their beards over this one.

      • D3xter says:

        I’m rather curious if they’ll find a way to harness the power of white-knights getting butthurt over minor issues and bankrolling entire campaigns, after all, all they have to do is start a project or game about feminism and LGBT rights and awaken the appearance of being downtrodden and they’ll bankroll it tenfold.
        It already worked for EA as a defense before after all, lots of PR to be gotten there by the likes of Walker: http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2012/04/05/ea-responds-to-hate-campaign-from-homophobes/

        • MSJ says:

          White-knighting is an American tradition, after their 16th President white-knighted an entire race that it contributed to a Civil War.

        • Phantoon says:

          In John’s defense, the EA bot thing didn’t happen until AFTER that article.

        • Pathetic Phallacy says:

          Yeah, damn “white knights” supporting a very valid and interesting research topic that should be brought to the gaming community’s attention for intelligent and meaningful discussion. DAMN THEM!

          • ElCidStVicious says:

            It’s already been brought to the discussion by much, much smarter people without aspirations to being a social crusading mercenary. The whole Tropes vs Women thing OH MY GOODNESS ATTACKS QUICK WE MUST SUPPORT HER BY GIVING HER ALL OUR MONEY was such a beautifully planted false flag that I kind of have to take my hat to her. That was like the reasonable people’s Waterloo; outmaneuvered by a soulless underachiever with a worthless degree and a razor-sharp sense of what the perpetually oppressed and their castrati white knights want to hear. The billion dollar donation boost made to ‘retaliate’ against those ‘misogynist 4chans trolls’ is pretty much the most sublimely beautiful example of reactionary stupidity you’ll ever find.

            One hundred and fifty thousand dollars for a series of youtube videos. Fucking incredible.

        • Jay says:

          Yeah, the hell with them and their ‘basic human decency’. What about my rights as an entitled middle class white guy? We might literally own and run the civilised world, but let’s not have our lessers getting ideas above their station when we can just pile on them with a massively disproportionate verbal beatdown, eh?

          People still seem stuck on the relative merits of her project, and not the simple fact that regardless of where you stand on the issue, the veracity of the negative reaction to this is something we should all be ashamed of.

          I like his referring to John by his last name though. It gives me the mental image of him raising his fist aloft and roaring “WALKERRRR!” every time one of these articles comes up.

          • Apolloin says:

            Middle-class white men don’t run the civilised world, not even close. The world is run by the wealthy and their families. I’m not saying that men and women are equal but you are more empowered as a rich woman than you are as a merely wealthy man.

            Wealth, both earned and inherited, is the defining quality that identifies the ruling class. Position within the ruling class is determined by other factors, but there is no social handicap so dreadful that you can’t gain entry to the 1% with a sufficiently massive wealth counterweight.

            The best way that I ever heard it wrote was that starting off as white and male was starting the game of life in easy mode, all other factors being equal. An examination of possible other factors such as sexuality, genetics, talents, intelligence leads one to conclude that there are actually many factors that determine success in life and that what really leads one to single out ‘male’ and ‘white’ is the inherent arbitrariness of them – after all the athleticly talented must still train, the intelligent must still study.

            On a final note, the chances are that the white males who run the world that were referred to are OTHER white males. Being white and male is not like getting your access card to the illuminati.

      • Phantoon says:

        Actually, a lot of the puerile comments were to support the project. What elevates a social issue faster than being demonized when your message is a safe, relatable one?

        Not to say there weren’t a fair share of people that actually hated her (and I’d bet sexism was pretty low on the list for why), but this IS the internet, after all. I’m not shamed to say I’ve acted like a total dick for the express purpose of making someone look better before.

      • PopeJamal says:

        No, you will not easily see a “4chan” project like this because, well, because they’re all abunch of disruptive aholes.

        It’s easy for a group of people with good intentions in their hearts to BUILD something because of the unifying sense of, well unity. And cooperation.

        Now look at 4chan: hatred, greed, low self esteem, bigotry, racism, misogyny, anger. At any given point the number of given people who would get a COMPLETE HARDON by bringing down the whole sandcastle is directly proportional to the size of the sand castle.

        At some point, once 90% of the participants have a very attractive reason to destroy the project, it’s just a timebomb.

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      Big Murray says:

      My problem with the Sarkeesian project is because of her and her beliefs, and while the attention being drawn to her project is the result of “bigots and trolls”, I’m the first to reactively jump in and point out that being against her doesn’t make you either of those things (which a lot of people imply).

      Looking at the rest of her work, she’s a reverse-sexist … and those piss me off almost more than actual sexists. She posts [TRIGGER WARNINGS] all over her blog posts, and treats “sandwich and kitchen” jokes as serious business (because of course, women never make similar jokes in the other gender direction … and when they, do it’s not “sexist”) . I don’t want anyone with such obvious prejudice designing videos to be shown in schools or making documentaries which claim to be unbiased.

      • Bobka says:

        I shouldn’t bite, I really shouldn’t, but how on Earth is warning people (who may be victims of abuse) about potential trauma stimulus within the content of a link/article/etc. “reverse-sexist”? Are men incapable of suffering from psychologically damaging trauma or something?

        When I was younger, my grandfather used to go all stony-eyed whenever we played pretend with imaginary guns and would leave the yard/room, and our parents would remind us us not to do that in front of him. Seems like common decency; don’t go triggering people’s unwanted memories.

        • Cryo says:

          common decency
          Oh-ho-ho. I really don’t think you are speaking its language.

          • Phantoon says:

            And just like that, you’ve fulfilled the above poster’s comment about opposition automatically being a troll. By demonizing the person rather than addressing their argument, you’ve shown that at least in your case, this is a reactionary issue, not a logical one.

            And to take a wild guess at the next post, “I shouldn’t have to respond to trolls!” isn’t true in any case. If it’s a social issue, you must do so. Because while in the short term you may have the easy bandwagon win of “yeah, me too!” people will soon forget a social justice cause and get distracted by the next shiny thing. In fact, bandwagoning is a staple part of our culture, and basically always has been.

            I hold the door open for anyone when I’m entering or leaving a place. But if I get some women pissed at me because she thinks some inane bullshit about how I’m a chauvinist because my hands were free? (That’s a thing, by the way. It’s happened. I was so amazed I didn’t even know how to react, because who the fuck are these people?) This is an anecdote, by the way. Totally unrelated, unless in some strange instance you didn’t state your views, in which case it’s related to you because I can demonize people too.

            In closing, no, John. You are the trolls.
            And then Cryo was a zombie.

        • Phantoon says:

          You’re ignoring the fact that men can be victims of abuse?

          Is thinking men invincible not sexist suddenly?

          • Jay says:

            I’m struggling to see how that’s even vaguely relevant. Nobody’s claiming men can’t be victims of abuse. Indeed, the only traumatic event mentioned in the posts you’re replying to specifically relates to a man.

            What exactly is your point here?

          • Cryo says:

            @Jay: Here’s what you are doing wrong – you think that words in the post above yours are a product of a human mind. They aren’t. This “phantoon” creature simply emits toxic waste as a product of its lifecycle, and it ends up here. There isn’t any consciousness behind those words so of course they don’t have any real meaning.

          • ElCidStVicious says:

            Christ, Cryo, get a grip you hopeless tool. “Hey, someone’s making valid points against a stupid project I foolishly over supported! I better lay down some ad hominem like the soft-skulled piece of obstructionist garbage I am!” Just get out of the way if you have nothing of worth to say on the points he’s put forward. I don’t even care but HERPA DERPA HE’S A TROOOOOLL is just about the lowest form of discourse there is, even below ACTUAL trolling.

            And yeah, I AM plunging into ad hominem and ‘trolling’ (even though that’s not what the word actually means and you should stop using it like that), because unlike Phantoon, I’m NOT giving you the benefit of the doubt. In aggregate you all sunk one hundred and fifty thousand dollars into what is essentially a series of youtube editorials. You are IDIOTS and this is why the stupid goddamn movement that is Second Wave Dworkin Feminism is universally mocked by both legitimate feminists and egalitarians alike. You drag the legitimate social and political dialogues initiated by the Flappers and continued by the first wavers down with pandering hysteria and bumper sticker points of view and have done more harm to the public perception and legitimacy of feminism than a BILLION 4channers demanding sandwiches EVER could. Your screeching stupidity drags us all down and if there was justice in the world you would be PUNISHED.

            And if it seems like I’m homing in unfairly on you, Cryo, it’s because you represent in a nutshell what the modern toxic second waver is: hysterical, dismissive, reactionary and worst of all, dull. You are a bore with nothing to contribute to one side or the other except mewling, idiotic snark.

            If I sound passionate about this it’s because these social issues are IMPORTANT, and you infantilize an entire movement by acting the way you do. You are awful.

          • Jay says:

            Yeah, but how do you really feel about it?

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          Big Murray says:

          It’s “reverse-sexist” because it’s assuming that women who have been victims of abuse are fragile flowers who’s poor little minds may be blown by witnessing an offensive comment on YouTube.

          If people are reading your blog at all, it’s safe to say they’re comfortable enough being on the internet that they don’t need defending in a patronising manner.

      • Phantoon says:

        No such thing as a “reverse sexist” or “reverse rape”. It’s just sexism. If it happens to be they hate men? Still sexism. The very notion of “reverse” would imply that men are always the aggressors- and if they are, fine. But realize (some feminists cannot do this, same as misogynists) that everyone is not the same, and that not all men are dangerous lechers.

      • abandonhope says:

        I don’t know that I’d call anything Sarkeesian is doing reverse-sexism. However, I did not find her perspective on sexism to be particularly nuanced or insightful, and I don’t really see any practicable solutions coming from her work, in which she routinely criticizes media/ads because they fail to reflect some nonexistent ultra-neutral ideal. That’s too simplistic.

        I do think that one could easily make the case that advertisers on the one hand sell women to men as being docile, unthinking and always ready for sex, which rattles the confidence of women, who are then in turn delivered ads that boosts their confidence, often by contrasting them with dim husbands or boyfriends, which starts the cycle anew. This reality is probably obvious to anyone over the age of 25, but to me the issue is more interesting–and solutions more apparent–from a wider view. Sarkeesian would improve her case by being more inclusive and comprehensive, since marketing is a parent to the problem of sexism in many areas.

        Unfortunately, one can’t simply will change. Different products are sold to different demographics using different techniques. I’m not particularly fond of the dim-husband, super-wife ads, but until I start buying Glade plugins, SC Johnson probably shouldn’t care what I think. Neither am I fond of the Axe/Lynx ads, but until I start slathering loathsome stanks all over my body because I’ve been told doing so will deliver me effortlessly into the eager hands of horny babes, Unilever shouldn’t care what I think, either.

        Corporations are making products they believe they can market, and, through advertisers, telling the people who buy their products what they want to hear. If teenage males can be convinced to make themselves smell like shit using the promise of sex, I don’t see much hope for effecting significant change in video games for which they are the target audience, and certainly not just by saying, “That’s sexist.”

        I took up half a comment page on the previous article, so I hope I’ve kept this brief and managed not to repeated myself.

      • Pathetic Phallacy says:

        Oh god, “reverse-sexist”? Someone has been listening to the doublespeak of Fox news.

        Feminism isn’t anti-men, it’s pro equality; however, I suppose that information is not something you can learn from Fox.

        The “bigots” and “trolls” is in reference to the very large amount of people who were sending her death threats, hate emails, sexist “get back to the kitchen” comments and people generally being dicks. Really, their anger only reinforced the importance of her research. I’m very happy that all the sexist assholes came out of the woodwork to display their ignorance and stupidity. Bless em’!

        • Dances to Podcasts says:

          Um, Pathetic Phallacy*, feminism is a term that covers a wide variety of opinions and some of those opinions are actually anti-men. Just look up the SCUM Manifesto, for example.

          Not taking any sides, just pointing out an inaccuracy. :)

          *great name to wade into internet discussions with!

          • PopeJamal says:

            Why should anyone take the SCUM Manifesto as anything other than extremist bull? Sure, it’s feminist, but it’s comically far from mainstream feminism.

            Christ, three lines in, I found a mail/male transposition in the text, so I wouldn’t take a “manifesto” seriously on those grounds alone.

    • Grover says:

      She definitely needed that much money after all the emotional abuse she went through for the years of counseling necessary to heal the deep psychic wounds inflicted on her by filthy, cis-priviledged, autistic teen-aged neck beard misogynists saying things like “Ur a cunt”, poor little thing.

      Truly, a savior and martyr for the cause of equality in our troubled times, where women are practically slaves and sex objects 100% of the time in all media, not to mention in real life where being a woman is as bad or worse than being a Jew in Hitler’s Germany.

      I myself donated $1000 USD, of course I had to take it out of my charitable giving, but I feel this is a truly just and righteous cause worthy of the massive payment.

      Edit: Just got an email from the Toys for Tots programs asking why I had canceled all my giving for this year! Hmm, could it be that WHITE MALE PRIVLEDGE is the TRUE issue of our times, not bratty poor male children? (I’ll give toys directly to poor female children.)

      • MSJ says:

        How are you this ignorant? The uber-minded experts of the internet has already taught us that Anita is the one that is like KKK Nazi Communists Who Are Of Course Jews (Or “Kike” If You Are Being Polite). That is what why they are called “Feminazis”, after the Jew-run group who throw Germans into ovens during the…. Boer War, is it? Are you a Kike Conspirator for trying to mislead us, hmmmm?

      • ReV_VAdAUL says:

        Are you the same Grover who on Something Awful actually cried when Obama cancelled the production run of F22s because you couldn’t imagine any worthier thing to spend money on in the middle of a global financial crisis than jet fighters?

      • Bhazor says:

        Why are you so offended?

      • Pathetic Phallacy says:

        She was receiving death threats . . .

        What angers you so much to make you a blabbering moron? Please, share with the community. I would really like to know.

        • ElCidStVicious says:

          Hysterical morons like you dragging legitimate discourse down with yuppie snark, maybe? God knows that’s what pisses me off.

        • Apolloin says:

          Until we change the culture of the internet for the better we have to stop pretending that some 13 year old who is desperately frightened that he’ll be forced to play a marine with breasts in Call of Duty 12 saying “Someone should shoot you.” is the same as a legitimate death threat.

          Death threats on the internets run the gamut from the use of stock phrases such as Die in a Fire up to and including actual respectably scary threats. Guess what? The respectably scary ones are actual crimes and can be reported as such! Thanks to the current facist stranglehold that most governments are achieving on the internet it is trivial for law enforcement to identify a specific poster of said threats and invite them in for a chat.

          But let’s stop pretending that 4-chan, as scary as it is from a sociological standpoint, is frequented solely by Blackwater employees and serial killers.

          • PopeJamal says:

            So you should only worry about serial killers and “Blackwater Types”? What about people like the Virginia tech shooter guy? He wasn’t in Black Water and he wasn’t a serial killer.

            When you have 999 “fake threats” and one “credible” threat, teh easy way to sort through them is to get rid of the “fake” ones. The right to be an asshole is way overused on the internet.

      • Davie says:

        I’m going to assume for the sake of my own sanity that this is some sort of bizarre satire.

    • Premium User Badge

      Sagan says:

      I paid for that, and as far as I’m concerned the extra money are her profits. She offered to make a product and it sold better than expected. So she made a profit off of it. She is under no obligation to use that money for the product in any way.

      • Bhazor says:

        Pretty much this.

        If some small indie developer made an unexpected fortune with a mediocre game (Angry Birds for example) I doubt we’d see the same bewildering outcry you can see up there.

        Fascinating to see how offended and how offensive people are being here. Wonder why?

      • Jimbo says:

        Profiting off of her ’cause’ (I’m assuming it’s a cause, and that she doesn’t just consider herself a mercenary social commentator for hire) to that extent might undermine her position somewhat. She must know that most of those $$s come from people simply reacting to this perfect storm of controversy around the topic that’s swelled up, rather than anything she’s actually proposing.

        • Premium User Badge

          Sagan says:

          Profiting off of this does not undermine her position. People will pretend that it does, but it doesn’t. She wasn’t doing this with the intention of getting this much money, and that is what counts.

          I’m actually going to be curious what the trolls argument for the money being problematic will be. That she did this for the money? That her opinions come from lots of people paying her to have that opinion? Anything I can come up with sounds ludicrous as soon as I type it.

          • Jimbo says:

            There’s no ‘pretend’ about it. If enough people believe her (hypothetical future) actions undermine her position then her position is undermined.

            She wasn’t doing it with the intention of making that much money, you’re right. The vast majority of the money was generated by the cause she is trying to represent, not by the product or service she is offering. She has accidentally ended up with that much money because she happened to get caught up in internet drama of the week. If she chooses to then take that money and put it in her pocket rather than ‘do the right thing’ and reinvest it in the cause which generated it, then I don’t think she’ll be taken very seriously in future. Her motivations would be questioned next time around if championing her cause also happened to be making her $$$ at the same time.

            Treating all of that money as profit would be a terrible idea on her part if she’s serious about this and cares about being taken seriously.

      • NathanH says:

        I think it’s a mistake to view this as paying for a product. It seems much more like sponsoring research and a project for social good. From that point of view, most of the extra money should be spent on project-related things, or given back. Exactly what “project-related” means is a bit of a tricky question, particularly since a bunch of donaters on Kickstarter are far less organised and cohesive than your average research-sponsoring body. So I think they have a fair bit of freedom with what to do with it, but still there are some things that they really shouldn’t do.

    • RegisteredUser says:

      I really do hope she donates a good amount to something that actually goes to help people.

      This should be a great litmus test of character for the gal given that she made over 20 times her initial(Louis CK donated half his proceeds – really two thirds of the overall profit left – to both the people he worked with and charity when his self-released Beacon Theater standup-act sold much bigger than he had hoped. And he loves to use the word “cunt” in his comedy. Given that that likely/clearly/maybeimjusttrolling makes him a vile, evil, sexist bastard, she has quite the way to go to top that).

      Lord knows there are enough relateable causes that could use it(battered women shelters, orphanages, halfway houses etc pp, endless list really)

  3. Red_Avatar says:

    I wish they made the “Backer” t-shirts less … crappy. I don’t WANT a t-shirt that says “BACKER” in big letters. It makes you look like a tit wearing it. I just want the damn game logo on the front and/or back – surely I can’t be the only one who has been put off the tshirts because of their “official backer” nonsense?

    • Premium User Badge

      Andy_Panthro says:

      Most of the T-shirts aren’t the sort of thing I’d wear in public! There have only been a few that I’ve funded that highly though, mostly for other reasons than the t-shirts.

    • Hoaxfish says:

      I wouldn’t mind a t-shirt with a nice picture on it… but yea, a lot of those backer t-shirts are terrible.

      As much as I understand wearing a GAP t-shirt sets you up with an identity as “I’m cool enough to shop at Gap”, it’s also an advert of “hey, you should shop at Gap to be as cool as me”… neither work, because name-dropping like that just makes you look insecure and suffering from horrible identity issues.

  4. Premium User Badge

    zapatapon says:

    The Myst III links directs to a review for The Moment of Silence.
    Possibly both games are equivalent in terms of badness?

    • malkav11 says:

      Myst III is the only entry in the Myst franchise that I actually enjoyed, with puzzles that made sense to a normal human being and the usual lovely visuals. Plus a decent turn from Brad Dourif as the antagonist of the game, a decent man driven into insanity and revenge by the cruelties of the evil sons from Myst 1.

      It’s nowhere near as janky as Moment of Silence, believe me.

  5. LionsPhil says:

    with elements of Settlers Of Katan thrown in for good measure

    Why would you pollute an excellent, classic cut-throat economic strategy game with a crap boardgame?

  6. BobsLawnService says:

    Maybe Sarkeesian will do the honourable thing and donate $150,000 to women’s shelters and charities.

    • Chris D says:

      The honourable thing is to do the thing you said you were going to do if people gave you money.

      If backers wanted to give to charity they could have done so directly.

      • NathanH says:

        Exactly, all the money donated to the project should be used for research into and communication of stereotypes in videogames (primarily those relating to women, but there might be an argument with that sort of extra money to maybe take things further).

      • DrGonzo says:

        No, the total she asked to raise should go toward the project. The rest of it on whatever the hell she wants.

        • seventhrib says:

          Surely the money donated by people was given on the understanding that it would be used for the project, not that it would end up in a big pot in Sarkeesian’s house. They’re funding a series of videos specifically, not her as an individual – her responsibility must be to use the money for the project, though goodness knows how since she’s got so much more than she needed.

          • Phantoon says:

            Right. Had I donated to this (there was no point to once it blew past the goal), I’d be furious if she donated all the money past the goal to something ludicrous like that Swedish political party whose aims are nonsense like “make men sit down to pee”. That’s not equality. That’s insanity. I’ll sit down when you stand up.

            Things aren’t equal, but demanding men and women start doing things arbitrarily to bridge some gap is not the way to equality. It’s a way to turn off anyone that isn’t already with you.

    • MSJ says:

      She already set stretch goals to make more videos, but she surpassed that too. It might go to whatever cause Feminist Frequency supports.

    • Inigo says:

      I still don’t know why she needed $6000 to begin with. Hasn’t she already been making youtube videos with no budget for several years now?

      • Xocrates says:

        No she hasn’t.

        Not only does she use donations to keep her going, but her previous series of Tropes Vs Women was apparently sponsored.

  7. Tony M says:

    Minis with Enemies needs read Tom Francis “How to explain your game to an asshole” http://www.pentadact.com/2012-03-17-gdc-talk-how-to-explain-your-game-to-an-asshole/

    • Phantoon says:

      I do so love Tom Francis BUT WHY CAN’T I GIVE HIM MY MONEY FOR GUNPOINT YET!?

  8. Premium User Badge

    Andy_Panthro says:

    For fans of adventure games and Quest for Glory in particular, I’d take a look at Quest for Infamy:

    http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1992695780/quest-for-infamy-an-adventure-game-by-infamous-que

    It’s by Infamous Quests, who are the same guys who worked on the King’s Quest 3 remake and Space Quest 2 remake (known as Infamous Adventures for their remakes).

    They’re not too far off being funded ($17,677 out of $25,000), and they already have a playable demo so you can get an idea about what the final product will be like.

  9. Kynrael says:

    About “Cult: Awakenings Of The Old Ones”, Dwarf Fortress adventure mode is moving in the same direction. Next update should have the world “living” as the same time as the player.

    But I’d love to see Cult happen too, that’s the sort of game I love.

    • RF says:

      I’d be wary of funding Cult. The guy has been working on it on and off for several years in the Dwarf Fortress forums (or, at least, that’s where I’ve seen him) and he’s really not made much progress within the past year.

      He focuses on the minute details instead of the bigger picture.

      • Phantoon says:

        So what you’re saying is, it’s exactly like Dwarf Fortress?

        • RF says:

          Not really. Dwarf Fortress constantly has work done on it and Toady got all the major stuff out of the way before the little bits.

          The last year of Cult’s development has focused on his stupid monster generation system and the world gen system instead of anything that you can, y’know, actually play.

          • malkav11 says:

            Surely that stuff is the point? There’s already a zillion roguelikes. Things like that are why Cult would stand out.

  10. Hoaxfish says:

    Someone set up a parallel project to “tropes vs women” focusing on male characters instead: http://www.indiegogo.com/misandryinvideogames

    They’ve taken a much more humorous approach to their actual pitch, and are just going to give the money to charity…

    Unfortunately, most people seem to have taken a knee-jerk response of being massively offended by the very idea. The “support” given to the “trope vs women” in the face of various attacks, has not materialised for this (I’m guessing people just see this as another attack on “tropes vs women” rather than an intelligent response dealing with similar ideas).

    Still, I believe they will produce something of worth, even if it’s not entirely “professional”, and will probably be dismissed as a joke. Stuff produced by the same group of people has been an amusing watch, and occasionally a nice look at the culture.

    • DrGonzo says:

      That does sound just as interesting as the tropes vs women one. But I can’t see any evidence of the other videos these people have made.

    • D3xter says:

      http://holygrenade.com/male-stereotypes-how-baldness-pervaded-the-gaming-industry/ xD

      Also, oh no, sexism and trolls all over that project, quickly call the press!

      There’s apparently another one too: http://kotaku.com/5918603/okay-but-what-about-all-those-tropes-vs-orcs-in-video-games

      • Hoaxfish says:

        The tropes vs orcs one isn’t live (and as far as I know, nobody is even suggesting it will ever move beyond that), and is much more of a parody than any serious attempt.

        As much as Kotaku might love to squeeze a story out of other people’s jokes.

    • Premium User Badge

      AndrewC says:

      The use of ‘misandry’, especially in video games, is a massive red flag. It’s certainly not proof of anything, but i’d suggest checking the correlation between people that use it and people who express hateful attitudes towards women.

      It’s dog-whistle language for angry manchildren. It’s wrapping up hateful ignorant attitudes in long, official sounding words, like Intelligent Design. It’s implying false equivilancy. It implies the oppressing majority is an oppressed minority, like ‘liberal media bias’. The project’s name implies that all games were secretly made by the grand high council of feminazis.

      No proof, obviously. Just saying. Massive Red Flag.

      • Phantoon says:

        Yo. No. What? Oppressing majority? Yes, most games are targeted at white males age 14-26. Except for the casual games, which have more players. Guess who plays those games? Women. There’s more women gamers now because of companies like Popcap that realized there was an audience there than male gamers. Which brings me to my next point- how is it the male consumer’s fault they’re male, and not the companies’ faults for only targeting them? Women hold more purchasing power anyways, and a lot of them still view anything more in-depth than Peggle with disinterest down to outright disdain (humans are terrific at ignoring cognitive dissonance, as many of these women will complain about how their children spend hours on violent video games which they bought for them while spending six hours playing Peggle).

        And to further take the problem, there’s a group of people here complaining the market is not aimed at them when they’re a relatively new part of the market. Sure, there have always been female gamers, but the prevalence of the Facebook crowd buying whatever shit is thrown at them (which they play for ten minutes then make the same joke for three months then forget about it entirely HELLO SKYRIM), tells the big companies that the emerging market is fine with the same rehashed shit anyways.

        So yeah, I take umbrage that it’s my fault for being part of the majority, and for having been here first, and that it’s my fault that companies with absolutely zero interest in social issues will target the majority because that’s the easiest thing to do. Look at Call of Duty- most video game companies do not care about anything besides making money, and nothing like rehashed crap year after year with “broadening market appeal” of their few non shit IPs (Dead Space we hardly knew ye) should give you a better example.

        So how about we have a discussion, rather than this finger waggling over “you’re the bad guy for being here”.

        • Premium User Badge

          AndrewC says:

          I’m finding it awfully difficult to understand what point you are making. ‘Women play casual games’ is a bizarre generalisation. ‘it’s not men’s fault for being men’ implies all men like games that objectify women and they can’t help it because they are men, which is also a bizarre generalisation. Both are stereotypes that you, I think, are railing against.

          Also something about Peggle and Skyrim being evil, I think.

          I can’t be sure. Your arguments aren’t coherent.

        • Xocrates says:

          “how is it the male consumer’s fault they’re male, and not the companies’ faults for only targeting them?”

          Because it works both ways. i.e. the reason companies only target them is because they keep buying and encouraging these kind of games, and therefore companies keep making them.

          Yes, this is primarily the developers/publishers fault, but until gamers in general start demanding other types of games it’s unlikely for the cycle to be broken. However that will never happen as long as gamers are happy with the status quo, which is why pointing out that, yes, there is a problem and what that problem is remains necessary.

          Also, the reason women play peggle while looking with disinterest to the “hardcore” gaming scene is not because they prefer casual games, but because casual games are the only games that don’t target specifically just one demographic.

          It’s your fault for being part of the majority only so far as you keep resisting an increase in the inclusiveness of the majority.

          • Hoaxfish says:

            Someone said the other day, that a lot of games are not actually targetted at males.

            Zelda, Mario, Sonic, Tetris, Solitaire are all enjoyed by women just as much as men. I’ve know non-”nerd” women who enjoyed mucking about with these games.

            The problem is, a lot of people assume that stuff like “Barbie’s dream palace: the game” is literally the only output from the industry “allowed” for girls, rather than that some games are simple gender-neutral.

            Yes, some stuff like CoD-shooters are male-dominated, and make up a noticeable presence in the industry… but that’s not the entirety of the industry.

            Actually, I know plenty of men who don’t care about playing games either.

          • Xocrates says:

            I was generalizing, obviously, but quite frankly if the most visible part of the industry is the male dominated side then that’s the part people will associate with games and gamers.

            Even then, what exceptions there are tend to fall either on the casual side, and/or tend to be male dominated. Mario and Zelda are still very much male centered games, and aimed at children for that matter.

            So, framing the problem in another way, while casual/kids games are generally fairly inclusive (if male biased), hardcore games generally aren’t.

            Which is a problem since those are the ones, not only with visibility, but attempting serious storytelling and depth.

        • Consumatopia says:

          Except for the casual games, which have more players. Guess who plays those games? Women. There’s more women gamers now because of companies like Popcap that realized there was an audience there than male gamers.

          And how many casual games intended for women have “The Musclebeast” or “Mr Emotionless McStonefaced”?

      • Hoaxfish says:

        Honestly, I think it’s a critical difference in their tone from “other projects”… they might have put some “long words” in there, but the whole thing is laced with parody, and humour (e.g. “Men are ALWAYS the heroic ones…”)

        The use of “Misandry” is as much a purposeful flag to those people who don’t believe it can exist (much as people only think it’s possible to be racist if you’re a white person), as it is “short-hand” for the base concept they’re dealing with… bad/boring/unintelligent portrayals of men in games.

        Of course both projects could be boiled down to “games have bad characterisation”.

        As I said, I don’t exact expect the most “professional” output (probably some swearing, and flamebaiting at least), but they’re effectively doing it for free (and you don’t have to donate).

    • JFS says:

      I actually do wonder why men in videogames are often steel-muscled beasts throwing out one witty one liner after the other. I don’t feel discriminated by that, and I know it’s there as a projection area for the oft-mentioned neck-beards, but it does show that there is indeed such a thing as an ideal of beauty for men. It might also put pressure on people, and it is practically a non-topic.

      On the other hand, taking such a thing seriously and discussing it in an appropriate way doesn’t seem to be what these guys are after. At least they’ll be giving the money to charity.

      • Phantoon says:

        Neckbeards play Dwarf Fortress. Also, 2cat.

      • Consumatopia says:

        Yeah, one obviously could do some interesting work looking at the Masculine Ideal in video games (I’m sure people have), but first you’ve got to look at the prima facie case that this ideal is imposed on men by other men. The sorts of games with muscle-bound tropes that we’re talking about are produced and consumed by men (and boys).

        Perhaps some would argue that men impose this standard on each other because women like it (a sort of anti-Lysisitrata) but that’s unlikely–the men portrayed in fiction aimed at women (e.g. romance novels, romantic comedies) don’t tend to be the emotionless killing machines we’re talking about.

        Any work that seems to assume that the nature of sexism is somehow symmetric is highly suspect, to say the least.

    • MSJ says:

      It would be good if it is honestly trying to create a conversation and research the issue, but this is just 4chan Men’s Rights Activist silliness.

      As it is, $3300 can probably get them plenty of booze, drugs and hookers.

      • Phantoon says:

        Or $3300 for charity.

        Besides, what better to fight hyperbole with than hyperbole?

      • Hoaxfish says:

        People have been suggesting the donation goes to Prostate cancer charity (something as gender centric as Breast cancer, though much more overlooked), and some are suggesting a 50:50 split. Either way, Charity counter projects are perfectly valid on indiegogo.

    • nmarebfly says:

      “(I’m guessing people just see this as another attack on “tropes vs women” rather than an intelligent response dealing with similar ideas).”

      I see it that way, mainly because they damn themselves with their own words. From the pitch:

      “Creating videos for Youtube is hardly an expensive practice, so we feel that demanding money for what should be an altruistic venture is a morally reprehensible thing to do. Especially when there are so many great causes that DON’T get the attention and funding they deserve.”

      This is petulant, childish, and pathetic. I would have no problem donating to a project that I seriously believed would do a good job airing gender issues, but based on the tone of the text this is not that project.

      Also, they say that the money won’t go towards an actual video and indieagogo takes 4% of the total, so if I was going to donate to a charity I’d just donate to a charity.

  11. shaydeeadi says:

    Kenshi still has it’s funding drive over at indiegogo too. If you pledge money to him it is instantly paid to him so Chris can license an audio engine and hire some programmers. There is a demo available too to see what he is doing. If you fancy an open world samurai RPG you should check it out.

    http://www.indiegogo.com/kenshi

  12. Veav says:

    Veav from the Skyjacker effort here – if you liked X-Wing vs Tie Fighter, Wing Commander, or even Starfox, Skyjacker has something to offer you. We didn’t make it into the roundup this week, but hopefully we’ll give RPS something to talk about by next week, or even by the end of the day. :D

    • Phantoon says:

      Sir, I demand a blurb about your game! Such as “50% less bloom than the average game!” or “30% less likely to be turned down to prom”.

      Something for the press, you see.

    • Dances to Podcasts says:

      You know how you’re not supposed to put your stuff in the comments but mail them instead? That might be one reason why…

      • Veav says:

        In general you’re right, but in this case – John knows about us, we’ve been on the feature the last two weeks. It’s not necessary to spam him every week with requests, he just skipped us this time because we’ve got weeks left on the clock and he doesn’t want updates with nothing to say. Buuut that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be a presence in the comments.

  13. Tacroy says:

    I want to give Clang all my monies, but I haven’t found any information at all on what controller the game is going to be compatible with. I’m only willing to give them (all my monies) – (whatever the controller costs), which makes it hard to figure out how much to put into the Kickstarter since I don’t know what controller they’re planning on using.

    • Hoaxfish says:

      apparently they’re working with that Razor thingy… looks a bit like a dual wii-remote.

    • Senthir says:

      I am considering putting money into Clang just because I want to see how the project turns out. I don’t believe you can use a peripheral for sword combat and make it in any way more realistic than an xbox360 controller, because when you do a big swing and you hit someone your physical sword keeps going but your virtual sword stops. That makes it, once again, feel like a controller and not a weapon.

      But the people on board with Clang know what they’re talking about as far as swordfighting is concerned. I’d honestly be interested in it as just a historical/educational piece, and if their tools educate developers on how to make better, more realistic sword combat in their own games then all the better.

  14. JackDandy says:

    I guess I should feel kind of sorry for the saps who donated to the tropes vs women thing, but then again, it’s something THEY wanted to see getting made.
    So it’s probably not a loss from their point of view.

  15. GameCat says:

    Hahaha I can’t stop laugh at these 15,000$ RPG Maker games kickstarters. You can easly close your budget in 30$, which is cost of software license, lol.

    • Senthir says:

      $30 buys software license. It doesn’t pay the bills for six months while you work on making a game. There’s a reason hobbyist RPG maker games are rarely interesting or compelling: because they have to work for a living and can only make a game in their free time. The only hobbyist RPG maker game I can even remember making more than a ripple on the internet is Charles Barkley’s Shut up and Jam!: Gaiden, Chapter 1 of the Hoopz Barkley SaGa

      • GameCat says:

        I know one guy who have job and wife and he made 3 long and huge RPGs in RPG Maker XP. He made it alone. Yes, his games have amateur look, but having job etc. doesn’t mean that you can’t make a decent game.

        I’m working now with my friend at one small game, we have plans to sell it. I think we can close our budget with a few dollars for alcohol to celebrate our (I hope so) success.

    • Phantoon says:

      I laugh at them because that’s a reasonable development price for a one man team, but all they do is churn out RPG Maker crap and run with the money.

  16. Damn You Socrates says:

    Sad to see the Tom vs Bruce stalling. Doesn’t look like it will make its pretty modest $10k

    http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2023800195/the-return-of-tom-vs-bruce

    • mckertis says:

      “the series evolved to include humor, narrative, and the distinct personalities of Tom Chick and Bruce Geryk.”

      I’m not sure they have any of those. What, stories about Tom Chick’s sexual exploits in trains of India counts as a narrative now ? Dont think so. Or was that an attempt at humor ? And Bruce is perpetually stuck in the 90′s or something ? Fine by me, but dont ask any money just on account of that alone.

    • Vinraith says:

      It’ll easily make its $10,000 and then some. The first few and last few days of a Kickstarter are usually the most profitable, and they’re already 85% of the way there. Hell, the latest update makes it clear that Tom and Bruce are so confident at this point they’re already working on the first one.

  17. malkav11 says:

    I might have backed Ground Branch if it were going to be a singleplayer game. I have no interest in a multiplayer game of that sort (less than no interest, actually) and promises of eventually delivering singleplayer and coop modes are nice but not relevant to funding the project they’re pitching now.

    • BOTA49 says:

      It’s completely relevant. If this project doesn’t make it, then there won’t even be the opportunity for a coop or SP experience at all.

      • Vinraith says:

        Perhaps, but funding a game you’re never going to play in the hopes that the devs might make another game you would isn’t exactly sound financial planning. I’m with malkav here, I want a game like this but I’ve no interest whatsoever in an MP-only title.

      • malkav11 says:

        Either way it would be a separate project for which they’d need to secure funding. Having a real, existent multiplayer game and associated tech under their belt might make that easier, or be a good stepping stone to singleplayer and/or coop, but it’s not required. And making the multiplayer game does not in any useful way guarantee a singleplayer version.

        So like I say, I might back a similar project aimed at singleplayer. But the multiplayer game they’re actually pitching is no good to me.

  18. Premium User Badge

    maicus says:

    PLEASE don’t fund games like Cold Fusion. I don’t honestly see any future in a commercial game built in RPG Maker XP. Don’t get me wrong, its a great tool… but why is a game that uses default art, music and code from a program released in 2004 worth investing money in? Where is the 15,000 dollars going?

    There are literally thousands of RPG Maker games out there now, free, that use the exact same engine, graphics and audio as this one – why is it worth investing in?

    • Premium User Badge

      FriendlyFire says:

      Honestly my problem isn’t so much that as it is looking at the concept art and then ending up with a generic, bland-looking anime-styled top-down RPG. There’s a major disconnect in style and atmosphere.

  19. Cooper says:

    What I particularly like about the cult “stretch goals” it that by and large revolve around opening up the engine of the game for people to do their own work on.

  20. Premium User Badge

    Johnny Law says:

    Good Retrovirus video… some sincere chat about aspects of Quake and Tribes in there was the cherry on top for me.

    • Phantoon says:

      It looks good but I don’t like the idea of being forced to relation to the ground.

  21. Phantoon says:

    Word Realms- you’re right about one thing. The graphics aren’t bad, they’re TERRIBLE.

    But then again, if it’s made by the Kingdom of Loathing peoples, it’ll probably be good despite the graphics.

    Still. Graphics.

    • NathanH says:

      They’re really not that terrible at all. They’re bright and clear and cheerful, and for a lighthearted game that doesn’t even need graphics that’s pretty much good enough.

  22. Premium User Badge

    Vesuvius says:

    I get that Neal Stephenson’s famous and all, but I don’t get why people think that funding Clang is anything but a rip-off. Right in the video he explains that the ‘game’ is nothing but an excuse to work on the sword mechanic, and that the entire gameplay will just be an arena fight. At the same time the sword mechanic won’t be great for backers without having to spend extra as well, since none of the reward tiers come with the sword controller.

    So you’re paying to get an admittedly barebones and lacking game based around a control scheme for a controller that everyone will have to pay again to purchase.

    Could someone explain to me why this has caught fire?

    • Premium User Badge

      LTK says:

      He made a hell of an introduction video.

    • abandonhope says:

      I don’t get it either. That’s a lot of money for not much of a game (and not much of a reward). I’m not a medieval nerd, so maybe I’m not the target audience. I think this might be for LARP-loving, Renaissance fair-going mutton shank-eaters.

    • D3xter says:

      People are paying to get the framework laid out for other games to be able to use more realistic sword fighting techniques and for instance the Razer Hydra as a realistic controller for that: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=auHSErC6ssE

      There’s worth in that, I just wish he would announce that they’d Open Source their findings and API/code for people to use, it doesn’t seem to be the case so far.

      Also a medieval Valve game using this (e.g. Gabe Newell) would be awesome :P

  23. Jay says:

    Man, Minis with Enemies sounded amazing up until the point you notice the horrific ccg-style mechanic for actually buying the minis. I know they say you can use ingame currency as an alternative, but I’d be amazed if you can manage that at a pace beyond the usual ‘insufferable grind’.

    I know they’re going for an authentic tabletop experience, but full-on wallet gouging might be taking it a little too far.

  24. Premium User Badge

    Sagan says:

    I think the takeaway from the success of the Tropes vs Women Kickstarter should not be that she got a lot of money because she got a lot of attention, but rather that she got a lot of money because people are sick of the low quality of game characters.
    Sure, the attention helped. But the attention didn’t give her money. What got her the money was that people liked what she is doing.

    • Hoaxfish says:

      I’ve seen people say they were giving her money because it would annoy other people…. not even because they think she was going to do a good job, or that they were interested in who she was, the subject, etc. Literally trolls trolling trolls.

  25. fsaenz says:

    Hello!
    For fans of adventure games, 3f Interactivo is raising funds to develop the second chapter of Reversion.
    http://www.indiegogo.com/reversion

  26. Shuck says:

    What continues to disturb me about these Kickstarter campaigns is the small amounts of money people are raising. it’s causing potential supporters to grossly underestimate how much games cost to make. 300K is not “a really big chunk of change,” but the cost of making a very small project. Everyone else is raising sums that aren’t going to remotely pay for the games. This is going to cause major problems at some point as a number of these games will have to raise further funds after a “successful” Kickstarter campaign or they won’t get finished. And a fair number won’t get finished. $5000 and $10,000 sums worry me, especially when the developer is vague about what it’ll go towards. The “Cult” developer says something about game development and paying for art and music. That sum shouldn’t even be enough to cover art and music, much less anything else.

    • D3xter says:

      Capable people making games on their own in 2/3 people teams don’t really obey the same costs huge publishers do. They’re usually “love projects” they make in their spare time over months or years and hope it pans out in the end and they become profitable. They’d just need some money for food and a household budget in some cases.

      This is of course different in the cases of Double Fine or inXile.

  27. Premium User Badge

    Stormwaltz says:

    Maybe everyone who would have supported Retrovirus has already invested in Miner Wars 2081. It has similar controls, but a far broader feature set. They aren’t running a Kickstarter, but they accept donations of money, art, fiction, and level design.

    http://www.minerwars.com/

  28. Flappybat says:

    500k for a remake of MULE? Christ what are they planning to do? It strikes me as a 50k project.

    • Hoaxfish says:

      Especially strange since Mule already got an excellent update a couple of years ago in the form of Planet M.U.L.E: here

  29. abandonhope says:

    “Projects we only found out about during the week that were clearly going to fall enormously short of their goals fell enormously short of their goals, but there’s no point in posting them up to stare at.”

    There is some point if the project creator hopes to re-launch down the road: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/41329137/lodestar-stygian-skies-tactical-science-fiction-rp

  30. Pathetic Phallacy says:

    I find it hilarious that so many people on here believe that the extra money she’s generated has to go toward charity or some other such venture. People, I don’t know if you’re aware of this, but research takes time and time is money. Research isn’t a charity-based venture, it’s a job. If she receives over and beyond what she expected, than it’s because the people that supported her truly value her time and her effort.

    She’s free to do whatever the hell she wants with the money, so long as she provides the indicated ‘gifts’ to those who backed her research. Funding is not the same as purchasing. She only owes the donators what she initially promised.

    On a side note: I’m very happy that all those assholes who sent her death threats and idiots who posted sexist comments on Kotaku and YouTube came out of hiding. It really reinforces just how terrible the gaming community can be at times and how important it is to have people studying things like gender issues within games.

    • abandonhope says:

      Is she really studying anything, though? Her project isn’t going to be peer-reviewed; it’s going to be a YouTube series. Should it be similar to her previous work, I don’t think it will have the rigorous detachment necessary to be considered anything remotely like a study. I think it’s essentially going to be a woman playing video games and zeroing in on elements that support a conclusion she’s already made, and judging by some of her other work, she’s willing to stretch things to make them fit.

      Whether there’s any value in this kind project, I don’t know, but it would probably be improved with a lot less editorializing. As it stands, I’m not sure it will be any more useful than much of cable news, where “evidence” is cherry-picked and cobbled together to support a predetermined view.

      • Kandon Arc says:

        Yeah, to me the whole thing seems very much like a preaching to the choir project, like crowdfunding Peter Tatchell to do write an op-ed on gay rights. Sure, it’s probably going to be interesting in it’s own way, but the only people who are going to watch it are the people that follow these kind of things and agree with what she’s saying. If there was a chance it would go beyond that circle it might be worth be paying attention to, but this woman doesn’t have the credibility or visibility to make that happen.

        Still, people like to hear their opinions repeated back to them, so hats off to her for monetising that so effectively.

  31. PebblesthePinkMage says:

    Hmm… Seems like nothing new I didn’t know about. Looks like everyone overlooked paper sorcerer and Void Rim if the name “Pox Nora” means anything to anyone. The military themed project, and RPG Maker games, etc don’t immediately strike my interest, so I hope to see more niche highlights in the future.

    P.S. I just registered to comment here. Why did I choose such a dumb name.

    Edit: I don’t know how I messed that up so badly. Let us try again.

    • Jay says:

      Paper Sorcerer looks interesting, but the guy appearing to be a total newcomer with no finished projects to his name is a bit of a red flag. That his first project’s going to be an RPG is another one. I read the description and all I think is “yeah, this’ll never get finished”. No offence to the guy, but I’ve seen this kind of project vanish into the ether way too often. You can be as dismissive as you like about the RPG Maker guy, but he’s got two finished RPG projects to his name by comparison.

      I’ve got the same issues with Void Rim that I have with Minis With Enemies, and that’s that panhandling for funding seems a bit cheeky when you’re building a game around an extremely aggressive cash shop. Other than that I like what they’re doing with it, but yeah.

  32. Flappybat says:

    Zombie Playground looks optimistic for 100k. They have goals up to 2 million but will be lucky to graze 150k in the ten days they have remaining.

  33. Envinyon says:

    You know, not everyone that spoke out against Tropes vs. Women is a bigot or a troll. Some of them actually had legitimate points as to why it’s a bad idea, why she doesn’t need money for it, and why people shouldn’t give her money.

    Although I guess people have the right to throw their money away on whatever they feel like.

  34. Johnny Lizard says:

    It’s good to see that Kickstarter seem to have sorted out their abuse / spam policy since the Rachel Marone fiasco.

  35. Premium User Badge

    jrodman says:

    Ah Auro, a game by the designer who believes that playing for score is the only truth, that completion in games is wrongheaded, and that playing a game other than for mastery is failing to understand games entirely.

    I don’t expect it to be fun unless you like pounding your face into a wall.

    • jamesgecko says:

      Who cares? If you realize he’s mostly talking about a smaller subset of what most people call “games”, it’s much less harsh. I don’t agree about everything he thinks about game design, but he thinks about it in such depth that he’s got some interesting systems and lots of risk/reward choices.

      Let’s not forget that every skill in the game is going to blend with both other skills and enemy abilities. Even if there’s only 12 skills or so and about as many enemies, it should be pretty interesting.

      It better be interesting, anyway. His articles have ruined me on a lot of games; I’ll be playing something and suddenly realize all the choices I’ve made have been no-brainers; none of them have involved any real tradeoffs or real consequences. :-(

      • Premium User Badge

        jrodman says:

        Not really. He insists that this stuff is true for all games.

        • jamesgecko says:

          He insists that puzzle, simulation, and some types of execution-based games aren’t really games. He’s said that Portal 2 isn’t a game. I don’t think Super Meat Boy can be a game under his criteria. Anything that isn’t competitive multiplayer (either directly, or indirectly via score) or doesn’t have randomness is probably going to fail his “is a game” criteria, iirc.

  36. MadTinkerer says:

    People need to give me several million dollars because I’ll blow it all on Kickstarters in a few months. I can think of no worthier cause.

  37. cronos1013 says:

    The Repopulation is up and over the finish line, with almost 26,000 now!

  38. D3xter says:

    Oh yes, and this one got overlooked again: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/935411564/hexit-point-and-click-sci-fi-adventure-game/ , it managed to get 11k without much publicity at all xD
    This might also be somewhat interesting/relevant to people, although it’s not directly on KickStarter: http://www.indiegogo.com/kenshi
    And Skyjacker was already mentioned above somewhere :P

  39. hemmingjay says:

    CULT is the one you want. Anyone who has ever devoted enough time to Dwarf Fortress has had that moment where they realize it is the penultimate game and time spent on other games is a waste. Finally a game concept has come along that might just keep DF company on the hard drive of intellectual gamers.

  40. zachforrest says:

    I thought i’d take a look at this Sarkeesian character.

    Fuck me, how banal.

    To paraphrase one article – i like buffy the vampire slayer because josh whedon thought; i’ll make the female protagonist tough, instead of weak’.

    Lordy, lordy, lordy.

    Does anyone on earth think reversifying male/female cliches is anything but hackneyed.