Be sure to watch the videos below and follow the links to learn more about these campaigns! You can register for a free account now to see my opinions on these campaigns!
Most Funded New Campaigns
Project By: Reaper Miniatures – Join in the world phenomenon of painting and collecting BONES! Stake your claim now in this 4th installment and help us make more~
Project By: Indie Boards & Cards – A game changing expansion for Flash Point!
Project By: Kevin Crawford – A revised full-color edition of the Stars Without Number sci-fi role playing game, with expanded material, new GM tools, and more!
Project By: Real Game FX – “Fog Monster” Fog Machines make continuous real fog that creeps & crawls across your game terrain. Colorless, odorless, runs on water
Project By: Robert Burke – A simple party game that rewards the clever, funny, quick-witted smart-ass.
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Read My Opinions
- I am starting to see a lot of Kickstarter tabletop game creators feel they need to add miniatures to a game to get people excited. The problem with this line of thought is that it is backwards when considering their existing audience. Take the Bones 4 campaign, for example. Their entire identity and audience and trust framework is built around miniatures. Same for CMON. They cultivated an audience who love miniatures. Shoehorning miniatures into a game without a ton of effort placed into marketing to that audience will doom a lot of campaigns. And I am saying that as someone who approves of miniatures being in a game from an end consumer standpoint! Shoehorning, however, will raise your funding goal, requiring a lot more people than you can reliably reach via your existing products or marketing efforts. Bones 4 is awesome for miniatures lovers and I encourage you to hop on this campaign if you like the minis thematically.
- You can tell a lot of love actually did go into the production of Flash Point: Tragic Events, but that the team mostly phoned in the campaign. There is no video, there is pretty basic graphic design going on throughout, and outside of topic headers, text abounds. This project is doing amazingly well because of the large audience Indie Boards and Cards has cultivated around the game, and all of their products, frankly. At least they planned fairly well for stretch goals?
- Before I excuse Stars Without Number for not having a video when I just knocked IBC for missing it, RPG campaigns typically do not delve in the arts of videography. I don’t think that is a good idea for the longevity of a product, but RPGs get away with it. They also get away with text-heavy and art-light campaigns, which I really will never understand. I imagine a majority of RPG books do in fact have art throughout, but I may be wrong. Tell me in the comments. I also want to point out that this is a revamp of an existing product, likely with a large following of fans, so that is doing them a lot of favors. I’d love to chat with the creators at some point to understand their marketing process and how that differs from what you might see from a board game marketing campaign.
- I love, love, love gadget campaigns and there are not enough of them in the tabletop genre. That is why I was so excited to see the The Fog Monster campaign do so well. If you are in the components industry, I would strongly suggest you find a gimmick which adds to the cool factor of your campaign and lean into it. The campaign itself has your usual pledge, stretch, and shipping graphics. Again, I don’t RPG or war game, but this would be a really cool experience to have if I were. Love the innovation and glad they are being rewarded.
- Robert Burke has a celebrity campaign on his hands! Rolf has a YouTuber celebrity endorsement (slash game designer) from Hank Green. Hank Green has quite a number of projects under the Don’t Forget to be Awesome branding, and it’s cool to see them expanding into more tabletop games. The campaign looks fairly polished with all the bells and whistles you expect from a professional production, save for the small shipping misstep at the beginning of the campaign. I also want to point out the ecosystem developing around placing Just Got Played video content at the start of your review section. Patrick Siebert and Brian Fiore are good friends of mine and I completely endorse your sending a prototype to them if they are interested in covering it. The visuals aren’t as fancy as you might get from a dedicated commercial of the product, but the antics and genuine fun times they have together more than make up for it.
Most Funded Unfunded New Campaigns
DISCLAIMER. I am not a time lord. These campaigns may have funded in the time between the list being created and this post being published.
Project By: Dennis A Weston – A family friendly, fantasy-based lawn game where 2-16 players control unique kingdoms battling for victory of a fictitious realm.
Project By: Nathan Schreiber – Players learn chemistry and retain the knowledge with simple rules, bright colors, and ninjas!
Project By: Overworld Games – Will you secure control of Mars for your faction?
Project By: Dave Killingsworth – 2-4 player game of miniatures, mages, & monsters. Battle with monsters in gladiatorial combat for the right to be the ARCHMAGE!
Project By: Tingletouch Games – Use your battle cards wisely to win sexy favors from your opponent in this strategic card game. Two brand new expansions included!
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Read My Opinions
- I will tell you why Kingdoms Lawn has not funded yet. You don’t need $300,000 to make any sort of tabletop project, from miniatures, to outdoors, to whatever. Hell, even Kingdom Death: Monster only asked for $35,000 as the initial funding goal. Here’s what needs to happen. The team needs to cancel, that is for sure. Whoever approved $300,000 as the funding goal needs to be fired, or at least smacked on the forehead. Then, the team needs to make full use of their partnerships mentioned in the campaign to truly create a situation similar to how celebrity endorsements work. If The Boys and Girls Club of America genuinely supports them, then the club needs to be shouting that on a mountain (or social media). Also, the team needs to reign in whatever costs they think they are incurring and only make a campaign which is most likely to fund. Add in the extra components or whiz-bangs after they fund.
- It is very cool to see that people from academia are using games as a teaching tool and simultaneously building a business to support that philosophy. Why haven’t they funded? I don’t think teachers do a great job at carnival barking, if I am being totally honest. They are close to funding, but even funding isn’t going to get them more than 200 or so backers. This campaign is simply undiscovered and in need of a signal boost. One thing I love about Genius Games is that John Coveyou is just really great at presenting his products as great products, and the educational stuff being an added benefit. Valence Plus just needs to flip the script on their marketing message.
- Why isn’t a cool game with a strong IP like Total Recall doing well on Kickstarter? Well, because a cool game with a strong IP is not a magic bullet to funding. Overworld Games backers are used to top-of-the-line art concepts, whether it is using the negative space of a mostly dark Barker’s Row, or borrowing the beautiful existing art style in Leaders of Euphoria, or countless others under the Overworld Games umbrella. Total Recall is arguably the least attractive or visually striking of all the games they have produced. Now, sometimes with an IP, your hands are tied via contracts and legal mumbo jumbo. But it is definitely not helping their bottom line, whoever made this art decision.
- Dawn of the Archmage is a step in another direction for SolarFlare Games and is a perfect example of what I talked about at the start of this article for the Bones campaign. Before this campaign, SolarFlare Games was building an audience around thematic and casual card games. Now, they are experiencing growing pains because the audience they have cultivated would have easily funded another card game by now with close to $10,000 raised. I will say that I have in fact seen the game being demoed at least once at a major convention, so I don’t think premarketing is necessarily 100% at fault. I also don’t think they should cancel, but they should consider re-evaluating their marketing spend at this point to target miniatures gamers. If they do end up cancelling, I might rework this into a standee sort of game to lower the costs and bridge the gap to the people who have made SolarFlare successful thus far. Oh yeah. Don’t show more than one or two stretch goals at launch, especially if you are entering into a new gamer segment with your campaign.
- Oh my goodness, we’ve got a sex-positive game on the loose and it made enough money to make it on my list! What will the neighbors think? I will say that Bedroom Battle is meant to be played by two consenting adults, with the round rewards being sexual in nature. And I don’t think there is anything wrong with that! I have no doubt this will eventually fund, but I think they could have marketed this to a much wider audience than what their current 164 backers might allude. Also, even though it is a sexual game by nature and that may be a tougher sell for reviewers, you still need game reviews to prove it is playable and fun, regardless of what the reviewers think.