We recently started a Kickstarter project called FPS Creator Reloaded to bring our successful FPSC product up to date, but it looks like the battle with Kickstarter votes is being lost. As I write this, we have 208 pledges from some great wonderful visionary people, £12K in the fund with £48K to go. The trouble is that we only have 22 days left to do this, and the percentages say we are 26% of the way through the Kickstarter and only 20% funding so far. You run the chart through the next 22 days and take into account the Day One pledges, the maths say we will fall short by quite an amount.
Perhaps had we run this a year or two ago we would have been drowning in funding, but that is sometimes the way of things. I recall a very useful guide called the Official FPS Creator Community manual which had so many pearls of wisdom in it the thing was practically a treasure chest, and I recall laughing at the comic strips that where injected at certain points in the tome:
It really showed the spirit of the FPSC community, that despite the fact the engine would break and stutter, and completely ruin their game, they could laugh about it and carry on regardless.
I always wanted to return to FPSC and finish the job I started all those years ago with the things I have learned since. Sometimes, the smallest change can make the biggest difference.
When Kickstarter came to the UK earlier this year, the opportunity presented itself to fire up this belated project in the form of FPSC Reloaded, a massive full-time development to take every little (and major) niggle that had blighted FPSC fans for years and do something about it.
I've been recently working on the V120 beta, a version that is being groomed for a UK DVD release in the UK, and I've found myself really enjoying the job of tracking down little issues that cause so many problems, fixing them and watching the engine hum along with it's new-found functionality. I was so looking forward to making an amazing revamp of FPS Creator, but it seems that not enough of the world wants to see it.
I will not be deterred however, and from now and the 22 days that are left I will be trying every trick I know to get the word out about Kickstarter Reloaded. I have chatted with big online magazines, I have engaged an online marketer in the very darkest corner of the web, I've blogged, tweeted and posted, stopping short of it becoming out and out begging.
I am spending my own money to pay our key artist to start making art right now so we can show potential pledger's what they will be getting in the new product and finding every spare minute to research the internet to find ways to tell people about this. We have directly sold the original FPSC to a five digit audience, and now I just need to find out where they've all gone ;)
I am also hearing the alarming feedback that users are following the project and are excited to see it happen, but are not pledging. Instead they are waiting to see what the fund does before acting. They think the money will leave their account right away and not come back. The idea of a Kickstarter is you pledge an amount in principal. Only when enough people have 'theoretically' pledged over the funding required does the money get transferred. That is, only when the project is a go ahead will the pledger's actually need to spend any money, and of course by that time it's like the worlds longest pre-order. A pre-order with some amazing benefits of course!
I may be proved wrong, and on the 11th hour a flood of pledger's will come in and save the day, and I will be the happiest little boy on the planet on that day, but I am mostly a cynic and realist, and spreadsheets and graphs are alarmingly accurate things.
If you are reading this far, and have gained a modicum of sympathy for my plight, you might want to check out the Kickstarter Reloaded page in question, and indeed pass this link on to anyone you think would want to make their own kick-ass gorgeous looking, highly engaging FPS game this time next year. One of the pledge gifts is a full version of the current FPS Creator product so they could get creating in less than a month in fact.
Here is the Kickstarter Reloaded link:
I continue to hope, and I check in the Kickstarter page every day to see what it is doing. The last two days have been particularly slow as three days ago the percentages where dead even, meaning we had a small chance it would continue at that pace, but it did not.
Anyhow, I will continue my PR quest to get Reloaded in front of millions, and if anything dramatic happens I will blog my happiness on these pages. Now back to bug fixing and that wonderful world we call software development.