Note: This post isn’t meant as an insult to the developers of Robots Love Ice Cream, I’m just using the game as an example to get a discussion going on Kickstarter.
Today I was going about my boring daily routine and I got to the part where I dig through my dresser looking for a tshirt to wear. I pulled out my Robots Love Ice Cream shirt and suddenly I thought, “Hey, wasn’t this from a Kickstarter for an iPad game? Like two years ago?” I hopped on Kickstarter today to check, and sure enough it was. In fact, Robots Love Ice Cream was the third project I ever backed on Kickstarter, and it’s funding was completed un July of 2011. And the game still isn’t done.
This got me thinking hard about Kickstarter and how I see myself using it in the future. When I paid $60 to back this game, I never would have guessed it would be over two years before I’d be playing it. I’m sure it’s really hard to make a game like this and it takes a ton of time, but paying that much money for a game that you might not even like (and I’ve payed $59 less for games I haven’t liked) isn’t something I’ll be doing again any time soon, unfortunately.
Now its my fault I spent that much. I could have backed the game for ten bucks, but I was new to Kickstarter and wanted to get a bunch of extra goodies. I got a shirt and some stickers. I thought the game sounded fun and that they could use the funds to push through and get it developed in a few months. Things must have happened that made production of the game take longer than they anticipated. But it’s made me question the merit of Kickstarter, and I’d like to get your opinions.
What Should We Expect From Kickstarter?
What kind of expectations should we have for projects we back, and does backing a project give us the right to have those expectations? I know it depends greatly on the type of project. I’ve backed some physical products that needed to find factories in China to manufacture items and have tooling and molds created. But then again, some of those same physical products have gotten to me years sooner than this iPad game. Should Kickstarter enforce completion times?
Maybe if the developers had a deadline they knew they had to hit due to different site rules, they could have at least gotten a beta version of the app out on time? I hate to make comparisons, but look what the crew behind the Retro Game Crunch was able to do in six months.
I’m sure Robots Love Ice Cream is going to be awesome and I apologize to the developers for using them as an example for this post, but the world of Kickstarter is such a new and exciting thing and discussing projects can’t hurt, right?
Update: Again, I want to say I don’t have any hard feelings for Addo, and from their latest update about PAX Megabooth, it looks like their game is going to be great, and I look forward to it!