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Yogscast: We have 'no obligation' to cancelled adventure game Kickstarter
Yogscast: We have 'no obligation' to cancelled adventure game Kickstarter
July 17, 2014 | By Mike Rose

July 17, 2014 | By Mike Rose
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    17 comments
More: Console/PC, Business/Marketing



While the games industry debates the ethics of YogDiscovery, YouTubers Yogscast have admitted that is 2012 Kickstarter for an open-world sandbox game called Yogventures has been cancelled.

Yogscast says in an email to Kickstarter backers that developer Winterkewl Games "have stopped work on Yogventures - but this is actually a good thing."

"The project was proving too ambitious and difficult for them to complete with their six-man team," the email ads. "While this was Winterkewl's project, we put a lot of time, energy and effort into trying to help them realise their dream. Since we heard the news, we've been working hard behind the scenes to make sure that you still get awesome stuff and cool experiences."

As noted by Eurogamer, the group later tells backers that Yogcast was "under no obligation to do anything - instead we're going to do our best to make this right, and make you really glad you backed the project!"

"Making this right" includes giving backer access to a different game -- TUG, an open-world survival game that is currently in development. As noted by Eurogamer, TUG developer Nerd Kingdom has signed an agreement with Yogscast to be partners on the project.

The original Kickstarter saw 13,647 backers providing $567,665 in pledges. At the time of writing, some backers are not particularly happy with the TUG compensation they are being provided.


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Comments


Kujel Selsuru
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I worry this will have a negative effect on crowd funding. There are already people who think it's a bad idea and this will only provide them with ammo :(

Daniel Gutierrez
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But... this is exactly why crowd funding is a bad idea for most people to invest in.

No one advertises their project as "50% to never deliver" because no rational person would place that in their marketing materials and limit their backing pool to people who understand the risks. These are projects that can fail, but are advertised as preorders.

Mark Velthuis
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Well, this is unfortunately how it works. People know in advance that the project they are backing might not ever see the light of day. Too many people just act as if that possibility will never happen.

If only those big evil publishers weren't so hell-bent on delivering lower quality, safe-bet games for more money. Then people wouldn't have to resort to crowd funding so much to get their projects going.

Matt Boudreaux
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This project doesn't seem like it failed due to a lack of funding, but rather a lack of experience.

Zachary Strebeck
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I think that when people back a Kickstarter, at the very least the project creator should be competent enough to budget out a game and get it made. I've written before (http://ind13.com/who-is-liable-when-a-kickstarter-campaign-goes-w
rong/) about what legal obligations a creator has, and this is no different.

Mishandling a project and people's funds like this gives other projects a bad name and hurts the community. Putting up your hands and saying "this is unfortunately how it works" is an acquiescence that we shouldn't be doing, in my opinion.

There NEEDS to be public outcry and a reminder that there are MANY projects that are successful, deliver the goods and are great games.

Mark Velthuis
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Thanks for the link. Your article has some nice pieces of info when it comes to dealing with kickstarter.

However......

In this article you write : "The point is, when donating to a Kickstarter campaign, it is best to go in with a mindset that appreciates the risk and is okay with not seeing the fruits of that donation. Think of it like going to a casino: the best way to go about it is to not put in any more money than you would be willing to lose."

This seems to contradict with what you say in your comment. To stay in the spirit of your comparison with a casino. People don't create a public outcry when they lose money in a casino. Even though they are probably decieved more in a casino than on kickstarter. The possibility of losing is there, people should either accept that or not take part in it.

Ben Sly
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For most projects, Kickstarter is gambling your reputation in exchange for money. If you don't deliver what the backers want, they will take it out on your reputation - and media sites are quite happy to pour fuel on the flames. Cherry-picking quotes like the one in this headline are the tip of the iceberg and it's going to be very hard for them to avoid being represented as a villain from now on.

Kickstarter is far from the free money fountain that many people have considered it to be.

Guillermo Aguilera
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$567,665... I do three games with this money.

Ben Sly
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That's the Kickstarter trap: no matter how much you raise, it'll always be half of what you need. Even if the project started off sane, it's really hard to avoid promising the sky when wrapped in the crowdfunding fervor.

Zachary Strebeck
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It's not "hard" to avoid it...you just do. That's what a smart businessperson would do. The problem comes when those who start these projects are not businesspersons, and don't execute the scope of the project properly. That's why I always recommend that they have someone who can do this business work on board from the start, BEFORE they even post the campaign.

Ben Sly
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It's hard to avoid in the sense that there's a lot of pressure once the campaign is running to keep stoking the flames with stretch goals and grand promises. Having a good business plan beforehand that covers previously agreed-on stretch goals that all members of the project understand does make it a lot easier.

Beyond the quibble over difficulty, I agree with your post. Kickstarter can be an excellent funding platform *if* you plan it well and stick to that plan.

Kyle Redd
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@Ben

Re: Stretch Goals. In this case, Yogventures had none. They raised double what they were asking (plus a major drop of personal funds from the developer) and still couldn't deliver the base game. That means the $250,000 funding goal was most likely just a "guesstimate" Yogscast dreamed up with no real thought as to whether it was actually what they would need.

scanner barkly
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This is why I tend to be very careful when I am Kickstarting something. I normally look for people with a proven history of doing what they wish to do again. I'm more likely to fund a project from an industry veteran seeking to operate outside the establish industry system (the last thing I funded was Chaos Reborn by Jullian Gallop) than something like this...which was basically a bunch of gamers who felt that making a game was easy.

I hope it doesnt have too much of a knock on effect and that worthy projects can still find funding in this manner but on the other hand I hope its a bit of a wake up call for people to think deeper about the things that they kickstart.

scanner barkly
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This is why I tend to be very careful when I am Kickstarting something. I normally look for people with a proven history of doing what they wish to do again. I'm more likely to fund a project from an industry veteran seeking to operate outside the establish industry system (the last thing I funded was Chaos Reborn by Jullian Gallop) than something like this...which was basically a bunch of gamers who felt that making a game was easy.

I hope it doesnt have too much of a knock on effect and that worthy projects can still find funding in this manner but on the other hand I hope its a bit of a wake up call for people to think deeper about the things that they kickstart.

Zachary Strebeck
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Agreed. It's also a reason why new creators should start small and build as they gain more experience. This seems to be a classic case of "biting off more than they could chew."

Andrew Brozek
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"have stopped work on Yogventures - but this is actually a good thing."

"Although we're under no obligation to do anything..."

And people wonder why big studios have big PR teams that don't let developers speak freely...

Jed Hubic
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Good to see that people that are good at presenting other people's content, and presenting things in a nice shiny package, aren't all out pacing some of the professionals out there. Money can't make you a game developer.


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