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Post news RSS JBS Kickstarter over! Post Mortem

The kickstarter is over, so lets go over some things that happened during the campaign.

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Before getting too deep into anything I wanted to give a big THANK YOU!! to those who did contribute to the fundraiser, since the KS failed I will not receive any of the funds. If you are still interested in supporting the game please send your donation over via paypal by sending it to dizzymediainc@gmail.com or clicking the image below:

The kickstarter adventure was fun nonetheless, a lot of ups and downs for me as I was really putting my all into the campaign and was/am financially struggling. Through it all I am happy to say I at least did my best and gave it my all, all day, every day, that the campaign was running for.

I can admit that I had a very small following before I launched the campaign, many people will say it plays a large factor in a successful or unsuccessful campaign. For the most part I can agree, some part of me still says a great game can pop up over night and be successful but then again, the masses must say so!

Here are the statistics from the first demo release to the kickstarter launch:

Here's the sites and promotional material I had posted before the launch:



Older build Let's Play Videos:
cadCTV Pt. 1
Xelipher Pt. 1
Xelipher Pt. 2
NewGuyGames Pt. 1

As you can see there is a small amount of coverage for the game so far and at least some proper promotional material for the trailer (as much "trailer" like as I could get with no budget). I didn't post too much on IndieDB prior to the kickstarter launch due to various reasons, which I won't go into now but I feel perhaps if I had posted even a few screenshots here and there instead of nothing, it may have helped a bit.

Here's the statistics from prior to demo release to first public demo release:

As you can see I had very little views prior to the first demo release but once the demo was released it sparked an interest, not much but something to get the ball rolling.

So make sure to always post your work in various places, especially if you are on IndieDB, constant updates either daily or every other day go over well with the general masses.

As soon as the campaign launched I went into a frenzy of sending emails to magazine/article/review/podcast places, youtube channels, bloggers, etc. and within the first few days received a decent amount of attention.

It wasn't until half way through the campaign did I start posting in the many groups and websites made specifically for kickstarter pages and such, even posting in those places didn't bring much results, at least for me that is. Here's a post listing 21 places to post your kickstarter for coverage:

I happened to land a podcast a little while before the KS launched but wasn't for a week and then I was going to have to wait another week to have it up on the net, it was exciting but taxing on my patience considering I felt it could have helped the campaign yet it was coming later then the launch. In the end the interview went over pretty bad, the interviewer didn't really ask any good questions nor did he seem all that interested in the game. Which made me feel like I was talking to a brick wall the entire time repeating the same information over and over again but nonetheless I had hopes that it was going to help in some way.

Long story short the guy never posted the podcast and after 2 weeks of waiting I inquired, his response was he was far too busy. I do understand everyone has their own lives but rendering and uploading is an automatic feature, it doesn't require you to sit and stare at the computer as it works. Thus stating this I asked for a personal copy of the interview for use but was denied for reasons not fully clear, with that I told him I no longer wished to use his interview.

I talk about that podcast in this article:

Fortunately I had already come across another great podcast host who interviewed me and did a great job with asking interesting questions and interacting with me on a more "personal" basis.

That podcast is found here:

After four days of marketing myself to death day and night, living and breathing marketing till i couldn't stare at the screen any longer .... something came through. An awesome article was posted on Indiegamemag.com which was a very big step for me, going from being almost totally unknown to having my game posted on one of the most respected indie gaming websites on the internet.

Two days after that another great article was written on Digitalblare.com giving yet another spike in attention towards my campaign.

Now even thought these great articles were being written and viewed by many people and many let's play videos followed helping, there still seemed to be a lack of flow when it came to donations.
Continuing to try and figure out exactly what the hold up was I started adding a few ideas I had for the game into the latest posts and demo's to see what the reaction was. Even though the changes and additions didn't increase the donation amount it did add to the game.

I had added in the kitty sidekick, various mini-games, shortcuts, hidden areas and more to the latest builds, the kitty sidekick was something that was very widely liked, no surprised, cats are awesome!

Here's the stats from the kickstarter launch post to a little after the articles, new additions and LP's:

After that I really struggled to get more attention towards my project and pretty much failed miserably, considering that the podcast was now available to the public and I kept releasing new builds that def. helped in having something to keep interest in. As the halfway mark started to get closer and I was looking at my donation amount I felt very sad that all the hard effort I had put in was not being appreciated as much as I had hoped or was at least expecting.

Instead of crying about it I decided to step it up once again and make something that would catch peoples eye and show everyone that I am not giving up. With that I created the second promo trailer for the kickstarter and might I say with the fire that was burning inside me I can clearly see it shinning through the video. I had hoped that by that point it wasn't too late to make a comeback with a new KS video, of course the questions arose "was it too late?" because first impressions can be everything.

For the most part according to stats I wasn't too late for views but as far as donations go, I did receive a fair amount after the new trailer was released yet I still felt I was hidden from the general masses.

The podcast mentioned earlier was used in the second promotional video:

For me this was my final LARGE production push for the KS page, the last effort to see if changing the kickstarter was even changing my chances of success. Besides the video I am content with how the KS page is displayed, I don't like the KS formatting and it is a pain to get used to but once you get used to it putting things together merely takes patience.

So after working day and night for a few days on the new trailer, I sat back and relaxed a bit, watching the stats and waiting for the spike. The spike never came, it was trickling upwards for sure but a major jump didn't come until I started producing more maps/level designs with very detailed environments. Curiously out of all the things I post, my level designs seem to gain the most attention, which makes me wonder if environment is what people really care about (duh of course!) but the funny thing is that's the base of my game.

My game is all about the environment and the puzzles within it, so was I lacking in some sort of way in presenting that on the KS page? Presenting the environment of the game, really getting you absorbed into it, on other campaigns I have noticed that the video merely shows the environments (for some, not all) and not much gameplay. Should I have done the same? Instead i tried to use suspense, action and mystery to bring the viewer in but should I have gone with a softer approach?

Of course these are all things I thought about during the campaign but was firm in my decision with the route I had pursued. If anything I tried this way as best as I could and if it doesn't succeed I know for a fact that it wasn't due to lack of effort, merely lack of efficiency.

Here's the stats from the new trailers launch to five days after (10 days left till end of KS):

As the holidays rolled in and people were spending time with their families, going on vacation and enjoying their lives, attention for JBS dropped but not to the point of an extreme drop. Only only new years eve did JBS not receive very many views, every other day a steady count of 300 or more views rolled in. Still at this point, donations came extremely slow or not at all.

It was at this time I finally accepted that I just must not have a large enough following to really gain the funds I am asking, no matter how many people I reached out to, 90 % of them merely ignored my game. The percentage that did give JBS a lot of attention loved it, there was of course a good percentage of people trying to change how my game was by giving their opinion on how things should be.

In all retrospect I will not conform to what the "players" want because in all actuality they don't know what they want. They think they know what they want but they don't, it is up to us as the game designers to really bring a game to the player that is by our own liking, built from the ground up with our heart and souls in the game. I have seen way too many projects go from being great to being trash because they took too many peoples ideas and implemented them into the game.

Of course there are many games that ended up being great because of the changes or maybe added onto the game but it really depends on the kind of game, I feel that my game isn't one of those games. I changed a few things, that in all honesty were already there, I merely made them viewable to the player or accessible. The one scene that I really didn't want to change was Stage 1's fog, SOOOO many people complained about it to the point where it was annoying enough to remove it so i didn't have to hear it LOL

It's not that the fog was bad but it's that for some reason, because people feel they can give input because your indie, they should forget they are hopping into your world and in there, it's your rules.
So remember folks, in a video game, especially and indie video game, you adapt to the game, the game does not adapt to you.

From the 25th on there was a series ups and downs and a few donations here and there near the very end due to KS displaying the campaign on their page. In the end I got close to $1,000 and I think now "oh indiegogo, if I had went with you that would be mine right now" but KS says "you get nothing!".

Stats from 25th to end of campaign:

So I sit here writing this today explaining to you my hardships through this interesting experience of launching and maintaining a KS page. For what it's worth, it was fun but disappointing.

If you have any questions feel free to comment below, I do hope that this helps anyone in whatever way needed. Once again thanks for reading and keep an eye on the game, more things to come!

Till next time! RAAAWWRRRR!


Late to the party, I know, but thanks for posting your story! Also it's shocking how fast the media and podcasts can come and go!

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