Far West 11th Anniversary

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Brock Savage

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I mean, if he hadn’t done that, then he should still have the cash. Unless he just keeps buying art and shit and then throwing it away when he changes his mind?

But it’s been my experience that it takes a lot of discipline to have money and then acknowledge that that money isn’t YOURS until a product is delivered. Discipline that I reckon the man doesn’t have given it’s been, what, 10 years now?
I totally get you and acknowledge that I may be overly generous in my judgement of Skarka's character. In my experience, incompetence, inefficiency, and poor management are more likely explanations for missing funds than outright theft and fraud (the company I work for happens to provide financial and legal services for businesses). If Skarka legit spent the money on himself that dude's got crazy chutzpah posting like he does on Twitter!
 
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TristramEvans

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I mean, if he hadn’t done that, then he should still have the cash. Unless he just keeps buying art and shit and then throwing it away when he changes his mind?

But it’s been my experience that it takes a lot of discipline to have money and then acknowledge that that money isn’t YOURS until a product is delivered. Discipline that I reckon the man doesn’t have given it’s been, what, 10 years now?

11 years next month (ie tomorrow)

Hence the...uh, thread title....
 

Jetstream

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I totally get you and acknowledge that I may be overly generous in my judgement of Skarka's character. In my experience, incompetence, inefficiency, and poor management are more likely explanations for missing funds than outright theft and fraud (the company I work for happens to provide financial and legal services for businesses). If Skarka legit spent the money on himself that dude's got crazy chutzpah posting like he does on Twitter!

I mean, in fairness, if he put out the book it wouldn't be theft. It'd just be shitty money management. And, y'know, small productions are often using Kickstarter for living expenses while they finish a project. It's only fraud and theft if he doesn't deliver a product. There's nothing in Kickstarter's terms that indicates precisely how the money has to be spent.

Now, you can argue that he should have damn well delivered by now, and thus it ought to be considered fraud. What I'm saying here still fits with your assumption of incompetence. I'm sure he didn't intend to walk away with everyone's money. But just because someone can write doesn't mean they can manage a project. Skarka should probably never, ever be in charge of something ever again.

11 years next month (ie tomorrow)

Hence the...uh, thread title....
Look, the thread title has been updated so many times, I barely look at it anymore :tongue:
 

Godfather Punk

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He worked on this


so he should know about this
This release includes:
  • Acurate expected sales figures for your budget forcasting
  • Cost/Budget Analysis Excell Spreedsheet
  • and more..

  • BUDGETS AND STAFF
    • Budgeting
    • Product Pricing
    • Expected Costs
    • Funding
    • Editing
    • The Staff
    • Freelancers
    • Royalties vs Flat Fees
 

Blammo

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So how hard is it to adapt D6 to various settings? Is there a document for someone who may want to their own game? Assuming D6 is still 'open source'...



It's a very easy system to adapt settings to because it has simple mechanics, an easily identifiable power curve and loads of material out there for reference. I honestly don't understand why Skarka is struggling so much after his announcement that he was switching to OpenD6, since it is the system he supposedly loved and was familiar with inside and out, unless he's trying to reinvent the wheel.
 

Bunch

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I imagine expenses were higher than projected and all the money is gone. People love to claim that Kickstarter money was spent on hookers and blow when in reality it's almost always a case of the creators biting off more than they could chew.

@ Jetstream Jetstream answered the lawsuit question.
Now you have got me wanting to make an RPG called Hookers & Blow with a line item associated to "Research"
 

chuckdee

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Now you have got me wanting to make an RPG called Hookers & Blow with a line item associated to "Research"
You should have a credit in there to one of GMS's puppets he was using to hide his involvement in Modiphius' products
 

xanther

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I mean, if he hadn’t done that, then he should still have the cash. Unless he just keeps buying art and shit and then throwing it away when he changes his mind?

But it’s been my experience that it takes a lot of discipline to have money and then acknowledge that that money isn’t YOURS until a product is delivered. Discipline that I reckon the man doesn’t have given it’s been, what, 10 years now?
I always was under the impression that Kickstarter says contributing does not guarantee you a product. So more like a gift than a contract for purchase. Now I do wonder about the tax consequences. The Kickstarter money is income and if he co-mingles it and spends it on non-business related expenses not sure he could offset business expense against it. That is, the money becomes his personal income and he has to pay taxes on it. Not a tax accountant or anything but ran my own business for over 6 years and...all it takes is the IRS to decide to audit you and he'll have another major emergency on his hands.
 

Bunch

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You should have a credit in there to one of GMS's puppets he was using to hide his involvement in Modiphius' products
I'm not particularly aiming at him. I'm just noting that Kickstarter is open to abuse and if I could be blamed for spending people's money on Hookers & Blow then at least I'd like to be able to say "Ya. I told you I was going to do that!"
 

Jetstream

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I always was under the impression that Kickstarter says contributing does not guarantee you a product. So more like a gift than a contract for purchase. Now I do wonder about the tax consequences. The Kickstarter money is income and if he co-mingles it and spends it on non-business related expenses not sure he could offset business expense against it. That is, the money becomes his personal income and he has to pay taxes on it. Not a tax accountant or anything but ran my own business for over 6 years and...all it takes is the IRS to decide to audit you and he'll have another major emergency on his hands.
Kickstarter says a lot of stuff that wouldn't really hold up in court. Generally speaking, also, Kickstarter's terms and conditions say the following:

Kickstarter does not offer refunds. A Project Creator is not required to grant a Backer’s request for a refund unless the Project Creator is unable or unwilling to fulfill the reward.

So, like... Most of Kickstarter's terms are really built around saying "If something goes wrong, Kickstarter is not responsible for the pathetic failure."

Also, wouldn't Far West be outside audit range? The IRS only worries about things within 7 years I thought? Same as Credit reporting agencies.
 

ORtrail

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It's a very easy system to adapt settings to because it has simple mechanics, an easily identifiable power curve and loads of material out there for reference. I honestly don't understand why Skarka is struggling so much after his announcement that he was switching to OpenD6, since it is the system he supposedly loved and was familiar with inside and out, unless he's trying to reinvent the wheel.

The latest and greatest site for OpenD6 then? Thanks.
 

ORtrail

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I at least had a preview (6 playbooks and one threat) go out to Patreon members. It's out of my hands at this point, but at least it doesn't have to be printing/shipping limbo.

Here's the cover:

View attachment 48238

I can hear the voice of Marty Robbins in my head, "I'm down with the West Texas, Ghosts of El Paso...."
 

burbles

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Huh. It didn't occur to me that a professional in the industry would be so stupid and irresponsible as to dump Kickstarter money into a personal account for their own use but I suppose that's possible. Not saying it's true but if it is, it would help explain why people are losing their minds over the minor inconvenience of losing some money on Kickstarter. I thought they were just being petty losers.
Remember this was 10 11 years ago, it was sort of the wild west of crowd funding.
 

Brock Savage

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Remember this was 10 11 years ago, it was sort of the wild west of crowd funding.
Okay, fair enough. Jokes aside, am I correct in assuming Kickstarter has tightened things up since then? I started doing Kickstarter in 2017 and never had any problems.
 

burbles

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Okay, fair enough. Jokes aside, am I correct in assuming Kickstarter has tightened things up since then? I started doing Kickstarter in 2017 and never had any problems.
Seriously for a minute, from my point of view......

Q: 'Has kickstarter tightened up since then?'
A: I know they've changed their wording, but whether that change has had any real effect - I don't think so.

What used to happen around Far West's era, was that kickstarter projects would promise a huge number of stretch goals (which increased as funding increased).

For example, from the Far West kickstarter page we have-

UPDATE: We've reached our minimum funding level, and exceeded it. But we're still going onward and upward with new goals and new rewards! Currently, the additional rewards are:

  • LEGENDS OF THE FAR WEST, an exclusive supplement that will be available in print to all backers who've pledged at the $50 level and higher (and ebook/Kindle/PDF for all backers, regardless of pledge level).
  • TALES OF THE FAR WEST, a short fiction anthology, featuring stories by Scott Lynch, Matt Forbeck, Dave Gross and many more, which will be sent in digital format (eBook/Kindle/PDF) to all backers, regardless of pledge level).
  • PROSPERITY, a PDF detailing a complete Far Western settlement, with all citizens statted and all buildings provided as miniature-scaled floorplans and papercraft models, which will be provided to all backers, regardless of pledge level.
  • FAR WEST POSTER MAP, a limited-edition poster featuring the map of the Far West from the endpapers of the Adventure Game hardcover, done by cartographer Andrew Law, to all backers who've pledged at the $65 level and higher (and in digital format to all other backers, regardless of pledge level).
Now a backer would need to chime in here as to what has been received (I'm pretty sure that at least one of the two books listed above was produced).

I was fortunate, I can't remember backing a project that didn't (eventually) produce the base product. If the 'stretch goals' were to be considered part of the kickstarter (now I believe from the wording that they are part thereof), my success rate would be below 40%

What I think has changed is the general knowledge of individual creators (or at least the successful/repeat creators) and the purchasers, as well as a trend by publishing companies to use kickstarter for their next release (ie essentially using it as a preorder system, using it to gauge interest). Far fewer creators have large stretch goal listings, or if they do, they typically do not involve the creation of any other physical product except for extra pages/illustrations in the main book. Adding extra 'things' means more handling, storage, organisation, postage.... All these extras add to the complexity and cost, and possible downfall of the kickstarter.

I haven't backed kickstarters in a while, typically because I haven't seen anything that I'm interested in that won't be available to the general public very shortly (possibly hours for pdf's) after the release to backers. Of a few I've looked at recently, I've noticed things like 'no physical copy' or 'no postage outside of USA' - increased postage costs is a known killer of kickstarters.

Phew, that was a little long winded. But hopefully helpful.
 

raniE

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Huh. It didn't occur to me that a professional in the industry would be so stupid and irresponsible as to dump Kickstarter money into a personal account for their own use but I suppose that's possible. Not saying it's true but if it is, it would help explain why people are losing their minds over the minor inconvenience of losing some money on Kickstarter. I thought they were just being petty losers.
If he's the writer, wouldn't that be him paying himself to write? If I was running a kickstarter and I was hiring someone to do the writing for me, they would need to get paid for their efforts, as even writers need to eat, pay rent/mortgage etc. That h hasn't actually delivered seems to me to be a different manner than a lot of the kickstarter money going to pay for his own upkeep while he writes the thing.
 

Godfather Punk

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What used to happen around Far West's era, was that kickstarter projects would promise a huge number of stretch goals (which increased as funding increased).
At the time a lot of projects also promised Free Shipping Worldwide. That caused a lot of stuff sitting in a warehouse somewhere, with no money left to deliver physically (while warehouse costs remained an ongoing expense).
 

Picaroon Jack

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I can hear the voice of Marty Robbins in my head, "I'm down with the West Texas, Ghosts of El Paso...."
It is only set in El Paso (and named Ghosts of El Paso) due to the ballad! The only real reference in the game to the song is Felina shows up a servant of the mastermind. So no Rosa's Cantina. There is a Red Rock Cantina and Dancehall that is is loosely based on Rosa's.
 

JamesV

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If you take burbles' and GP's recent posts, then throw in a handful of scammers, and I think it sums up the main points of failure in the early KS era.

Looking at my account today, I've pitched in for 78 (wow) projects and only two never delivered:

First I think was the money issue, because of the "always something (e.g thefts, breakages, alien invasion)" issue. Second was the shipping issue. Somewhere out there is apparently a shipping container with my reward shooting in it.
 

xanther

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....Also, wouldn't Far West be outside audit range? The IRS only worries about things within 7 years I thought? Same as Credit reporting agencies.
Again, no tax accountant but I believe there is a difference between criminal and civil tax evasion, fraud etc. Have been told the civil penalties for fraud extend beyond 7 years. Yes you won't go to jail, will just be hit with back taxes, penalties and interest...so no worries :smile: What the IRS worries about have no idea.
 

Jetstream

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Okay, fair enough. Jokes aside, am I correct in assuming Kickstarter has tightened things up since then? I started doing Kickstarter in 2017 and never had any problems.

Not to my knowledge. Kickstarter's terms still fixate around reducing Kickstarter's liability. I think it's mostly that more people who suck at this just stopped doing it because they got sick of the public ridicule.
 

remial

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Huh. It didn't occur to me that a professional in the industry would be so stupid and irresponsible as to dump Kickstarter money into a personal account for their own use but I suppose that's possible. Not saying it's true but if it is, it would help explain why people are losing their minds over the minor inconvenience of losing some money on Kickstarter. I thought they were just being petty losers.
do you know the story behind the Kamigakari kickstart campaign?
 

burbles

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do you know the story behind the Kamigakari kickstart campaign?
Kamigakari was the last kickstarter I considered backing (as I have the Japanese version as a souvenir of my visit to Japan).

I was going to mention this one in my post above, but to be fair to them as far as I know they did eventually deliver.
 

Ladybird

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do you know the story behind the Kamigakari kickstart campaign?
Meh, as fucked up as it got, we've got our Kamigakari corebooks now. It came right in the end, but I'll never support that publisher again.

Far West backers... not so much on the entire book front.

At the time a lot of projects also promised Free Shipping Worldwide. That caused a lot of stuff sitting in a warehouse somewhere, with no money left to deliver physically (while warehouse costs remained an ongoing expense).
The cost of shipping has also skyrocketed since then, and it wasn't exactly cheap at the time. In retrospect that was always a ridiculous thing to offer.

Stretch goals were also a ridiculous concept, and nowadays they're a potential red flag for me.
 

Blammo

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Kamigakari was the last kickstarter I considered backing (as I have the Japanese version as a souvenir of my visit to Japan).

I was going to mention this one in my post above, but to be fair to them as far as I know they did eventually deliver.

Kind of. They delivered the PDF and POD coupons, but nothing else. At least people have a game to play, though.
 

AsenRG

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Kamigakari was the last kickstarter I considered backing (as I have the Japanese version as a souvenir of my visit to Japan).

I was going to mention this one in my post above, but to be fair to them as far as I know they did eventually deliver.
Well, if they did eventually deliver, they really don't deserve a comparison with Far West, in my book:thumbsup:!
 

Baulderstone

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The cost of shipping has also skyrocketed since then, and it wasn't exactly cheap at the time. In retrospect that was always a ridiculous thing to offer.
I used to ship Christmas presents back to Australia every year before e-commerce took off, so I'll second this.
Stretch goals were also a ridiculous concept, and nowadays they're a potential red flag for me.
What bugs me is when a company sets a ridiculously low target number to fund so they can brag about how they funded in 2 hours, then makes things that are already written and clearly a core component of the game into stretch goals so they boast about hitting them.
 

Ladybird

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What bugs me is when a company sets a ridiculously low target number to fund so they can brag about how they funded in 2 hours, then makes things that are already written and clearly a core component of the game into stretch goals so they boast about hitting them.
Yeah - as ever, Kickstarter like to say they aren't a store, but as long as they get their cut they don't actually give a shit.
 

Jetstream

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Stretch goals were also a ridiculous concept, and nowadays they're a potential red flag for me.
Eh. Nothing wrong with stretch goals as long as you're realistic about it. Onyx Path's stretchies don't cause issues at this point. Not like they did in, say, the first Exalted kickstarter.

And Rich Burlew (Order of the Stick) is my favorite example of well-meaning early adopter... And honestly he probably would've been fine if he hadn't annihilated his drawing hand in there.
 

AsenRG

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Eh. Nothing wrong with stretch goals as long as you're realistic about it. Onyx Path's stretchies don't cause issues at this point. Not like they did in, say, the first Exalted kickstarter.

And Rich Burlew (Order of the Stick) is my favorite example of well-meaning early adopter... And honestly he probably would've been fine if he hadn't annihilated his drawing hand in there.
What has happened to Rich Burlew:shock:?
 

ORtrail

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What has happened to Rich Burlew:shock:?

According to the always accurate Wikipedia:

Burlew has an undisclosed chronic illness which sometimes impedes his ability to draw comics and causes periodic delays in schedule.[30] Due to his illness, Burlew reiterated on his website on July 10, 2011 that The Order of the Stick webcomic is produced on "a random schedule ... depending on [his] ability to work."[31]

In September 2012, Burlew seriously injured his right hand in an accident that required emergency surgery and prevented him from drawing for an extended period. Despite physiotherapy, he has said that he does not expect to fully recover from the injury.[32][33] Forbes highlighted Burlew's open communication on the impact of his injury on the delivery of his Kickstarter rewards: "a great example of both fantastic communication and how a project can get derailed through no fault of anyone’s is Rich Burlew’s Order of the Stick. [...] Burlew sliced his thumb open on a piece of broken glass, severing tendons and requiring emergency surgery. Worse, it was his drawing hand. [...] There’s no telling how long it’s going to be before Burlew is able to write again, let alone draw, but the way that he has continued to communicate with his backers has engendered nothing but sympathy and support".


Somewhere out there, is GMS tightening his grip on a glass coke bottle??? :argh:
 

Ladybird

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Eh. Nothing wrong with stretch goals as long as you're realistic about it. Onyx Path's stretchies don't cause issues at this point. Not like they did in, say, the first Exalted kickstarter.
Oh, absolutely; if they're small and discrete tasks like some more words, more art, a special edition book, or higher pay for everyone, cool. If they're something like "we'll upgrade your rewards with some extra stuff!" that requires extra work... well, that's potentially a problem.

And if they're offering extras for sale at silly prices with impossible shipping... well, HUGE RED FLAG, I remember CoC7e.
 

Sable Wyvern

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A propos of nothing in particular... Since when can you no longer browse Twitter more than a page down, before you get a nasty popup to Register & Login?
I remember not too long ago reading was unrestricted..
You can actually make that go away and continue browsing, without logging in ( I'm not on Twitter often enough to remember how I did it ... I think it was click "login" then just close the login interface, and continue browsing).
 
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Blammo

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Oh, absolutely; if they're small and discrete tasks like some more words, more art, a special edition book, or higher pay for everyone, cool.

These are the ones I look for, and I especially appreciate the bolded one.
 

Jetstream

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What has happened to Rich Burlew:shock:?
What ORtrail said. He cut himself really badly shortly after the OotS Kickstarter ended. He’s never really gotten back to his old level of output since.

Combine that with somewhat over enthusiastic early KS stretch goal promises and there are still things from that project that ain’t done.

I think the too-cheap crayon drawings are the biggest outstanding.
 
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