Lostcast 140: Sapped

  • LDG

  • Patron

    As a fan of both LDG and tiger hats, this was my thought process upon landing on the AWL2 Kickstarter. Maybe it will help if you end up having to do a relaunch.

    • Last time you asked for $5k, and now this time you are asking for $50k. I did a double-take to see if I read that right. I checked the original AWL, and yeah, the funding is now 10x. Felt odd, but it didn’t sway me. I knew you low-balled the original.

    • I scrolled down to find whatever the $20 option was. My intent was to both buy the game and support my friends at LDG. That threshold looked to be $25, so I thought, “OK, $5 extra is fine.”

    • I read the rewards, and I didn’t seem anything particularly remarkable. I don’t have time for alpha builds. I already own AWL1. The only real extra is in-game “Bronze Supporter” credit, which I guess is somewhat neat.

    I am a fan of LDG, and I still felt a bit of hesitation buying the $25 tier. There was nothing extra there that interested me. I’m basically just buying the game with a $15 tip for you. Perhaps I should just be content with Bronze credit because I’m just not sure what more you could’ve done at that tier.

  • Tiger Hat

    Ok - I’m going to brainstorm here a bit bear with me.

    I’ve already jumped on board for a portrait (My support is more because of the value I get from the podcast/streams), but I did feel like there were not enough reward tiers, it’s clear that you’ve opted for digital only options (wise) could you beef that list out a bit?

    You’ve got a few avenues that are not exploited within the kickstarter most notably Lostcast and your streams, but you’re also keeping AWL1 updated, so perhaps there’s something there too.

    So, off the top of my head, could you perhaps offer a reverse stream, sit in on a backer’s stream and offer critique as they work through a problem, or demonstrates their game? (kind of how I sit in on Geoff’s streams giving him a hard time about LineRenderer ;) )

    Along the same lines, some form of shout-out/promotion during the cast?

    Design an enemy?

    Design a weapon / spell / etc?

    Can we get the soundtrack as a download on steam?

    Unique Pets/Familiars? Designed by backers?

    Heck, if you’ve got a lot of game devs following you, you could offer to collaborate on a jam or something perhaps?

    You may be able to get a bit of a kick by granting Linux support and posting to /r/linux_gaming there are people out there who support stuff on the penguin just to make it a more serious platform. I’m happy to help out with the Linux stuff if need be, but it should be easier than OSX in my experience.

  • Patron

    I don’t think LDG should be allowing backers to design their game. Sounds like a dangerous idea.

    Maybe LDG could do something with their spiffy new logo? Maybe an LDG mousepad? It even doubles as advertising. Everytime that person looks to grab their mouse, they get hit with your logo.

  • Patron

    Here is my 5-minute attempt at creating an LDG mousepad. I didn’t bother measuring alignment or anything. I would buy this on Kickstarter.

    It is in black and white, so it should be pretty cheap to commission.
    LDG mousepad

  • LDG

    Thanks for the thoughts you guys! Great points here.

    Agreed that the $25 tier isn’t impactful enough. We’ve been trying to come up with something more appealing, but everything is so expensive/time-consuming and we’re already overwhelmed. We spent a good chunk of time discussing the rewards but we should have thought more about them.

    Physical goods are scary to me. I’ve ready so many horror stories of Kickstarters burning through their time and money fulfilling those rewards. However I can see the appeal – definitely better than “hey your name someplace maybe.” A Raga plushy especially would be super awesome ;) But might make for its own campaign…

    This campaign has been in trouble since day 1 – it needed to pull in about $5k to be healthy, and it made under $2k. That’s really deflated us and made it hard to rally around it. We’re learning a lot tho especially from your thoughts. Seems like these are the high-level points:

    • Video should be more combat-focused, action-packed, exciting!
    • Rewards should be beefier, more generous
    • We should have had (somehow???) some press and/or video coverage lined up for day 1. This is the hardest probably because it has external requirements, and we just don’t get responses from the people we reach out to

  • Jammer

    Have to say again, really agree on the video points. I know you guys, so the video itself didn’t impact my decision one way or the other. But I’m in a minority who has that benefit.

  • Jammer

    You guys are getting a lot of peoples “2 cents”, so I want to make sure I throw mine in there as well.

    Brace yourselves, because here it goes.

    First and foremost you guys are great. I know there were setbacks, but I have done my best to consume a lot of the content that you guys put out, hell I even watched Matt play Splunky, and was by the way the first ‘like’ on that video, yes I know big stuff goin’ on in my life these days; but I digress. Anyway, my point is, I loved it. I sincerely have found enjoyment and individuality, or a unique flavor in all products you guys put out. You are both intelligent, accomplished individuals whom obviously have a passion for games and whose strengths compliment each other. Kickstarter attempt number 1, if it fails it fails, you both have obviously been quite critical of yourselves and have made yourselves open to feedback, so what’s done is done and I say don’t sweat it. I believe you both will create an extremely enjoyable experience because you’ve already created and iterated on an enjoyable experience. I look up to you guys not just as programmers, or artists, but as creators- you create enjoyable experiences and I look forward to the future of your creations whether you blow out Kickstarter the first, second, or third launch. What I want to convey is whether or not you look at this as a “failure” on the path to success, or just another step on the staircase, the reality is it is just another experience, just like everything that lead up to Lunch Bug, or Lava Blade, or AWL1, the reality is you’re both better than you were, and your offerings will reflect that. I know money is important, but I believe in good work, and that is what I want to experience and that is where my money and support will always be. You both do good work, and I’m certain there are many people like me who will in time make LDG a continued growing success. Now get out there and do what you both love to do, no reason to lose another decade launching Kickstarter after Kickstarter instead of making games.

    And most importantly:

    @richtaur said:

    A Raga plushy especially would be super awesome ;)

    ^ This.

  • Tiger Hat

    @dannagle These things are generally pending approval, the same as the portrait. It may offer some neat ideas as well. Like I said, I’m just brain-dumping, because I really don’t think I can handle Lostcast 142: Depression Cast.

    I’d totally be up for a Raga plushie - I’ve got one of these: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/731983185/dont-starve-chester-plush it certainly would be something for a new campaign though (although, I’m not sure it should be on it’s own, if you can get the manufacturing sorted out, then use it as a high-level tier.)

    Could you perhaps do a comic? The Raga origin story? I’ve got a couple of Super Meat Boy comics (including signed ones) that came out of some random sponsorship thing, super into that sort of thing. Particularly as I must say, the character model for AWL2 Raga is super cute.

    High res art? Shipping posters (and mouse mats) is super expensive, especially because people like me insist on living in the middle of nowhere (AKA Australia) - but exclusive hi-res art? That’s pretty easy, and if you had a permissive enough licence around it, we could print our own posters/tshirts/blah blah blah.

  • LDG

    @agmcleod yeah agreed. man it’s tough to look at the video with “new eyes” now – it’s just not ready. It’s hard cuz we were pushing it off for monthsss so we just had to pull the trigger. I guess sometimes things gotta get worse before they get better.

    @vox hey thanks that’s really encouraging! Yeah we gotta keep in mind that if nothing else we’re better at making games now. We’re pretty lousy at marketing and promotional efforts but when we put our heads down we can make a fun game… hopefully ;)

    @salmonmoose the plushie is a cool idea – @Macaronee mentioned it at one point. Would be fun! But yeah would probably be best as its own campaign. hard to say! Geoff likes the idea of high res wallpaper. A comic is a cool idea too. For the AWL2 Kickstarter we wanted to focus on the game but ended up cutting too deep, not having much else to offer.

    Really appreciate all the support and encouragement. Tough times ahead, good to have you guys here :)

  • Phew … took me a long time to read all (I speak Spanish)

    [ ] Plush
    It sounds like a good idea to get people not only love the game, love the character, “Raga”

    [ ] Comic
    Here we must be careful, there are three options.
    1 - A page = a mini chapter
    2 - A page every X day (People waiting for the launch of a new page)
    3 - A full comic (not really like this option)

    [ ]Video
    Through Kickstarter and Facebook and talk about this, you need more action

    [ ] Re launch campaign
    Possibly the best option, with a little less money (You can get some other means)

    [ ] Rewards
    Maybe could improve a bit
    OST> DLC on Steam
    Extra Copy for Friend (AWL And AWL2)
    (I’m not sure what they can offer)

    I can not support them with money (Find out pay, including school)
    but I can help in other areas

    • Small Advertising (I’ve been doing in my Fanpage)
    • Maybe translation into Spanish
    • I’m a writer (Learning Ability)
    • Drawing <— ignore this, I’m not good

    PS: the video is increasing your audience, a bit faster (Post in 13 Sep 2015)
    [16 sep. 2015 | In the morning]
    Views 400
    Plays 80

    [17 Sep. 2015 | 11:28PM Pasific]
    Views 607
    Plays 100

    Needs more plays :c

  • LDG

    Welcome to the forum! nice to have you here :)

    That’s wonderful that you shared the video on your Facebook page, thank you for doing that. Good stuff, translation especially is something we’ve been meaning to work on for ages.This is really helpful feedback, cheers!

  • @richtaur Oh … really you like another language?
    This is also possible with AWL1? Maybe update

  • LDG

    Maybe! We’ve been meaning to for ages, we’re just swamped with everything all the time ;)

  • Jumping in the boat of constructive criticism, I think the Kickstarter campaign had one big problem: presentation.

    The game play video is super nice, but I think for a small company like Lostdecade, you guys should have put your faces on the video, talking about your passion and ideas about the game you want to build. Everything there is nice, but so cold that it didn’t excited people to contribute.

    I guess you have the number of visitors the kickstarter campaign are having, right? Is that number compatible with the number of backers? If the # of visitors are way way bigger than the backers, you probably didn’t have a problem with divulgation of the campaign, but with its presentation.

    Supporting an indie game studio with its own IP is more about the people behind it than game itself. Of course the game quality counts. IMO, the gameplay is super nice, and the mechanics clever and fun, but showing the TEam only at the end of the page didn’t caught my attention.

    If you plan to relaunch a campaign, consider giving to you two more importance than the game itself. I think it would make a lot of difference…

    Now, if you had a crappy number of visitors on the kickstarter page, then it is another story :)

    Cheers and good luck!

  • LDG

    Thanks for the feedback. The traffic has ben lower than the previous campaign, I’d guess do to increased saturation on Kickstarter. However, the campaign itself isn’t presented as strong as it could be, so our conversions are low. Interesting point about maybe needing more of “us” in the video, we’ll think about that.

  • Tiger Hat

    Visitors will always be drastically larger than backers, I’d be more concerned if you had a conversion rate approaching 100% than a much lower one. Is it a known number? I’ve heard that you can multiply radio callers by about 1000 to get listeners, is the viewers to backers ratio similar to what you saw on AWL1?

    I think more exposure for Matt and Geoff in the video could help, you guys have charisma enough to do a podcast, let there be much shonky invisible chair green-screen and tiger hats here too!

    I’d promote you on my game’s pages, but I think there are more people posting in this thread than there are playing my game :)

  • Patron

    I’m probably in a minority but I backed the game because I really enjoy the podcast and wanted to support you guys, the game sounds awesome but the actual product wasn’t what I backed. So I agree, getting some of that podcast charm into the promo video might help! Also the sort of people that back on kickstarter are going to be interested in your development chats and stuff so let them know they are out there and that there will be more once it’s funded!

    Having said all that, I don’t think your pitch is poor, and response is just indicative of how kickstarter is at the moment, what gets funded seems mostly based on a combination of nostalgia and a really strong track record, lots of people have been burned on kickstarted projects at this point and people are hesitant.

    If I am brutally honest I feel like this sort of title will always struggle on kickstarter as it’s a sequel to a fairly recently kickstarted game. I’m gonna have to borrow one of those Tiger Hats for a minute but do (non spiritual)sequels ever make it on KS? Especially ones so soon after the original product? Potential supporters will feel like the money you made from the first game should be supporting/funding this one as they may have unrealistic understanding of how much indie devs make and how much it costs to fund development. You’ll miss out on the goodwill people have for new projects/teams and the accompanying hope/potential that comes with that.

    I think you’d be mistaken to believe that the reason it’s not getting closer to the target is because you’re not offering physical rewards and going down that route sounds like it would be a bit of a logistical nightmare, shipping things out of the US incurs extra taxes on the recipient and for you to cover those taxes would basically wipe out any money left from the production costs. I imagine the time spent overseeing production would also be better spent when you’re just two guys.

    Rather than AWL2 your new game sounds like you have taken the ideas of AWL and rebuilt it, less than a continuation it’s a rebirth and I’m really looking forward to playing it. The passion you guys have for it is clear and hearing the thought process behind each aspect makes me confident you’ll provide a quality product. Rather than KS have you considered Early Access as a means of getting funding while continuing development?

    Anyway sorry if this was rambley/negative/annoying.

    Good luck! No matter what happens you guys are an inspiration and I can’t wait to play the game.

  • @islipaway I think not early access (not yet)
    it is better greenlight first (They talk to Valve to skip this … but! It is a great advertising!)
    Each friend clicking a “Fav” is advertising for your contacts
    on page Greenlight put support for Kick and later get early access to contributors
    My point of view

  • LDG

    @islipaway said:

    I’m probably in a minority but I backed the game because I really enjoy the podcast and wanted to support you guys

    Really appreciate that, thanks! Definitely agreed that’s a minority – we really needed to tap into the larger Kickstarter gaming audience to get funded.

    If I am brutally honest I feel like this sort of title will always struggle on kickstarter as it’s a sequel to a fairly recently kickstarted game.

    Yeah I think there was some definite feeling of “if the first game doesn’t pay for the sequel, should the sequel even get made?” That kind of thinking probably turned away any potential backers.

    Good luck! No matter what happens you guys are an inspiration and I can’t wait to play the game.

    That’s great to hear, thanks :3

  • LDG

    @いちび-の-きつね said:

    @islipaway I think not early access (not yet)
    it is better greenlight first (They talk to Valve to skip this … but! It is a great advertising!)

    Agreed that Greenlight could have brought the campaign more traffic. It’s interesting because getting a greenlight without using Steam Greenlight is a definite advantage … but maybe not if you need crowd-funding. Makes AWL2 an extra poor candidate for Kickstarter.

    Thanks for your thoughts :)

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