BlinkWorks, a little film company I’m quite fond of, made an announcement today:
Awesome. For so many reasons. Let’s start from the top: who BlinkWorks is. As far as I know, it’s just James and Lisanne over there, two super cool individuals who I’ve had the opportunity to share some drinks with on a few occasions. I dig small companies, but what I dig more than that are small companies that churn out high quality things (hence why I love the Mac indie market). They blew me away last year with the work they did on the company profiles for New Media Manitoba Christmas event.
The thought of them making a full fledged documentary is rather exciting.
The topic of the documentary is really neat: Indie Game Developers. It’s something I don’t know terribly much about, except how Damned Hard it is to make a living selling software. When I tell people that I’m a programmer, one of the first questions I typically get is “so do you make games?!” and the answer to that is… no, no I do not. While I have an appreciation of the insane math that goes into game engine development, making games themselves has never interested me much. But I always find it interesting to learn about them, and the stories behind the games themselves. Indie Game: The Movie looks to be right up my alley.
I’ve seen KickStarter linked to before a bunch of times, and had even gone to see some of the proposed projects. I’ve always been intrigued by the whole concept, but never enough to actually read their FAQ to figure out how it all works. It’s really rather ingenious and works out beautifully for stuff like this. You say what your project is going to cost, and individuals pledge money towards making that happen. The pledges can be any amount, from a couple bucks to hundreds. But the point is to get a lot of individuals pledging relatively small sums. If there turns out to be insufficient interest in the project, then everyone just walks away, no richer, no poorer. If by the time the clock runs out, the pledged sum is equal or greater than the stated cost of the project, then everyone’s credit cards are billed the amount they pledged. There’s an element of trust here, you have to trust that they’re actually going to use this money to develop said project, as opposed to the more obvious “hookers and blow” method of getting rid of cash. I’m not entirely certain how this part is managed, but I guess worst case scenario you’re out a bit of money. This is the first project that I’ve pledged money to, but I’m much more likely to go check out that site from now on.
The “problem” with KickStarter project, it seems, is that you need numbers. Having a dozen friends pledge $100 helps, but won’t get you to the finish line. Looking at their numbers so far, it seems $30-50 is by far the most popular pledge. You need lots of people. They seem to be doing pretty well so far though. As of this writing (what, maybe 12 hours after starting?), they have 65 backers totaling $3,714 of their goal of $15,000. The project has been mentioned on a few prominent websites like Boing Boing, and G4TV which I’m sure will help.
Go to the Kickstarter project page for it, watch the teaser they’ve prepared so far. If you think you’d like this documentary, take the few minutes it takes to pledge something. Every bit helps.