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The Videogame History Museum will house the world's most comprehensive videogame archive in the Silicon Valley area of California.
The Videogame History Museum will house the world's most comprehensive videogame archive in the Silicon Valley area of California.
356 backers pledged $50,266 to help bring this project to life.

Recent updates

The National Videogame Museum is OPEN

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Good day, revered backers!

We often tell our whole story to media people but the piece about Kickstarter is often left out of the detailed version. What you guys did for us was crucial in going from a traveling museum to a permanent one. For those of you who haven't been following, here's how it all went down.

The Kickstarter campaign goal was to better mobilize and protect the collection that was previously shown at just a couple of events a year. The money immediately went into funding a more widespread campaign that included exhibits at E3, Game Developer Conference, PAX East, South By Southwest, Comikaze, and so on. With the word out that we were looking for a permanent home, our agenda at each of these events was to find the right space and support to make that happen.

In February 2012 we set up an exhibit at an event that we never would have done had it not been for your Kickstarter support: the DICE Summit in Las Vegas, NV (www.dicesummit.org/). We had a small room set amidst the many conference rooms that year, and in that small room our typical arrangement of rare artifacts, arcade machines, and of course our signature "80s Living Room". The living room provided a great backdrop for many of the media outlets in attendance, and IGN hosted a series of webcast interviews in our space.

After one such interview, Gearbox co-founder and CEO Randy Pitchford looked around the exhibit and asked us: "Are you guys planning on opening a videogame museum? I want to open a videogame museum. I think I've got the place for you". That place was Frisco, TX. Randy was moving his company from Plano to Frisco and had already formed a relationship with the city. This was leveraged to gain us audience there and they loved our product. Frisco was (and still is) growing dramatically and was looking to expand on the cultural experience for its residents and visitors. In September 2014, the city approved the build-out of the National Videogame Museum (www.nvmusa.org) to the tune of $1.2 million dollars.

If not for the $50k raised here on Kickstarter, that meeting at DICE 2012 would not have happened and who knows where we would be today. Thanks to you we are in the PERFECT home: a city that appreciates what we are doing, a beautiful facility with plenty of room for expansion, and a local community still booming with businesses of every kind. Frisco IS a destination. If you haven't already visited, do a little research and you'll discover that there is plenty to do for everyone here... after fully enjoying your museum of course!

We opened the doors to the public last weekend, April 2nd 2016, within five years and WELL ahead of our eight-year plan outlined here on Kickstarter. For those of you who pledged $10 or more here, your ticket is waiting for you! We've already had the chance to meet up with some of you on opening weekend and hope to see all of you soon.

On behalf of the National Videogame Museum founding team, THANK YOU for making this happen!

The Year In Review

Thanks to all of you, it's been a busy year! For those of you who have missed our appearances since the Kickstarter campaign ended, here's what we've been up to:

1) Our last update mentioned a collection of items in southern California. During that trip, we invested in some storage solutions. Thanks to you, we became more mobile and more organized. In the past, you saw Classic Gaming Expo's museum unfold in a series of cardboard boxes and random plastic tubs. Now, we can "roll out" with heavy duty bins - many on wheels - which help us get places faster and more efficiently and most importantly protect our valuables.

2) In February 2012, we attended the DICE Summit (www.dicesummit.org) where we exhibited to a much different audience than we are accustomed to, consisting primarily of executive-level industry people. The exhibit included some rare items and a few arcade machines that highlighted the work of Ed Logg, who was given a lifetime achievement award during the event. Our exhibit provided the backdrop for G4TV's broadcast where we met Gearbox Software's Randy Pitchford. More on the significance of this in a moment.

3) In April 2012, we exhibited at PAX East (east.paxsite.com) where Videogame History Museum was the sponsor of the "Classic Consoles Freeplay" area. The museum exhibit was a small sampling of what we offer but we also provided 40+ classic game consoles and hundreds of games for attendees to play all weekend.

4) In June 2012, we made our annual appearance at E3 (www.e3expo.com). Graciously sponsored by Gearbox Software, our 2500 square foot exhibit was just a stone's throw from Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony in the West Hall. With the additional space and new storage options we were able to exhibit in 4 massive glass display cases and still had plenty of room for our signature "classic 80's living room", console timeline, and freeplay area. Tens of thousands of attendees visited with us and among other accolades, the exhibit was named "best of show" by The Seattle Times.

5) In August 2012 we hosted Classic Gaming Expo (www.cgexpo.com) in Vegas. This is our 13th year doing the show, and it is here where we currently put on the largest museum exhibit. Over 7000 square feet were dedicated to the museum alone, and this does not include arcade machines or console freeplay. Many new items were exhibited this year thanks to a cross-country effort to move some of the east coast collectibles into permanent storage out west.

6) In September 2012, Gearbox Software will host a Community Day surrounding the release of Borderlands 2. During the weekend, a celebrity Poker Tournament for charity will be conducted, with all proceeds going to The Videogame History Museum (http://www.gearboxsoftware.com/poker). We are very excited to be partnering with Gearbox, they have been a tremendous supporter.

There's quite a lot more going on that we hope to reveal by the end of this year. It's exciting stuff!

We're still a pretty small team and trying to keep expenses down. We've used the Kickstarter funds sparingly and we believe productively so as well. Our next task is to update our website so we can provide timely updates and photo galleries on our own home site going forward. Stay tuned because you will see this site re-launch in the next few weeks, providing all kinds of updates and photos as we march towards our goal of a permanent home for the museum. In the meantime, you can see photos of this past years' events on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Videogame-History-Museum/179048562145691).

Thanks to all of you once again and please follow us on Facebook, Twitter, or the soon-to-be-relaunched website www.vghmuseum.org, as this will be our FINAL transmission here on Kickstarter.

John, Sean & Joe
Videogame History Museum

The Museum's Next Step

It's been a few weeks since our last update so we thought we'd let you all know what we're up to.

Beginning tomorrow and for the next week, we'll be on our first west coast business trip, with 2 very specific goals in mind: 1) Get our Las Vegas storage facility properly inventoried, packaged, and ready to mobilize; and 2) Meet with backers and donors who have items for the museum itself.

To elaborate, you're already aware that our first primary goal was to centralize our collection. The very first step of that goal will begin in earnest tomorrow as we digitally record everything in our Las Vegas storage, which comprises about 20% of our overall inventory. This facility has been "home base" for Classic Gaming Expo and many of our one-of-a-kind and/or very large items reside there. We also pluck parts from this home base for various west coast functions, most recently our exhibit at E3. That "plucking" costs a lot of time and also adds wear and tear to our items as they have been packed up and stashed away usually in a rush. Having real jobs and families far away from Las Vegas has, in the past, made our museum organization a bit of a low priority. We're excited to change that beginning tomorrow. We'll know exactly what we have, we'll have it properly stored and ready to move, and whether we're in Las Vegas, New Jersey, New York or Illinois we'll know exactly how to get to it quickly.

The second goal of this journey is the first "collection run" since forming The Videogame History Museum. In the past, both as individual collectors and together representing Classic Gaming Expo, John, Sean and I have met with many members of videogaming's rich history to secure artifacts -- documents, prototypes, and other museum-worthy items -- to add to the museum that we've exhibited at CGE in the past. Later this week, we'll tour from Vegas through southern California meeting with more of this industry's "alumni", this time representing YOUR Videogame History Museum. This tour will also test our new inventory system and allow us to work out any kinks before heading back east.

One last thing. We haven't forgotten the pledge gifts we promised when you backed us during the Kickstarter drive! We'll be spending a lot of time working out the logistics and will have a delivery plan in place by the time we return next week.

Thank you all again for your time and support. Feel free to contact us anytime at info@vghmuseum.org but know that we'll be in touch again with you soon right here to share our progress.

John, Sean, and Joe

Videogame History Museum

A Fantastic Finish!

Well, the Kickstarter fundraiser is over, but our work has just begun.

Your support of our Kickstarter campaign was absolutely overwhelming!  Not only did we surpass our goal - we obliterated it!  We can't thank you all enough for your donations and general support.  It confirms something we have believed all along; The time to properly pay tribute to the videogame industry by preserving it's roots for generations to come is now.

Very shortly, we'll be sending out surveys to all who donated and are entitled to one of the rewards.  Please get it back to us as soon as possible so that we can get your swag out to you as soon as it's available.

Please continue to follow our progress at our webpage at www.vghmuseum.org.

We have some specific plans for the website that we hope will both keep you coming back to check-in with us and show off bits and pieces of the museum collection.  Each month, we're planning the following features:

- Artifact Expose

We'll focus on one piece in the collection and offer a bunch of different pictures and an in-depth description of the item and any available stories behind it.

- Franchise Spotlight

In this feature, we'll pick a specific franchise and post pictures of everything we have related to that particular franchise.  For example, our first installment will be Burgertime.  We will show all the different versions of Burgertime from the arcade machine to handheld versions and any Burgertime promotional materials we have.  The key to this feature is that we will ask for your input.  Meaning if you have something related to that month's franchise that we don't have, we want to hear about it!  Send us pictures, tell us the story or of it's not something you're particularly attached to, maybe you'd be willing to donate it to the archive.

- Progress Report

Here we're going to offer a quick and dirty report of what's been going on with the museum project itself in the last month.  Whether it be a report on artifacts we'd secured or our search for a location or further funding, we'll report it here.

 

Thanks again for your support during this fundraiser.  In closing we'd like to offer a bit of a statistic regarding this specific fundraiser.  While the higher dollar donations are what really pushed us over the top, it's interesting to note that we achieved nearly half of our initial goal by the support of people who pledged $100 or less. This supports what we have said all along and will continue to try and get across to people - every little bit helps!  Please continue to spread the word about the archive.  If you run across an artifact you'd like to contribute or find yourself with a few extra bucks you'd like to donate to a worthy cause, please get in touch with us.

John, Sean & Joe

Videogame History Museum

WE MADE IT!

This doesn't happen very often, but I have to admit that when I woke up this morning and checked our Kickstarter project and saw that we had met our goal, my eyes literally welled-up with tears and a chill rolled down my spine!

You guys (and girls) did it! We'd like to share a quick story that we hope will help you understand the feeling we have right now.

At the start of each and every Classic Gaming Expo just before the doors open to the public, the three of us take one last walk-through of the show floor and the museum and just kind of take it all in. We don't really say much to each other - we just look. We see all of it every year, but we still gaze upon what two mom & pop retail store owners and one phone company manager were able to put together. It's really pretty amazing!

The most amazing part about CGE is that what drives us to do it every year is pure and simple passion. It's a lot of work to put on a show like that and it takes a lot of time away from our families and real jobs. There is absolutely zero financial reward for doing it. In fact, not only is there no paycheck for any of us at the end of the show, we each cover our own personal expenses.

This Videogame History Museum project is fueled by that same passion. It's truly heartwarming to see that so many of you not only share that passion with us, but that you see it burning strong enough in us that even in these tough economic times, you've pledged your hard-earned money to help launch the Videogame History Museum.

Kickstarter is just the beginning. The money that we raise here will be spent carefully and wisely to promote awareness of the museum collection and generate more revenue. A project like The Computer History Museum takes-in and spends tens of millions per year. We're many, many years away from being in the same league as they are, but something of that scale is our ultimate goal and it will cost a lot to get there.

Even though we have reached our pre-set goal here on Kickstarter, please continue to donate as you are able. Both Kickstarter and Amazon Payments will be taking a hefty chunk in fees out of what was donated here. Every dollar we receive over the goal will be spent for exactly the same purpose as the first dollar.

Thanks again for your support!



John, Sean & Joe
Directors, Videogame History Museum