Hi, I'm Rahdo. Two years ago, on a whim, I grabbed my iPhone one afternoon and started recording gameplay runthroughs of my favorite board and card games, and uploading them to YouTube. And now I'm about to start my 3rd year of filming! WOOHOO!!!
You can check out my series at
As a sampler, here's a playlist of some recent runthroughs I've done
I make these videos for fun, not for profit, as a way of sharing my enthusiasm and passion for the boardgaming hobby, and helping like-minded board game geeks choose which of the myriad games on the market are right for them.
But as it happens, as of 2013, I've retired from full time employment, and as such can no longer afford to buy all the latest and greatest boardgames. This is fine, as I've got more than enough games to keep me and my wife entertained for years to come, but I would like to keep producing run-throughs of the hottest games on the market.
That's where you come in.
By backing this, my second RAHDO RUNS THROUGH Kickstarter campaign, you're funding my ability to continue to produce videos of all the latest, hottest games, ranging from the big games of the moment like Caverna and Lewis & Clark, to the soon to be released hits like The Convicted, Patchistory and Escape from Zombie City.
Last year I raised $4000 in my first Kickstarter Campaign HERE, and that covered all the games purchased for the year, plus a trip to Essen Germany to cover Spiel, the biggest game convention in the world! This year, I'm looking to achieve the same results with a couple of new stretch goals on top of that!
Here's how it will work:
- All the money raised will go towards the purchase of new games for filming the 2014 season of RRT, as well as a trip to the Essen Spiel convention in October, any campaign stretch goals, and any other incidentals that come up from the filming of Rahdo Runs Through.
- All excess funds at the end of the filming year will go to Richard and Jenefer Ham as a filming salary.
- All the expenditures of this fund will be exactingly and publicly detailed for all to see, ensuring total transparency, on my Guild at Boardgamegeek.
In return for your donation, you have access to a variety of rewards, most of them revolving around the idea of helping to shape the direction of the Rahdo Runs Through series. To me, as a backer, it only makes sense that you should have a say in what direction the video series will take!
Here's a list of the various rewards and how they work, spread amongst the different backing levels. If there's one thing you'll soon find out about me, it's that I'm very engaged with my viewers, answering every question posted, ever! --famous last words :)
Microbadges - every level backer will get a microbadge to apply to their Boardgamegeek account. Of course, if you don't have a Boardgamegeek account, this won't do much for you, but it's still on offer! :)
Voting for Videos - Every month, 3 games (sometimes more) covered by Rahdo Runs Through will be voted on by Kickstarter backers, from my ever-growing collection of games. The higher voting level you you pledge at, the more votes you can cast (yes, you can buy votes, I'm totally corrupt!) This voting system will be in place until the fund runs out, which (fingers crossed) should be at least one year.
In addition, at certain backing levels, you will be able to specify a game (or games) to be filmed, regardless of the popular vote, so if you really want to see a game covered, this is your chance to make it so!
Voting for Games - at voting level #4, backers will actually be able to vote for the games that are bought with the fund. You're putting in money after all, so why not have a voice in how it's spent? Votes can be cast for any game on this request list. Roughly 1 out of every 5 games bought with the fund will be chosen by Kickstarter backers in this way, and like voting for videos above, voting for games take place until the fund runs out.
In addition, at certain backing levels, you will be able to specify a game to be bought, ignoring the request list. This is your chance to see any game covered, provided it's not too expensive to receive in Malta (shipping included).
Co-Hosting - if you'd like to appear in a Rahdo Runs Through video as a co-host, now's your chance! We'll record a split screen discussion/debate/argument/love-fest between you and me as part of my 'final thoughts' on a game of your choosing, using Google Hangouts, and it will be posted on Youtube. Instant stardom!
Prototype Testing - if you've got a game that you're developing and you'd like some feedback about how it plays with 2 players, you can now get a direct Skype call with me after a 3-5 hour play session of your game. You'll have to arrange delivery of the prototype, or alternately we can maybe arrange a play session at Essen or Gencon (if the stretch goal is hit).
Games - Artipia Games has very generously offered to ship a promotional copy of ANY game from their catalog, free of charge, to anywhere in the world, for three Rahdo Runs Through backers.
Also included will be a limited edition signed Rahdo Runs Through sticker commemorating the 2014 Kickstarter campaign that made Year 3 possible!
Custom Glass Art - my wife is a talented professional glass artist, and has offered to create a beautiful and completely unique reward especially for some higher backer levels. It could be a pair of earrings, a pendant, or even a game piece as can be seen at http://www.gamerglass.eu! She'll work in your preferred colors, and we'll ship it to you free of charge, anywhere in the world!
"Lucky Dip" Game Marker - if a custom piece is out of your price range, for almost half the price, you can take a chance on a randomly selected marker from Jen's current in-stock collection of singles. These are all made with the same love and care as the custom pieces, but like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're going to get (though Jen will quiz you about your preferred colours before she sends a piece!)
UPDATE! OMG, you guys have totally blown through Jen's entire stock... she had no idea that could happen! I've added a second pledge level, called "Later Lucky Dip", which is exactly the same EXCEPT they'll be shipped out by September instead of May, giving Jen time to refresh her supplies!
Glass Set - for the true glass aficionados, you can get a full matching set of 4 player markers, again in your own custom choice of colours, or a matching necklace and earring set!
MEGA GLASS - if you're really looking for an amazing glass opportunity, you can get a full necklace, or 2 bracelets, or a set of 20(!!) player markers, perfect for all your worker placement needs! All made to your custom specifications.
In last year's campaign, the only real stretch goal I had was getting a decent camera for my filming, and I'm so glad we got that, as it's made such a huge difference.
This year, I opened a dialog with my fan-base in this thread, and it seems folks are excited to have me chase after a few new stretch goals!
Stretch Goal Number 1: Laptop Upgrade ($6000)
So while 95% of my videos are first person perspective views of boardgames being played, occasionally I film videos using the webcam and some PC capture software on my laptop. These are usually so I can talk about convention previews, or some other sort of online-feature that I need to demonstrate while running a PC.
However, my plucky but underpowered Samsung NC10 netbook really isn't quite up to the job, as you can see in this video series I did teaching how to get involved in boardgame maths trades:
So that quality level is, how shall we say, less than stellar? Several people have suggested that I get a new laptop that has enough horse power to do a decent job at running while recording, and I think it's a really good idea. I've love to do more videos about boardgame related stuff like previews of upcoming conventions, a proper runthrough of Boardgamegeek.com, a tutorial covering how I make and publish videos, even a semi-regular boardgame news update series!
So this laptop upgrade should make that sort of content more much achievable, with a decent quality level to boot! Hence, stretch goal #1 was born! If we hit $6000, I'll be picking up a machine capable of doing decent recordings out of the box, which should widen the range of the videos I do.
But wait, there's more...
Stretch Goal Number 2: GENCON ($8000)
In addition to several game previews, at Essen Spiel 2013, I also filmed a series of videos that ran through the show itself. While I plan to do exactly the same thing this year, it turns out there's a lot of people who'd like to see me give the same treatment to the OTHER big yearly boardgame Mecca event: Gencon, held in Indianapolis, Indiana in August. So, if we hit $8000, I'll be booking flights, getting tickets, and preparing to bring you as much cool and exclusive coverage as I can muster from the show. To get an idea of what we're talking about, here's a playlist of some of the videos I filmed while at at Essen.
I learned a lot doing those, and I can only imagine I'll produce even better stuff this year at Gencon, if we hit this goal!
Stretch Goal #3 - JEN!!! ($9000)
A lot of my viewers LOVE it when my wife Jen makes occasional guest appearances in my videos. They are few and far between, but here's a playlist of the ones where she's shown up:
Now my wife is actually very camera shy, so she's a bit reticent to join in usually. Plus these runthroughs can take a surprisingly long time to film, and since she works from home, this takes away from her time making glass art and making a living!
BUT, the requests for her to show up more often have been so overwhelming, Jen has agreed to appear in 12 runthroughs over the next 12 months if we can hit our 3rd stretch goal of $9000. She's quite nervous about the whole thing, but willing to give it a go because there have been so many requests!
Stretch Goal #4 - HELP! ($11,500)
Boy I REALLY hope we hit this. I really enjoy making runthrough videos, but the one part of it I don't enjoy at all is the maintenance of the videos. You may have noticed I make the occasional error while filming (GASP!) Yes, it's true! And I generally try to ensure that all errors are annotated in the videos so people get a full and true representation of the gameplay.
But doing these annotations, while relatively easy, is also time consuming, and since I tend to be a lazy sod, I put it off for various periods of time until I'm so far behind I have to spend several hours at a stretch updating everything.
Das ist nicht so gut!
So I've spoken with one of my most regular viewers who personally spots more errors by himself in my vids than every other viewer combined. And he's agreed to join the Rahdo team by taking over annotation duties as a part time gig for what is a very reasonable price, for 1 year's worth of monitoring & updating. And that's where this stretch goal, at $11,500 comes in. If we can hit it, you'll hopefully all enjoy a more error-free Rahdo Runs Through experience! (yes yes, the errors will still be there, but at least they'll be promptly noted!)
Stretch Goal #5 - GAME CHANGER ($12,500)
OMG, someone just pointed out to me the existence of the Pivothead wearable camera system, which looks absolutely amazing!
I've always dismissed GoPro cameras which many people have suggested because I wouldn't be able to see what I'm filming, and Google Glass is insanely expensive, so that was out. But these seem perfect for me, and here's how they'd change the game:
If they work (that's a big if, but they seem very promising!) I'd start filming runthroughs with two cameras: my Panasonic TM90 (from last year's Kickstarter campaign), and the Pivotheads. The Panny would be set up as a static longshot with the whole game in frame, never moving, and the eye glasses as I film now.
I would then post BOTH videos to YouTube. So for people who have a hard time with the camera motion, you can watch the long shot Panny video, and for people who can handle motion, you can get up close and personal with the Pivothead video.
This seems PERFECT for my style of gonzo filming, and finally motion sensitive folks will have an option to watch my stuff without discomfort! AND I'll finally have 2 hands free to film with! AMAZING, a real game changer!
So there we go, and we only have to hit $12,500 to do it! I am super excited for this!
Stretch Goal #6 - SPEED BOOST ($14,000)
Part of that whole "retired living" thing I've got going on is that we scrimp on basic services, including our internet. We go with the cheapest option our ISP provides, and it's fine for regular web surfing and whatnot.
BUT, this year, I've got a lot more co-hosting sessions I'll be doing, and if you saw the ones I did last year, you can tell that my bandwidth was a real drag. Just check out this online interview I did with Joel "Drive Thru Review" Eddy:
It's passable, but it just gets worse and worse as the video progresses. Skip to the last 10 minutes, and you'll see I'm a blurry splotch running at probably 7 or 8 FPS. :)
So, it's been suggested that for the next year, we upgrade our broadband service a bit so that these co-host session will look good. This also means I'll be able to upload my HD videos faster as well (currently it takes anywhere from 5 to 10 hours to uploaded a full runthrough).
I've just gotten off the phone with my ISP, and 12 months of an upgrade will put the next stretch goal at $14,000 (after Kickstarter fees and US->EU fees). We're definitely getting into stretch territory here, I think, but let's see if we can do it!
Risks and challenges
I'm not really anticipating any particular challenges or risks - other than maybe laryngitis! Last year I was able to hit all of the backer's requests while still producing over 150 videos, and while I might be slowing down a tiny bit this year, I still fully expect to put out a high volume of videos for all to enjoy.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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