FINAL HOURS -- FUNDED! BUT IT'S NOT TOO LATE FOR STRETCH GOALS!
Over 40% of our referrals have come from Twitter, so whether you've backed the project or not, get out there and tweet the link http://bit.ly/outerlands and tag it with #BackOuterlands! We COULD get to a fully 100% original-music soundtrack!
NEW OUTERLANDS DOUBLE-ECLIPSE POSTER! (2/7/14)!
We're very, very happy to introduce a new poster option designed by FEZ creator Phil Fish! It'll be a high-quality print on a delicately textured surface with glossy, smooth-finished text. There's a new tier over to the right at the same cost as the existing poster tier. We won't have the other poster design until after the Kickstarter campaign is over, but don't worry! We'll be sending out a backer's poll after both designs have gone out and you can choose then which design you'd like.
NEW OUTERLANDS SHORT (1/29/14)!
Here's a taste of what Outerlands will be like. We'll have another short ready for you before the Kickstarter campaign is over. Thank you for your support!
FIVE NEW DIGITAL TIERS (2/5/14)!
Our fantastic music collaborators Jim Guthrie and Disasterpeace have offered up some INCREDIBLE music bundles for our backers! We've got new options at $45, $50, $70, $100, and $135. You can get entire bundles of music at each of those tiers, but the $70 tier is an extremely limited (10 ONLY) offering where Jim will personally sign and send you a vinyl of Sword & Sworcery LP - The Ballad of the Space Babies. If you haven't heard the S&S music or seen the artwork before, they're both incredbly impressive!
WHAT IS OUTERLANDS?
- A DOCUMENTARY "TV SERIES" ... Even though this isn't for a TV network, we're calling it a "TV series" because of the format. It'll be a minimum of six one-hour episodes. A TV "one hour" can mean anything from 42 to 60 minutes.
- IN SIX EPISODES ... We could potentially do more than six if we reach some of our stretch goals!
- ABOUT THE PEOPLE AND CULTURE OF VIDEOGAMES ... Videogames are art. Art is culture. Within any culture are beautiful traditions, heartfelt passions, and incredible, unbelievable stories to be told. That's where Outerlands comes in.
- THAT CAN'T BE MADE ANY OTHER WAY. Traditional media outlets, broadcast networks, and even the new wave of original content from online distribution aren't going to take a "risk" on videogame content. We don't think it is a risk. We think videogames are a global cultural revolution that's sweeping in whole new ways of looking at the world, inspiring countless people into new lives, and that untold numbers are aching for this kind of content. Help us prove it!
Video is expensive—especially documentary content that requires ongoing access over a long period and a lot of travel. AREA 5 has become very good at knowing how much a production is going to cost. Originally, we were thinking about showing a bunch of awful spreadsheets and writing walls of text to explain where the money is going. Fortunately, Braid artist David Hellman came to our rescue!
WHO'S MAKING IT?
AREA 5 is Ryan O'Donnell, Matt Chandronait, Jason Bertrand, Cesar Quintero, and Rick Curnutte. You can find out more about us on the AREA 5 web site. We're also collaborating with some INCREDIBLE people that are just as excited as we are to make this happen! And, if we hit our FREELANCERS STRETCH GOAL, there will be even more people added to the team!
IS IT ONLY ABOUT PRESERVING OLD GAMES? (ANSWER: NO!)
Game preservation is only one important topic—one which is particularly easy to tackle in the San Francisco Bay Area (where AREA 5 is located), which is why it's the featured example in our Kickstarter video. Our ambition is to explore every story that we can possibly afford to! To give you a better idea of what we're going for, this series is directly inspired by This American Life, Radiolab, Objectified and Helvetica, A Life Well Wasted, 99% Invisible, Polygon's Human Angle, State of Play, and, of course Indie Game: The Movie.
WHAT OTHER TOPICS WILL THE SERIES COVER?
It goes by pretty fast in the Kickstarter video, but there's a scene with a cloud of words in there. Those topics are just a taste of what's on our list. We can't even imagine the kinds of stories other minds can bring into the fold if we can get to our FREELANCERS STRETCH GOAL! We will also be holding polls and surveys throughout the Kickstarter period to hear about topics YOU want to cover!
WILL YOU DELIVER THE EPISODES AS YOU FINISH THEM?
No. We know from experience that we'll get the absolute highest quality by shooting and editing everything together. Whether you're backing at a level that gets you the series digitally or on Blu-ray, you'll get the entire season as a package. Filming a documentary is about being there and we want to have the opportunity to film that last great story for episode 1 even if we're just finishing shooting for episode 6. Besides, who doesn't like to binge-watch TV these days?
WHEN WILL IT BE DONE?
We are predicting 18 months from the finish of the Kickstarter campaign. That is roughly mid-July of 2015. The first six months will be pre-production (research, scheduling, travel arrangements, legal, insurance) and production (the actual shooting). Post-production (the period where we do all the editing, add in graphics, mix the sound, produce and edit a soundtrack, and so forth) will happen afterward. Kickstarter rewards will be designed and updates posted throughout the 18-month cycle.
We are honored to be working with Humble Bundle and Fangamer for our backer rewards! They helped Double Fine Productions and Mighty No.9 on their Kickstarters, so you know we're working with the right folks to make sure you get your rewards on time and at the highest quality!
BACKERS-ONLY LIVESTREAM - We will hold live streams at a secret URL that only Kickstarter backers will get access to. In it we'll show you stuff we've shot, rough edits of stories we're working on, and get your feedback on where to go next! We'll also trot out deleted scenes from past AREA 5 content. Watch purely for entertainment, or get more involved and help us shape the series! OUTERLANDERS UNITE!
SOUNDTRACK (DIGITAL DOWNLOAD) - All the music used in the series! At the minimum this will include licensed tracks and original tracks from our collaborators, music created by AREA 5, and other original tunes. Help us hit our 100% ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK STRETCH GOAL, and we'll have the funding to commission ALL original music for the series!
OUTERLANDS SEASON ONE (DIGITAL DOWNLOAD) - All finished episodes of the series in a handy download.
OUTERLANDS SEASON ONE SPECIAL EDITION (DIGITAL DOWNLOAD)- All finished episodes of the series in a handy download, plus extra content like full interviews, stories that didn't make the cut for the main series, behind-the-scenes, and anything else we can think of that is interesting or awesome! We even have ideas for setting unused footage to music and presenting just for artistic value.
POSTER (DIGITAL DOWNLOAD) - A high-resolution PDF that you can print out at your leisure and use for your own purposes.
STICKERS - Quality stickers featuring carefully designed artwork inspired by the subjects featured in the Outlerlands episodes.
POSTER - Designed by one of our fabulous collaborators, this Kickstarter-only Outerlands poster will never be printed again!
T-SHIRT - Designed by one of our fabulous collaborators, this Kickstarter-only Outerlands t-shirt will never be printed again!
LIMITED EDITION T-SHIRT - A limited-run, ultra-high-quality design on the very best, super soft T-Shirts! NUMBERED! Show your support by backing early!
LIMITED EDITION POSTERS - Extremely high-quality prints designed by Cory Schmitz on equally high-quality stock!
SPECIAL EDITION BLU-RAY - There is no "Regular Edition" Blu-ray. Contains everything in the digital Special Edition plus a surprise or two! We feel it's silly to offer the Special Edition digital reward and have a Regular Edition Blu-ray at a higher cost. Yet another Cory Schmitz original, this will be a work of art designed for shelf display!
THE AREA 5 FILM FESTIVAL! - A one-day event where we rent out a theater, showcase AREA 5 films and other random, never-before-seen content (quite frankly, stuff we CAN'T show anywhere else), as well as a curated list of other videogame-themed films and shows. There will be food, drinks, and presentations from creators, cast, and documentary subjects in between the showings. VIP access means reserved seating and any other discounts or free stuff we can line up for the day of the event—stuff we can't line up until funding is complete and the event is definitely on.
WHO'S IN THE KICKSTARTER VIDEO?
This is where we get to thank the amazing people who have thus far lent us so much of their time and are such huge believers in this project! To Jim Guthrie and Disasterpeace for the music, and for our first documentary subjects!
If you're ever even somewhat close to Alameda, California, do yourself a favor and head out to High Scores Arcade Interactive Museum. All games are on free play and it's only $5 for an hour or $10 for a whole freakin' day! The owners, Meg and Shawn, are the coolest people ever! Also in the video are Mike Mika and Frank Cifaldi from Other Ocean Interactive. Besides being great game developers, Mike and Frank have made enormous efforts to preserve games and gaming culture. That shot of Frank looking at old slides is in Mike's famous basement that many of us first learned about on Robert Ashley's incredible podcast A Life Well Wasted. Our filming with Frank, Meg, Shawn, and Mike is far from complete, but we're already well into our production thanks to their tremendous help! We've also shot at the Oakland M.A.D.E. museum—though it isn't featured explicitly in the Kickstarter video.
Risks and challenges
Our production schedule is set for roughly 18 months. That's a long time and a lot can happen in that period, but AREA 5 has been in business for 5 years and in that time we've finished dozens of productions. From full-length documentaries, to trailers, mini-docs, and fictional shorts. We know exactly what it'll take to protect ourselves and our content while making this series.
The main risks for any film project are accidents—both to equipment and personnel. Of course we mitigate this as much as possible by taking out insurance as appropriate to every production, but that doesn't mean that catastrophic events can't occur that could cause us to lose some or all of our footage on a given trip to a foreign land. If this happens and our budget doesn't allow us a reshoot, we'll find other amazing stories to tell that will allow us to fulfill our promise to deliver the series on time.
Other than losing content on location, we have a triple, multi-location backup plan for all our content. Short of San Francisco falling into the ocean, we should be covered.
Finally—and this one's a doozy—we've heard tales of certain Kickstarters that have been funded and then had their largest backers deny/reverse the charges after the campaign is over. As you can imagine, this can be hugely devastating to a lean-and-mean documentary project. There's only so much contingency a budget can absorb before something has to slip. The worst we can imagine in this scenario is having to cut an episode.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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