EarlyNinja - The Platform Revolutionizing Early Access
EarlyNinja - The Platform Revolutionizing Early Access
EarlyNinja allows gamers to buy Early Access videogames without risk and helps developers stay on track with a milestone-based system.
EarlyNinja allows gamers to buy Early Access videogames without risk and helps developers stay on track with a milestone-based system. Read more
About this project
We believe Early Access is one of the most enjoyable and rewarding ways to support new and upcoming developers, but at the moment, the way Early Access is structured is bad for gamers and bad for developers.
The problem with the current state of Early Access is that most EA games are not delivered as complete and this is generating a massive financial loss for gamers. Being gamers ourselves, we have experienced the frustration and the disappointment of not seeing our favorite games delivered on time or with promised features.
With EarlyNinja we want to build a platform that is dedicated to improving your Early Access experience whilst providing a reliable and professional route to market for developers (check our website!).
We only work with quality projects, rejecting the current 'throw everything at the wall' system, to ensure that our Early Access offering is comprised of high-caliber games with a clear plan for completion.
Here is what influencers from the gaming community think about the current state of Early Access:
None of these quotes and influencers are directly linked or endorse EarlyNinja and serve only as inspiration for our work.
Every game accepted onto the EarlyNinja platform will adhere to a detailed roadmap, agreed in advance with one of our experienced team managers or, as we call them, a Sensei, who will project manage the entire process.
This roadmap will include key milestones and, each time a milestone is satisfactorily passed, a pre-determined funding percentage will be released. When the project is completed, the last amount of funds will be released meaning 100% of your money will be given to the developers.
However, if development slows down significantly or is interrupted and a milestone isn't reached, you will be entitled to a refund based on where the snag took place. For example, if development stops 50% of the way through a game, then you get back 50% of what you paid upfront.
Our job is to offer each developer on the EarlyNinja platform support and guidance to help create great games; meaning the games you want to purchase and play stand an exponentially better chance of getting to market thanks to your support.
When the game is completed, the full version will be put online and made live in the EarlyNinja store.
What are the benefits to backing EarlyNinja via Kickstarter?
We hope you believe in our project and share our views on how to improve Early Access gaming. We truly believe getting EarlyNinja off the ground is an inherently good thing for everyone who loves gaming and wants to support the independent sector.
But if that isn't enough to convince you, we've sorted some deal sweeteners (Reward section!).
The funds gathered from the crowdfunding campaign will be used to cover all of the costs related to:
- Developer Onboarding
- Platform Development
How does this affect me positively?
We know that developing a game is a complex activity that requires careful planning; Firstly, you will be the one to decide the roadmap, deadlines for when updates will be released, and the status of your game.
In addition, as EarlyNinja leaves a portion of the payment unreleased until the finished product is ready, you will be able to demonstrate that rather than being an impulsive developer, you truly want to deliver a top-notch finished product within a reasonable timeframe.
Demonstrating this desire through EarlyNinja’s payment system offers customers financial protection as well as helping to build up trust between your users and your brand.
Last but not least, if you demonstrate that you can deliver a finished product, there will be many people happy to buy your Early Access title safe in the knowledge that you are a reliable and trustworthy developer. This can also have a positive impact on the total number of copies sold!
How do milestones, payments and deadlines work exactly?
Each milestone is formed by a weight (in %) and a deadline that can be freely specified. The amount of content you complete determines how much you will receive when a milestone is achieved.
Once approved, the % assigned to the milestone will be unlocked for payment and the funds will be transferred to your bank account. If the milestone is not approved, the Sensei (the account manager assigned to the project) will contact you to clarify what is needed to hit the milestone.
How much does a milestone have to be delayed before a user is entitled to a refund?
We completely understand that a milestone can be delayed – it is an unfortunate risk in any development activity!
When this happens, your EarlyNinja project manager will contact you to gain information about the delay and will advise you on how best to manage your situation with the community.
Users become eligible for a refund when the accumulated delays represent 100% of the initial development time. For example, if the entire development cycle is 12 months, it means that users will be able to ask for a refund after 24 months.
What will EarlyNinja cost?
We will retain a fee (15%) to cover structure and work costs for each copy sold, which is half compared to major video game platforms of the sector.
Our story starts in the summer 2016, when co-founder Stefano brought together 7 individuals from completely different backgrounds to put their heads together and come up with a solution to the Early Access challenges.
We have highlighted the problems and proposed solutions with a whole new framework: protect gamers in case something goes bad with development and incentivize developers to deliver high quality games.
We believe that the key to making EA a better market is to promote fairness and transparency between developer and gamer, which are currently missing from the most important gaming platforms out there.
How do we do this? We select only games with the highest potential and help developers meet their deadlines, while offering gamers the ability to request a refund in the event that something goes wrong with the development.
Our work has brought us far and we’ve managed to make some important progress. All of the following images are real screenshots of the platform, no mockups here!
Our story has lead us here, to Kickstarter, to ask for your help. We are hope our work will be appreciated - we’ve poured all our passion and know-how into it. We’d love to have your support and we can’t wait to usher the entire gaming community a new era for Early Access.
Our stretch goals mainly focus on finalizing and implementing the following functionalities:
- STEAM KEY INTEGRATION
- DESKTOP CLIENT
Support us and stay tuned to be part of this content creation!
Should we reach the pledge goal we'll also introduce new rewards related to the stretch goals to make this even more worth it.
We hope you can support us along our journey and that you'll enjoy the rewards we've made available for backers.
Risks and challenges
From the technical perspective, our software engineers and developers have delivered a solid and bug-free platform using the most up-to-date technologies, ready to host tons of your favorite games. We are very happy with the result! We use the latest technologies (Stack: Linux/Nginx/Mongo/PHP; Frameworks: Zend Framework/Polymer) to ensure maximum stability for our users.
Founders Stefano and Edoardo are natural team leaders and have been operating for more than 10 years in the fields of digital marketing and communications with success. As such, all marketing-related risks and challenges will be directly faced by them.
The challenges that EarlyNinja might face during and after the funding campaign mainly deal with the presence of big, strong and mature competitors like Steam and GOG and EarlyNinja does not want to fight giants like them. Instead, we want to be an alternative for players that want to buy Early Access games and that feel they need more protection.
Developers, on the other hand, will never be forced to partner exclusively with us and retain their freedom to place their games on multiple platforms.
With this in mind, another risk that EarlyNinja could face regards the fact that we are a young and small company. Giants like Steam could easily break our marketing strategies with their heftier budget. We plan to discuss and develop new marketing strategies daily to confront this challenge once the initial campaign is over.
In conclusion, we are confident that we have created an incredibly solid platform supported by a strong, capable team. As we look back on everything we've built this past year, we remain certain that with your help, we can surmount any obstacle and launch a truly innovative product for players and developers alike.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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