Update #6 - What a campaign(and year) it's been!
This experience with Kickstarter has been an incredible one. While we did not reach our goal, we do appreciate all the support that has been given to the project!
We've learned and pushed to have many positive changes implemented into the game and LiveInTheGame's online presence, as a result. Early on, we had a nice growth in support and donations for the project, with a few external sources covering aspects of the game(such as Softpedia, Adventuregamers, WAYG Podcast, and CrypticHybrid on Youtube) but that support lost momentum rather quickly, and I think this is in large part to a few factors being: awareness, quality, and timing.
I know, I personally, reached out to several people on Twitter, Facebook, Twitch, and Youtube primarily. Of these included: YourGibs, PushingUpRoses, Shipwrecked, PoeForevermore, and RealOtakuGamer to name a few. This is also LITG's first real attempt at a Kickstarter, and I'd like to think I did okay with it, but I certainly could have done better with a bit more research and planning. Like if I were to make another Kickstarter campaign, I would use services like Thunderclap and Backerkit to help make rewards more flexible and give more incentive to have you guys help spread the news about us.
Quality, I think, was a big one here. The game is very unpolished, and I know this, and I hope that while playing, this was understood and didn't tarnish your own ideas of what the game could and will be. However, this extends beyond just the gameplay and has to do more with the trailer/campaign in-general. For more info about that, please see Update #4. I am not an artist, and I tried to make half-decent graphics to accompany the written content for the Kickstarter, I do not think these went over well. This game will be a first for most of us on the team, which I don't think provided much confidence in the campaign/project, either. How we'll address this in the future is by: polishing the game much more before having a Kickstarter demo, consult professional trailer creators(like MJoshua) and have a proper trailer for the game/Kickstarter, and have more involvement from the whole team with the campaign.
Lastly, I think the timing was pretty bad. I could see a Poe-related Kickstarter being much more successful during the month of October. Alas, the campaign would not have been ready then; the Kickstarter and Demo were being prepped for several months leading up to the November 27th launch date. The holidays are always busy, and starting the campaign on Cyber Monday is like the equivalent of throwing away a whole day(well, maybe not THAT drastic). Still, I'm sure everyone had their own plans, and most of us are so focused on those plans during the holidays that it's not really an ideal time to launch a Kickstarter. It's also possible that people were kind of tired of 'spooky' things at this point in the year, anyway. And on that note, Wry isn't exactly the kind of 'glorified gore' or 'jump-scare' type horror anyway, so it wouldn't have scratched that itch if it were there.
But probably the biggest factor was the October 2019 date. I really don't like lying to people, it's probably one of my greatest virtues and vices. This date was trying to account for the amount of game still remaining and what would have to be accomplished each 3-month period. And that content is controlled by the team's ability to work on the game; over half of the team are not being paid at all, so our time is split by our day jobs, family, and other passions, too. Such a far-off date is a real problem for players, too. Rarely does hype for an indie game last that long. I also wouldn't expect someone to eagerly await the release of the game over that entire period- there is simply too much going on in the world and everything in our lives moves far too quickly.
But what does this mean for Wry Reveries' Future?
We're still working on the game. We have undergone a few changes to the project structure, team members, and scheduling- but the October 2019 date for release hasn't changed as of yet. We may relaunch the Kickstarter in October 2018, with updated backer rewards, campaign/game content, and stretch goals. Mainly because I really want Wry to get the treatment I feel it deserves, with a professional animator and voice actors, at the very least.
On behalf of the entire Wry Reveries team, I would like to thank everyone who spread the word about Wry Reveries, posted, tweeted, recorded videos, and of course, became a backer! We are all very grateful for your support of this project, and it makes us happy just knowing that there are people out there who want us to pursue this vision, truly. And so, we shall!
Take care for now, and have a Happy New Year!