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ced1106

Confrontation: Classic

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typically, the creditors go after the money. If another company by the same owner has cash on hand, they will go after it in one fashion or another.

 

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54 minutes ago, Maledrakh said:

typically, the creditors go after the money. If another company by the same owner has cash on hand, they will go after it in one fashion or another.

 

Yep.  And it's generally only the ones who can afford lawyers when it was setup and afterwards who can stave them off.  Not something that usually applies to hobby oriented companies. 

The update this morning seems to have stopped the "bleeding" - they're back up over 2k from when I checked at lunch. 

 

This little tidbit in the comments was interesting:
 

Quote

Joss is well know in Europe, especially by francophone backers. In my opinion, he is, for many gamers and backers the best guarantee this KS has. He is the asset that gives many of us confidence in this project.

 Joss is one of the guys listed as a collaborator. 

Haven't there been a couple other gaming KS disasters that had a well known and respected name attached to them? 

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Yep -- although the ones I've seen were game designers, not those with miniature production experience.

 

What I did find odd is that SD lists successful crowdfunded campaigns, yet did not mention Joss' experience with Alkemy (although a few backers of its campaign did not like the miniatures). If he's so "well known" in Europe, why don't they mention his experience on the KS home page? And give me more info than the words, "well known". I want to be able to search for someone's previous projects and read comments from backers or customers so I can confirm their experience!

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I felt this comment in the KS comments section summed up the situation fairly well:

 

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HaleysRedComet 33 minutes ago

So, let's think about this. I, and I believe most people here, want the return of Confrontation. CMON dropped the ball on this when they held the rights. They teased Phoenix edition through a different project and never delivered on that, and now SD holds the IP rights and plans to bring the game back via Resurrection. So far, so good, I think. We got a company who is actually doing some work to bring the brand back. Awesome.

OK, so back in early 2017 SD announces that Classic and Ressurection will be something they are working on, and at some point Classic will be a Kickstarter project. Awesome. I'm jazzed about this, I love this game and the minis and can't wait to see how SD does with it. Then... not a lot happens. As the project draws closer there is a poll for characters to be included with the pledge, actually pretty cool. Get the community involved, good idea. But then...

Mostly silence from SD. People, in general, don't get responses to questions on the FB. One thread in particular had a ton of pretty basic questions - what's the pledge structure, etc... - but the only question that was answered was someone asking for SD's Twitter account. So, we know SD is seeing these questions but ignoring them. I'm not saying I was expecting detailed answers, but a simple "Wait and see" or "This is the basic idea" would have been nice. This would be a trend that SD continues to this day - they mostly don't respond to social media inquiries.

Anyway, the KS launches and funds in 2 hours. It raises about 650K Euro. Awesome. But then... people start asking questions and looking closer at things. The minis will be PVC with ABS weapons, similar to what Wrath of Kings does. Personally, this doesn't make too much sense to me, as my metal Confrontation minis tended to have stability issues with ankles more than anything else. But, this is the project SD wants to do. So, we will have PVC and ABS. The issue of quality comes up again and again. It's answered, but because a prototype isn't shown people don't believe it. We are told to trust SD, many backers do because they've delivered on their RPG projects before. SD posts and update saying they can be trusted because they've made products before. OK.

So, we are 3 days from the end of the project and it is down to about 461K Euro right now. That's nearly 200K lost and about 66% of what it was at the height of funding. What happened? Here's where I am going to get really critical: Sans Detour barely worked on this project.

The project launched with over a year of planning able to go into it. What we saw was pictures of the old Rackham minis - the same ones used in their catalog and on the mini's cards. There's even art used in a few situations instead of miniature images. That's weird. Not a single model was ever cast by SD. They're offering a resin pledge, people thought maybe SD made some of those minis. Nope, I confirmed that they were leftover from old Rackham. SD then doubles down on this and states that they are unable to produce a mini they have made, that it is cost prohibitive. I have never seen a single miniature company using KS that has said this. So then people start asking to see how they will scan the masters into a computer, as SD stated they will do this to make molds. Nope, again. So we are left to conclude that Sans Detour has not done -any- work prior to the KS campaign to show people what they plan to produce. They said they've made calls to factories. That seems like it is enough for some people.

Then, we get into the weird grey area of how business ownership and partner companies. In an update, Sans Detour stated they would use Ludik (with whom they share an owner and address) for logistics on this project. They stated that, if Ludik were to go under, they wold simply switch to a different company. So, in a comment, it was disclosed that Ludik is now controlled by a liquidator. I don't know how this wasn't known before, it's a huge red flag. Then, we also find out that Stellar Licensing, the company who owns the IP, only owns the Confrontation IP as their single asset and is owned by the financial Director of SD. Again, kind of weird.

So - in the year leading up to this project, the only prep work done was to photoshop existing images together, make a choice of minis featured, and contact factories. That is, observably, the only work done by SD leading up to what they hoped (looking at the stretch goals) would be a million Euro+ project.

This brings us to the current situation. Sans Detour, the account, is barely involved with getting information out. Instead, Joss - the project manager - has his own account and comments, while other collaborators - who are friends of the project and not SD employees - also give official information. The collaborators get all their info from SD directly, so if they don't have the answer to a question and want to answer it, they have to ask someone. Fine so far. But - we have seen that some of the collaborators have berated and ignored people who have questions or concerns about the project. It's also apparent that there is no native English speaker who works on this project, which sometimes causes misunderstandings. It's a small issue, but for a company to launch a large project in English without a native speaker seems like a mistake.

It also came out that SD was not able to produce game play videos of the game they are pitching, which was a request frequently asked of them. I asked a collaborator about this and was told that there are only 2 players around their office and they had no time to record. I don't see how, in the year they had to prepare for this, they couldn't run through a game and take pictures or record. That doesn't add up to me, and makes me think this project wasn't taken seriously by SD from the start.

It would appear that SD thought it could put together a project for a game that hasn't been produced in about 10 years and expect that people would be willing to buy a 300 Euro box of minis without even seeing how they might look in the material they will receive them in. Next to no prep work was done, and SD seems to be happy with the fact that it passed it's goal at all despite the fact that it lost 1/3 of it's funding so far. SD plans to launch a new edition of Confrontation next year sometime. No one has seen any work that has gone into that so far, so we are left to conclude that as much effort will go into that project as went into their current one. Which is to say - not much at all.

 

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this project is less than 10 thousand euros away from dropping below it's first day funding total. 

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Probably a good thing the campaign only has 3 days left.

 

Something I found interesting is the average pledge per person.  The Early Bird pledge was €299, but the average per person is only €191.  Shows how much people wanted the smaller sets over the large box.

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30 minutes ago, Clearman said:

Something I found interesting is the average pledge per person.  The Early Bird pledge was €299, but the average per person is only €191.  Shows how much people wanted the smaller sets over the large box.

I noticed that, too - but over 900 backers are a single euro - if you take them out of the mix, the average pledge for the rest is 309.   Looks to me like there are 900 people sitting there waiting to see what happens, either before the campaign ends, or like myself, someone who wants bleacher seats to the train wreck. 

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That says a lot too.  Those 900  don't represent a lot of money, but they're over a third of all backers.

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They made an update today to say "Here's what comes in each of our pledge levels."  They are being very clear about things (the 76 extra minis only come in the plastic pledge, and neither the resin nor plastic pledges will be available in the pledge manager). 

 

 

And they've lost about 18K so far today.  But I'm sure that will all turn around with the update, now that potential backers aren't confused about which pledge they might want.


I wonder if this is the normal 'ramping up' that happens at the end of a campaign, except with numbers below zero.

 

I still don't think enough people will drop to defund the whole thing- but with the drops escalating, that is in the realm of possibilities.

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they're up to 23k lost today.  Less than 2.5k until they're less than the 440k they made in the first day. 

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I loved the Confrontation stuff, though I never played the actual game.  My brother and I used many of their minis as stand-ins for GW stuff, especially HQ units.  I wouldn't touch this with a stranger's 10' pole...  Really hope the supporters get what they're pledging for, but more and more this feels like simply throwing money out a window would yield more good.  

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And when I checked it this morning, their funding total is now less than they pulled on the first day - currently 437k versus the 440k they got the first day. 

I also learned that per KS policy, you cannot decrease or cancel your pledge in the last 24 hours of a campaign IF it would cause the project to defund.   Well, you can, but you have to contact KS customer support to do it for you. 

 

I don't think they'll lose enough in pledges for that to happen though.  But who knows.  

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I want to back this. If Reaper was running it I probably would.

Given what they're obligating themselves to produce and the resources I know of they have to do it, I unfortunately have to pass. Maybe if it was better funded.

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2 hours ago, Club said:

I want to back this. If Reaper was running it I probably would.

Given what they're obligating themselves to produce and the resources I know of they have to do it, I unfortunately have to pass. Maybe if it was better funded.

 

 

Yeah, that's where a lot of people are.  If this were being run by a company that we all felt we could trust, the whole story would be different.

The company doesn't have a proven track record for good business decisions (in fact, one of the owners owns a hobby shop and online store that's going out of business right now).

That business going under also seems to indicate that these guys aren't independently wealthy and probably won't be able to cover costs if this kickstarter ends up in the red.

A lot of red flags.  Still, I hope they deliver, because that would be better for everyone.

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