Sunday, May 1, 2016

Jaded Gamers Far West

Did you ever have one of those times where you felt really lucky that you didn't do something?  I've got one of those times, it was when Far West went up on Kickstarter and I almost backed it.  It would have been my first project I ever backed but I was a bit skeptical of the whole crowdfunding thing at that time.  Even though I had been following some of Gareth Skarka's blog stuff about the game and found it interesting I gave it a pass.  Decided that I would instead pick it up once it was released.

Boy am I glad I made that decision.  It's closing in on the five year mark and still the book has not made it to the backers, much less the open market.  Something like this would have left a bad taste in my mouth for Kickstarter and I would have been less likely to back other projects.  Fortunately I've backed other folks who managed to get their books out in a timely manner (John Wick and Second Thought Games are the two that come to mind immediately). 

Now he's evidently offering out refunds but is urging that people stick with him and not ask for one.  Really at this point I'm not sure why anyone would... but that's just me.  Because nearly five years is a bit much.  Honestly with as many blown 'promised' delivery dates and 'almost' done updates it has become a joke among the gaming community on the internet.  Coupled with some of his snarky remarks to backers and others questions what is going on it has become a clear example of what not to do so many times.  There are even websites up mocking the project and showing all of the quoted delivery dates over the years. 

But the sad part is this.

Gareth and his company Adamant has put out so much good stuff in the past.  Hong Kong Action Theater was simply an amazing example of how to emulate a specific film genre.  Terminal Drift, actually got me somewhat interested in D20 material when I was sick of it.  Imperial Age was a another good D20 product that floated to the top during the glut.  Then MARS captured the John Carter of Mars vibe so well with a good system adaption and a setting that had just enough of the serial numbers filed off. 

Then he did this Kickstarter along with a few other, so far, flubbed pre-orders of cool properties (Buckaroo Banzai among them) that haven't delivered.  His, and his companies, reputations have become quite stained.  It will require a lot of dedication and hard work to rebuild and with the amount of cynicism he has shown over the last few years I'm not sure he has the drive to do it.

For those interested here is a link to the Kickstarter comments sections so they can see the latest activity.  Far West Kickstarter

For those also interested here is a link to the Adamant Entertainment listing on DrivethruRPG where they do sell some of those good products I mentioned.  Adamant Entertainment

Until next time.

1 comment:

  1. He's not offering refunds, but he is granting partial refunds if requested, because he doesn't want to have to deal with another backer going to their local attorney general and complaining.

    "Partial" meaning "dropping the backer back to the $10 level" in this case, so we'll still get digital rewards. In theory.

    But yes, he's sunk his reputation, probably irrevocably. I agree - GMS has done some exceptional games, but I will never buy another one. And I'm far from the only consumer with this thought.