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In update 28 they talk about how they are making a spreadsheet on the break down of the funding and where all the money is planned to go. 1. as a backer i think we should get to see this breakdown. and 2. more importantly i just think it would be interesting to see where 4.1 million goes into making a game as epic as this. Its an insight that most consumers dont get to see. Kind of an inside look on things

 

What do you guys think

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I think it is not a good idea, and doubt it would happen on advice from their legal department.

 

The reason I think it is not a good idea is mainly because, it's boring. The only reason these figures sound appealing is that it's for a videogame we helped fund. Beyond that its reams of numbers.

 

Would you appreciate it if you worked for a company, who took in some money, and with no obligation posted your salary to the world? I sure wouldn't, nor is it fair or appropriate to ask them to.

 

-We as backers are in the unique position of having only donated money for a project. We are not share holders, and are not legally entitled to anything beyond the pledge rewards we are promised via our pledge.

 

I apologize if this sounds kind of mean, but it's never going to happen unless something catastrophic happens and a major lawsuit occurs.

Edited by syn2083
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dont get me wrong... i dont think we actually have any entitlement. and i wouldnt want a breakdown on every single penny as far as peoples salarys go. like i dont need to know how much george is getting in order to be on the team. It could just be something like

 

$10,000 - for graphics engine and in game tools being built

$500 - alcohol for the kickstarter ending party

 

or whatever. i am just interested in the fact that i personally would like to see what that amount of money goes into to make a game like PE. Also i am a numbers guy so i actually like number crunching. thats just me though

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I think this would just encourage the 'I want more money spent on this feature that I like and use rather than this feature that I don't like' arguments. And we already get tons of 'I don't want development time/money wasted on that' going on.

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Well the unity engine is a very small cost (which you can find on their website). It's 1500$/development seat for the interface so however many people they require to attach the various objects/integration.

 

Beyond that there isn't much cost wise we would see really if you get down to it. - of course they would likely subdivide salaries based on objective goals, but again this would really equal out to peoples pay, so..

 

It's an in house IP so no fees there, all game assets would really be covered within employee salaries, though its possible they make a separate breakdown for each object, but at this point that kind of detail would be pretty difficult to do.

 

We may see a breakdown for the set aside of physical production, eg units created for sale, but beyond that a lot of the cost would be obfuscated by salary.

 

I mean for those of us that like numbers, sure, its interesting, but for most people its just random numbers with no real meaning.

Edited by syn2083

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Nah, they've already got enough to do. If we keep asking for every little thing, it'll take them an extra year to finish.

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"It has just been discovered that research causes cancer in rats."

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Some KickStarter projects have, in the interests of transparency and trust, given details of where the funding went. Even charities use auditors to establish their claims about 100% of donations to a project goes to that project without making the details publicly available. It would be interesting to look at the financials of any video game company, but it's also commercially sensitive. Double Fine released a rough break down of where the funding was going, I'm expecting that at least.

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Well, if you are using Unity, all "in house IP" might not be the best bet. They have a ton of stuff for sale and cheap in their marketplace.

 

In general, I think it would be neat to see the general, high-level funding break down. I don't need to know how must Chris spent on Alka Seltzer to deal with the after effects of the kickstarter party. I suspect it is half the fund.

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Hell no they shouldn't release their budget to the public! Sweet lord, talk about asking for nothing but trouble; imagine the epic levels of bitching when people find out that only 10 dollars are being spent on boobplate and 20 bucks on romances!

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-We as backers are in the unique position of having only donated money for a project. We are not share holders, and are not legally entitled to anything beyond the pledge rewards we are promised via our pledge.

I'm not interested in legal fiction. It is true that we're not shareholders and we have few rights, however...

 

The people who paid for Project Eternity, through Kickstarter and Paypal, are taking a risk. Obsidian has our money. If they were evil/bad they could give themselves lavish salaries, produce a game that meets the requirements just barely, and have zero profit left over to spread around via "kicking it forward".

 

The whole concept of capitalism economics is that reward comes from taking risk and that means we, the backers, should be treated differently than customers who buy an off-the-shelf game where a studio or entrepreneur took all of the risk up front in the hope that his game would sell enough copies to pay off the investment with profit left over for the risk-taker.

 

It is optional but it would also be perfectly appropriate to share financial plans for the Kickstarter project with the Kickstarter backers.

 

Some backers, usually referred to using the term investor, REQUIRE financial plans that prove your plan is reasonable. Us Kickstarter backers are much more forgiving than that but it would be a huge step forward for crowdfunding if we were voluntarily treated seriously.

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This can only end badly. Whatever minuscule benefit might be gained in good will amongst a handful of people, this would only embolden a good deal more to complain about feature X getting short shrift in comparison to feature Y.

 

Do some of you really not see this?

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We are not investors, we are internet. Internet is not rational or business savvy. Internet is impatient, entitled, cynical, moronic savants; and internet is gloriously disdainful of consequence.

 

Internet should not be trusted with this information.

Edited by JWestfall
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JWestfall speaketh much wisdom, which should be heeded.

 

I feel the sickly iridescence of entitlement here, and it must be cleansed.


sonsofgygax.JPG

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It'd be interesting to see, sure, but I think it would be a bad idea for them to publish figures. I think there's a fine line with projects like this between listening to feedback and ideas from fans vs. having a vast crowd of people who don't understand how a game is made but have very strong opinions nonetheless, and as a group will never be satisfied. Is $30k too little to spend on scenery art? $300k? $900k? I have no idea, and I'd guess the majority of people on here wouldn't either.

 

Any figures they want to publish will be interesting, but overall if you didn't have faith in Obsidian to make the project / weren't willing to accept the risk that whatever you put down for the Kickstarter might not result in the game you want, I don't think you should have backed it.

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The only number I would like to see is what is left after PayPal, Kickstarter, failed pledges, printing of cloth maps, physical editions, shipping of same etc. have all been subtracted so we have an idea what is the real number, because it is probably way less than $4.1m

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“He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice.” - Albert Einstein

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In update 28 they talk about how they are making a spreadsheet on the break down of the funding and where all the money is planned to go. 1. as a backer i think we should get to see this breakdown. and 2. more importantly i just think it would be interesting to see where 4.1 million goes into making a game as epic as this. Its an insight that most consumers dont get to see. Kind of an inside look on things

 

What do you guys think

 

I totally get your question. And I agree, it would be an interesting look behind the scenes at a part of the game making process we rarely get to see.

 

But no. Please, no.

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If I'm honest, the only thing I'd like to see are some discussions between the writers and the designers, too see how that part of the creative process works. For everything --- items, character dialogues, lore.

 

But I understand why they might not do that until afterwards, and having a camera sitting there while your working might be a bit of a pain.

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sonsofgygax.JPG

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Well, I certainly don't think they should open their books for us, that'd just be stupid. I wouldn't mind if they gave us an overview on how much of the money is going where, though. Double Fine did that and it was interesting to see how much of the money could be realistically expected to go into the game after kickstarter and amazon fees, failed payments, costs for physical rewards and so on was accounted for.

 

I generally think they should take a page out of Double Fine's book when it comes to keeping backers informed.

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Simply put - no for detailed spreadsheets. We know that it is the money going for development. Such info is usually classified even within the company, and for a good reason.

 

The one thing I would like to see is how the financing is structured on a global picture (pre-production budget, core production, QA, post production - fine tuning, marketing and travel&lodging associated to marketing).

 

The best I could do to is to offer Adam my expertise as The Finance guy between now and my next contract, but that would require going into an NDA agreement with Obs. Since I have little to no experience in the gaming industry I doubt I could contribute to the project more than my pledge ;)

 

Generally if you do not know company/business specifics, the figures will tell you little (if anything without the proper education). You might also misinterpret and misunderstand them easily.

 

As they say: "Curiosity killed the cat" - it is sometimes better to not know back office finance stuff, than to talk about things from the perspective of your home budget knowledge or limited understanding of the finance in the business and its environment.

 

I am not sure if they even publish the annual FS for their business (can't find it via easy search nor on their website)

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I'd like to see this break down because it lies in the field of my professional interests and I'm curious what it would look like. Unfortunately, people are right - malicious bickering would ensue, so it's better not to make this public.

 

What about a very general list? Like this:

The one thing I would like to see is how the financing is structured on a global picture (pre-production budget, core production, QA, post production - fine tuning, marketing and travel&lodging associated to marketing).

Edited by Rosveen

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What real benefit would you get from seeing a full breakdown of budget allocation? As someone who works in accounting, I see no benefit for publishing that, because on top of providing a spreadsheet ( actually probably a sequence of spreadsheets ) detailing everything, that would be Asset retention and purchase, depreciation, salary and expenses. Trust me, it's boring and usually very complex.

 

Some are bringing up parallels with being investors, which we aren't. We volunteered money to Obsidian on the sole requirement of return of a video game, plus bonuses based on your donation level. Investors generally own a percentile share in the company or at very least the project for the principle of financial gain at the end result.

 

We provided donations, not investment, we should not confuse the two.

 

If you are really interested in all that, their corporate website might release quarterly financial reports to the public, that is if Obsidian is a publicly owned company.

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Double Fine released a simple chart, giving a rough outline of how much money is going where. They had to spend around $1 million on Kickstarter and Amazon fees, along with all the various rewards and shipping costs.

 

It will likely be the same with Project Eternity. People keep talking about what can be done with $4.1 million. The truth is the actually figure Obsidian will be left with after rewards and fees is likely to be around $3 million. People are going to need to know that, else they will be asking where all the money went...

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In update 28 they talk about how they are making a spreadsheet on the break down of the funding and where all the money is planned to go. 1. as a backer i think we should get to see this breakdown. and 2. more importantly i just think it would be interesting to see where 4.1 million goes into making a game as epic as this. Its an insight that most consumers dont get to see. Kind of an inside look on things

 

What do you guys think

They must have only one item of expenditure : The creation of the best RPG in history.

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