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The Cole-Bar Hammer, a 7-year old Kickstarter that is still going (kickstarter.com)
68 points by victorbojica 5 months ago | hide | past | favorite | 105 comments



I think the "still going after 7 years" means "still hasn't been released after 7 years". It was supposed to be for sale in 2014 and still hasn't shipped yet (from what I can find in Google). The creators have been stringing along their backers for the better part of a decade.

As far as utility, it seems like more of a gimmick than something that would get regular use. I can't think of a time when I've been working on a project and wished I had a 1/2" drive ratchet, a short pry bar, and a hammer but only had space in the tool bag for one of them.


I think the king of stringing along backers is still Star Citizen who - 8+ years after the original Kickstarter[1] - are still taking crowdfunding money with no finished product in sight.

[1] https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/cig/star-citizen


It's not fair to say SC doesn't have a product.

They have an alpha that's fun to mess around in and gets big updates 4x a year.

There are plenty of games that cost $60+ that are worse than SC for $45 and the promise of bigger updates.

If CIG folds after a decade, that's not a scam... that's just a mismanaged studio. CIG has delivered a product. You can judge whether it is a good product, but they have delivered and continue to deliver.


>They have an alpha that's fun to mess around

They've spent nearly 10 years and close to half a billion dollars, and all they've produced is a glorified model viewer with some extremely buggy and half-baked gameplay mechanics tacked on. There is no visible progress towards a viable MMO or indeed of server instances supporting more than ~30 concurrent players without breaking in bizarre ways.

>If CIG folds after a decade, that's not a scam... that's just a mismanaged studio

It became obvious years ago to anyone but the wilfully ignorant that CIG are incapable of delivering, and to continue to take people's money in this circumstance is indefensible. If they cannot deliver they should gracefully admit it and refund backers and investors as much as possible. Instead they continue to pump out new ship models while making no progress towards core tech required to actually deliver something resembling the game they promised.

>CIG has delivered a product. You can judge whether it is a good product, but they have delivered and continue to deliver.

That is the problem - they continue to deliver eye candy to attract new victims, but nothing of substance. Star Citizen is vapourware with just enough bait to keep luring gullible whales into dropping cash on ship models.


There's plenty of $60 games released that have less substance than Star Citizen. You can argue whether the product is worth the price as it stands, but it's clearly marketed as a work in progress, with no unrealistic promises made. You, like several others, seem to be blaming it for not being something it does not claim nor aspire to be. I haven't bought it, but I just might when it can be run well enough on Linux, with limited expectations on my part.


>There's plenty of $60 games released that have less substance than Star Citizen

There's plenty of similarly priced or cheaper games which have far more substance (in terms of delivered scope, not promised scope).

>but it's clearly marketed as a work in progress, with no unrealistic promises made

Star Citizen's kickstarter originally promised to release in 2014/15 [1], and they continue to push back that date with no end in sight. This behaviour is literally illegal in my jurisdiction - there are reasonable exceptions for things outside the supplier's control, but scope creep is not one of them.

>You, like several others, seem to be blaming it for not being something it does not claim nor aspire to be.

I mean, they've claimed to be able to deliver a game and have failed pretty spectacularly at that. They claimed to deliver an accurate flight model which accounts for centre of mass, individual thrusters, etc. and as I understand the current flight model is basically "noclip mode but with collisions". They've sold so many ships for various lifestyles (journalism etc.) but show no progress towards even a vague idea of how those game mechanics would work, let alone implementing them. User created content and modding tools, land claims, private servers, all have been promised and then silently dropped in favour of spruiking newer and shinier ship models. They've claimed to deliver a universe of star systems and are still manually grinding out content for the first star system.

> I haven't bought it, but I just might when it can be run well enough on Linux, with limited expectations on my part

I'd advise you hold off until they deliver something close to a finished game, or even just hit beta, but you do you.

[1] https://web.archive.org/web/20121019000754/http://www.kickst...


> Star Citizen's kickstarter originally promised to release in 2014/15

It's playable right now, has been for a long time. The fact that it's not been deemed "finished" is rather irrelevant. You can compare it to a similarly-themed game such as Elite: Dangerous, which has been released and updated through paid extensions. There doesn't seem to be that much more to do in that game, from what I can gather. (I bought it, but haven't gotten around to playing it much yet.)

Or put another way, with a typical funding method SC could have released their game a few years back as it was as "gold", and it would have been a decent game -- certainly no worse than No Man's Sky at launch.

Comparing SC to the average scam Kickstarter that doesn't deliver anything and lies to the backers is simply wrong. It's an ambitious project and their release date goals were way too optimistic -- but it's hard to get mad at them for that when you have any experience with software development.


Elite has 100x the content and playability of star citizen and is probably thousands of times less buggy. They're not even comparable.

I downloaded star citizen out of curiosity during free fly last year and there's virtually nothing to do. That's if you can even get into your ship without crashing. It took me many attempts. Core gameplay loops just aren't there. The only people having fun are those that "make their own game" by role playing.

I've played a good amount of Elite. I got bored eventually but there's a ton of solid gameplay and virtually no bugs. It's a better game than star citizen in its current state in every way I can think of.

The buggyness of star citizen is unforgivable. I've played many early access and alpha games and nothing I've touched is as unplayably buggy as SC has been for years.


$363,500,000 and no finished product.

LOL, Jesus Christ if this isn't proof-positive that Modern Monetary Theory has corrupted everything I don't know what is...


$300MM isn't even an absurdist number for a AAA game [0].

Cyberpunk 2077 single-player was $121MM and they have multiplayer planned so probably add another $50MM - $60MM on top, if not more.

I have no doubt that GTA 6 and Elder Scrolls 7 will both come near or break $300MM. $300MM is an absurd amount, but that's just where the market is headed; big and expansive games.

I am not defending CIG necessarily but scoffing at a number out of context is disingenuous.

But yeah, the price tag is likely to be $500M - $750M but their goal isn't to put out a rehash of a rehash for $80 then rinse-repeat next year.

CIG is pretty upfront they are trying something crazy and Chris Roberts (SC creator) is well-known for his scope creep + desire for perfection. It's not like CR is demanding monthly subscriptions to play or that everyone spends $x / year on SC.

If you want to buy an overpriced ship, go for it... but you can buy most, if not all, ships in-game for in-game currency that's easy to get. It looks like the most expensive ship purchasable in the game is an "890 Jump" which costs 32M aUEC or $950. You can get 300k aUEC every two hours so like 212 hours of grinding (but seriously, this ship is purely a status symbol. Just like those crazy rare flying mounts in World of Warcraft.)

[0]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_most_expensive_video_g...


I really like SCs transparent model and generally open development, with lots of material to release and learn from. I also like that they at least have a product they can put in the hands of the players.

But the scope creep is pathetic. I used to support them early on and for quite a while; however they have lost all incentives to do anything other than string the backers along. They haven't actually set to deliver something properly playable and at this point the only people enjoying the game are the hardcore fans who HAVE to enjoy it otherwise they feel like they haven't got their money's worth.

Scope creep itself is fine, but if it perpetually delays your initial release then what's the point? I think they know that by now.


You're not necessarily wrong but $170M completed and $275M still in alpha are two pretty considerable differences. Given that one extra piece of context, I'm perfectly willing to scoff at that number.

I find it interesting that there are currently zero Bethesda games on the list despite their fairly broad scopes, which is... telling, considering the reputation of their games. That said, I have doubts that ES6 will hit $300M. Maybe ES7 as you say, but that's not the next Elder Scrolls game.


Hmm. For some reason I had thought Skyrim was Elder Scrolls 6. TIL.


I'm confused what MMT has to do with any of this

MMT is a model used to explain how the economy will be affected by certain governmental policies

So I'm not sure how it's supposed to have "corrupted" everything. Care to elaborate?


My son was big into this game 6-8 years ago. We bought and put together a PC for him. I bought him a $35 ship. While I cherish the time I spent with him building the rig, and he's surpassed me in "what's good these days in PC stuff", he's now a sophomore in college in another state.

Still no game.


Another long-running one (though not as much of a money-sink) is Spaceventure, by the creators of Space Quest. Star Citizen appears to have an estimated delivery of Nov.2014, but the estimated delivery of Spaceventure was Feb.2013. The game entered beta almost half a year ago.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/spaceventure/two-guys-s...


  I've play Star Citizen more then any other game in the last 5 years, well maybe on par with Skyrim. If you haven't seen it in a while the original scope of the game ( spaceship based sim ) is quite complete and polished.  If all you want to do is hop in a ship, fight some pirates, do some pvp, missions or cargo hauling for credits to upgrade your ship or buy a new one its all there. Its a blast to play with a friend as most ships are multi-crew.
The scope creep has changed the goal from "Best damn spaceship sim" to "Best damn space sim". So yea the apple pie is going to take a while to bake.


If you can run it. I have friends who spent hundreds on ships back in the day, but haven't upgraded their PCs in the meantime. They can no longer run it, as the specs have creeped up along with the features.


300 million dollars is all that needs to be said.


Agreed. I think it’s unlikely that they will ever have a finished product. They’ll probably coast until the magical money spigot runs out, then fold quickly.


    $2,134,374 pledged of $500,000 goal
Hmm, so it's just a rip-off?


But also, hammers for framing or demolition already exist and are very good.

Martinez M1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b8AOrkfR1WM

A bunch of different hammers: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DabECxs3WhU


Came here to mention the Martinez M1. Hammers are basically a solved problem. I hope to one day have a project big enough to justify buying one.


I was more impressed with how quiet the nail gun was compared to ~20 years ago when I used to work with my dad, that was a gas one, damn loud. :D


It reminds me of the useless Craftsman “gift” SKU Craftsman puts on display ends during the holidays: a combo crescent, hammer and pry iron[1]

Aha! That’s what I’ll get good old uncle Bill.

I think it took Leatherman ten years to get something out the door —but that was the 70s when you didn’t have the prototyping we have today.

[1] https://www.craftsman.com/products/automotive-tools/wrenches...


I can't think of a time when I've been working on a project and wished I had a 1/2" drive ratchet, a short pry bar, and a hammer but only had space in the tool bag for one of them.

I don't know anything about the product itself, but based on your description I wish I had something like that in the van when i was in a band and we were going on road trips in a cheap van. Especially if they somehow included a hacksaw.


How are they stringing them along? The Kickstarter can no longer receive funds. Do scammers typically provide updates for 7+ years after they stopped receiving money?


Typically, if the project meets its goal, the project is allowed to make updates indefinitely, even if the project never comes to fruition.

It's a shame, really. Speaking from experience, I once raised over $20K USD on a $48K goal. The project failed on Kickstarter; however, I was able to raise funds and complete the project by other means, but Kickstarter does not allow me to make updates to the project because it 'failed.'

I have to ask, though... which project is a failure, the one which is completed despite failing to meet the Kickstarter goal, or the one which meets the goal but never delivers?


Meta / off-topic, I'm fascinated by the fact that your account is nearly 3 years old but this is apparently your first comment.


Let's make it two. I had a previous account that for some reason I dropped before this one. I believe that account also only accrued one or two comments over the course of a few years, as well.

I happily lurk and consume along with the other 99%.[1] In part, this is because when I read HN, I attempt to stay on the front page for the sake of time and though I appreciate those who sort by new and filter what gets to my eyes, it's rare that a conversation is fresh enough that it makes it worthwhile to comment in terms of viewership, nor that it's valuable enough insight to take up someone else's finite resource pool of time to read.

It seems upon personal review that by posting I may now have committed violence twice today on that valuable resource. My apologies. I'll attempt to post less regularly or more profoundly in the future.

[1] https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/1%25_rule_(Internet_culture)


Well, you raised $0 on a $48K goal.


They still accept purchases for in-game content that hasn't yet come out, and so, still raise funds.


And here I thought it was a kickstarter for a hammer invented by a 7 year old kid.


Maybe they'll make it out of titanium and go after the ultralight tool enthusiast market? It'll never get used, but damn it's light!


No joke actually, there really are pro carpenter titanium hammers and they are expensive. https://youtu.be/IE0-I0T7Xhc?t=399

But these multi taskers are pretty much good at nothing.


I would buy the shit out of a titanium framing hammer but only if they put a soft steel face on it. Older framing hammers are better than newer framing hammers because nails tend to smash the waffle teeth down enough that they don't tear up your thumb when you miss. Titanium is strong enough that this never happens so your hammer destroys your thumb no matter how old it is.


One of the features of a hammer is its weight. If you want a lighter hammer you can just buy a smaller one. But people buy 1 lb hammers specifically because they weigh 1 lb.


I was writing a comment asking what's the point of a lighter hammer, then I realized that a lighter hammer you can swing faster is actually exponentially more effective than a heavier hammer. KE = 1/2mv^2 babe! Physics, bi*ch! :)


Do you definitely want to transfer kinetic energy more than momentum?

I reckon a lighter hammer swung faster is more likely to end up with a bent nail.

Also, exponential would be 2^v. v^2 is quadratic.

(And you need to sub in the F=ma part as well to demonstrate your point, so your gain from the lighter hammer should be less than quadratic. Exercise left to the reader.)


It's probably too late for anyone to see this, but I think momentum is what matters for a hammer. Here is my argument.

I'm assuming that when you swing a hammer, your arm applies a constant force to the hammer. Let's say that force is F, and we are swinging the hammer a distance of d, and the mass of the hammer is M.

Then the acceleration is a = F/M. The distance traveled in time t is 1/2 a t^2 = 1/2 F/M t^2. We want that to be d.

That happens at time t = sqrt(2dM/F). The velocity at time t is a t, so the velocity when the hammer hits the nail is v = sqrt(2dF/M).

That gives a momentum of M v = sqrt(2dFM).

The kinetic energy is 1/2 M v^2 = 1/2 M 2dF/M = d F.

Note that the momentum at distance d depends on the mass. It goes up as the square root of mass. Kinetic energy at distance d, on the other hand, does not depend on mass.

When I've hit hammers with nails, the heavy hammers have always seemed to drive the nail deeper per hit than the light hammers, which suggests that hammer mass does matter, suggesting that it is not kinetic energy that determines how deep the nail is driven.


> Do you definitely want to transfer kinetic energy more than momentum?

Seems that way; if you're using a hammer, the goal is for all parts of the system to come to a stop. You're trying to deform the material you're hammering the nail into; isn't that measured in energy transfer?


I guess this is tricky because you want all that energy to go into deforming the wood and not the nail. The physics is beyond me here.

Intuitively, I feel like weighty hits tend to drive the nail into the wood, whereas fast hits just bash the nail about. That might be more about accuracy though?

(Also my anecdote confirmed by someone with practical experience, see other comment.)


> Intuitively, I feel like weighty hits tend to drive the nail into the wood, whereas fast hits just bash the nail about. That might be more about accuracy though?

Yes, if you're using your arm, there's a tradeoff between speed and accuracy. If you're using a nail gun, not so much.

I was just saying that it looks to me like measuring what happens in energy seems correct, and measuring in momentum looks like a conceptual mistake.


Note from someone who does a lot of woodwork: yup, that’s right.


But you want slow accurate strokes with most hammers. Very hard to get precision with speed.


Light hammers are good for riveting. You need something that won’t overpower whatever you’re using to buck the rivet. (In my case, a three-pound sledgehammer head.)


I used to quite like browsing KS in the early 10s. I didn't fund that many projects as I got burned by a couple, and a couple more were pretty underwhelming, but I used to like browsing it to see what innovative ideas people had (often my favourite were too far out of the norm, so never got funded).

Nowadays I see ads for Kickstarter and other crowd funding sites popup in my feeds quite a lot. The product is often interesting, but then when I look into it I realise it's an existing product, available now on AliExpress, that's just rebranded. The 'founders' of course give their 'story' about how they are tirelessly making this innovative product to change the world.

One notable example was a set of silicon lids for pans and plates as a replacement for plastic wrap. I saw the product, and was actually quite tempted to fund it as it wasn't very expensive (<$20), but it still had quite a while left for the campaign to complete and the estimated delivery was a few months away. I then found exactly the same product on AliExpress, for less than half the price, and it arrived before the campaign had finished funding :D


Are you sure it's not the other way around? There is a well known business strategy where Chinese entrepreneurs look at promising kickstarter projects and launch production in Shenzen and have something on the market even before the original campaign is over.


Those silicon lids are great! My mom had a set long before the existence of KS, validating your belief in this case at least.


I like those silicone lids, I think I picked up a set on Amazon, until the most used size tore.


Back in 2011 I thought Kickstarter and crowdfunding in general was so cool. I funded a maybe 20+ projects. I think I received 4-5 items and the products i did receive were very underwhelming. Probably half of the projects I never even heard from after the funding closed. Needless to say I haven't been on KS in a long, long time.


Crowdfunding on Kickstarter changed my life. I was just a kid with an idea in college in 2014 and decided to try a project that became a business that I am still running today. I think there are gems to be found here and there, but it is definitely to find the signal in the noise.


I think the comment you replied to was pointing out that Kickstarters are generally bad for consumers. No doubt you and a bunch of other people have made out well on the supply side.


Might be a fun game to have each person pick a kickstarter, strip it down to the pitch, the goals and the backer options and have everyone guess if it was successful or not.


The only thing I backed on Kickstarter was a game called Trial by Trolley. I went whole hog and got the $65 edition.

Took so long to make it that by the time I finally got it, no one ever wanted to play it. Most of my friends end up playing totally different party games when we get together.

I also looked back a bunch of things I bookmarked to see what did and didn't get made - about 75% of the KSes I was interested in never got to funding status, or got funded, but eventually failed.


Is that long? I backed a spinoff of Sierra's old Space Quest almost 9 years ago: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/spaceventure/two-guys-s....

Still waiting patiently :)


in the mean time you can play excellent http://snailtrek.com


Same here. Was just thinking about it last week.


Oh lord, has that really been 9 years now? Wow.


Consumer crowdfunding websites like kickstarter and indiegogo have largely failed to live up to their early hype. Campaigns now fall into two categories: designer vaporware from people you've never heard of, and established companies that don't need crowdfunding but are using it anyway for marketing purposes.

On the other hand... niche crowdfunding websites like Crowd Supply seem to be doing better than ever. There are a few reasons for this:

1. A lot of campaigns are for open source hardware. These projects are developed in the open, and you can go to github and download schematics and look through prototype firmware to evaluate the project yourself, months before the campaign even starts.

2. Vetting seems to be better. There are almost always real prototypes floating around by the time a campaign goes live.

3. More modest goals. More often than not, the funding goals are right around some sensible volume buying / manufacturing threshold. The creators usually just want to be able to get a PCB with microvias, or buy parts by the reel rather than in single-unit quantities. You don't see as many creators trying to get rich quick or bootstrap a company.

In my view, this is more in line with what crowdfunding was supposed to be: Getting volume buying commitments for an already working design rather than speculative "investing." A lot of kickstarter/indiegogo "creators" should probably be in jail for fraud.


Crowdfunding still works great for independent comics. "Hey I drew this thing and now I want to use KS/IG as a way to manage pre-orders" is a proven, solid part of an artist's revenue stream.

My general rule of thumb is to avoid hardware campaigns, and to be exceedingly dubious about any campaigns that are asking for enough money for a creator to live on while they make a thing unless they have a long track record of delivering.

And any campaign that meets a lot of stretch goals should probably be expected to take at least twice as long to deliver, if not more; sometimes I think it would be really worthwhile for Kickstarter to build active support for stretch goals into their platform, that trigger changes in the delivery date promised on the page when met, because "add four more levels and two playable characters to the scope of this video game" sure is gonna take some more time to build.


The exception might be boardgames. Boardgames are huge on Kickstarter. 30-50 new board game campaigns come out every week (most non-board gamers are surprised to learn that about 5,000 new board games are released every year). Many are from new small publishers that use it for its intended purpose.


Lots of successful kickstarters are artists, musicians, ... that can't prefund a production run, but have a product that's a clear scope of how this kind of thing is made (book, artprints, ...) and a large chunk of the work already done. That is still not 100% risk free, but an overall success outside your two categories.


> and established companies that don't need crowdfunding but are using it anyway for marketing purposes.

There are also groups who are using crowdfunding to check-and-see if a video game (or whatever) has enough fans to be worth greenlighting.

See Mighty No 9, or Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night.

If a Kickstarter campaign is successful, then the investors dive in with the rest of the money to greenlight the project. If it fails, then they kill the project right there and then.

Mighty No 9 and Bloodstained have their share of issues, but I think the methodology has been proven to work. "Proving worth to investors" is a real step in the process.


Yeah. I'm wondering if there's somewhere that actively tracks this stuff, especially the popular ones.

The park & diamond helmet for example (https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/park-diamond-foldable-bik...) raised over 2.5MM EUR and I lost track of how late it is but they've easily sent 10-15 updates saying "sorry, we didn't get it in time for [MONTH], but we'll be ready in [MONTH+2], promise!". They gave me a refund when I asked for one, at least, and since then I've only seen more of the same.

Hard to tell if it's a scam or utter incompetence.


Oh my gosh, I love that their graphic [0] skips 2019 to make it seem like they haven't taken two years.

That's disingenuous if I've ever seen it.

[0]: https://c1.iggcdn.com/indiegogo-media-prod-cld/image/upload/...


> Getting volume buying commitments for an already working design rather than speculative "investing."

This still happens in KS and IGG both. I have seen a number of rather interesting backpacks from companies we never heard of. Also, I had multiple successful deliveries from Chinese companies who see IGG as a great jumping board towards the international markets.


> More modest goals

More modest than building a hammer? As they say in their promotion page, we have been building hammers for tens of thousands of years now...


The one use I see in the news is people who suffer some economic loss _and_ have some news notoriety set up a campaigns in an attempt to earn sympathy donations (not saying it's wrong to do, but rather it’s very few people under hardship shared by many who leverage their news status and get more donations than someone who was not in the news).


I think music is an exception to this. I have funded several indie bands that have released albums that I liked.


crowdsupply is almost entirely just making pcbs, which are literally the most straightforward thing in the world to get manufactured


The point is that crowdsupply vets projects that they are at a stage where a lot of it is actually just finishing design and manufacturing, or at least have a clear path there, instead of letting people imagine "we will have a PCB and software running on it, how hard can that be" and kickstart that. (because most electronics products are "straightforward to get manufactured" at some level, getting there and not overcomplicating it so it isn't anymore is the problem)


Anecdata: of the 36 projects (not including projects that failed to get backing) I have backed in the past 8 years:

- 4 were outright scams (only 1 was caught and cancelled by KS)

- 32 delivered, practically all were very delayed, sometimes by years.

- Of the 32, most were as promised, but some turned out useless - At least half I regretted buying

One thing that was very apparent (here as IRL) is that software projects runs WAY over the schedule.

I have since completely stopped supporting Kickstarter, unless I'm backing people who I already know of and who has a reputation at stake. There's way too much fraud and useless crap (but "World First Ultimate Crap").

Finally, it's not _all_ bad. The highlights: Klauf Light Bar (use them daily), Exploding Kittens (have played a few times), THIMBLEWEED PARK (love it), [Pocket]Chip, Nebia Shower, Kuroi Hana Knife Collection (use daily), Stingray Non-stick pan (use daily. Note, a 2nd campaign from the Kuroi Hana Knife people).


I’m shocked you actually got 32 of 36 items regardless of the quality. I would have guessed a much lower number of deliveries.


My findings largely reflect this, but I have to admit that I stopped after about 10 projects. Now I will no longer do a KS, regardless of the product, or the founder, or the price. I'll just wait, pay full price later if it's worth it, and save myself the frustration and multiple "regrettable delay" notes.


Yes this. It took me too long to realize that the “discount” was rarely worth the risk and opportunity cost.

KS is really bad, but there are many other crowd sourcing efforts that are worth backing which wouldn’t be available otherwise. I have backed ~ 4 different FPGA dev board campaigns (not on KS).

EDIT: for example https://groupgets.com/campaigns/868-butterstick


Cool idea, let's see how I did:

- 41 projects backed

- 5 unsuccessful

- 5 I cancelled

- 1 outright scam

- 1 not delivered

- 27 delivered

- 2 still pending, including SpaceVenture at 9 years.

Of the 27 delivered

- 15 video games or software. Most were delayed, but were generally considered excellent when they were finally delivered.

- 4 physical objects that wound up being just OK. (Coffee Joules, Brimstone Card Deck, Fidget Cube, Thimble Slide)

- 8 media (books or cds) that I mostly really liked


I used to be super into my cooking knives, but after a decade of using everything from rubber handled target chef knives to 300+$ japanese art-work knives, I've learned that it's better to buy a 40 dollar chef knife every 3 years than a 200$ one every... 3 years.


This is meandering pretty far off topic but... Why do you need a new chef's knife every 3 years? I've had my reasonably-priced Victorinox for probably a decade. With routine sharpening using quality stones (they cost more than the knife), I don't see needing to replace it in the next decade.


Yeah, If it gets babied and my wife never touched it. The reality is the tip is likely to get chipped, she'll forget it's the nice one and toss it in the dishwasher, etc., and it'll wear out.


I've backed quite a few projects (150), so I did a review to look for patterns.

* 33 software/game projects

* 23 board game projects

* 20 "thing" projects (i.e. requiring manufacturing)

* 60 rpg material projects (adventures, systems, supplements, etc)

* 14 other media

I initially backed quick a few software and "thing" projects. But both seem to be prone to unexpected setbacks, delivering late or never. My only outright scam was a "thing", but quite a few of these have gone silent. Transparency in these projects was never great, but maybe that has improved since I stopped backing them?

Of the board games: I enjoyed half and still have 3. Honestly, this seems to be in line with the games I try in general. Kickstarter has practically become an official business model for the industry, with established companies using it regularly. The result is that there is a high standard even for amateur projects in terms of understanding the game they're making, having artists lined up, having reasonable ideas of manufacturing/shipping costs and delays, posting regular updates, etc.

Currently I mostly back RPG books. They're often useful and inspiring for my own games and I've found quite a few systems that I'm keen to try (fingers crossed, 2021 will let that happen). About half of these result in a product I like and keep, and for the rest... Almost everyone running these projects is an RPG nerd like me, looking for an excuse to take their crazy idea as far as they can. I can get behind that. Transparency on these projects has usually been very good.

On lateness: every project has been late, except the ones that were basically just a preorder for something already in progress. The best you can hope for is regular updates that are transparent about progress and setbacks.


I'm at:

- Total: 13

- Scams: 3

- Not delivered: 4

- Delivered on time: 0

- Delivered with <3 month delay: 1

- Delivered with <1 year delay: 4

- Delivered with >1 year delay: 1


Just to chime in, I bought a CNC and 2 3D printers from Kickstarter over the years. One was junk, one was a scam, and the other ran out of funds before they shipped a unit.

The first CNC (MyDIYCNC) was 6 months late and the quality was horrible. The two MDF walls that held the metal Y axis in place were pre-drilled more than an inch apart. It was sold as a budget CNC printer but in reality was basically useless except as a learning exercise in what matters in CNC design.

Of the two 3D printers I bought, neither arrived. The Peachy Printer was a cute, simple, and cheap design.. after many updates of adding complexity and delays one founder accused the other founder of running off with the funds and buying a house, but did so in such a weird way one has to wonder what the hell actually happened.

The other 3d printer I don't even remember the name.. it was supposed to be high quality and cost around $300 CAD. Manufacturing delays and issues, they cancelled the whole thing and shipped nothing.


This one is 5 years and never got delivered. I vowed to never do another KS type site ever again after this one.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1284726646/the-lampster...

Funny story though, I bought them as gifts for the 4 founders of our company. CEO went nuts after a year and the 3 of us eventually left. Company is still in business, is much hated on the internet and I hope one day he will get a nice delivery of 4 lamps and wonder where they came from.


I mean there are completely stupid pitches, like this one where it's the backers who pay to make the game:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2000580152/neil-degrass...

Of course, no game is going to get made, because that's not how you produce a videogame, but people still gave almost $400,000 for that.


So is the moral of the story that their Kickstarter is a scam, or that it takes a surprisingly long time to design and manufacture a high quality hammer?

I'm not sure what background this crew has, but presumably there's a large delta between thinking "hey i reckon i could invent a better hammer" and actually designing it, mass producing it and getting it to market. On the face of it you might think if you back a project like this you'd get your hammer within a year or two, but maybe it's more involved than that. I honestly don't know.


The moral of the story is that most people don't really know how difficult it is to:

1. Come up with an idea.

2. Plan and execute idea to achieve a finished product.

3. Get finished product shipped out to users.

That's why this kind of shit has normally been relegated to people having to pitch ideas to people who not only have capital, but also have experience in bringing products to market.

Kickstarter gives any person with a dream, an opportunity. Without also explaining to them that this is a long row to hoe.


A kickstarter becomes a scam the moment the project creator realises their project isn't realistic and will never be fulfilled and fail to disclose it to the backers, while keeping giving them the run around for years. Projects don't have to start as a scam to become one eventually.


Ah the gamble of crowd funding on a platform who refuse to get involved, even when there has been violations of their terms of use. Some great examples spring to mind.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/tangibleinstruments/arp...

'Tangible instruments' have a product 'ready to ship. Turns out to be an empty case. Essentially spent all the investment money, but didn't get ownership of the hardware design from the ee they contracted so had to start again. Still no product, and years after it was due to ship it's been superseded in terms of functionality by products available in the marketplace.


I've used a lot of tools recently, including crowbars and hammers of various sizes. This is a stupid idea, as stupid as multi-tool pliers or the swiss army knife.

It means that it WILL sell, and the buyers will be the category of hipsters sporting well-trimmed beards, thick rimmed glasses and forester's shirts. The customers will be very happy with their product, as happy as they are with their multi-tool pliars and GPS watches, and since they will never actually use it for anything remotely resembling actual work (as with their other posessions) they will remain happy with it.

So.. Good on you, Cole-Bar. You can be as next-gen as you want, you'll never get picked up on an actual building site. You're too flimsy (and expensive) to use as a crowbar (they are TOOLS and they will be hit and bent in every imaginable angle, with any imaginable tool), and you are.. not a good hammer for anything, not as a light precise hammer, not as a heavy duty one. Congratulations, you're about as useless as your target audience, a match made in heaven.


While I agree this looks dumb, I don't understand your loathing for multi-tool pliers. The most useful tool is the one you have with you, so I'm going to carry as many as I can fit in my pocket at once.


Kickstarter campaigns are basically the modern day infomercials.

It’s all about having the perfect pitch video and impressive tram bios, getting shallow pro-forma coverage in all the tech blogs, and then name-dropping them all in order to bolster your image (along with the obligatory credulous pull quotes). Make sure your social media team keeps putting out updates, and don’t forget to add some ridiculous stretch goals for when you go viral.

Never mind that your team has never actually shipped a working product at scale before, and never mind that fulfilling all your reward tier posters and T-shirts will take nearly as time as delivering your actual product.

At least when you bought something off TV you’d actually get something. Sure, you’d have to wait 6-8 weeks for it to arrive, but that’s practically Amazon Prime compared to Kickstarter.


You mean "home shopping", like on TV where you call "right now" and you get useless stuff... Kickstarter is purely a marketing business, many backers still don't understand it.

The client is the project creator, not the backers. Since Kickstarter makes money on successful marketing campaigns.

Apparently, they are still doing well

https://www.kickstarter.com/help/stats

Good for them. I will never back anything on that platform because I find it exploitative. Kickstarter claims they can't do any due diligence and it's up to the backers. But how can a backer assess the viability of a project if Kickstarter themselves can't? How many bakers know anything about industrial production, supply chain, ... The project creator can lie to the face of backers for half a decade, of course most of them are completely ignorant of what producing goods entails, for instance:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/stillalive/polygons-the...

4 years to produce a basic measuring spoon, and counting...


I was more going for those old late night informercials, Ron Popeil, etc. "But wait, there's more!"


I've dabbled in kickstarters over the years, but my main exposure to them is through the podcast "Your Kickstarter Sucks". It's quite entertaining.

http://yourkickstartersucks.com/


I go into Kickstarter and IGG and friends with the view that I want to contribute a small sum of money to see something realized. If you take a good crack at it and eat the money, that's okay.

After all, I gave you like $200. It's not the end of the world.


> After all, I gave you like $200. It's not the end of the world.

Where's my $200?


Oh we had some delays with a vendor. It'll be there next May ;) COVID trouble you understand.


On point for a KS thread


Is there an opportunity to create a business that kickstarts products/services and assures that the funders get the product they contribute to. The business would provide a framework of services to help kickstart the products listed, as well as help with any/all aspects of the delivery (incubation, local resources, grants, testing, etc)


KS has become a scam. I crowdfunded this one product, they kept delaying the shipping date, then they said they shipped it, no details of shipment, then they informed me that it was delivered. I gave up, scammy douchebags!


I’ve always looked at crowdfunding as a bet. That is, here’s something I wish existed and maybe these people can do it. If you think of it as a way to preorder, you’re bound to be disappointed.


So much shilling and gaslighting in their KS's comments page.


I remember first seeing the Stanley FuBar what feels like 7 years ago. I wonder which came first, and whether they were invented independently of each other...


[flagged]


Or at least, it would be useful, if it had been manufactured and shipped to its purchasers at any point in the last 8 years.




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