[Henry in his office in front of a pixel fireplace, wearing a captain’s hat, dressing gown, and smoking a bubble pipe]
Hi, I’m Henry.
I made the game Spaceteam.
You can get Spaceteam right now, for free. It’s a cooperative party game in which you shout technobabble at your friends until your spaceship explodes.
[overlaid with brief video clips of the game (eg. from the trailer)]
It’s won some awards and is used by teachers, businesses, therapists, and grandparents.
I want to keep making games, sustainably. But I don’t necessarily want to sell them.
That’s why I’m asking YOU to join the Spaceteam Admiral’s Club.
Unlike other exclusive clubs, you won’t be getting:
- Seat upgrades
- Complimentary beverages
- Business lounge access
[awkwardly long pause/nervous glances/cut]
The Admiral’s Club is a community of fans and supporters, but also an experiment.
Traditional campaigns like this focus on funding a specific game, but this one is different. You'll be supporting me directly as a developer, making free games for a whole year.
I'll be working on several cool projects, which is not something that a regular campaign would allow.
First of all, you'll be showing your support for Spaceteam. It has always been free and will stay free, with a few more upgrades to come.
I'll also be working on two brand new games: Blabyrinth [Blabyrinth icon] and Shipshape [Shipshape icon]. You'll hear more about them over the course of the campaign. I'm hoping to finish Blabyrinth and make some good progress on Shipshape before the year is up, and you can follow my progress as it happens.
And then there's the mystery box [Mystery Box icon]. In my experience, game development can be unpredictable and full of surprising opportunities. What's in this box? Maybe an interesting collaboration? A special event? Or an installation piece? It's so mysterious that I’m not sure if it even exists yet. But with your help I'll have the freedom to open the box if it materializes.
That's why this is an experiment. I want to see if people are ready to support an indie developer directly, allowing me to make smart decisions about what I work on. And if I can be sustainable, then I think this model could work for others as well. There are many other indies with small, but important, games that I’d love to support in a similar way. I think the whole game industry needs to move forward and diversify, and for that to happen we need to give creators the freedom to create.
That's what the Spaceteam Admiral's Club means to me.
So what does it mean to you?
Well, you’ll be joining a special community with a discussion forum and developer diary where we can share stories and experiences and I can document my progress. Hopefully we'll have some interesting conversations along the way.
Like everyone else, you'll get new Spaceteam upgrades and the other brand new games that come out of this project.
There are also some special features just for supporters. Depending on how much you contribute, you can create your own Spaceteam word lists and share them with others. You can design your own Spaceteam character. You can even get a fully customized version of Spaceteam for your company with your own graphics and in-jokes.
There will also be a secret handshake.
[Subtitle: "Everybody shake! (hands)"]
In the event of a catastrophic campaign failure [animation of funding thermometer/graph drooping] these games will probably still get made, but I’ll end up charging money for them instead.
I’d rather not do this. There are several important reasons I want to keep my games free:
- They'll be accessible to everyone
- I won't have to compromise the design in order to sell more copies
- I won't have to worry about piracy, copy-protection, clones, or second-hand sales. In fact it will make sense for me to share the games as widely as possible.
It's also impossible to pick a single price point that works for everyone, so I think this "pay-what-you-can" model is more respectful of what people can afford.
You see, the club is open to rich & poor alike. In fact, down here on the right you’ll find a handy table to indicate just how rich you are. If you're able to click on one of the higher numbers, please do so!
The money will go towards my living expenses while making these games, travel costs to bring them to festivals, and some of it will pay for art and music because I usually need help with those things
So please, join the Spaceteam Admiral's Club.
You'll be doing more than just bringing a new game into existence. You’ll be supporting an indie developer. You’ll be casting a vote for alternative funding models. And you’ll be part of a community that believes that artists should be paid for their work.
This campaign feels much more honest and sustainable to me than other business models. I really hope it makes sense to you too and that together we can make it work…
[turn to face camera 2, zoom in on face]
…as a spaceteam!