KS Creator Questions title

TheLeague of Gamemakers brings you more Kickstarter tips! In our series, Kickstarter Questions, we’ve asked the same 7 questions of project creators who have started and finished a campaign to discover the best practices and common paths to success.

Our next set of questions comes from a passionate designer with his first game hitting backer’s tables right now. Chris Henderson is the creator of What Oh?!? The Game of Couples Banter. Here’s what he had to say as a project creator:

7 Kickstarter Questions

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What are the most cost effective advert outlets you’ve found to drive folks to your campaign?

The only advertising I used was for my Facebook page. For 50 bucks or so, I added maybe 4-5 likes to the page. It didn’t seem very effective.

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Name your favorite way to engage backers.

I messaged every one of my backers a thank you message. I try to be as personal and as personable as I can when talking to them.

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When do you know your game is ready for Kickstarter?

I tested the game for years and even so, I had to make a decision to stop before it kept evolving even more. If you are a perfectionist, the game will never be ready. I knew the game was fun and the rules were tight. I had people asking me when it would be available. I knew I had to Kickstart it eventually.

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What is your action plan for after a campaign ends?

I am currently going through my post-campaign action plan. This involved tweaking the final game graphics and rulebook wording. I was already in discussion with a game manufacturer and had a promised cost estimate. I sent the files over and am currently working on fulfillment. In the mean time, I shoot a message to my backers every 2-3 weeks with an update. I update my Facebook page once a week, but, honestly, I should keep posting every day or two.

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What is something you would do differently on your next campaign?

I had no reviewers officially lined up to drop a review of the game when my campaign launched. I didn’t even have my own final demo copies ready to send out to reviewers. I ran the whole campaign and only got 1 review on their from a local game reviewing couple. *Forehead slap*

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What 3 tips would you give a new project creator?

1) The most important thing I learned and I really cannot think of anything more important: make sure you have enough fans, friends, family, or followers to provide the first 30% of your project’s funding in the first weekend. People ignore ‘losing’ projects, so do the word-spreading, money-asking thing.

2) Make your graphics and your video look good. Hire someone if you have to. An idealistic, younger version of myself believed that great ideas or great game mechanics would make people buy your game. I’m not at all saying to make a bad game that looks good, I’m saying that if your good game looks bad, no one will believe it is good.

3) Help out other creators. Look over their projects when they ask for feedback. You’ll be asking the same things one day. When you offer your help, you never know what will come of it. It’s probably the best way to network in the Kickstarter community.

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What’s kicking around in the next Year?

2014 will be focused on selling and marketing the leftover games from the Kickstarter-funded print run. If things go well, I’ll start on the first expansion for the game (Family Talk) and I will most likely Kickstart this expansion.

1 Bonus Question, Just for Fun

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What is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?
Wha-? AAAaaaaghhhh!

Chris Henderson founded Games Without Strings to self publish (cheers, Chris!) his first game, What Oh?!? Here’s a link to his successful Kickstarter campaign and to his website where you can find out more about the game and grab your copy. It’s shipping now! He printed with Ad Magic, printers of Cards Against Humanity and a popular Kickstarter manufacturing choice for card games and more.

More Kickstarter Questions here!

If you have crowdfunded a successful campaign and would like to participate in our KS Questions, send us an email! – we’d love to hear and publish your answers and tips.

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