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Cautionary Tales continue…

May 1, 2016

This is a pretty interesting overview of Chaosium’s mismanagement of the Call of Cthulhu kickstarter.

The sad part is that it sounds like most of the terrible business decisions were things which people could have avoided up front… a lot of the same issues that drove many rpg publishers under during the 80s and the 90s.  Spending more than you’ve got, forgetting things like, you know, storage and shipping have costs, or that… you have to pay the people making the product, and so on.

The usual sort of failure you hear with Kickstarters these days, assuming the folks are capable of making a product in the first place, are actually the issues around things like finding out bonus prizes like t-shirts or other collectibles cost more than you thought, or that shipping suddenly rises in cost – not that, you didn’t do the initial calculations to begin with.

It’s also the reason that a lot of folks simply go with PDF only sales overseas or put their product up on a print-on-demand site to avoid the shipping costs.

I’m glad to hear the folks who took over are attempting to pay off all the freelancers who put in effort, though it’s sadly so common for freelancers to not be paid on time (as in years of wait) or at all, that the only difference in that would have happened compared to the normal process is the customers wouldn’t have gotten a book out of it either.

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