Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

What do you want to see in Armagetron soon? Any new feature ideas? Let's ponder these ground breaking ideas...
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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by AI-team »

Would be get a complete rewrite of the game or would you just be adding new features to the current codebase?
  
 
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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by Lucifer »

compguygene wrote:
Lucifer wrote:
Now, I know that the idea of a marketplace to buy custom and/our different graphics for a Lightcycle and Tail seems abhorrent to you.
No. The idea of having a specific type of content that must be purchased is not only abhorrent, it's impractical. In a GPL game, there can't be any enforcement of a paid system that lacks a free alternative.

So, what other ideas do you have for rewarding contributors to a kickstarter project?
Before we give up on the idea of a marketplace,
I highlighted the parts that indicate that I'm in favor of a marketplace and you're just failing to understand.
So, you are saying that you couldn't implement a system that simply uses your GID to determine if you have purchased a piece of content, and only renders it across the connected clients if it has been purchased?
In a game whose source code is freely available, we cannot guarantee that connected clients who haven't paid for the content can't steal it after they've received their copies.
I understand that local client can't really be prevented from using a given graphic image. However, the value is in establishing an identity for oneself, that is unique graphics that others see. Certainly you could have free content delivered this way as well.
There may be a way to deliver it in a way that makes it difficult to steal the content, but I'm not coming up with anything that doesn't somehow violate some core principle.
Honestly Lucifer, if we absolutely cannot monetize some small part of this and then provide value to backers,

...

So, if this is gonna work, we are going to have to create a piece of commerce here. You're right, I am out of ideas. By definition, unless we create a piece of commerce to deliver value to the backers, we are not going to get backers.
Someone correct me, but I think this is a false dilemma. You're presenting the argument that the only way this can possibly work is if we do X, even after reading my post from the other thread (quoted here) suggesting numerous other possibilities and asking for other ideas.
Lucifer wrote: If we could get a developer to work full-time on the game, I think he/she should take a lead role rather than a codemonkey role. Yes, coding would happen, but also courting developers, leading discussions to lay out plans for features/fixes that can be delegated (sorta) to other developers, overseeing infrastructure (but not directly running it, because that could easily eat away all of his/her time), setting up and running tournaments, promoting the game, and here's the kicker: managing all efforts to make the game pay his/her salary. So, merchandising, special paid distributions, etc. Whatever comes to mind. Growing the audience is a big part of it. Fundraising drives, finding corporate sponsors, etc.
So, again I ask for people to contribute ideas. Compguygene has run out and apparently has only contributed the marketplace idea. What do the rest of you have, no matter how ridiculous it may sound to you?
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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by XD|VIPer »

So are we saying that you want to pay for the game or just the graphics, sound, and music or just those custom made moviepacks?

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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by Lucifer »

XD|VIPer wrote:So are we saying that you want to pay for the game or just the graphics, sound, and music or just those custom made moviepacks?
It's not feasible to charge for the game since it's been given away for free for years and is open source. The minute we make people pay for it, someone will buy it and then give it away for free. They have that right, that's what the GPL is all about. So we're never going to charge for the game.

However, the game loads content developed by other people. Sounds, music, graphics, maps, moviepacks. All of these are things someone could reasonably sell to players rather than give away. So Compguygene is suggesting, basically, a marketplace for these things to be sold.

Looking at what could be accomplished given one year's worth of full-time development by two developers (with additional part-time development as needed/available by others), this is the list of things proposed that could generate revenue for the game, to be used to keep those two developers employed full-time to work on the game:
  • A marketplace for third-party content to be made available for pay (including scripts that provide functionality to servers and/or clients when the scripting engine has time to be worked on)
  • Infrastructure that requires subscription (server operators could charge monthly fees, the project itself could provide high performance tournament servers, etc)
  • Merchandising. Merchandising, merchandise. Armagetron the T-Shirt. Armagetron the Coloring Book! Armagetron the Lunch Box! Armagetron the Breakfast Cereal! Armagetron the Flame Thrower! (The kids love that one)
  • Special paid distributions. These would have special content/themes/music, and you'd have to pay to download it. The core program would still be GPL, however the associated content would not be so free.
  • Actual fundraising drives, similar to the way that Wikipedia or the Office of Letters and Light do their fundraisers.
  • Corporate sponsors, aka advertising. We could provide an advertising network in-game and sell time/space on it to commercial operations. We'd also use it for our own purposes, of course.
Pay particular attention to the items that could generate revenue for other people. Servers that run ads could get a percentage of the ads, but the network itself would be managed by the dev team, so the dev team would get a cut. Servers that charge monthly fees could keep the money themselves and actually pay the costs involved in having high performance servers. They could donate some of it back to the project. The marketplace Compguygene wants would include a commission to the project, but the lion's share would still go to the content creators that sell through it.
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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by Word »

Well, the obvious offerings would be a better game for them to play (they get it for free, so the game itself should be considered as an incentive/reward as well!), server help and making it easier for them to advertise (not just have banners, but some description text and a more direct way to connect to someone's website) their companies, or immortalize their names somehow (Hall of Fame! Bot names! The John Doe Memorial Server!) :)

Ridiculous perhaps, but I thought it should be mentioned - a different form of advertising: If you 'politicize' the game and somehow promote certain ideals more aggressively - stuff most people would agree on, but not everyone cares about (e.g. tolerance, cllimate protection...), you could get some more supporters, maybe.

You could also turn the game into some kind of art/music gallery for people to display their works on the walls/as 'server soundtrack' and people could comment them.

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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by compguygene »

Thank you for clearing up my misunderstanding of your prior post and suggesting alternative means of monetizing things. Clearly a combination of things you have suggested would be a workable solution. Personally, I might be willing to buy Armagetron: the flamethrower as a Christmas gift for my son!
But seriously, the paid distribution could be the thing to push as the Kickstarter project. Backers would get a copy for their contribution of $20 and above. Of course, some backers will download the current game and start playing.
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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by Phytotron »

compguygene wrote:Personally, I might be willing to buy Armagetron: the flamethrower as a Christmas gift for my son!
Spaceballs the Flamethrower!


Seems to me all those things Lucifer bullet-pointed above could go into an Armagetron online cash shop. Real and virtual items. People buy all kinds of stupid virtual crap—"in game content"—for video games these days.


By the way, wasn't there talk of developing a new graphics engine once upon a time?

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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by Lucifer »

Phytotron wrote:
compguygene wrote:Personally, I might be willing to buy Armagetron: the flamethrower as a Christmas gift for my son!
Spaceballs the Flamethrower!


Seems to me all those things Lucifer bullet-pointed above could go into an Armagetron online cash shop. Real and virtual items. People buy all kinds of stupid virtual crap—"in game content"—for video games these days.
Theoretically. Practically, there are technical issues that need to be worked out (some involve paying money to someone else).
By the way, wasn't there talk of developing a new graphics engine once upon a time?
That work is ongoing in the sense that everything is ongoing. Meaning it's not getting done.
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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by Paizo »

wow! Arma on kickstarter!
but wait, i don't get it.
What are the benefits for armagetron? Are there people ready to stop studing/working for develop this game?

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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by sinewav »

Paizo wrote:What are the benefits for armagetron? Are there people ready to stop studing/working for develop this game?
Yes, several people. LOVER$BOY is actively writing code and there a patches and bug fixes submitted all the time from a large handful of other players. This project is far from dead, but simply suffering the ills of most open source projects.

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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by /dev/null »

I have no problems with the devs getting more money so they can spend more time working on tron, but a cash shop? **** that noise, this is open source, not steam. The last thing I want is to have to shill out 5 bucks just so I can join a server. Tron has an active and longstanding community specifically because its free. I dont think added microtransactions to tron will do anything but put some nails in its coffin. Plus, there is literally nothing to keep someone from just making thier own free versions of the stuff in the cash shop. Tron has never really been built with security in mind, so it would be trivial to lie to the servers and say "Yeah im totally using the bought version of this bullshit, I swear im not lying"

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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by Lucifer »

/dev/null wrote:I have no problems with the devs getting more money so they can spend more time working on tron, but a cash shop? **** that noise, this is open source, not steam. The last thing I want is to have to shill out 5 bucks just so I can join a server. Tron has an active and longstanding community specifically because its free. I dont think added microtransactions to tron will do anything but put some nails in its coffin. Plus, there is literally nothing to keep someone from just making thier own free versions of the stuff in the cash shop. Tron has never really been built with security in mind, so it would be trivial to lie to the servers and say "Yeah im totally using the bought version of this bullshit, I swear im not lying"
Actually, the way resources work (and always will), you won't even have to do that. Someone pays for some content, and then puts it up somewhere to download. Put it in the right place and bam! it works, no need to pay for it.

Our biggest strength is being open and free (as in freedom). We start setting things up that aren't free and open and they will be exploited.

Maybe kickstarter isn't the right place for this? I recently saw an article (but didn't read it) that said that more and more transgender people are using crowdsourcing to pay for their transitions. Maybe if we can get an idea of how they're getting so many people to pay for operations that cost tens of thousands of dollars and benefit nobody except the person getting the operation, we can find a way to get people to give US money for a high quality open source game?
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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by compguygene »

Reviewing this thread, I absolutely agree that Kickstarter is not the right platform to crowdfund this. There are other platforms and ways to organize the crowdfunding. I will spend some time looking into that and report back.
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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by compguygene »

As promised, I have taken the time to compare a number of relevant crowdfunding platforms and have found what appears to be the best combination of low fees and yet actually reliable and flexible, JustGiving. JustGiving is appropriate for charities and projects. Obviously, Armagetron would be a project. Lucifer, please check it out and tell me what you think.
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Re: Let's talk about doing a Kickstarter for Armagetronad

Post by compguygene »

As promised, I have taken the time to compare a number of relevant crowdfunding platforms and have found what appears to be the best combination of low fees and yet actually reliable and flexible, JustGiving. JustGiving is appropriate for charities and projects. Obviously, Armagetron would be a project. Lucifer, please check it out and tell me what you think.
Armagetron: It's a video game that people should just play and enjoy :)
https://bit.ly/2KBGYjvCheck out the simple site about TheServerPharm

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