Truth be told, with a few hundred more hours work Solace Crafting will be able to support itself, I don't doubt that. So the goal is really just to get those hours in. Without funding I can only get somewhere around fifty to one hundred hours in per month. With funding I can get two hundred plus hours in per month (and still go to bed on time).
One thing to keep in mind is that because I put time into development every day, the remaining time needed to get Solace Crafting into early release gets smaller every day. In other words, the amount of funding that I need to cover expenses gets smaller every day. Somewhere in the near future, the amount of money I have saved, the amount of funding supporters have provided, and the remaining time needed, will reach a point where it is "safe enough" for me to go full time. The $9,000 that Kickstarter reached though did not fulfill would realistically have been "enough," but maybe not considered "safe enough" by all parties.
For those interested in pushing that date closer to now, I've researched some alternatives and would love to hear what you think.
My top pick: PatreonPatreon is actually a subscription platform by nature, something I never want to impose on general players, but it could work well for the current situation. Every dollar earned through Patreon can be displayed as "total amount raised" towards a goal. I can also reduce the goal amount freely as time goes on and I get closer to early release. Patreon also allows rewards so I can still offer the $15 pre-order, etc. I will be posting updates to Patreon most days if this is ends up being the way to go.
Another possible route would be Equity Crowdfunding through IndieGoGo, but this has a heavy initial, a fair amoun of paperwork, and so forth. I don't think is the best choice for right now, though equity does have its benefits.
Also with IndieGoGo, a "flexible funding" campaign with inDemand would allow me to keep whatever is earned, and to continue to raise money even after the deadline has passed for players interested in buying higher tiers. I already have a video and graphics, so this too could be a viable option, though I wouldn't be looking to "run it" like I tried with Kickstarter.
Another possible route is to offer pre-sales through for example the Humble Store, which I've heard is possible, but this makes it difficult to accept different amounts depending on what individuals are capable of/willing to support. Or to simply pre-sell the game myself using PayPal, but this sometimes leads to PayPal freezing accounts, and in general is a lot more tax and paperwork for the developer.
Personally, I think creating a Patreon page that clearly states the purpose and goal of allowing pledges is the easiest, safest, and perhaps best way to go. Please let me know if you think IndieGoGo has a better chance, or if you are interested in something else and why.
Thank you!Since the campaign has ended and I've refocused my attention on developing the game I've got a lot done. Some of the code I wrote over the weekend won't be going in just yet, but solace upgrades, demon wave attacks, and static defense obelisks are all in and working! I just have to make them look better =]
I also made a lot of improvements to building and added in some more pieces for increased creativity.
To help potential patrons better understand where Solace Crafting is going I've started a development road map, though it's just text for now. Check it out and let me know if you have any ideas:
Best wishes to you!