If you have been on any boardgaming media today, you have problem seen at least something about Cthulhu: Death May Die and it’s Kickstarter launch today. It is the latest Kickstarter release from the popular CMON Games. It has caused a stir today, as the company has released the tiers in an different fashion than usual.
CMON Kickstarters have always profited off of fear of missing out or FOMO. Their campaigns usually include a lot of Kickstarter exclusive content, as well as early bird deals. This causes their campaigns to fund almost immediately. Gamers who miss out on their Kickstarters can expect to pay several hundred dollars to get all of the pieces on the market afterwards, leaving many people unhappy with their practices.
This campaign was no different, and in some ways even worse than prior campaigns. Many backers eagerly jumped on the second the campaign was released, only to be dismayed as the tier with the giant Cthulhu mini only had 100 backer slots, gone within a few seconds. Making matters worse, CMON continued to release new tiers with the miniature. Except each new tier was more expensive, and would take longer to receive. What started as a pledge for 220$ USD that would be delivered in July 2019, has now become 250$ that will be delivered in April 2020. Many fans were extremely disappointed to be paying more for worse service.
This differs from CMON’s usual early bird tactic, where a set number of gamers get a discount off the game. The added disappointment of the delay in time AND paying more is what has people mad this time.
I have no skin in the game, so to speak. I had not planned on backing this game, and will definitely not now. From an outside observer, I continue to be surprised by CMON’s willingness to alienate their fans, when they know their projects will back, gimmick or not. I truly believe that they lost backers with this ploy, but yet they gained a lot of media presence with it. Knowing their market strategy, I stopped backing their projects a while ago, finding that I had too much stuff that I never used. It is easy to be drawn in by FOMO, but missing the campaigns also poses problems. taking the stance of none of their Kickstarters means I risk aftermarket prices if I fall in love with a game. It’s frustrating, but I personally would rather navigate that than support their continued Kickstarter practices. The only way that they will stop doing stuff like this is if people stop backing it.