Lately it’s been getting harder to differentiate between someone on Kickstarter who’s just there to troll others and someone that’s genuinely in over their head that doesn’t know how crowdfunding (or even game design) works. A week ago we covered an open world Star Wars RPG campaign that had launched amongst other genuine campaigns seeking funding to the tune of $200,000. The asking amount was ambitious enough but there were way too many red flags to treat this one as anything other than a joke.
When it comes to intellectual properties the first thing anybody should do, unless they already own the rights, is to contact the holders of the IP or risk getting shut down or worse. In this case, I’m surprised that Disney hasn’t cracked down on this obvious Star Wars rip-off. And based on the comments that I’ve seen in both of the updates and in the main section I’m far from the only one that was waiting on seeing it get the mighty banhammer from them. Some, it seems, either contacted or threatened to contact them for this obvious breach of DMCA.
The other major red flag that made me feel like this guy was just trolling for some cheap laughs was the lack of…well, anything really. The pitch was literally like a paragraph or two that said nothing beyond him wanting to chase his dream. There was no video, screenshots, or even concept artwork. The spelling was horrendous. The guy didn’t even bother to use a spellchecker or know how to spell Kenobi right.
All of this brought out the hecklers in droves. And, honestly, I felt compelled to toss a buck in myself just to have a little fun. From comments ranging from “I put in a buck, where’s my stuff” to “I can’t wait to see Disney sue your pants off” nobody took this idea for a Star Wars RPG seriously. Whether this “Devin” chap did or not I’m not sure but he certainly didn’t take it lightly.
Well, as of January 7 the creator decided that enough was enough and announced that he’s canceling the campaign. You can read the full post below or in the link, but in a nutshell he was fed up with people trampling on his dreams. “You truly want to see some be in debt for the wrest of their life because they had a dream for a video game that they never created. Very selfish, and very ironic.” Frankly, the only irony here is that he could be genuinely hurt. Either way, he’s certain to have dodged a laser blast from LucasArts/Disney for infringing on the Star Wars name.
It’s getting harder to spot a joke campaign from a downright scam or just a troll wanting to get their rocks off at the expense of others (and giving Kickstarter a bad name). Whatever this one turns out to be in the end, and we might never know, it’s safe to say that if Disney hasn’t heard about this by now it will soon. The sad thing is that this one wasn’t even funny. It’s just a sad attempt by someone to get noticed. At least that’s how I see it. At least the “Open Source Death Star” project nearly three years ago was genuinely hilarious.