When it comes to crowdfunding the pitch pretty much makes or breaks a campaign. The difference between a mediocre finish and a spectacular one lies in what a developer manages to convey in a short video and text pitch. In the case of Stardrop, the focus on showing rather than telling has hurt the funding. I know that I was wary at first due to the lack of gameplay and story elements, both very important to an adventure game. Particularly one that’s first person. However, perhaps the one saving grace lies with the short demo that the developers have offered.
While the pitch is less than stellar at least the demo starts to fill in the holes and answers to questions that I had. Namely, just who are the protagonists and why are they out there as a salvage and rescue team? Even so, there were questions that were still left unanswered which is why I turned to Joure Visser for more insight on the campaign and Stardrop itself. It’s still not a lot but it’s better than what I had to read through initially.
In response to my questions regarding why they chose to let the demo speak for the game itself Joure basically told me that they’re more “show than tell” and that they had hoped to let the demo speak for itself. I pointed out that not everyone will take the time to download and play the demo, relying more on the pitch than anything else, but I do at least see where he’s coming from.
I want people who are passionate about the game to back us and not just because.
“I am a show not tell kind of person and the most important aspect of STARDROP will be the experience. If that does not draw you in then it might not be for you. I want people who are passionate about the game to back us and not just because. If the story element draws you in and you play the demo I feel that’s when you should know enough about the project to decide if you want to back it. I know that there are people who won’t play the demo but they should if they like the idea.”
But what about the demo itself? I’m happy to report that I did like what I saw, even if it was little more than a tutorial of sorts in the ship owned by Aryn and John. I did enjoy the banter between the two as they come across a dropship adrift somewhere in the middle of space. It ends just as she gets ready to board the derelict so we basically got to see the one interior so far. Not counting the bonus level that shows off more features for Aryn’s helmet. Which, honestly is probably the best part of the experience and adds some extra strategy to the experience.
The main problem that I have with Stardrop, and I’m sure is keeping most potential backers from pledging, is that most of the “experience” is tied to said demo. It’s got to be a big reason why the campaign has stalled so badly and definitely one that almost made me pass completely. The demo is good and I do recommend trying it out before deciding one way or the other. It’s more or less sold me but I don’t see Stardrop making funding this time around because of the way the pitch is structured.