If you need proof that crowdfunding platforms should overhaul their vetting process, check out the Kickstarter campaign for New Pokemon MMO Game and VR. Creator, Fabio Guida is seeking $2,128 to create an unofficial development team to pitch Nintendo the idea of an official Pokemon MMO. The campaign is just as ridiculous as it sounds.
Let’s ignore for just a moment the copyright violations on display here. Guida openly admits that the campaign is a “pre-view” he’s using to garner feedback. This already violates Kickstarter’s rules. Campaigns need to create a product, but he’s just looking spread the word and maybe build a team. Things only get more outlandish from here.
The campaign video is actually gameplay from MunchingOrange of the fan game, Pokemon Generations. A project that Nintendo publicly shut down once they found out about it. Basically, Guida has come to Kickstarter trying to push an idea he didn’t come up with for a franchise he doesn’t own. All so he can try to sell Nintendo on the idea of paying him to make their game.
Turning Up The Heat On This Dumpster Fire
“The aim of this first kickstarter campaign is to create a great team in order to create a prototype to show to nintendo and get their patronage, like Niantic did,” he explains. Of course this oversimplification completely omits the fact that Niantic had already developed and released a successful augmented reality game with Ingress. Meanwhile, his proposed project has no development team, no progress, and no proof that backers will ever receive anything for their money.
Ordinarily I hate drawing attention to such clear scampaigns. I find it disrespectful to actual indie developers. People who’ve put time and effort into their passion projects, who don’t get enough media coverage. The bigger problem here though is that this mock campaign made it onto Kickstarter in the first place.
Kickstarter has to begin addressing these junk campaigns. Currently, they are doing a disservice not only to their platform, but also to the developers who rely on them. Indiegogo has already lost significant legitimacy in the crowdfunding community due to its lack of campaign vetting. Kickstarter needs to police its content more. Otherwise creators and backers will move to a platform that does.