Camelot Unchained Newsletter #3 – Are You On The Fence?

Mark’s getting serious.

The Camelot Unchained Kickstarter campaign is at the halfway point today, with 15 of 30 days having passed.  The campaign is sitting at the $1.2 million mark, which means that it has picked up an additional $200K since it hit the million dollar point a week ago.  At that rate of funding, the project needs another four weeks, and it only has two.


Last night the third Camelot Unchained newsletter went out to those of us who signed up for the mailing list.  It opened with a personal appeal from Mark Jacobs.

We knew that our Kickstarter campaign wasn’t going to be an easy sell. We are asking for $2M which isn’t the largest Kickstarter ask but it is still very significant. Even though I am putting up $2M of my own money (and an additional $1M from investors) to fund completion, we know that many of you are still nervous about committing.

If you are among those who are waiting to see if we get closer to funding before committing to our Kickstarter, I have to ask you why?

Kickstarter, unlike PayPal, doesn’t charge your credit card until the project funds. Thus, you can back us without worrying about being charged for a project that doesn’t fund. This is why we can’t use PayPal until after Camelot Unchained funds.

Also, by pledging now you help us as we pass through the Kickstarter doldrums that very often happen in the middle of a project. I’m hesitant to use any gimmicks (“Pledge now and receive a pony!”) but I will simply say this, if you believe in what you’ve seen so far from Camelot Unchained and have not currently pledged, it’s time to show your support. Doing so costs you nothing and in the meantime, it may help encourage other people to pledge as well.

If everyone who signed up for our newsletter pledged now we would be a lot closer to making our goal. So please, if you like what you’ve seen and heard from myself and CSE, now’s the time for getting off that fence before it leaves a permanent mark!

That text is unchanged by myself except for fixing “smart” quotes that did not copy/paste correctly (those are Microsoft’s curse on the world in my opinion) and inserting line breaks to make the text more readable. (That is where my mind inserted line breaks when reading it, which probably says more about how I think that what was written.)

And the message is, essentially, “don’t wait.”  Certainly a last minute push to the final goal is more likely, and more likely to be successful, the closer to the actual goal the campaign is.  And that last minute push can be important.  Look at how much the last day or so brought in for Shroud of the Avatar.

This was followed up by a reminder about  The Depths, the plan for an RvR dungeon in Camelot Unchained.

Depths of Camelot Unchained

Depths of Camelot Unchained

The Depths was discussed in a video update where it was described as a “stretch goal.”

I am not sure that going from a message about trying to make it to an ambitious base goal to a discussion of a stretch goal, which assumes funding above and beyond the asked for amount, is really the best one-two marketing punch.  But it is possible I am missing something there.

The newsletter then launches into an interview with author, former Dark Age of Camelot player, member of the Stellar Emperor fraternity, and Camelot Unchained backer Mark Sumner, who, according to the interview, learned about the Camelot Unchained Kickstarter from “the spiffy blog of the Ancient Gaming Noob.”

Hi Mark!

Then the newsletter closes with a thank you for people who have supported the project and a final statement about the future.

…I look forward to the day that we are not talking about pledges, backing, etc. but rather how together we can make Camelot Unchained the game that many of us have been waiting so long for, an RvR-focused MMORPG that is willing to take chances, break rules in order to dare to be great.

So here we sit, with 15 days left to go, the funding about 60% complete, and probably all the easy dollars pledged at this point.  There are no more islands or inns available. (25 people pledged $5,000 a piece for those.)  So a lot of people need to show up and buy in to make this happen.

7 thoughts on “Camelot Unchained Newsletter #3 – Are You On The Fence?

  1. bhagpuss

    I’ve gone from not interested at all to mildly interested as more information has come out and because Mark has run such a good campaign. Neverheless, much though I have come to like PvP over the years, I only like it as an appetizer before the main course or a liqueur at the end of the meal. PvE is and always will be the staple. Without a very substantial PvE offering to back up the RvR I really can’t summon up more than mild curiosity.

    Also, I played DAOC at launch and while I liked it well enough I don’t have the extremely warm nostalgic memory of it that so many seem to have.

    I’m at the point where if CU does ever launch I might try it. I’m quite content to wait and see if it ever happens. I’m curious about whether people doing that will be at a significant disadvantage over Founders, but I don’t imagine I’d ever do more than dabble so even if that were to be the case it wouldn’t bother me.

    If a Kickstarter campaign fails to meet its target, is there anything to stop it being relaunched with a less ambitious one? I always though $2m was a very big ask. If it ends up with, let’s say, $1.5m pledged, making the full pot $4.5m instead of $5m and MJ thought he could shave some non-essentials and still bring in a good, solid MMO for that 90% of the wished-for funding, would he have to start again from scratch?


  2. Devilstower

    Hey there. (I’m Mark Sumner. Devil’s Tower is a book I wrote in another life, when people still paid me to write books.)

    I visit this place often. You’ve just about got me pulled into World of Tanks. Seeing that I’m even more ancient, and haven’t done any serious MMO’ing since I spent two years trying to max LOTRO without dying (never made it past somewhere in the 30s) I need a new hobby.

    The RvR in DAOC is probably the most fun I ever had on line. I’m hoping CU can recapture that atmosphere and fun. (and sorry if this posted twice. If there’s anything more ancient than me, it’s the flippin’ version of IE my company forces me to use)


  3. Coppertopper

    I’ve been a little bit turned off by MJ’s videos. They smack slightly of the white sunglasses wearing goofball that pimped WAR so hard. “Just the facts man!” is what I was thinking after watching the first 5mins of the ‘combat’ video and not a single mention of CU combat was made. That being said, going to pledge this – my first kickstarter – as DAoC was both my first and still favorite MMO (GW2 is the only other on my HD right now).


  4. Asmiroth

    I personally have no interest in the game or concept but do have interest from a meta perspective.

    If Jacobs is right and he only needs 50k subs to stay alive, each of those would have to give 40$ through kickstarter to reach the base goal. That’s a lot of money for crowdsourcing and a significant percentage of interest too. Even if 100k invested, it’s still 20$ for an admitedly super niche game.

    If anything, the entire story is going to be one giant lesson learned for the industry.


  5. Jason Mitchell

    I had been waffling about backing this but just went ahead and did the $50 level. I buy a ton of games all the time anyway, might as well get something for doing it early I suppose.


  6. Belghast

    Honestly I like what he is trying, but the more I hear about the game the less and less interested I am in it. I like PVE content, I love getting loot as drops. PVP is something I can only do for short periods of time. I spend the rest of my time doing PVE content.

    So while I think Camelot is interesting, and I loved Dark Age of Camelot… this really is too far off the PVP deep end for my tastes. I just don’t think the market is there for a PVP only subscription based game.


  7. wartzilla

    To me it seems like he’s trying his best to alienate both the traditional PVE customers and the sandbox PVP customers (lets face it, Eve players) by going for something that’s apparently called ‘realm vs realm’. I’m not big into MMOs, I only play one, so I only vaguely know what that is.. but it sounds like canned fighting between player-populated NPC factions to me. You know, like pretty much all other MMOs.

    Take a look at this ‘foundational principle’:

    ‘Sandboxes are great fun!’ Which is why we’re not making one. Wait what?!

    I will only be interested in another MMO if it’s a pure sandbox game. It seems quite weak that there is only one around. Darkfall has apparently re-launched as another game — I just don’t trust that developer. They seem really unstable and incapable of supporting a long-term game.


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