Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Mantic Fail

The pledge manager for the Mantic Dungeon Saga Kickstarter is about to close and they have managed to out do themselves in weak communication and presentation for a company having done 8 kickstarters now.  I expressed in my end of the drive review that I thought they did a bad job in presenting information during the campaign (other than the game designers personal blog).

In terms of new information they have provided a few pictures of newly sculpted models painted but ofcourse provided no information about whether their examples are resin masters, plastic production samples or something else.  One could actually level a false advertising claim but technically they would just counter, they are not selling anything since this is kickstarter backing.

Originally they talked about getting the backers involved in forming and testing the game but they essentially went dark (including the aforementioned designer) for months.  They did hold a single open test day at their site a few weeks ago but given the time delays involved in outsource manufacturing in China and shipping the game and all the expansions pretty much need to be in the final polish stages at this point and they will still probably miss the project dates.

They also said that all backers could expect the beta copy of the rules about the time that the open test day occurred but they missed that date by about  month now.  (Update they released the beta rules the day after the post with essentially 3 days left out of the 5-6 weeks the pledge manager was live).  Ofcourse this is kickstarter so people are expect to just put down their money in hopes of some day getting the game and maybe by providing even the basic alpha rules back during the drive that was really going the extra mile.  They have also stopped answering questions in the kickstarter comments long ago.  The only person answering any questions about the game itself was the designer himself again but only very recently.

Now the game is going to be the game and I have already backed that so this lack of information matters less than the information about the expansions.  They essentially set up 4 game expansions during the drive which should have significantly different game elements.  The basic game mechanics revolve very closely to the villian raising skeletons and such to fight which does not make a lot of sense for the Orcs Boss to be doing.  You could do something lame and just have Orcs able to pop out of tunnels so their would really be no reason to get the expansions as the game play would seem the same.  Any new information for these 4 expansions.  Not that I have seen.  They are still showing stuff like this in the pledge manager.

 Here you are pledging for mainly a tile set to go with a campaign included in the basic pledge with no info about how many tiles you get in the basic set or the other expansions, what is on the tiles, if the tiles really matter at all or are just decorative movement boarders.

This is the time when Mantic should have been talking up all these expansion and providing details about them to make me want to add them to my pledge.  They posted more than once a day when they were initially after my money but the only game type information posted during the pledge manager was essentially reformulated stuff from the original drive.  If most of the for all the expansions are past the alpha phase why do they tell use nothing about it.  Maybe it is not done, maybe it is not good so I they do not want to show it, or maybe they just take their backers for granted assuming we will just buy it all regardless of how vague they are.  I do not know but I think I am pretty much done with kickstarters and find these delays and bad communications just what I need to avoid pledging for other things also.

I waited about as long as possible for information but with the manager closing this weekend and only 2 workdays left I could not wait any longer for fear of any technical issues preventing the pledge from getting set.  Maybe I just expect too much from a kickstarter.  I should just be happy that something shows up at the end of the day right.  More than one have not made that.


  1. Never been impressed with mantic's kickstarters. It was only due to deadzones ruleset I even bought in - I still really like it but probably could have proxied every model with current models i have and scenery with necromunda scenery.

    I will probably just monitor anyone deciding to sell off their kickstarter from this for tiles/dungeon stuff - I have a growing collection of WHQ character models (as you are aware ;) )

    1. That is probably a good way to go ofcourse they did sell a tile pack on their store not that long ago which had the Dead Rising and Green Menace tiles for like 15 dollars or so.

  2. Sigh @ Mantic and their habit of abusing the crap outta Kick Starter for EVERYTHING.
    Am I supposed to believe they don't have money to like, make and market stuffs without friggin' handouts?
    I actually just started painting some Dreadball figs, and have been lurking about the Mantic forums an' whatnot. I'll probably be writing a post about Mantic for Sunday.

    And yes- you bet I'm gonna talk about mold lines.

    1. I have been putting off talking about the figures in the Project Pandora box for a while. Maybe it is the classic if you cannot say anything nice don't say anything at all.

  3. Oh- Hey eriochrome!
    How rude of me not to say hello.