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Founders' Update: Capital Raise - Official Discussion Thread

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I have been an entrepreneur for 15+ years, and in that time I have raised a LOT of money.  Fundraising has always been an exceedingly difficult and time-consuming part of my job.

 

I can say without question that this raise has been the easiest that I have ever done.

 

Todd

ACE

 

Thanks to all for the transparency. It makes it a lot more palatable to commit funds. From limited exposure, it seems the ArtCraft team makes your job less arduous. =) That's awesome.

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This is at least half incorrect.

March revenue was made in 1/4th of the time, since KS was still running, and June's revenue is affected by the ending of the KS offers.

 

They wrote that they sold $30K of virtual items in March and $135K in June, that seems correct.

 

Not specifying what were the stretch goals, store discounts, upgrade opportunities, etc. doesn't make it incorrect imo. I agree that they could have added some context to those numbers. 

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I saw this information posted on the Angels site: Robert Xiao, CEO Perfect World Board Member

in case Perfect World is involved in the Crowfall development, that could mean that the game could be acquired from PW company at some point. 

Player rumors state that the PW support is one of the worst one in the gaming industry. I hope Crowfall would ensure that the game support would stay in tact.

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Hello beloved Crowfall fellows,

 

today I watched the Crowfall Investor Video.

 
JTC says: "One thing that doesnt come across in that video is that, Gordon and I are not just passionate gamemakers, we are also passionate about growing ArtCraft to be a phenomenal business."
 
Gordon Walton says: "Yes, we wanna be a world class business! Part of that is raising one million dollars right now, in this raise. ..."
 
So what you guys think about that?
About the way they want to go with ACE.
 
I have to honestly say that the statement gives be a bit of a bad taste.
I really had the good will towards ACE, because its a very charming small company, which is lead by passionate gamemakers themselves, willing to try out new or forgotten stuff and taking risks, and I wanted to support that.
So, what does this new goal/claim mean; what means "phenomenal, world class business" ?
 
Well, lets look at gaming industry, what is a phenomenal, world class business there.
A phenomenal business is a successful business, because business means economy, and in economy everything is all about profit. So a phenomenal business is a economic successful business, meaning a phenomenal profitable business.
Which are the phenomenal (profitable), world class business we have in gaming industry?
The biggest (world class) business would be Electronic Arts. EA is one of the major players, if not the major player in gaming industry. EA is a very profitable and economic successful business. But that they are economic very successful doesnt mean that they are in every other kind of view very successful too. In fact the games of EA are shining through constant diminishing quality, but on the other side progressively increasing methods of additional monetizing options built into their games, with constant less content, scale, creativity risk and ambition on top of that. All resulting in EA winning the "Worst Company in the USA" Award consecutive in 2012 and 2013, all while still staying a world class and economic successful company. And I dear have to say that in my point of view the other major companies in gaming industry arent very much better either, poorly.
 
I would like ACE to give more thought to the matter, what these words mean or should mean, and what they want ACE to really be or become.
 
Because there is no need for the next EA, nor does anybody want to be the next EA. But they all try to be the nice good willing company, but they arent. Its only one of these marketing fashion things of them, but no honest attempt to establish a respectful company culture. Theres a huge difference in half-bottom, mainstream trying to be something that is trendy but you arent, and really being it, or at least really honestly trying to become it.
 
One of these possibilities a company would have been able to shine and make a statement, would have been when the company works together with partner companies, which was unfortunately missed here. Like when the T-Shirts for Crowfall have been presented. There was saying of like "We want them to be really high quality", but no word about where and more importantly how they were produced, and by whom. If you want to be a phenomenal business, how about considering this kind of stuff too? Or is it still enough to present a well made product in front of the customer to be "high quality" these days, like it was back then in the 20th century, did really nothing change at all since then?
 
So, ACE, who are you and who you want to be, and what will you do to become so?
I was thinking of upgrading to give even more support for my individual possible, available spectrum of doing so, as I am not a accredited investor, and would be happy enough myself not with a certain amount of Return on Investment, but with a high quality game, as well as a company I am willing to support, because they support us with good games and others (their environment) with good and respectful treatment, that actually differs from what the (very) economic successful companys are doing.
 
How "phenomenal, world class business" like would that be?!
 
Yeah, I know, I was bored today again, but still...
Edited by Urahara

After EverQuest Next is gone, its Star Citizen for me.

 

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I understand your concerns and how you hope ACE remain a small company of passionate developers who aren't scared of taking risks.

 

I think it's important to look at the context and the purpose of the video. Saying "we're a small company aiming for a very niche audience" isn't necessarily what investors are looking for, maybe some investors are looking for that, but usually what attract them are words like "growth" and "profit".

 

The international expansion of ACE is probably planned since day one and has been discussed by the company a few times not long after the Crowfall was announced, with their intention of serving English speaking regions and European countries.

 

World-class and phenomenal are adjectives that may be more related to being the best at something or offering an excellent product/service. It doesn't have to be about being the biggest and most profitable company in the world.

 

I think it's really important for ACE to always seek to become better and greater, and I'm sure it can be done while staying true, having their customers satisfaction as #1 goal and continuing taking risks and innovating.

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This are several threads about this raise already. I think people are going totally bonkers for nothing about this all. Relax people.  :) 

First this:
 

world-class
adj.
Being among the best or foremost in the world; of an international standard of excellence.


That Gordon and Todd say this in an investment video, doesn't mean everything they say is about money. What they want ACE to be is a quality company. AKA a world-class company.

Money does make people see crazy things that doesn't exist.


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I think it's easy to get a bad taste in your mouth when hearing about stuff like this, simply because you have companies like EA and others who employ really bad business practices (from a consumer viewpoint). But just because there are bad apples between the big gaming companies, doesn't mean that all big gaming companies are bad. Instead of hoping that the good companies stay forever small, to keep their integrity in tact, it's much better to actively try making sure the big companies stay good. Don't give the companies money, simply because of hype, without knowing whether the game is good or not. Stop spending crazy amount of money on micro transactions in games where micro transactions don't belong. Employ stuff like the Steam Refund System. Don't give in to their bad business practices. 

 

Big companies are forced to react if the consumers act, just like how the new Batman game was pulled from the Steam Store, because so many people refunded the game (or at least, contributed to the fact). 

Edited by Smed

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It's a dang shame that the middle class is legally shutout from investing into ArtCraft. I know I'd feel pretty confident investing around $10K in Artcraft. Perform some type of business magic and make this a possibility Gordon.

 

Go talk to the SEC or ask ACE to launch an IPO.

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You've got to understand that they're trying to get people to invest in their company. People that invest 300k want to see a return on that investment. Gordan and Todd saying they've got business experience and want to grow ACE into a business will give potential investors more piece of mind.

 

I sure wouldn't want to invest a large sum of money into some hippie artist's fantasy dream.

 

Also there was some really good news in this video. The whole "We want more money so we can over-deliver and deliver more quickly to our backers" and "Doubling down on the vision of the game" all sounds great to me. The only concern I have with a game like Crowfall is the vision being compromised by trying to appeal to a bigger market. 

Edited by Zybak

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I work at a leading chip company and that core developer passion is not lost in it.  All big companies can't say this, but some can.   The point is that big does not always mean bad.  Anyway, ACE needs to grow 500 times over for there to even be a concern that is not completely self-imposed.

 

I am looking at other comparable games and the current Crowfall funding levels are barely on par.  It is still early though.

Edited by Tahru

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Well I think some might argue that if you got 10k to throw around at a video game you might be a bit better off than middle class.

Not really as I'm active duty Air Force. Honestly, some decent decisions and a fairly lucky real estate investment back in 2008, put me in a good spot.

 

Correction: September 2009 not 2008.

Edited by Omen

Eat or be eaten

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