Thursday, 12 November 2015

Fountain War Book - The Kickstarter

Unless you've been hiding under a rock for a while, you should have heard of the Fountain War Book which is currently seeking funding on kickstarter.  There's a lot of opinions being thrown around about it, though less on reddit now that there's a ban on discussing it following a load of vote manipulation.

The criticisms pretty much boil down to one of two things:
1. It's being created by The Mittani (in collaboration with CCP and written by Jeff Edwards) therefore is bad - the "Grr Goons" argument.
2. The funding goal is $150,000 therefore it is bad.

Now the "Grr Goons" arguments barely needs a mention.  Anyone with an ounce of sense knows it's not only irrational, but quite literally retarded to take the fact that you hate a group in game and use that as your reasoning for keeping the EVE Online universe out of a novel.  Jeff Edwards has made it clear that he has creative control over the book and that he's looking to get as much input from non-goon groups involved in the war as he can.

The funding goal argument confuses me.  Some people are saying "They want $150k, therefore I'm not going to fund it".  But they don't want $150k from each player, and it's not like getting the book itself as a reward is expensive ($10 digital, $15 paperback) so their total is irrelevant to you as a potential backer.  The total is purely what they need to achieve to make it worthwhile for Jeff to stop working for the time it takes to research and write the book.  That's like saying "I won't spend $500 on this TV because they are selling 1000 of them!  $500,000 is ludicrous for some TVs!".

My position is this: I'm in full support of this book.  I'm in support of any new forms of media being pushed through about EVE (as long as they've gone through the correct channels for CCP approval) because it's good for EVE.  The real question you have to ask yourself is "If this kickstarter fails, what's the chance that someone else is going to be able to release quality media based on he EVE universe".  Honestly, I see this as a test for the community.  If we can't successfully back a novel being created by a best selling author, the most famous player in EVE and CCP themselves, then it's unlikely we'll ever see the EVE universe continuing to branch out beyond the video games that CCP throw out.

5 comments:

  1. Agreed. I think you are spot on about this one.

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  2. I've not backed it simply because it doesn't interest me.

    I'm not sure how marketable the lore of the game is commercially because even the majority of Eve players don't care about it.

    I think what has surprised people is the apathy to player created lore.

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    1. Yeah, that's fair enough. If you're not interested in EVE books then there's little reason to support an EVE book.

      I believe the intention is to write it in such a way that a non-EVE player can enjoy it as a "normal" sci-fi book rather than as a historical text. It should be as much to do with the author's creative license as to do with player created lore.

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  3. "as long as they've gone through the correct channels for CCP approval"
    At least the kickstarter campaign was released without CCP involvment by people without knowledge of CCPs EULA. That's a very bad start to gain trust. I'd love to hear if CCP is going to have any influence (veto) BEFORE a chapter gets published. Can't find any information on this. In fact I don't see any participation of CCP in the process of creating this novel despite granting IP rights. And by the way, where do I find the costs of the IP licence? Included in publishing costs?

    "Honestly, I see this as a test for the community. If we can't successfully back a novel being created by a best selling author, the most famous player in EVE and CCP themselves, then it's unlikely we'll ever see the EVE universe continuing to branch out beyond the video games that CCP throw out."
    EVE - The Empyrean Age (Novel) written by Tony Gonzales
    EVE - The Burning Life (Novel) written by Hjalti Danielsson
    EVE - Templar One (Novel) written by Tony Gonzales
    http://community.eveonline.com/news/dev-blogs/the-third-eve-novel-eve-templar-one/
    The Fountain War novel isn't going to be the first novel about EVE Online being published - why should it be the last chance?

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    1. "At least the kickstarter campaign was released without CCP involvment by people without knowledge of CCPs EULA."
      They already had licensing agreements, but added some rewards that got removed. To be honest though they weren't even things of value, they were just a laugh. Had it been anyone except Mittani running the kickstarter it would have been fine. Nobody would have batted an eyelid if it was Chribba going "along with this book you get a Chribba corpse".

      "I'd love to hear if CCP is going to have any influence (veto) BEFORE a chapter gets published."
      Jeff stated in his AMA that CCP ultimately has oversight as it's their IP, so yes, I imagine they will.

      "And by the way, where do I find the costs of the IP licence? Included in publishing costs?"
      That deal is between CCP, TMC and the author. I imagine that's covered by NDA, so you are unlikely to see anything about that. I should think they get royalties if the book is released though.

      "The Fountain War novel isn't going to be the first novel about EVE Online being published - why should it be the last chance?"
      Because EVE isn't as big as it once was. It's hemorrhaging players and the remaining playerbase is growing increasingly toxic. After seeing the childish reactions of some of the community to this offering, I can't see a decent author wanting to spend time on a book going forward. At most you'll get player written fanfic, which let's face it, is terrible.

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