The Gadgets & Games Of Kickstarter: December 18th 2012 Edition

Ads by Google

If you’ve never heard of it, Kickstarter is an amazing site where people from anywhere can financially support projects that inspire them. These impressive new products may include things like eInk watches, high-budget video games and Android game consoles.

Each Kickstarter project is its own independent experience, representing the hopes and dreams of one person or a whole team. Will it succeed? Will it fail? Will that Kickstarter project become a media sensation? Let’s take a look at some awesome Kickstarters to watch.

The Up-And-Comers

Tailly

Tailly is your own personal tail that wags when you get excited. Seriously. If your heartbeat is slow, the tail wags slowly. As your heart speeds up, the tail speeds up.

It’s an interesting bit of wearable tech that appears well engineered, though the application isn’t what most cyber-punk novels imagined. I guess we have to start somewhere.

Transporter

The cloud is great, but it’s not perfect. It’s expensive to store large amounts of content and security can be an issue. Transporter tries to solve these problems by offering a device that can store data locally and share it with authorized users – both on your local network and online.

A private server can already do this, but servers are expensive and difficult to manage. Transporter is a small, affordable and promises an intuitive interface. The idea has caught on – the project may have met its $100,000 goal by the time you read this.

Ads by Google

WynCASE

Smartphone gaming controllers are already on the market. What makes WynCASE different is its size. Today’s controllers tend to be bulky and usually clip on to the existing device. This device, however, barely increases the size or weight of the iPhone it’s attached to. It also can be used in multiple orientations. It’s an iPhone-only product, however, which may limit the project’s appeal.

The Contenders

Forsaken Fortress

Forsaken Fortress is a role-playing and strategy game that puts you in charge of a camp of survivors during the zombie apocalypse. Unlike most zombie games, this one isn’t just about shooting undead dudes in the face. You need to keep members of your camp alive while finding food and resources and repelling the assault of the undead.

The game has an X-Com vibe but promises even better character development. The goal is $100,000 – which should be doable for this indie title.

PrusAL 3D Printer

3D printing is a new fad, but it can be hard to do with a small budget. PrusAL wants to change that by giving hobbyists an inexpensive do-it-yourself 3D printer that can be set up with basic tools. It’s a niche project with a modest goal of $12,400. Unfortunately, it’s so far made only a fraction of that and there’s not much time left.

Wasdio

This project wants to create a peripheral that can replace WASD as the preferred method of movement control in PC games. Its creators have a simple argument. People perform better when they can control objects through large muscle movements (hands and arms) rather than fine movements (fingers). So why not harness that fact? The project has traction and some time left. My fingers are crossed.

The Winners

FloJack

Supporters of NFC peripheral FloJack came through in its hour of need to boost the project over to $96,145, making the goal with some room to spare. This means that iPhone and iPad users will soon be able to use NFC-enabled apps. Let’s just hope the product comes out before Apple makes the feature standard!

LA Game Space

I’m super stoked that this project made it. And not just made it – they managed to earn $85,000 more than their goal! It looked like the project may have stalled out half-way but a second press push on multiple gaming sites and an offer of free indie games to supporters helped kindle interest and push the project into reality.

The Losers

FreakVibe

This cool project aimed to create a portable smartphone speaker that would work wirelessly and instantly with any phone. It would do this by amplifying the sound coming from the device instead of streaming audio from it. Though it was a good idea, the project never caught on and ended with just over $10,000 pledged towards its $90,000 goal.

Interstellar Marines: Prologue

Sigh. This project had it all. A great idea. An amazing video. Experienced game developers. It did lack one thing, however – a recognizable brand or franchise. It seems that video game Kickstarters can’t bring in the big bucks unless they make reference to another game that’s already popular.

Ormr

This project sought to create a brand new image editor with an interesting feature. Non-linear undo/redo. In other words, it would be possible to undo actions in any order. Did you make a mistake five steps back but only now noticed it? No problem! It’s easy to see how this could be useful, particularly for digital artists – but apparently the audience was too small to make the $50,000 goal.

Spark

Spark wanted to connect your home’s lighting to the Internet. It’s not as silly as it sounds. Connected lighting could be turned on or off while you’re not home, could automatically turn of when you left home (by detecting that your smartphone had gone) and could be connected with a variety of peripherals. Not enough people were convinced, however, so Spark earned only half of its $250,000 goal.

What Kickstarter projects have you noticed recently which either did spectacularly well or spectacularly bad?  Have you invested in anything interesting recently?

Ads by Google

10 Comments - Write a Comment

Reply

Marianne Martin

Kickstarter may or may not continue to flourish. I have heard good and bad….time will tell!

Reply

Mac Witty

I do not think I want a Tailly…

I do like “NIBIQĂś, the thinnest keyboard for your iPad”
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/nibiqu/nibiqu-the-thinnest-keyboard-for-your-ipad?ref=category

Reply

Obed Cutaran

Tailly is weird, but it’s quite interesting. Also the Transporter is awesome, sadly they don’t ship outside US

Reply

Tony Khamo

I think it needs lots of success stories, where projects are profitable.

Reply

Kannon Y

This is honesty one of my favorite regular columns on the internet, period.

Despite my initial skepticism about Tailly, I realize that seeing it in the real would be actually pretty awesome!

Reply

Junil Maharjan

Some of these are great and should be created. but kickstarter has so many shitstarters that is has become hard to trust real innovators.

Reply

Lisa Santika Onggrid

Tailly will impress cosplayers. It’s a cute idea, but very niche, I think. However, it’ll not be a surprise if it reaches the goal.
Transporter will solve the needs of home server users without extra hassle.
Ormr is very interesting. Too bad it doesn’t get too much support.

Reply

Rajaa Chowdhury

One of the very successful Kickstarter project Connectify Dispatch has gon live a few days back. Hope MakeUseOf features it.

Reply

Rajaa Chowdhury

What about the The MagPi Kickstarter from the Raspberry Pi guys. http://www.raspberrypi.org/archives/2861

Reply

Crazie Flawed Narcissistic-VampDoll

im obsessed with start ups and this kinda thing

Your comment