Kickstarters seem to be all the rage at the moment and, for miniatures at least, there seems to be a couple of different ways they are used.
One is by larger companies as a convenient, hip and 'modern' way of taking pre-orders. This is a bit of a twisting of the idea behind crowd funding, as there is basically a product which is ready to go into production but the Kickstarter allows the company to produce a larger initial run or improve the quality of the product. I have supported a couple of these already - the board games Zombicide (Guillotine Games) and Sedition Wars - Battle for Alabaster (Studio McVey). I have Zombicide already and for me it was a great experience, apart from some very minor delays, I felt it went very smoothly. It looks like the Studio McVey offering will go off in a very similar way, and we should see that in the new year (VERY excited about that one!)
The other type of Kickstarter that I've had experience of is for smaller manufacturers/sculptors who need funding to bring their creations to market. I jumped on the Red Box Games Kickstarter when Tre Manor launched that earlier this year, and also Infamy Miniatures' Indiegogo campaign when they launched their first 3 miniatures. And it is one of these that I want to talk about today.
There is an Australian guy known on t'interwebs as Sprue who's sculpting I have been watching over on OzPainters for quite some time - Tracy bought some of his metal goblins a while back, and his sculpting has really gone from strength to strength. Today he has launched a Kickstarter to release 4 of his sculpts and put some funding towards his new skirmish game (which looks VERY interesting as you cast [resin] finger bones as part of the game mechanic).
His sculpting is superb - really full of character, just take a look at his Blacksands Orc, with a face only his mother could love...
I highly recommend getting over to the Kickstarter and pledging some of your hard earned cash. From what I've already seen of his sculpting and the plastic he will be using to cast his models, I really don't think you'll be disappointed.