I'm a game designer and a game artist living in France.
That this is a very beautiful and terrible subject where many developer break the teeth above !
Getting essential support (moral or financial) to well develop his indie game project and his reputation is really not easy (even on a crowdfunding website).
Most of the time, those who try it are :
1. developers who left a big videogame studio to start an indie game studio with values they respect and motivate them.
In this first case, the indie game get many chances to birth with the developers professional networks because the developers can share their project to the right persons likely to distribute their games in a friendly manner because their firends are familiar with their professional skills.
2. games with amazing concepts but unrealizable as a small structure and who need a big team (50 to 200 persons).
In this second case, the games often fail to hatch and stay at the embryon's step full of wonderful ambitions who attracted all the eyes when the project was braodcast but who, unfortunately too hard to realize, are abandoned.
3.game's lovers who see success stories about a one person team making a great game became a reference like zombie game.
In this last case, game's lover who enjoy playing successful game simply think :"Zombie work so well, i'll do one too and get famous !". And there we have a new copy-paste game.
What lesson can we learn ?
The network, if it's made of professional quality, facilitate the broadcast of a project because it's already based on a tangible recognition.
The network, if it's made of amateur quality, is based on ideals, ambitions (or wind) that attracts the wonder but don't have any tangible aspect and stay expectations often flouted.
What happen when we have a realizable project but we don't have a professional network ?
We are not visible !
Simply because we rarely sell dream and when even we sell it despite the constraint, if no-one (of professional quality or of good reputation) is here to see it then there is no sharing and no interesting broadcast.
Now that we know the situation that touch the new indie developers who try to build themselves alone because they don't have any other way to do it, let see how this people can improve their situation !
Here is my guide to find support :
I. Why should you be supported ?
In this first step, the goal is to list every reason who motivate you to support a project.
It requiere a lot of reflexion but it's a very good exercise to find what attracts support.
For example, here are the possible reasons that i give to potential supporters to support my arcade casual game Shokokut about bonzais (playable on shokokut.com) :
II. How can you be supported ?
When we think about support, we think of financial donations but it's not the only way to get supported !
Today, reputation is extremely important because it's synonymous with development and retention of customers. That's for it there is sponsors ready to pay for an ad space on medias and games !
Let see how a supporter can supports your project :
I think we saw the essential reasons and medium to search supports to motivate the good realization of your projects .
I end it by saying that even if it seems simple, it's a tough task requiering a good sense of communication, a good knowledge of the places where you need to be, to be able to fill the supporters with news about your project ... And it takes many many times to achieve.
Therefore if you have the opportunity to integrate a community manager in your team who can handle this, don't hesitate a second and take him in your team. Never neglect the community aspect of your game because it feeds your reputation and your motivation ! But don't worry, if your game is good, you will reach the top !
Do you think it's a real basis or do you have some experience to share and to improve this guide ?