Tuesday, July 28, 2015

An Interesting Thing

Penny Arcade is doing a Kickstarter and I have learned an interesting thing from it. They have been doing a thing for a number of years now called Pinny Arcade. Basically, they sell you some overpriced pins with stuff on them related to games or their comic and then you can trade them with folks. There are special and somewhat limited pins that are only sold for a time or pins that are available only at certain events and whatnot. It's a giant and successful money grab. Nothing wrong with that, so far as it goes.
I find it irritating because it is designed to work on people like me who have a strong desire to collect whole sets of things. But there will never be a "complete" set of pins. It's only going to grow and grow and grow. They're getting a lot of people to spend a lot of money on these overpriced pins. So, all that being said by way of a preamble, I confess I have felt a bit of schadenfreude at the PA folks learning that there are a lot fewer hardcore pin collectors than they thought. I will explain.

One of the earliest (and most limited) pins was a special pin that was only given out to folks that backed their podcast Kickstarter at the $150 level or higher. Only 245 people did, so presumably they only made about 250 pins at most. Since then, their trading gambit has gained in popularity and those pins have become something of a hot item with reports of them going for as much as $2,500 on eBay.

With that background the PA folks apparently figured that they'd make another Kickstarter-only pin and print some more money toward getting their project funded. Well, it's 20 days into their campaign and they've only just managed to fund. But of more interest is that they haven't sold out their run of 1,000 pins. Granted, there are some higher tiers which also get the pins, but at best it looks like there are only about 800-850 hardcore pin collectors where they were expecting that number to be over 1,000.