Kickstarter is a great way of crowdfunding projects that elsewhere would be unable to gain the funding or support it needs but thanks to the Internet and a connected globe, those who support your idea or want a piece of the end product can back you from the very beginning.
Here we take a look at some of the very coolest projects around at the moment and why it's worth putting your money forward.
1. A Brand New Arts & Literature Mag
Tales Magazine is a gorgeously presented arts and literary magazine, publications like this are vital to writers, artists & other creatives in terms of support and forums in which they can get their work seen. A quarterly magazine based in the East of England, Tales magazine is for those looking for dreamy, whimsical literature and gorgeous art and photography all packaged in a gloriously presented read. All about the joy of the narrative, it is a sort of storybook for adults.
Their Kickstarter is to fund their transition from a web-based publication to one in print and is offering copies of the magazine, advertising opportunities and chances to attend the launch party depending on how much you pledge.
2. A New Video Game For Retro Consoles
For those of us who grew up in the 80s or 90s, or if you just have a love for vintage video gaming, you may remember the Sega Genesis/Mega Drive that brought the world such classics as Sonic The Hedgehog, Earthworm Jim and Mortal Kombat but now technology and the industry has moved on to ever shinier, over the top AAA games that leave many yearning for a simpler age of gaming.
Well, independent publishers, Bitmap Bureau have created Xeno Crisis, a new game for the old console! The creators have said of it:
"Xeno Crisis is a new, original title for the Sega Mega Drive / Genesis which will be released both as a physical cartridge and also as a downloadable ROM. At its core, it's an arena shooter that takes inspiration from the likes of Smash TV, Contra, Mercs, Granada, Alien Syndrome, Zombies Ate My Neighbours, Chaos Engine, and Shock Troopers.
We want the game to look, feel and sound like the classic Mega Drive games of the '80s and '90s, but also add some new elements that weren't so common in games of that era, particularly procedural map generation and randomisation of gameplay elements. Achieving that classic look and feel is vitally important to us, which is why we've teamed up with legendary pixel artist Henk Nieborg, who previously worked on the Mega Drive title "The Misadventures Of Flink", developed by Psygnosis."
So if you have one of these beauties in the loft or still keep it out to remind you of the good old days, why not give yourself a brand new game to play on it but with a retro feel! There is also a version for the SEGA Dreamcast as well, so it's a must-have for all retro gaming enthusiasts.
3. Fashion that helps Refugees
The refugee crisis across Europe and the world is in a critical state at the moment as people flee violence, natural disaster, and persecution in their home countries while others are reluctant to let them in. The Pin Project aims to help these people by providing long-term self-reliance through meaningful work.
By buying or gifting one of the artisanal, handmade pins through this project, you help support those desperately in need by providing them with self-reliance as well as getting a fashionable and swarthy pin that can go with almost any item of clothing. Nice.
4. A Portable Games Console For Modders & Linux Lovers
A portable games console which you can modify to match your individual style as well as loads of free software that you can download and make your own through your own virtual modifications and tweaks. Sounds perfect for the gamer in your life!
It's easy to assemble design and clockwork Pi, and Raspberry Pi accessibility means that the possibilities are almost endless. The Kickstarter says:
"GameShell is the world's first modular, portable game console with a GNU/LINUX embedded operating system. It allows you to play thousands of classic games from Atari, GB, GBA, NES, SNES and many of history’s greatest consoles.GameShell uses the powerful LINUX operating system and every game published on it will be free, open-source and modifiable. We have included one classic game - Cave Story in GameShell and there will be more free games included in future."
5. A Gorgeous Wildlife Photography Book That Fights Wildlife Crime
There are some stunning wildlife photography books out there, but this project is aimed at combatting wildlife crime whilst showcasing the animals it targets through some breathtaking and heartbreaking pictures.
The Kickstarter is also raising funds to have the book published in Mandarin in China, where the demand for such animal products fuels many of these crimes. The fundraising page says: "This international group of award-winning photographers are using their powerful and iconic images to help bring an end to the illegal wildlife trade with the publication of a truly unique book, launching in May 2018, thanks to the funds raised so far on Kickstarter."
6. A Colorful Cardgame For Evil Geniuses
In a world where 'Cards Against Humanity' have made cardgames cool again and a social activity to once again enjoy at parties, brings an anarchic and twisted sense of chaos to a gorgeously created universe of sword and sorcery.
An intense game of strategy, it is sure to have you screaming in annoyance and laughing at your friend's misfortunes as you bluff and double bluff your way around trying to guess other's plans to catch unicorns and steal them from you, all while you are doing the same. Pledge over a certain amount for a soft toy with the game!
7. A Forest Of Trees To Combat Climate Change
By buying up a 500-acre nursery and researching irrigation projects and hiring people to manage the land, the 1 Million Redwoods Project wants to bring 1.5 million of one of the world's oldest trees to live to protect them from extinction and help against the negative impacts of climate change.
The ambitious project says of itself: "The 1 Million Redwoods Project has been in the works since 2014, when For The Wild began designing the 500-acre nursery/research forest in Northern California. After three years of observation of the habits of the plants, wildlife, streams and weather, founding members Ayana and March Young finalized a design that incorporates permaculture principles, traditional knowledge, and new understandings in ecological science. Earthworks began in the summer of 2017, with the creation of three large catchment ponds for irrigation, linked by a meandering swale that recharges groundwater. Both open-air and enclosed nursery sites have been prepared on the land. A special potting soil made from composted sawdust from local lumber mills, mixed with primary forest soil and biochar from forest restoration byproducts, will provide nutrients and immunity for the first 1 million redwoods and their many companion species."
8. Bike Reflectors With 360° Visibility
Any cyclist knows that visibility is important on roads but with the dark winter nights, this can be hard to achieve, and reflectors are a must! That said, many reflectors don't offer 360° visibility, so depending on what angle you are approaching another vehicle, it can be hard for them to see you.
These reflectors offer strategic placement that doesn't affect your tires performance and can be seen from all angles making them perfect for keen cyclists and hobbyists alike as well as a vital safety feature.
9. A New Skatepark For New Orleans
New Orleans is the largest US city without a skatepark, and yet some avid skaters want to change that to give skaters a place to go and enjoy themselves safely as well as offering specifically designed areas for tricks and flicks.
City Hall has given them the go ahead, and the park is fully licensed so if you pledge it just means bigger and better infrastructure, and you can land yourself with some pretty cool boarding swag as well!
10. Kate Nash's Latest Album
Okay, so we are slightly cheating here since this Kickstarter is officially over, but you can still go via the page to pre-order the album that was made thanks to funders from the site. For those of you that don't remember or completely missed Kate Nash the first time around, she is the British songstress that first came to prominence around 2007 with her sleeper hit 'Foundations' that managed to push her debut album 'Made of Bricks' to the top of the charts in the UK and to number 36 in the US.
We love Kate Nash here at OMG Lane and have written about how she is the savior of punk rock (click here to read) and how she took on Buzzfeed for being downright nasty about her career. Nash took to making a Kickstarter campaign to finance her fourth studio album without the backing of a major label, and it included the sort of homemade rewards that you'd expect from a DIY punk aesthetic.
Signed Polaroid pictures, pop-up gigs in your own house, even one-on-one video chats were all sold as part of the package to get backing for this new musical excursion, and it worked as the backing was secured and the album will be forthcoming in the very near future.