As in the greenlight-thread kickstarter was mentioned in a quite negative way, I would like to... well, to compensate for the bashing by people who never were on kickstarter, I will add a bashing by someone who pledged a bit.
Currently I have about 40 projects in my backer history, but some of them are music or art, and of the games I did back some failed to reach the hurdle and I was not charged (and the game was either dead or financed in a publisher deal - either way the game does not concern me very much any more...) This leaves an estimated 20 games for which I payed.
So why did I back? Basically, because I wanted a lot more variety in the games which are on offer. Because some types of games are no longer developed, or only by one or two indies, and adding one more indie who makes this sort of game may make a whole lot of a difference. Which meant, that ultimately I chose more the risky projects than the average. Also I took a decision not to take industry experience into account, but specifically to look for a person/team which seems very dedicated to their dream, giving me the hope they will make the effort to get it right, rather than finishing just a bland copy of whatever and call it quits.
And where did it go wrong? First of all, I consider the "stretch goals" a disease. "If we reach X$ more than ..., feature Y gets added." Which means that any game which is sufficiently overfunded becomes a horrible mess of unrelated features, spreading the core team thin. And adding team members to a developer who is a newbie himself may not always work out as intended.
Then there is the pressure by the backers to realease something. If it is 6 months late, people understand. But say you have run into a wall and cannot finish, some backer will want their money back. In some way it is understandably. But it results in games which are "finished" when the money runs out, rather than when they are fun. Or canceled as failure instead of released in a horrible state. None of the games I backed and which have reached the "released" milestone are much fun.
Note that one of the projects which did fail with much publicity was one of the few I backed with an industry veteran in charge.
The pressure is made worse by the fact that many teams seem to miscalculate the costs. If they need X to finish, they need a lot more money because of backer goodies which are often more expensive than planned, because of kickstarter fees, of bounced payments, ... This is before the usual development issues turn up and start to cost money.
But finally, most of all, because kickstarter is about the description, the interesting text, the pretty picture, and of course the effective pitch video. There are a lot of "parts" which make a game fun or not fun which cannot be described easily in a pitch. With a comic this is easy: Show pages 1 to 5 and promise you add 50 or 100 of the same quality. With a game, you would need a demo - but most projects go to kickstarter before
the real development starts - before the team gets assembled because there is not yet enough funding. Which means it often open to interpretation what the result will be. This is good in some way, it gives the possibility for innovative projects to get funding through a pitch "Just like X but with modern graphics". However, the opposite seems more common, the promise of innovations for a game which is ultimatly a bland copy of an already bland AAA game.
Keep in mind, that I am very happy with many games I bought through a more traditional "alpha funding" process. There I buy when something can be played, usually a demo is available and if so I check if the demo is fun. However, as I wrote on kickstarter this is usually not the case. (The few games which go with
demo to kickstarter seem a lot better than the average, for some reason.)
Edit: Ugh, what a wall of text