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Five Gaming Patreons Worth Supporting
Kickstarter games like Wasteland 2 and Broken Age have already proved that gamers are well and truly behind crowdfunding and Patreon looks like one of the most intriguing and potentially game-changing of the many alternatives to Kickstarter – particularly where games criticism and analysis is concerned. Despite the idea of games as a serious cultural medium slowly being accepted games, criticism and analysis is a field that is still terribly underfunded and under supported; Patreon however offers gamers the chance to more directly and effectively support games critics, writers and content providers that they like. While most crowdfunding sites work off a single donation to a greater cause, Patreon is based around pledging regular donations to support content creators and critics for each piece of content or criticism they produce.
With that in mind, here are five Patreons that are worth supporting for gamers:
1. Christopher Franklin
Christopher Franklin’s Youtube-based series of video-essays-about-video-games Errant Signal has long been a favorite of mine and it’s cool to finally have the opportunity to support him directly. He tackles everything from classics like Quake and Half-Life to more recent games like Spec-Ops The Line and The Last of Us.Errant Signal has been of a phenomenally high quality with no funding behind it and with the considerable number of people already signed up to support him on Patreon it’ll be exciting to see what he produces in the future.
2. Nika Harper
While a lot of League of Legends players might recognize Nika Harper as Riot’s former Community Coordinator, a lot of people don’t realize that she recently left her job at Riot to pursue her writing. It’s a bold move on her part and if her Patreon is any indication, an ambitious one. Nika is promising supporters all manner of audiobooks, readings and videos about writing on her Patreon page. As someone who recently picked up and enjoyed her eBook Echoes of Old Souls, I think Nika Harper is a Patreon well worth supporting.
3. Cara Ellison
Of the many games writing projects on Kickstarter, Cara Ellison’s looks like one of the most exciting. Cara Ellison has a hell of a track record as a games critic with everything from PC Gamer and Rock Paper Shotgun to Kotaku and The Guardian on her resume. Even more impressive than this track record is her idea of ’embedded games journalism’. In her own words Ellison plans to use Patreon “to journey to the most exciting auteurs of our medium, stay with them, explore their outlook, ask how their environment affects their design”. It’s certainly an exciting prospect and Ellison already has a number of games designers in mind (such as Arkane’s Harvey Smith) for her journey.
While a lot of the other Patreons on this list are predominantly looking at produce games criticism, Cameron Kunzelman is looking at taking things a step further and making games alongside his criticism. Kunzelman’s prior indie games (which are all free) have been really unique and unorthodox in nature with their subjects ranging from ghosts of feminism to the epic journey on an Alpaca. Kunzelman may not have as big of an online following as some of these other Patreons but he is no less worthy of your support.
Lana Polansky is a name I’ve seen pop up more and more frequently in the games criticism world and I was a big fan of her work in a recent collection of game-focused short stories known as Ghosts in The Machine. Her Patreon offers gamers the chance to directly support her works – whether it be games writing, short Twine games, or the delicious baked goods she makes as a hobby.