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Crowdfunding, Board Games, and Claiming Duke: An Interview with Nate Murray

Crowdfunding, Board Games, and Claiming Duke: An Interview with Nate Murray

Indiegogo has recently taken on a new Head of Gaming. While, that title may sound daunting and unattainable, in reality, Nate Murray is just like the rest of us, but he has a really friggin’ awesome job. I had the pleasure of getting to interview the man behind Indiegogo’s gaming division and let me tell you, he’s just as awesome as his job title says.

Like many of us, Murray began playing tabletop games at a young age with the wonderful world of Dungeons & Dragons. At the time, it was the only game to sate his imagination and allow him to participate in a whole new world that was far different from the real one.

But there was one thing that brought him back to the table time and time again, it was the relationships he made both in and out of the game.  “Leveling up a character and creating long-standing relationships or even leaving marks on this world you spent so much time in was an amazing feeling. That so many of us started in D&D may be why you’re seeing a growing trend in Legacy style games. The feeling of making something your own, unique adventure is very compelling.” This love is what drove Murray to begin working in producing tabletop games, and it’s the creativity and amazing people that make him keep coming back.

This devotion allowed him to gain a job at IDW and crowdfund many of their games. One such game is the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shadows of the Past, which was successfully funded through Kickstarter. But this experience is what makes him believe in Indiegogo and their services. “I think the services Indiegogo offers are simpler for creators and backers to use. As to why I left an absolutely amazing job at IDW Games to take this leap, I felt like I had reached a point where I could do more good for the industry by switching from making games for one company to helping multiple companies at once. So far it’s been amazing.”

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And that’s the thing, Indiegogo is all about connecting consumers and creators into one copacetic ecosystem. Crowdfunding allows for an open-conversation with the people who are buying these products. In some ways, it allows for a more beneficial relationship than even social media can, as the fans are the ones helping the creative process along. Sometimes these fans can become friends (Pete Walsh, Nate says hi!) Indiegogo has even recently implemented “Equity Crowdfunding” that will allow users to become investors in start-up companies.

According to Murray, this will influence the types of games we see on the market: “Fans are voting with their dollars and telling the market which direction they want to see tabletop (and video games) go. I think soon you’ll see major awards given to crowd-funded games. And I look forward to seeing those awards given to games born on Indiegogo.” I think we can all agree that there are definite upsides to crowdfunding and that it shows that we don’t have to give up on ideas that we once believed to be pipe dreams. Get out there and create! Maybe even start an Indiegogo?

And with International TableTop Day on April 29th this year, we couldn’t let him get away just yet without getting the inside scoop about what he would be doing this year.

“I’ll be at my favorite game shop Villainous Lair in San Diego that day and looking to get into as many games of Coup as possible. It’s actually a running gag how much I love that game. If you know the game you may appreciate that my Twitter bio’s last line is ‘I claim Duke’, and I’ve been drawn into other games by fans and given the ‘Duke’ ability.”

TMNT Nate Murray

Be sure to follow Nate Murray and his wacky board game ventures over on the Twitter machine.

What do you think of crowdfunding and how it connects consumers to business? Are you getting excited for International Tabletop Day? Let us know in the comments! 

Featured Image Credit: Indiegogo, Overlyaed by: Blythe Wiedemann

Blog Image Credits: Nate Murray, Tony Vargas.

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