Quoted from sammiesguys:
Happened to me too. But I'm not going to just completely make shit up as to why in the meantime. I will wait for and answer and go from there.
Come on man. That's no fun. Make shit up!
This topic is closed.
Quoted from Phil-DP-USA:
Email dated March 7, from Julie at Universal to me:
Hi, Phil. I have been swamped this and I’m catching up on emails and voicemails. I’m very pleased that you are stepping in to help. It sounds like that will aid in getting this project on a good trajectory.
I don’t think our frustration has stemmed from any cultural differences. Our frustration arose from their lack of understanding that The Big Lebowski assets are restricted to the approved set we have, and that while additional talent approvals are possible for most of the cast, they are just not possible for John Goodman. Frankly, I’m also worried that DP do not understand what an artistic rendering is.
And yet I'm sure everything is perfectly fine when it comes to the license (and Arnold) with Predator.
Yep, I went there...
Quoted from Leechman:
I'm staying in as well since I really would only preorder a game with money I can afford to lose. And who knows? Maybe it will all work out? Either way, I'm not risking my house payment or food on the table for my kids so I'll sleep fine tonight!
Just seems like there's not enough reward considering the risks of staying in at this point.
If you can really afford to lose that money, how does it make sense to stay in for the relatively minor cost benefits of doing so?
Quoted from bajapanda:
Because if you don't, there's a risk that this bank run, whether justified or not, can put the company and the game itself at risk. If everyone withdraws, where does the project itself end up without any backers that believe in the title and the game?
Dead as a doornail.
I'm sure there will still be people willing to go forward in spite of the risk of doing so, but clearly it is becoming more obvious to more people (see many other current threads on Pinside) just how much risk is involved in pre-orders, and fewer and fewer people are going to be willing to support this kind of risk taking.
Quoted from BrianMadden:
I don't understand what the big deal is really? DP have stated we can get refunds up until our machines are built.
DP has stated/implied a lot of things, some of which may not have been true.
I'm thinking that's the issue. You are acting like there is zero risk by staying in, and that's simply not the case.
Quoted from BrianMadden:
No drama either way.
That ship has sailed.
Quoted from kvan99:
Call me a skeptic but we only have half of the story....as far as I'm concerned this could have been resolved behind closed doors like gentlemen.
Have you not read the posts by Phil with the emails that he has posted?
He was trying to do exactly what you said...resolve this behind closed doors. It seems pretty obvious to me that he was unable to do so in a timely manner, so he was left with little choice. He even told Barry that he would start issuing refunds if he wasn't taken off the books at DP USA Inc. by a certain date.
Quoted from sd_tom:
Since you're destroying the entire company and liquidating the assets..
That's what you do when you are getting out of business, if you can't sell it or merge it with another company, you liquidate the assets. He tried to sell/merge DP USA, but couldn't. So he's liquidating. Exactly as he should.
Edit: I am not clear on who all the owners of DP USA are/were
Quoted from Skins:
It's more than the fact they are using phils name. The underlying issue is the fact they willfully created a new PayPal account under DP USA. Phils issue with that is his social is attached to the PayPal account used by DP USA. To go further, Phil's issue with DP Euro withdrawing money from DP USA is the fact that they don't have any obligatory responsibilities to DP USA. DP Euro can bankrupt DP USA but not be on the hook to provide any good or services for said money. In essence, people would be forced to sue Phil for fraud. Phil is in a terrible position and people defending DP Euro clearly lack even a rudimentary understanding of business liability. What I find most troubling if true, is DP euro created a new DP usa account still using phil's tax Id number (tin) or his social AFTER Phil quit. One has to seriously question DP euro's intentions by continuing to leave Phil on the hook for a company he's frozen out of on all other fronts.
The silence on DP euro's part is inexcusable and unbelievable. Enough with travel excuses. The company has been shaken to its core. There is no time to gather yourself. No time to put spin on anything. The truth only needs someone's mouth to start moving to be told. Who at DP euro is going to start us off...
**this isn't directed at you hwawonya. I just grabbed the first post in context.**
Best summary of the last couple days.
So now they want to dissolve DP USA, Inc *after* they deliver all the pre-orders that were paid through them? That's the only way they will let Phil out? Why would that be?
Quoted from Pdxmonkey:
Thanks for that jab,
I know they had an appointment to do the interview yesterday hence why I thought it would be online but it's not so I'm still eagerly waiting
Oh, I hope you didn't take that as a jab at you. Not how it was intended at all. I'd just like to hear the other side of this fiasco.
Quoted from sd_tom:
I'm very close to draining this myself.. nothing good is going to come out of this thread / Barry & Jaap won't be responding to all this crap point by point here.. they'll send out a letter to the customers. But it is hard to turn away.. Drain would fix that.
However, what keeps me from doing it so far is that I do have $4500, in theory, in the paypal account in question and the threat of RobT posting a "head in the sand".gif if he somehow found out i drained it.
You are safe. For now.
Quoted from KevinCPR:
Why does it have to suck that there wouldn't be crowd funding available for boutique startups?
This doesn't have to be the end of boutique startups. They just need to get back to how it's always been done.
New boutiques just need to get their staff together, and if they're truly THAT passionate about starting a manufacturing line to make their machine en masse, they will all go out and secure $50,000 loans (each), or second mortgages, or max their credit cards, and/or sink their retirement savings into their company. That's what groups of entrepreneurs do if they have a dream.
This whole thread has blown me away, and I just wanted to step in and say as a 10-year-AFTER-startup pinball company, that the recent "kickstarting" or "crowd funding" model the last couple years blows my mind. When CPR started, yes we had a dream, yes we had a plan of what we wanted to be able to do... but like any business dream, on the side or otherwise, you need to finance it to get it going. I cannot begin to tell you the extent that we went into hock to buy everything we needed. Loans, credit lines, credit cards, savings... ALL maxed and spent. With minimum payments due every month or course. Personally (and I'm being completely honest here) I nearly lost my house back in 2007. Yes. The timing of the completion of the BK playfield pairs was 6 months later than originally planned, and due to that bad timing, there was nothing we could pay ourselves with for a very long period of time. When it was just two of us, my partner had a full time job, he was OK. I had switched to CPR exclusively a year prior. So with a house 4 months in arrears, the bank started foreclosure proceedings. Plus monthly payments on *everything* were missing. Thanks to a good friend of mine, she opened a credit line in her name, and cut me a cheque to pay the bank and ward off the foreclosure. The house (with a basement full of BK's) was saved to live another month or two. We made it to the BK release. It took many years to pay all our original debt down. But we came out the other side. That's what you DO. IMHO. That's what it takes.
I think it's obvious the difference when a company is liable to it's own financing. In your mind, put yourself in the place of both models, and feel the difference. I can certainly tell you that when it's YOUR money you've risked, and interest is ticking on you, there is a HUGE candle under your butt to perform & produce. You have to. You don't have a choice.
The existence of interest free, unreporting (credit bureau), and no-monthly-payment loans handed over so nonchallantly to seed major projects of this scale... boggle me. I wouldn't have been able to sleep at night if we had ever financed like that. Risking/holding/spending customers' money. Plus what I read (amongst many) a cavalier attitude toward no-recovery loss. Things like "It's my risk, meh. If I lose it, I lose it" W-O-W So being funded this way also means that if you end up not reaching the finish line, your seeders aren't even going to come calling? They "knew the risk", and just casually blow it off? What a utopian financing. No-strings-attached financing? That's why I can't believe it's become so prevalent, and so accepted. Maybe the cavalier attitude toward loss is just a brave face. I would think $5000+ if ever truly lost, to anybody, would be a big deal. Methinks.
All I can say is, we never had even an inkling of such a concept/meme in the hobby back in 2004-2005 when we started. Times have changed !
My 2 cents from a personal perspective...
Quoted from aeonblack:
Kevin, I think you're missing one of the most important details about crowd-funding (and in my opinion, also the reason why crowd-funding and kickstarter have become so popular). Unlike traditional means of finding investors or borrowing money, crowd-funding platforms like Kickstarter bring the projects to the people who want to back them because they believe in the product or company. Normally, you're pitching to people who just want to make money. The downside to this is that when pitching to people who want to make money, you are put in your place and turned down if the idea isn't going to make money or you don't have your finances in order (Dragon's Den shows this off better than anything else); On Kickstarter, you're not held up to that same standard, and the majority of people backing projects don't have a background to hold you up to those same high standards.
Exactly! And those lack of stringent standards are why pre-ordering a pin from a new company who has never made a pin is so risky. Generally this means that they were not able to find enough investors to get the game off the ground otherwise, so they need the crowdfunding from the hobbiest.
The new pin companies are asking for money from people (us) who are not nearly as objective about the risks involved as normal investors would be.
They are appealing to their (sometime over zealous) love of the hobby, and desire for a certain theme and/or features etc. in a new pinball machine. They aren't being particularly objective and may not realize what the true risks are. They don't have a true understanding of what kind of financial or other backing the new company actually has.
And yes, I realize completely that there are plenty of people who pre-order these pins with a complete acknowledgment that it is in fact a risky proposition, but they feel confident enough to put their money on the line in order to get the pin produced, so I do not mean to paint with an overly wide brush here, but I do think that we tend to think more with our emotions than our logic when it comes to these kinds of pre-orders. And I say that as someone who was in on the original JPop offering of his Zombie themed pin (i.e, I am guilty as well).
In sum, I hate the idea of putting virtually all the risks involved with whether a new company will make it or not on the hobbiest, rather than the company itself. And that's exactly what crowdfunding does.
Quoted from TigerLaw:
If I'm Barry or Jaap, at this point Id not be sure how to even communicate with Phil. They can't trust him with a written correspondence of any kind (no letter, text, or email) and I can't imagine they want to talk to him...
A lot of people have commented on Phil's level of professionalism in how he handled this matter, my question is more along the lines of how good is Barry's and Jaap's judgement in bringing him in to begin with. At some point, they not only selected him as a partner but gave him broad monetary controls and authority, he was (in fact) their mouth piece.
Did DP exercise good judgment in partnering with Phil? I'm not giving my opinion on that either way...but I certainly have one.
It's interesting to look back on the discussions about Phil's presentation at Expo and how some of us commented on what we thought was a lack of professionalism at that time, shown by his slamming of Gary Stern and the regular dropping of F bombs. Ironically some of the same people who defended the presentation as being perfectly professional at that time are now talking about how completely unprofessional Phil is.
Quoted from rosh:
While I expect all of this will get resolved over the next couple of weeks, the bad thing is this will now slow the project down by at least that long as these guys are dealing with all of this, made so much worse by Phil's actions here on pinside.
Please explain to me how Phil's actions here on Pinside will have slowed the project down "so much worse" than if he hadn't posted?
He had been trying to get off of the books for 6 weeks, apparently with little or no response.
If anything, it seems that he sped things up.
Quoted from inhomearcades:
This we both agree on. I'll still purchase the game when it's made but at this point, I'll just hold onto my cash if Phil ever decides he wants to refund it.
One thing that I would be a little concerned with is the bookkeeping aspects of this mess. If Phil supposedly tried to issue a refund to everyone who paid through DP USA and that's who you paid through, but you didn't get a refund, does DP know this?
There was discussion about Phil not having access to customer lists/info, but do Barry and Jaap know who has and hasn't received a refund?
Quoted from RTS:
Phil wanted out at all costs, and the future success of DP didn't factor into his equation. His unauthorized decision to refund is the single cause of the hysteria demanding refunds that may kill the game.
If he really wanted to cause hysteria and screw with DP he could have caused much more damage by doing things other than giving people their money back!
How is receiving your money back, even if not requested, such a horrible thing?
Quoted from CrazyLevi:
When the intent is to completely undermine the project by shaking consumer confidence and causing a general shitstorm, I can see why some thought it was a horrible thing.
I'm not sure what he could have done beyond this without getting himself into serious trouble. If he wanted to screw his former bros and the entire project, this is about as far as he could go.
I understand what you are saying, but I think if he was dead set on causing as much damage as possible, there are worse things that he could have done than give people their money back.
I'm not saying that what he did didn't cause a shit storm. I think this thread is pretty much proof positive that it did.
Quoted from taylor34:
Considering how late they are on the BOP kit, I would think anytime in 2015 would be optimistic. They ship and finish that, then I would have more faith, but when you can't finish a much easier product on schedule, how can you expect to produce games on large scale on schedule? Seems highly unlikely.
I'm still trying to get Burningman to take me up on my friendly wager about him getting his TBL before June.
Quoted from Hwawonyu:
So folks need to decide if they want it made.
Who *doesn't* want it made?
I want it made! Doesn't mean that I'm going to pre-order a $9k pin under these circumstances. I think there is a lot more to decide than just if we want it made. Everyone has to look at their own priorities and aversions to risk and decide for themselves whether it makes sense to do so.
Quoted from Robotoes:
I considered long and hard preordering this game when it was first announced, and I'm so very glad I didn't. I considered it because of the refundable preorders.
Really feel bad for everyone who wants out and hasn't gotten a refund.
"If you want to make a run and slow it down and be part of hindering vs helping then its a shame you got in."
What's really a shame is to try and make people feel guilty about wanting their money, as if they are somehow abandoning the hobby / not supporting pinball. They are a company offering a product, and there are customers. Emotion does not need to factor into it.
"More importantly we now have Roger Sharpe involved so its a safe bet those concerns are being more than handled."
Also, not trying to single you out, but sentiments like these have abounded and I just. don't. get. it. So what? Roger Sharpe is a cool dude, and has an amazingly successful history in the business, but the man is not Jesus. Shaking out license issues does not liquidity, or a pinball machine, make.
Quoted from metallik:
Sounds like the Achiever Edition is the carrot for those willing to keep their money with DP while they "straighten out DP USA." Hopefully this approach pays off and they are able to get the straightening out done quickly and get on with making games
A plaque doesn't sound like much of a carrot to me. Am I missing something?
Quoted from fattrain:
Took all the songs from the email and made a 20 song YouTube playlist for people to jam out to if they so chose
Man, I forgot how incredibly cool that title sequence is!
Quoted from bemmett:
Oh cool, well can someone tell me WTF "Reversal Canceled" means on my payments screen cause I have no f-in clue. Do I get a plaque for not knowing if I have paid, I sure as shit don't have a refund and surer than shit not going to pay twice. Thanks for clearing up absolutely nothing.
If I were in your situation I would continue to ask for the refund. I just wouldn't trust the accounting at this stage. I.e., are you paid or not paid? Does DP think you got a refund? I'd just feel safer getting my full refund now, and would consider getting back in later when they get their shit together.
I.e., what Iceman says above.
Quoted from Hwawonyu:
What you call posting I call a non buyer mucking up a thread for folks involved in this project.
The value of my post is that we involved would love to discuss this but have to sift through your stuff.
Look I get it we are all involved blah blah blah. But seriously I may make a comment but In don't park my butt in Jpops thread or the Hobbit etc if I am not a buyer. And jeez I even had money on Jpop.
It just gets tired to keep hearing non buyers harp on and on about what they know or don't even participate in but are experts dying to share.
The argument that you can't have an opinion unless you actually "have skin in the game" holds zero water.
It's a freaking pinball forum. We discuss all things pinball. Tons of us are interested in TBL. Yes, even those of us who don't actually have money down on a pre-order.
Quoted from Nilroc:
Email Barry and voice your concerns.
I have and I now have no concerns.
Quoted from inhomearcades:
I have emailed Barry. His response was that he told Phil to refund me and that hopefully he will. I didn't pay in full, I was purchasing two games. I'll send Barry another follow up email. I guess I don't understand all the secrecy around why everyone feels so at ease all of a sudden. Why not share with everyone the information that eliminates the concerns?
Quoted from Nilroc:
Here's my story.
Got a unrequested refund from Phil.
Barry emailed me explaining the situation and to retry PayPal .
Followed Barry's instructions and then confirmed with Barry he has my money.
He emailed me back confirming. Sent Jan 1st. Payment.
Confirmed via email with Barry he received that Payment.
Barry confirmed he received Payment.
I'm cool with that.
I trust Barry and DP to get TBL built and delivered this year.
So since Barry responded to your emails confirming that he had your money, that means you no longer have concerns?
Quoted from sd_tom:
I see all that, haven't forgotten it. I have filed a lot of it under "revisionist history" of things that he was probably ok with at the time
Might want to read those posts again then, because he made it clear in the emails that he was sending to Barry that he was not, in fact, "probably ok with it at the time".
I don't understand the "revisionist history" remark either, considering that he posted actual emails that he had sent regarding these issues as they were occurring.
Quoted from Concretehardt:
Wow this thread makes the JPOP thread seem positive and uplifting.
No it doesn't.
Quoted from DnDPins:
I think you are missing the point that they are not in bankruptcy and until that point, people with pre-orders have no right to financial disclosure.
There is no reason for DP to declare bankruptcy (which I certainly hope they do not do as I want to see them survive and make great games) until some creditors push them to seek that protection.
It's like you didn't even read the post that you are replying to.
Quoted from Aurich:
Pot leaf is gone. This makes me very sad actually. Sucks some of the character out of the game, sorry the license had to wuss out like that.
No more gun. Too bad, but oh well.
Makes sense that if they are going to remove the gun they'd remove the pot leaf as well.
Sad. Pinball used to say screw political correctness. Not these days.
Quoted from burningman:
Ozno...this is Don. Please pm me your information, I will personally handle your refund request when we are authorized to do so. In your PM please supply me with your Name and order number.
So you are this Don I assume:
"Don brings 25 years of experience in risk management and policy holder retention. In the service industry, customer service is the trade. Don has a no-nonsense approach to customer service and operations. Being a Pinhead since the age of 14, he is excited to join the Dutch Pinball team."
Quoted from Aurich:
It's really not that complicated. I sell things on Pinside, and I don't get into huge fights with people. Spooky sells games on Pinside, no drama. Laseriffic, Hooked, etc etc.
It just takes a little communication and understanding. The drama happens when you hide things, you don't keep your word, you go silent.
Rick's his own worst enemy. I'm still getting pissed off emails from him over posting his MMr photos. Accusing me of committing a crime etc.
Think about that for a moment. Someone who was happy to sell Pinsiders $8,000 games is freaking out that pictures he took of them being made are available to those same people. That's how petty this is.
Somehow I'm not shocked that someone with that kind of personality has drama on a forum.
My take is simple: If you're happy to be hear when people are lining up to stuff cash in your pockets then you should be happy to be here for those people later when they have questions.
Rick, Kevin, Barry, whoever.
Couldn't agree more.
And please tell me Rick didn't really use the word "crime" in an email he sent to you regarding the pictures of MMr that you posted?!
Own worst enemy indeed.
This topic is closed.
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