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Unknown
LV 1

So, hopefully this doesn't bring up too much of a bad discussion but I managed to accidentally stumble across Evocality online. 

What exactly happened with that? Just looks like last update was in 2015 then there's absolutely nothing?

 

Just curious, thanks.

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Peppermint
LV 11

Can't say as I know what happened, but it has obviously died down. The domain account itself is suspended. I would say development stopped, the admin/owner disappeared or decided to no longer operate it.

Unfortunately, there are a ton of games that fall into this type of category.

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Unknown
LV 1

That's a shame. It looked like a bit of a gem. I've also noticed that Clanheart seems to have died down development wise? I used to actively follow it's development.

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Drago
LV 6
2 hours ago, Digital said:

Unfortunately, there are a ton of games that fall into this type of category.

Reminds me of my 2 favourite virtual pet sites that summised to this - SonnexPets and NutrinoPets :(

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Unknown
LV 1
15 hours ago, Nate said:

Reminds me of my 2 favourite virtual pet sites that summised to this - SonnexPets and NutrinoPets :(

I didn't realise NutrinoPets was gone. I actually used to play it quite a while back. It's a real shame when sites just, disappear. Although I don't think Neopets is ever going to be one of them (my 13 year old account just got banned on there). -.-

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Unknown
LV 8

I don't remember the specifics, and there were quite a few reasons. I think it was a mix of lack of funding (despite the Kickstarter), poor planning, personal drama in the owner's life, and other reasons. There was quite a bit of a backlash around its closing as the owner seemingly disappeared and many people (including myself) donated money that we never got back.

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I was fortunate enough to have some one on one time with the owner in the past. Seems like the kickstarter was successful but the game got derailed when payments were forwarded for coding, which was never done. After things turned toxic between the owner and her staff (for multiple reasons) she kind of disappeared. She later returned in an attempt to pass the game on to a new owner (which is the time we met), but after the negative feedback she got, despite having interested parties, she took off again. Of course she did have her personal drama, like kami said, but I guess we all do. Point being, the game is officially discontinued which is really sad considering how much work and planning went into it.  It's always sad when that happens because it seems to hurt the community and turn a lot of people off supporting/following similar game; especially as far as kickstarter is concerned.

Not sure about Clanheart. I think they're still developing and doing the overhaul on art? *shrugs* Every time I got to the site, only like 2 people are active online.

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Always sad to see. I hadn't heard of either, but Clanheart looked cool

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Unknown
LV 1
2 minutes ago, dracula said:

Seems like the kickstarter was successful but the game got derailed when payments were forwarded for coding, which was never done.

Not that I knew all the staff who were working for Evocality but if memory serves me correctly one of the frustrations was staff claiming they never got paid for the work they did so there were questions everywhere about what happened to the money that was raised. 

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Hey, ya'll.

I debated joining this discussion, but decided to pop in and lend my two cents. Hopefully you don't mind my bumping up an old thread.

I never *really* disappeared from this community; I've silently watched from afar for a few years. I was sad when VPL went down, but I'm still in contact with some kind folks from the old days. I hid from the community for about three years because of the outlash against me; folks were understandably upset, but some of the feedback was hostile and a few individuals even went to my personal social media pages and stalked and harassed me there.

It was during a time in my life when I was not emotionally stable; I could see the downfall of my game - which was my passion project and my child - was coming, and I couldn't properly handle the pressure and responsibility. There are many intricacies to this story -- too many to go into, and that are redundant now. But it was never my intent to hurt or scam people.

My vision was very important to me, as it was to the members of my staff and many members of the virtual pet community who became invested in the dream. Tensions understandably rose when game production declined, but I don't fault anyone for their anger. I was 22, I made bad decisions, I had no business experience and had no reasonable right to think I could run a business off the ground cold - and ultimately the failure of Evocality was my fault.

Anger is justified. I offer you all a sincere apology for my actions, and for the downfall of our conjoined dream.

It does bother me to hear false rumors, however; I would like to clear this one up in particular. Everyone on my staff was paid in full. And if by chance I am not recollecting correctly, I implore my former staff to please reach out to me and we can discuss this privately. I have PayPal receipts of all payments - if there is a mistake, let me know so that it can be rectified.

Anyways, I hope this answered some of your questions. My best to you all.

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Outintherain
LV 3

Didn't expect to see this response here. I wasn't a backer, so I had no stake in the project. But I saw the Kickstarter and some of the comments there. Definitely a hard situation to face when you don't have that kind of experience. I heard back then that there was a possibility the project would be sold. There was an interested buyer but the sale didn't go through because you wanted to keep the pet art for personal use as well. I'm not sure how much of that is true. But I am curious if there are any plans to move on with this project or try selling it again. 

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Hey @SingSong,

Thanks for reaching out. I can offer some exposition.

In May of 2015, I was hospitalized. During that time, a member of my staff chose to kindly take up the payments of my colorists/artists. That person also saw that all of the customs ordered through Kickstarter were completed during my absence. When I returned, they approached me about taking on the Evocality project fully.

At the time we had just received art for a new human avatar -- it had been an expensive endeavor, but the lines were gorgeous and had the name of a distinguished artist behind them. We agreed that, in exchange for the debt I owed this staff member (payments to artists and the completion of the customs), I would give them the rights to this artwork for use in their own pet site projects. In return, the staff member would absolve me of the debt and release the Kickstarter customs into a Google drive that I could access for distribution. The latter never happened.

As for the "sale" of Evocality-- there was no such thing. The words "sale" and "buyer" were included in the proposed contract, as legal terms only. Given that taking on the project would incur the new owner a debt of several thousand dollars, I actually offered that individual money and support in the transition. I never, ever, asked to be compensated. Later I even created a thread on VPL asking for a new owner who could take on the financial responsibility to step forward and take the business "for free."

I admit that, as it's been three years and I was not in the best mental state back then, I could be misremembering this particular part. But I recall asking for a small percentage of net profit (like 1-2%) for the first few years of game launch to try to recoup my personal financial loses and to pay back my investors. Again, I never, ever demanded 50% of profits. That's absurd.

The "personal use" project I wanted to continue using the art for was for a guild on GaiaOnline, where Evocality had already existed several years before it was ever a pet site in development, and where there was already a community of people who owned Evocality characters. Whether or not that was a sound decision (I understand both flips of the coin), the staff member in question rejected my proposal to retain some rights of the lines for Gaia - and though it saddened me, I ultimately let it go.

I admittedly dragged my feet when it came to the contract for the owner transition; I had a hard time letting Evocality go. Additionally, because of the financial and legal liability, I had to have the contract reviewed by a lawyer. It took quite a bit of time - and on top of it all, I was never present. I can't speak for the person who wanted to take on the game, but I can say that the time it took to review the contract was excessive, and I understand why they chose to back out of the deal. My sluggishness was jeopardizing the future of the game, and ultimately it would not have been a wise investment for them to take on.

I don't mean to point fingers. If anyone is to blame, it is me. I made a lot of poor business choices that destroyed the game. But it was never, ever my intention to hurt, offend, scam, or mislead. I understand why rumors spread among my staff and broke out in the larger virtual pet community, and I also understand why many of you will still continue to believe them. You have no reason to trust me. But as I've learned and grown in these past few years, I decided that it's time to explain my side of the story, and I thank you for allowing me the chance to share it with you.

Finally, as to your question regarding the future of the game.... I really don't know. Every year or so I've gotten sparks of inspiration and the desire to work on the project again, but fear and doubt have held me back. That said, I can't say it's impossible that Evocality will ever be made.

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Outintherain
LV 3

So if I'm getting this straight, the only debt is to the one staff member who put in their own money to pay artists (something they chose to do on their own). And you still own the rights to the HA that was drawn because they never traded the images of the customs to you? And I guess because that transaction didn't go through, the Kickstarter backers didn't receive some of their customs which is why some backers were upset (aside from the fact that the game didn't become a reality). Am I correct here?

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@SingSong There should be no outstanding debt. As per our agreement, I surrendered rights to the human avatar art through email correspondence with the other party. But really it is unclear; I never received a response from them confirming the trade, which maybe was why I never received the rest of the customs via Google drive (and therefore many backers still do not have their customs).

I haven't seen this human art used anywhere in the pet site community, and it was never published on any Evocality channels. So it's entirely possible the staff member meant to rescind the trade offer, and still considers me in debt to them -- but if that's true, it was never conveyed. I have been thinking this whole time that everything was buttoned up. Regardless, I do not consider myself the owner of those lines anymore.

And yes, you are correct. That staff member paid the artists of their own volition while I was away. It's a shame their great kindness has suffered through all the drama.

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I know this is a veeerry old thread, but I wanted to chime in here about Kickstarters and perhaps lend a little advice to anyone considering going that route for funding.

Developing a pet site is very expensive. Unless you get lucky and have the artistic skills, the programming knowledge, etc. and can do it all yourself at your own pace, you're looking at a ton of money for assets. Kickstarters are a great way to go in helping with that, but in my own personal experience, a successful Kickstarter does not always mean a successful pet site.

When I first read about what was happening with Evocality and saw that they'd raised so much money, I said to myself, "if I had that much cash, it would easily be enough to finish my game!" Not long later I put together my own Kickstarter and was thrilled to have exceeded the amount we needed by a small portion. I was very careful, I made a budget and stuck to it, and sadly, my game is still in development.

I can definitely relate to everything Leef has said. I've been struggling in my personal life and feeling incredibly burned out on my game. If it weren't for a couple friends who have been helping me stick to it (it still amazes me how many people love my game sometimes), I'd have long since given up. Thankfully, though our progress is very slow, we're still pushing forward and I hope someday we'll reach the finish line!

So, my advice... Kickstarter isn't everything. Be realistic, don't rely on hope. Be prepared for failure. When it happens, rally to those who believe in your dream, too, and let them assuage your doubts.

@Leef... I'm glad to see you around again. I know it's never easy to speak up when people are upset with you. And I wish you the best, should you decide someday to pick up the pieces of Evocality. My inbox is always open to you. :)

Edited by Lucille

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