'Mythic' Kickstarter project exposed as scam, canceled

A Kickstarter project has been exposed as a scam and canceled, after forum sleuths noticed that all of its art and photos had been lifted from other sources.

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It had to happen eventually. This year has seen an explosion of independent projects funded by crowd-sourcing site Kickstarter, and it was only a matter of time before someone tried to take advantage of such goodwill for a scam. Such is the apparent case of "Mythic: The Story of Gods and Men," a project that raised eyebrows and has subsequently been canceled.

The project page seems a bit slipshod at a glance, and for good reason. Comments on the Something Awful and Rock Paper Shotgun forums noted various reasons for suspicion. The character art, backgrounds, reward pictures, and office photos had been lifted from various sites. Most strikingly, the reward tiers were lifted directly from the Kickstarter page for The Banner Saga. The page bragged that its staff was composed of former Activision Blizzard vets, and that animation would be done by "friends at Disney/Pixar." We're sure they've got a beach in Kansas to sell you too.

The developer, "Little Monster Productions," briefly insisted that the project was legit in the comments before giving up the ghost. It had managed to snag almost $5,000 in pledges before it was exposed. Kickstarter only charges backers once a project is completely funded and finished, though, so those who chipped in won't be ripped off.

Fortunately, this wasn't a particularly convincing scam, and the collective brain of the Internet caught it quickly. Although crowd-sourcing has seen tremendous success, a healthy dose of skepticism is always a good idea. Scammers have been using donations as a cover for a long time, and the next one might be more convincing.

Editor-In-Chief
From The Chatty
  • reply
    May 1, 2012 10:00 AM

    Steve Watts posted a new article, 'Mythic' Kickstarter project exposed as scam, canceled.

    A Kickstarter project has been exposed as a scam and canceled, after forum sleuths noticed that all of its art and photos had been lifted from other sources.

    • reply
      May 1, 2012 10:02 AM

      Bound to happen eventually. Scammers gonna scam.

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      May 1, 2012 10:12 AM

      This is expected and completely not a big deal. I want to know what will happen when half of these projects can't be completed on the kickstarter funds because of over ambition, delays, unforseen problems, and other things like this. Who will be held accountable then and will people be as likely to continue pledging money to long-shot (some, not all) dreams?

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        May 1, 2012 10:40 AM

        Yeah, these questions will be interesting. I think a lot of people will continue to use Kickstarter despite the inevitable failures though.

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        May 1, 2012 10:56 AM

        it's already happening. there are projects littered all over the kickstarter site filled with comments about them not responding to anyone over a year after being funded.

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      May 1, 2012 10:14 AM

      what's crazy is that the guy had the audacity to show his face on the video. I wonder if anyone has tracked the dude down yet..

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      May 1, 2012 10:39 AM

      This is like court appointed rehab. People want you to learn that it's not good to do things like this, but really the only thing you learn is what to avoid so you don't get caught the next time.

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      May 1, 2012 11:46 AM

      How the heck does this work, anyway? How do they get around the 1933 Act to have so many investors?

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        May 1, 2012 11:53 AM

        If you're referring to the securities act that really has nothing to do with this. This is basically high tech pan handling. Or more closely it's just getting a gift from people that are taxable.

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        May 1, 2012 12:01 PM

        These aren't investments, you don't get any share of revenue or profits or any interest. Indeed Kickstarter doesn't allow that, these are strictly donations. Also you have to have a project you can't fund a company as such.

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      May 1, 2012 12:36 PM

      Honestly, Kickstarter isn't all that different from putting a paypal "DONATE" button on your homepage. It seems more official, but I think it really comes down to an easy way to donate to start a project, or keep it going.

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        May 1, 2012 5:40 PM

        It's that plus the promise of something tangible if they hit the goal.

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          May 4, 2012 9:41 AM

          Plus the fact that your donation isn't paid unless the goal is reached. I think the great appeal of Kickstarter is precisely that it addresses the shortcomings of common donations: it requires that what you get for your donation is made clear, and it lets you better avoid tossing money down a hopeless well.

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      May 3, 2012 7:19 AM

      Kickstarter only charges backers once a project is completely funded and finished, though, so those who chipped in won't be ripped off.

      and finished

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        May 4, 2012 7:41 AM

        yeah that should probably be updated