At some point in 2015, I set a $3,500 milestone on Patreon. I've always openly stated that I consider this to be my "monthly salary" for working on Yandere Simulator.
Numerous volunteers assist me in developing Yandere Simulator. In December 2015, I decided that, whenever the Patreon raised at least $4,000, I would use the extra $500 to pay volunteers, as long as those volunteers met certain criteria:
1. Contributing to the game on a daily or almost-daily basis.
2. Contributing to the game in an extremely significant way.
3. Are in a position where they have to stop contributing to the game if they aren't making money from it.
Druelbozo is the only volunteer who has ever met all of those criteria. Druelbozo left the project in June 2016 (he got a job at a game studio). From December 2015 until June 2016, I paid Druelbozo $500 every month for his contributions to the project. (That's $3,500 total).
This is how much money the Patreon has raised every month since December 2015:
Since $3,500 goes to me every month, the total amount of "extra" money that the Patreon has raised is $12,941.06.
$3,500 of that went to Druelbozo, meaning that we had a surplus of $9,441.06 that was not going to any volunteers.
My intention with this surplus of money was to put it towards the game's eventual crowdfunding campaign. For example, if I need $100,000 to fund the final game, and the Patreon raises a surplus of $20,000, then I only need to ask for $80,000 when I launch the crowdfunding campaign.
Ever since it became clear to me that Yandere Simulator had the potential to have a very successful crowdfunding campaign, I decided that the campaign's first "stretch goal" should be to raise enough money to pay back the volunteers who helped out in significant ways by giving them the amount of money they would have normally been paid. (For example, Druelbozo normally would have been paid $1,500 per month for the work he did for me, for which he was only compensated $500 per month.)
At a rate of $1,500 per month for 7 months, Druelbozo deserved $10,500 for the work he did for me. Additionally, for his work prior to December, he deserved to be compensated an extra $1,500, meaning that I truly owed him $12,000, even though I had only paid him $3,500.
On July 14th, I decided to pay Druelbozo $8,500 immediately, instead of waiting for the eventual crowdfunding campaign to meet a stretch goal. As a result, the Patreon "surplus" has dropped from $9,441.06 to merely $941.06. (But, on the plus side, the crowdfunding campaign's first stretch goal just got $8,500 lower.)
At this point in time, there are no volunteers who meet the criteria to become paid volunteers. (There is one volunteer who might qualify, but I need to test his skills a bit before I can decide on that.)
Because I usually work on Yandere Simulator for 84 hours per week, it's honestly quite difficult for me to say whether or not $3,500 constitutes a fair monthly wage for my time and effort. I have considered raising the number higher, but I fear that people will accuse me of being greedy if I do that. So, for now, I'll just continue to work at a wage of $3,500 per month, and anything above that amount will continue to go into the "Crowdfunding Campaign Fund".
I hope that this post assuages the concerns of anyone who felt like I was being secretive about the Patreon money!