Flying Saucer Media

Flying Saucer Media

is creating documentary films and podcasts about extraordinary people who do

4

patrons

$32

per creation

No corporate sponsors.


No hidden agendas.


Real talk with real game developers.


I'm Russ Pitts. I've been writing about and making videos about game developers for over a decade.

I'm traveling around the world meeting new indie game developers, and talking to even more on my podcast. The result will be a comprehensive exploration of the art of making games, featuring some of the most exciting game-makers around.

Who are they? Why do they make games? How do their real lives intersect with their art? These are the questions I've been asking developers for years, and every developer is different.


Video games are made by people.


Did you know? Some people don't. And that's a HUGE DEAL.

Knowing how games are made, by whom, and how helps us to appreciate the medium for what it is: a modern art form.

Some people look at video games and see a number: a score, or an amount of hours. Other people see pixels, triangles, colors. Still others see violence, fear.

When I look at video games I see people. I see the people who made them. I see the people who marketed and packaged them. I see the person who had an idea one day about how to entertain or share an idea through a video game. And that makes me want to learn everything I can about those people, and share their stories with the world.

You can help me do that. By backing this project, you'll be supporting my documentary crew as we travel around the world to meet real game developers and learn about who they are, what drives them to make games, how they got started, and how they do what they do.

I've been a filmmaker and media creator for 30 years.


I was a producer for TechTV's The Screen Savers. I was editor of The Escapist for six years, and during that time I won six Webby Awards. After that I helped co-found Polygon.com, where I produced the video series Human Angle.

I even wrote a book about how video games are made, called "How Video Games Are Made."

I left Polygon in 2014 to work as an independent. Since then I've founded Flying Saucer Media, produced short documentaries for clients like Harmonix and Epic, and produced a short documentary about the charity Take This(which I also co-founded).

I'm currently also shooting a feature-length documentary about Desert Bus for Hope.

See what we do.


The following video is from San Francisco, and our time with Alphabear and Steambirds developer SpryFox.



Why I need your support.



I've done this with a major games site. Over the course of my career, every time I've wanted to take a video crew out to do a long, detailed piece on a game team it's been an argument about how long it would take, how much it would cost, and how many other things those people could be doing instead of working on my project.

When you're deep into a "every pageview matters" business model, you have no choice but to slide your editorial direction towards creating only content that will efficiently spike the pageview needle. It's not even about ideals, really. You literally have no choice but to slash content that radically opposes a high pageview-to-cost model. So even when you start a thing with good intentions of doing quality over quantity, if you're tied to the ad-driven content model (which all websites currently are) you're going to eventually focus on quantity over quality.

And that's ... basically the opposite of what I do.
Tiers
Gold Star Backer
$1 or more per creation
Maybe to you it's just a buck, but to me it's a whole lot more. This pledge means you believe in me and the work we're doing on Stage of Development, and even if you can't afford to give more than a buck, you want us to know you're with us. And that's a lot. You get a gold star, and my thanks.
  • Your name in the Gold Star Backers list on the Stage of Development website.
  • Monthly Patron-only newsletter featuring the status of current and future Stage of Development productions.
Five-Star Backer
$5 or more per creation
You could do a lot of things with your five bucks, so we want you to know we appreciate you spending it on us. As a Five-Star Backer, you'll get:
  • High-quality downloads of all of our podcasts and videos.
  • Behind-the-scenes photos.
  • And your name on our backer list at the Stage of Development Website.
Ten-Star Backer
$10 or more per creation
It's like a tin star, but way cooler. We'll still cal you sheriff, though, if you like. Your reward for being a sheriff 'round these parts is:
  • Behind-the-scenes videos and outtakes.
  • Limited edition Stage of Development digital poster.
  • Your name (in the sheriff section) on our backer list at the Stage if Development website.
  • Plus all previous rewards.
Battlestar Backer
$20 or more per creation
What's bigger than a Ten-Star? I really don't know, but "Battlestar" sounds awesome, and you've earned it. 
  • Associate Producer credit on all videos and podcasts produced while you maintain this pledge level. You can take that to iMDb.
  • Early downloads of all releases.
  • Access to the Flying Saucer Media public Slack channel, where you can see how we make the donuts.
  • Plus all previous rewards
Goals
$32 of $5,000 per creation

Monthly Stage of Development documentary videos


STAGE OF DEVELOPMENT is a documentary series produced by Flying Saucer Media, and created by Russ Pitts. The series features human stories about real people who make video games.

Our first episode of STAGE OF DEVELOPMENT was about SpryFox, creators of Alphabear and Road Not Taken



Our first full season of STAGE OF DEVELOPMENT is currently in production, and is about the indie game scene in Chicago, USA.

Each episode of STAGE OF DEVELOPMENT costs — at minimum — $5,000 to produce. And that cost covers travel, equipment, food, and the time of our four-person "Flying Saucer Media" crew to shoot and edit the episode.

If we can raise $5,000 per month, then we can make a new episode every month. Easy!

1 of 4

No corporate sponsors.


No hidden agendas.


Real talk with real game developers.


I'm Russ Pitts. I've been writing about and making videos about game developers for over a decade.

I'm traveling around the world meeting new indie game developers, and talking to even more on my podcast. The result will be a comprehensive exploration of the art of making games, featuring some of the most exciting game-makers around.

Who are they? Why do they make games? How do their real lives intersect with their art? These are the questions I've been asking developers for years, and every developer is different.


Video games are made by people.


Did you know? Some people don't. And that's a HUGE DEAL.

Knowing how games are made, by whom, and how helps us to appreciate the medium for what it is: a modern art form.

Some people look at video games and see a number: a score, or an amount of hours. Other people see pixels, triangles, colors. Still others see violence, fear.

When I look at video games I see people. I see the people who made them. I see the people who marketed and packaged them. I see the person who had an idea one day about how to entertain or share an idea through a video game. And that makes me want to learn everything I can about those people, and share their stories with the world.

You can help me do that. By backing this project, you'll be supporting my documentary crew as we travel around the world to meet real game developers and learn about who they are, what drives them to make games, how they got started, and how they do what they do.

I've been a filmmaker and media creator for 30 years.


I was a producer for TechTV's The Screen Savers. I was editor of The Escapist for six years, and during that time I won six Webby Awards. After that I helped co-found Polygon.com, where I produced the video series Human Angle.

I even wrote a book about how video games are made, called "How Video Games Are Made."

I left Polygon in 2014 to work as an independent. Since then I've founded Flying Saucer Media, produced short documentaries for clients like Harmonix and Epic, and produced a short documentary about the charity Take This(which I also co-founded).

I'm currently also shooting a feature-length documentary about Desert Bus for Hope.

See what we do.


The following video is from San Francisco, and our time with Alphabear and Steambirds developer SpryFox.



Why I need your support.



I've done this with a major games site. Over the course of my career, every time I've wanted to take a video crew out to do a long, detailed piece on a game team it's been an argument about how long it would take, how much it would cost, and how many other things those people could be doing instead of working on my project.

When you're deep into a "every pageview matters" business model, you have no choice but to slide your editorial direction towards creating only content that will efficiently spike the pageview needle. It's not even about ideals, really. You literally have no choice but to slash content that radically opposes a high pageview-to-cost model. So even when you start a thing with good intentions of doing quality over quantity, if you're tied to the ad-driven content model (which all websites currently are) you're going to eventually focus on quantity over quality.

And that's ... basically the opposite of what I do.

Recent posts by Flying Saucer Media

Tiers
Gold Star Backer
$1 or more per creation
Maybe to you it's just a buck, but to me it's a whole lot more. This pledge means you believe in me and the work we're doing on Stage of Development, and even if you can't afford to give more than a buck, you want us to know you're with us. And that's a lot. You get a gold star, and my thanks.
  • Your name in the Gold Star Backers list on the Stage of Development website.
  • Monthly Patron-only newsletter featuring the status of current and future Stage of Development productions.
Five-Star Backer
$5 or more per creation
You could do a lot of things with your five bucks, so we want you to know we appreciate you spending it on us. As a Five-Star Backer, you'll get:
  • High-quality downloads of all of our podcasts and videos.
  • Behind-the-scenes photos.
  • And your name on our backer list at the Stage of Development Website.
Ten-Star Backer
$10 or more per creation
It's like a tin star, but way cooler. We'll still cal you sheriff, though, if you like. Your reward for being a sheriff 'round these parts is:
  • Behind-the-scenes videos and outtakes.
  • Limited edition Stage of Development digital poster.
  • Your name (in the sheriff section) on our backer list at the Stage if Development website.
  • Plus all previous rewards.
Battlestar Backer
$20 or more per creation
What's bigger than a Ten-Star? I really don't know, but "Battlestar" sounds awesome, and you've earned it. 
  • Associate Producer credit on all videos and podcasts produced while you maintain this pledge level. You can take that to iMDb.
  • Early downloads of all releases.
  • Access to the Flying Saucer Media public Slack channel, where you can see how we make the donuts.
  • Plus all previous rewards