Despite it being April Fools Day, we found some real, actual crowdfunding campaigns that look like jokes, but aren’t.


Ryan Macklin, writer and RPG game designer, developed Katanas & Trenchcoats, Episode 1: Welcome to Darkest Vancouver, just over two years ago as a goofy blog post parodying “the 90’s dream of Highlander and World of Darkness games”. Announcing on April Fools Day that year, he promised the game would go to Kickstarter. The following year on that day, he launched the actual Katana & Trenchcoats website at with proceeds going to the Seattle Children’s Hospital (over $1,500). And this year, after seeing the response to the first version of the game, he put out a call for writers for a revised version. Today, on April Fools Day, the promised Kickstarter went live.

“Here’s my thing about April Fools Day stuff,” Ryan wrote last year after launching the first version of the game. “I loathe pranks. I love shared, good-spirited laughter. Katanas & Trenchcoats is us laughing together, cheering together, having fun together.”

A $15 pledge gets you an electronic copy of the new edition while twice that adds on a physical book. Go check it out. It’s totally a real thing.

Moving on, let’s see what Dice Hate Me Games is doing this year.


Last April Fools Day, they launched a 72-hour Kickstarter campaign for Deck Building: The Deck Buildng Game and Unpub: the Unpublished Card Game with a funding goal of $4,115. (Why that amount? The campaign launched on 4/1/15.) After merging with Greater Than Games, the company launched a contest called _________: The _________ Game Contest, a contest that centered around using a game mechanic whose name is in the title. Out of a staggering 158 entries, two winners were chosen: a game about magicians stealing each other’s tricks called Trick-Taking: the Trick-Taking Game, and a game about managers in the Office of Time Management sending workers through time to manage the flow of time itself called Time Management: the Time Management Game. Those two games, along with Traitor Mechanic: the Traitor Mechanic Game, are now on Kickstarter.

This year, they want $4116.

A $9 pledge gets you either Trick-Taking or Time Management games, $19 gets you Traitor Mechanic, and $37 gets you all three. This is a real thing, too.

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