Weight Gaming Site Request for Comments


#1

I am happy to announce that we have completed the concept document for what we have planned for the actual Weight Gaming site! With this we want to open it up to the community for everyone to review and offer their feedback, concerns, and if they have any other features they would like to see. We will be The pdf will be attached at the bottom of the post but here is the tldr of the most important features for those who dont care to read the whole doc. Keep in mind this is only a subset of the planed and wished features so if you wish to see the full plan look at the pdf below!

TLDR;

SSO

The forum and the main site will now use a single sign on system that will allow users to sign into one site and be signed into all others instead of having to sign in in two different places. We also plan on allowing devs to request access to this server so they can use our sign in system if they need it for something like cloud saves or to keep track of stats on the server.

Now there is an issue here. When we switch to an SSO we can not migrate existing accounts from the forums. This means that users will have to remake their accounts. This will not delete existing accounts though. As long as your recreate the account with the same email (or google account if you used the google sign in) the forum will link your old forum account to your new account automatically.

Store Front

We will be creating not one, but two store fronts! Now you may be thinking “two store fronts?! what are you thinking, how can you do two?!” Well during design we realized that would be beneficial if we had one store front for selling games and one for selling assets for creating games that was geared more to devs. We feel this would be great as it opens up the ability for those devs who may not want to make a game to sell or make assets they crafted available for others to use. So in summery we plan on implementing these two store fronts:

  • Standard Game Store Front
  • An Asset Store Front

Reviews

The store front will allow users to leave reviews on both games and assets.

Search System

We plan on allowing users to search for games/assets based on tags, keywords, release state, and categories to name a few.

Pricing Methods

We plan on supporting multiple pricing methods ranging from a fixed price to a pay what you want donation system. Devs will also be able to set the product to be free.

Revenue Split

The revenue split will work similarly to how itch.io has it set up; allowing the Devs to chose how much of a percentage of each sale will go to Weight Gaming. The only difference is that unlike itch.io there will be a minimum percentage set. This is to help us pay the basic costs of running the site and hosting the game. The actual percentage has not been set yet as we need to look at our costs first but we are feeling it will be around 5-10% minimum.

Payment Processors

We plan on supporting a few payment processors to give everyone flexibility in choosing how they wish to pay. Currently we plan on allowing for payments through both paypal and stripe. This is needed as paypal may not allow users to buy certain games under their ToS. We would also like to add in a wallet system (this can be used to get around paypal) and a payment processors for crypto currencies if a user wishes to use those.

Payout Methods

Right now we are only planning on using paypal for the payouts but we may add additional methods as required or requested.

Returns

We will have a return policy so users can return games and assets that they are not happy with. The specifics of the return policy will be determined closer to release.

Patreon Integration

We are planning at minimum to allow Devs to link to their Patreon on their store page and on the pages of their products. We would also like to integrate with the API to allow for Devs to seal off downloads to only their Patreons.

The Deprecation/Removal of Curated Projects

We plan on removing curated projects from the forums. This will instead be replaced with a new system the will instead create a new forum subcategory automatically when a dev uploads a new game. We may also do this for assets but we are still considering that possibility.

Timeframe

While not specified in the doc we believe that this project will take about 12-24 months and this is the time frame we will be aiming for.

Cost

This will be detailed more in the doc but we estimate that for upfront cost we are looking at around $700-$1400. Along with this steep upfront cost we estimate that the development of the site will increase our monthly costs by about $15 a month. We are currently saving up the funds but if you wish to help us make this happen faster consider donating to us on our Patreon.

Full Doc

WGSiteConceptDoc.pdf (221.4 KB)


pinned globally #2

made this a banner . It will appear at the top of every page until it is dismissed by the user. #3

#4

About the payment processors, since I work for one of the major ones I actually have a good deal of insight here. We can talk more in DM’s on Discord if you want but here’s the short version.

Most review processes are done by either someone reporting the content or by there being a blatant ToS violation in the name. Like obviously naming a store Sexy Fun Times is going to get flagged. If the names are relatively innocent the likelihood of getting reviewed is very low.

Given that the amount processed will be sub 20k a year that further decreases the chance of being reviewed.

That said the only concern I have is more a content one. If you are going to be hosting asset artists/games then you really have to be careful about what gets approved. It’s very dicey to approve for example, any characters that have a canonical age of under 18 even if for the purposes of the game they are aged up. For liability reasons I’d suggest not hosting that content, there’s a reason DA and Tumblr have cracked down like they have.


#5

Very interesting insight. We will have to keep that in mind though we do still plan on abiding to their ToS the best we can.

We do understand your concerns over hosting content. Your example is especially concerning because child pornography is one of the things that is not protected by safe harbor laws in the US. That being said no website (that has been doing it unknowingly) has been charged with distribution of that kind of content, and even Tumblers crack down (not sure about DA’s) was caused by Apple removing their app from the app store more than government pressure. Also, in our view we are just about as legally exposed with hosting content as we are with the forum as users can still post and link illegal content here on the forum.

Funny enough this may actually shield us more legally as dealing with selling is going to force us to have to form a LLC.


#6

Regarding the removal of the Curated Projects subforums - will there still be a way to create dedicated discussions for WG-themed games hosted elsewhere? For example, Eat The Dungeon has its own browser-based game site, and while this is the closest to an actual discussion forum Fetish Master has (outside a near-abandoned subreddit), I don’t know how h.coder would feel about uploading the game to the storefront just to keep the forum active.


#7

Good question. So one important distinction to make real quick is the Curated Projects category will not just disappear. Instead we are not going to be accepting new applicants into the Curated Projects category and merging existing Curated Projects into the new category as they move over to the main site. This will allow us to phase out the category slowly over time.

Now, there will be a point where we will fully close down the category, and you bring up some good arguments especially with Fetish Master. A majority of the ones that are still in that category and don’t show much activity will be placed into the Archives. Any ones like Fetish Master that still show activity and interest will be handled on a case by case bases and either be given their own category or if there is enough of them we may just rename or keep the Curated Projects category but just freeze adding more projects into it.


#8

I can’t help but feel this is all very grandiose and unnecessary. It just seems to fly in the face of the original idea of the Weight Gaiming forums which was to build a community, not a marketplace.

As a dev, l don’t charge for my work. If I did I’d do it through Patreon (or similar where there’s already an established channel to the market I would want to address), for early access or extra features the way many other niche games do. I certainly wouldn’t want WG as my sole channel to market, or any facility that ties the operation of my game to WG’s servers - after all there’s no guarantee those servers will be around for any length of time.

One of the problems is of course that payment providers tend to have issues with payments related to fetish work (Paypal is particularly problematic for other reasons too - they’ve a habit of just holding onto monies for months if they get a whiff of anything suspect). Another is that you will have to vet the content to make sure it’s legal (and not just in the particular part of the world where your server is).

If you go down the limited liability route (and liely you’d have to because of all the legal worries) you are going to have to produce audited accounts (more expense), take out legal/liability insurance (expense), and pay tax on your part of the income too.

The math doesn’t seem to add up. WG has 1,500 users and just 20 Patreons (0.13r%). Let’s say 5% of the user base is prepared to buy stuff in the marketplace, and they do so a couple of times a year at $10 a pop, and you take a 10% cut. Your payment processer takes their fees, as do federal, state, … and you may end up with an income of $100? That’s got to cover the additional hosting fees, your time to review the content, and accountancy, insurance, and filing. Even if every single user bought two games a year you’d probably still be running at a significant loss!

To get it to work you’d have to broaden the user base by not limiting yourself to WG content, and just become a generic adult game site. But, if you do that you’ve lost the community.

If I had my vote, I’d say stop dicking with the forums, and go back to writing games!


#9

I understand you concerns so let me see if I can address your major concerns one by one here.

To us the marketplace is the next step in building the community. We hope that by encouraging devs through the possibility of monetary gain we will be able to incentivise more people to try to make games, increase quality, and encourage cooperation between devs with different skill sets. Also, the market works a duel purpose of acting as a better distribution system for these games then the forums are.

There are other channels like itch.io that can be used if a dev wishs. We do not want to force a dev to use us as their sole market if they do not wish to, but we hope to provide a market place more tailored to these types of niche games so that users that want this content can more easily find it. Also, your second comment can be said with just about any service. Also, there are not many services with ToS that are friendly to fetish content so it can be just as likely a service could rip a devs content down just for that.

Yes with Paypal (there are some caveats with it), no with Stripe. Last I checked their ToS is ok with content like ours as long as it is not illegal.

True, but these issues are the same issues we already face with the forums. For example if some one was to link something that had child pornography we could still be charged for distribution in the US. If there is a country whose laws we can not comply with we plan on blocking their access just as we are planning to do with the EU in the event their new copy right directive is passed later this month.

Its more than just legal worries, but it has been a plan we have been working on since I took over to ensure Weight Gaming is no longer in the hands of just a few people but a fully independent legal entity.

True, but that is the cost of doing business and as for the tax we already have to do that with our Patreon income.

Actually, we have 1500 registered users. In reality though we get ~25000 unique visits a month. Most users that visit weight gaming are just looking for games and dont wish to participate unless they have a question or just want to. Also, our current research shows a total Market size of around 100,000 to 500,000 users that we can confirm that are interested in just weight gain with the most likely value being around 300,000. (to give context my scans of FAs user base alone shows 100,000 users alone that are interested in weight gain. This was gathered through analysis of watch lists).

This is actually a very high conversion rate in the market right now with the average being closer to 1%, and we are seeing evidence that the conversion rate might actually be higher to 10%.

You are kind of right, we will more than likly be operating at a loss for at least a few years, but this is not uncommon for new business. Also, and I know how crude this sounds, but sex sells. We are seeing strong evidence of an under-served market that is just starting to emerge. We are seeing a few games come up for sale that are heavily fetishized or contain notable amount of fetish content. Stationmaster pulls in almost $2000 a month, Volkenfox’s new VN State of Flux broke $10,000 on kick starter in less than 24 hours, and Familiar Travels (which advertised as a nsfw game) made ~$22,000 on theirs and are still gaining as they are still selling through a site of theirs.

The fact of the matter is we strongly believe there is a market for these types of games, and we wish to open up this market. Is it a risk, yes but if we are not willing to take that risk who else will?

I understand your concern, but if you haven’t noticed we have been trying to expand the community to be more than just weight gain. While we do not want to become just a generic adult game site, we wish to welcome all expansion and transformation content along with fat and weight gain.

To sum up we do not wish to become the next steam, but instead we are aiming to be a fetish centric itch.io that is based mainly around fat, weight gain, expansion, and transformation.


#10

I would like to chime in, as the creator of WG, that the idea of a marketplace has my support. The greatest thing, in my opinion, that will come of this is more visibility for new and old projects. The problem that has always plagued this place (as a forum) was that finding a coherent and up to date list of projects is not easy, you have to dig and watch new posts carefully. The marketplace should be thought of more as an interface for easily finding projects rather than just a means for creators to make money, since the latter is strictly optional. We don’t want to force you into any monetary model. If you like your game to be free and supported by Patreon instead, then you can continue to do it. The only difference is now your game will appear in an easily navigated and searchable interface.

It should also be said that the intention is not to replace the forums. They will remain as an integral part of the community to discuss ideas, give feedback, report bugs, etc. because a marketplace cannot do that as effectively. If a person finds a game on the marketplace that they’d like to leave feedback on, then I believe the intent was for a link to be provided on the marketplace back to the thread for that game (or something to that effect).

In my discussions with Grot, it is very clear to me that the intent here is not for making money, but to grow the community and to further the evolution of professionalism that I wanted to foster with the original forums. To be completely honest, if we only wanted to make money, there’s a great number of much easier ways to do so. Its going to be an arduous and very long road to make this profitable (my views) but the bigger prize is the larger community that will hopefully draw in more developers, artists, etc.