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ICONS, Gareth-Michael Skarka and customer service

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  • samaritan1975
    I know the delays on ITU are a verboten topic. This is not about that. This is about how Gareth handles criticism by way of a customer requesting a refund on
    Message 1 of 9 , Nov 14, 2012
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      I know the delays on ITU are a verboten topic.

      This is not about that.

      This is about how Gareth handles criticism by way of a customer requesting a refund on said product. A few refunds, actually. I confess, I requested that ITU and Buckaroo Banzai be refunded via Paypal (what I had thought to be the correct step in these instances). I inquired about getting my pledge to the Far West Kickstarter refunded, but understood that was probably not going to happen due to Kickstarter's nature- I don't begrudge the man that. And I can't say he dragged his feet on refunding, as he did that right away.

      Apparently, asking for a refund in the face of piss-poor communication and numerous delays (seriously, Barenaked Ladies might could write a song about it at this point) warrants being called 'childish' and 'entitled' on Twitter yesterday. No, it wasn't by name, but the timing is suspect at the very least.

      I urge anybody on the fence about their pre-orders to read this thread, if they haven't already:

      http://forum.rpg.net/showthread.php?612670-ICONS-Team-Up-will-we-EVER-see-it/page9

      I further urge anybody still in love with ICONS to show Mr. Kenson and crew their support when the license changes hands.
    • Jack
      ... Im one of those who asked for a refund. (if not the first) Ive received my refund promptly. But the whole Team-ups thing was handled very poorly. I will
      Message 2 of 9 , Nov 14, 2012
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        --- In icons-rpg@yahoogroups.com, "samaritan1975" <samaritan1975@...> wrote:
        >
        > I know the delays on ITU are a verboten topic.
        >
        > This is not about that.
        >
        > This is about how Gareth handles criticism by way of a customer requesting a refund on said product. A few refunds, actually. I confess, I requested that ITU and Buckaroo Banzai be refunded via Paypal (what I had thought to be the correct step in these instances). I inquired about getting my pledge to the Far West Kickstarter refunded, but understood that was probably not going to happen due to Kickstarter's nature- I don't begrudge the man that. And I can't say he dragged his feet on refunding, as he did that right away.
        >
        > Apparently, asking for a refund in the face of piss-poor communication and numerous delays (seriously, Barenaked Ladies might could write a song about it at this point) warrants being called 'childish' and 'entitled' on Twitter yesterday. No, it wasn't by name, but the timing is suspect at the very least.
        >
        > I urge anybody on the fence about their pre-orders to read this thread, if they haven't already:
        >
        > http://forum.rpg.net/showthread.php?612670-ICONS-Team-Up-will-we-EVER-see-it/page9
        >
        > I further urge anybody still in love with ICONS to show Mr. Kenson and crew their support when the license changes hands.
        >


        Im one of those who asked for a refund. (if not the first) Ive received my refund promptly. But the whole Team-ups thing was handled very poorly. I will not buy any product from that company ever again.

        I will certainly support & purchase any Icons from the new compnay that has the license though.
      • Gareth-Michael Skarka
        I ve posted this response to Samaritan publicly on RPGnet, but I figured I should put it here as well: I don t participate here any longer, but a link on the
        Message 3 of 9 , Nov 14, 2012
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          I've posted this response to Samaritan publicly on RPGnet, but I figured I should put it here as well:



          I don't participate here any longer, but a link on the ICONS mailing list brought me over.

          First off -- I want to apologize to Samaritan. I did not consider before sending out that tweet that you'd see and think I was speaking about you. To be clear, I was not. I had been hit with a half-dozen emails yesterday (about FAR WEST, not about ICONS), all of which were of the "this has been delayed, so I don't want it any more" variety. That's what I was venting about, and to be honest, I regret it --- and not only because of the fact that you mistakenly thought I was targeting you with my bitching. I think that if you compare our communication regarding your refund, you can see that I bore you ZERO ill will, expressed my disappointment in myself, and refunded your pre-order without hesitation.

          Regardless: What I said on Twitter injured you, whether you were the intended target or not, and for that I am very sorry.

          Now, as to the delays:



          There's not much I can do about BANZAI -- I'm at the mercy of the licensor's schedule here.

          But FAR WEST and ICONS TEAM-UP are solidly in my lap. The delays there are my responsibility, and I'm working my ass off to get them out the door. I want to correct one misconception: That there's movement on FAR WEST but not on TEAM-UP -- both are getting my full attention. Every day is spent on both projects.

          My communication has been awful -- it's a constant failing of mine. I haven't wanted to talk about the reasons behind the delays, because they are a combination of things which are both very personal and contractually confidential, but also because I felt that it was better for me to simply try to get them finished, rather than make excuses.

          I will come right out and say this: The delays, and the situations prompting them, have thrown me into a pretty bad depression (of which I have a history), which really came to a head yesterday (hence my blowing up on Twitter). I don't like to talk about that kind of thing, but there it is.

          I'm getting help for that.

          In the meantime -- ICONS TEAM-UP *will* go to Steve this week for his approval. I'll drop everything else to make sure that happens. You've all waited long enough.


          Again, Samaritan -- I apologize. And I also apologize to everyone who has been waiting. I hope that I can earn your faith again, someday.


          -Gareth-MIchael Skarka
          Adamant Entertainment
        • samaritan1975
          It seems fitting to post my reply here, too, with another apology for some assumptions made: Gareth-Michael- In turn, I apologize that this turn of events came
          Message 4 of 9 , Nov 14, 2012
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            It seems fitting to post my reply here, too, with another apology for some assumptions made:

            Gareth-Michael-

            In turn, I apologize that this turn of events came down the way it did. You understand how I would believe the tweets would have been about me. It is true, your responses by e-mail were civil. Thus, my shock to see something so... counter... on Twitter in such a short span of time.

            For my part: I apologize for presuming the worst. I might humbly suggest, though, that in light of the road thus far travelled, that frustrations with customers not be aired out in public?

            As far as the causes of delays: I understand how things get away from us. From a personal stance, I just couldn't let it go anymore. I've been burned before under similar circumstances, and decided to make the clean break. I hope you realize I bear you no ill will, and hope that your endeavors are fruitful and that your difficulties ease soon.

            TL;DR: That's a hell of a man-up, Mr. Skarka. No snark: thank you.

            --- In icons-rpg@yahoogroups.com, Gareth-Michael Skarka <gms@...> wrote:
            >
            > I've posted this response to Samaritan publicly on RPGnet, but I figured I should put it here as well:
            >
            >
            >
            > I don't participate here any longer, but a link on the ICONS mailing list brought me over.
            >
            > First off -- I want to apologize to Samaritan. I did not consider before sending out that tweet that you'd see and think I was speaking about you. To be clear, I was not. I had been hit with a half-dozen emails yesterday (about FAR WEST, not about ICONS), all of which were of the "this has been delayed, so I don't want it any more" variety. That's what I was venting about, and to be honest, I regret it --- and not only because of the fact that you mistakenly thought I was targeting you with my bitching. I think that if you compare our communication regarding your refund, you can see that I bore you ZERO ill will, expressed my disappointment in myself, and refunded your pre-order without hesitation.
            >
            > Regardless: What I said on Twitter injured you, whether you were the intended target or not, and for that I am very sorry.
            >
            > Now, as to the delays:
            >
            >
            >
            > There's not much I can do about BANZAI -- I'm at the mercy of the licensor's schedule here.
            >
            > But FAR WEST and ICONS TEAM-UP are solidly in my lap. The delays there are my responsibility, and I'm working my ass off to get them out the door. I want to correct one misconception: That there's movement on FAR WEST but not on TEAM-UP -- both are getting my full attention. Every day is spent on both projects.
            >
            > My communication has been awful -- it's a constant failing of mine. I haven't wanted to talk about the reasons behind the delays, because they are a combination of things which are both very personal and contractually confidential, but also because I felt that it was better for me to simply try to get them finished, rather than make excuses.
            >
            > I will come right out and say this: The delays, and the situations prompting them, have thrown me into a pretty bad depression (of which I have a history), which really came to a head yesterday (hence my blowing up on Twitter). I don't like to talk about that kind of thing, but there it is.
            >
            > I'm getting help for that.
            >
            > In the meantime -- ICONS TEAM-UP *will* go to Steve this week for his approval. I'll drop everything else to make sure that happens. You've all waited long enough.
            >
            >
            > Again, Samaritan -- I apologize. And I also apologize to everyone who has been waiting. I hope that I can earn your faith again, someday.
            >
            >
            > -Gareth-MIchael Skarka
            > Adamant Entertainment
            >
          • Gareth-Michael Skarka
            Thank you. Now, back to work for me --- not only will that get ITU to Steve quicker, it also allows me to duck out on my embarrassment. -Gareth
            Message 5 of 9 , Nov 14, 2012
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              Thank you.

              Now, back to work for me --- not only will that get ITU to Steve quicker, it also allows me to duck out on my embarrassment.

              -Gareth




              On Nov 14, 2012, at 11:17 AM, samaritan1975 wrote:

              > It seems fitting to post my reply here, too, with another apology for some assumptions made:
              >
              > Gareth-Michael-
              >
              > In turn, I apologize that this turn of events came down the way it did. You understand how I would believe the tweets would have been about me. It is true, your responses by e-mail were civil. Thus, my shock to see something so... counter... on Twitter in such a short span of time.
              >
              > For my part: I apologize for presuming the worst. I might humbly suggest, though, that in light of the road thus far travelled, that frustrations with customers not be aired out in public?
              >
              > As far as the causes of delays: I understand how things get away from us. From a personal stance, I just couldn't let it go anymore. I've been burned before under similar circumstances, and decided to make the clean break. I hope you realize I bear you no ill will, and hope that your endeavors are fruitful and that your difficulties ease soon.
              >
              > TL;DR: That's a hell of a man-up, Mr. Skarka. No snark: thank you.
              >
              > --- In icons-rpg@yahoogroups.com, Gareth-Michael Skarka <gms@...> wrote:
              >>
              >> I've posted this response to Samaritan publicly on RPGnet, but I figured I should put it here as well:
              >>
              >>
              >>
              >> I don't participate here any longer, but a link on the ICONS mailing list brought me over.
              >>
              >> First off -- I want to apologize to Samaritan. I did not consider before sending out that tweet that you'd see and think I was speaking about you. To be clear, I was not. I had been hit with a half-dozen emails yesterday (about FAR WEST, not about ICONS), all of which were of the "this has been delayed, so I don't want it any more" variety. That's what I was venting about, and to be honest, I regret it --- and not only because of the fact that you mistakenly thought I was targeting you with my bitching. I think that if you compare our communication regarding your refund, you can see that I bore you ZERO ill will, expressed my disappointment in myself, and refunded your pre-order without hesitation.
              >>
              >> Regardless: What I said on Twitter injured you, whether you were the intended target or not, and for that I am very sorry.
              >>
              >> Now, as to the delays:
              >>
              >>
              >>
              >> There's not much I can do about BANZAI -- I'm at the mercy of the licensor's schedule here.
              >>
              >> But FAR WEST and ICONS TEAM-UP are solidly in my lap. The delays there are my responsibility, and I'm working my ass off to get them out the door. I want to correct one misconception: That there's movement on FAR WEST but not on TEAM-UP -- both are getting my full attention. Every day is spent on both projects.
              >>
              >> My communication has been awful -- it's a constant failing of mine. I haven't wanted to talk about the reasons behind the delays, because they are a combination of things which are both very personal and contractually confidential, but also because I felt that it was better for me to simply try to get them finished, rather than make excuses.
              >>
              >> I will come right out and say this: The delays, and the situations prompting them, have thrown me into a pretty bad depression (of which I have a history), which really came to a head yesterday (hence my blowing up on Twitter). I don't like to talk about that kind of thing, but there it is.
              >>
              >> I'm getting help for that.
              >>
              >> In the meantime -- ICONS TEAM-UP *will* go to Steve this week for his approval. I'll drop everything else to make sure that happens. You've all waited long enough.
              >>
              >>
              >> Again, Samaritan -- I apologize. And I also apologize to everyone who has been waiting. I hope that I can earn your faith again, someday.
              >>
              >>
              >> -Gareth-MIchael Skarka
              >> Adamant Entertainment
              >>
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > ------------------------------------
              >
              > Yahoo! Groups Links
              >
              >
              >
            • Tim K.
              ... Gareth, get well. I know its tough, as a game writer myself, I understand all the craziness that can come up. I did not pre-order, so i don t have a dog in
              Message 6 of 9 , Nov 14, 2012
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                > I will come right out and say this: The delays, and the situations prompting them, have thrown me into a pretty bad depression (of which I have a history), which really came to a head yesterday (hence my blowing up on Twitter). I don't like to talk about that kind of thing, but there it is.
                >
                > I'm getting help for that.
                >
                > In the meantime -- ICONS TEAM-UP *will* go to Steve this week for his approval. I'll drop everything else to make sure that happens. You've all waited long enough.
                >
                >
                > Again, Samaritan -- I apologize. And I also apologize to everyone who has been waiting. I hope that I can earn your faith again, someday.
                >
                >
                > -Gareth-MIchael Skarka
                > Adamant Entertainment
                >

                Gareth, get well. I know its tough, as a game writer myself, I
                understand all the craziness that can come up.

                I did not pre-order, so i don't have a dog in this fight other than
                understanding the kinds of things you go through, and face. (Deadlines,
                inspirational crashes, money flow problems, etc, etc.) I want the book,
                but I won't have money for it until MUCH later. Sadly. (I am a game
                designer, so you know by function--poor)

                Yet, I do empathize, and encourage you to take care and get a handle on
                the depression.

                -Tim
              • Gareth-Michael Skarka
                Thank you, Tim. -G
                Message 7 of 9 , Nov 14, 2012
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                  Thank you, Tim.

                  -G


                  On Nov 14, 2012, at 4:35 PM, Tim K. wrote:

                  >
                  >> I will come right out and say this: The delays, and the situations prompting them, have thrown me into a pretty bad depression (of which I have a history), which really came to a head yesterday (hence my blowing up on Twitter). I don't like to talk about that kind of thing, but there it is.
                  >>
                  >> I'm getting help for that.
                  >>
                  >> In the meantime -- ICONS TEAM-UP *will* go to Steve this week for his approval. I'll drop everything else to make sure that happens. You've all waited long enough.
                  >>
                  >>
                  >> Again, Samaritan -- I apologize. And I also apologize to everyone who has been waiting. I hope that I can earn your faith again, someday.
                  >>
                  >>
                  >> -Gareth-MIchael Skarka
                  >> Adamant Entertainment
                  >>
                  >
                  > Gareth, get well. I know its tough, as a game writer myself, I
                  > understand all the craziness that can come up.
                  >
                  > I did not pre-order, so i don't have a dog in this fight other than
                  > understanding the kinds of things you go through, and face. (Deadlines,
                  > inspirational crashes, money flow problems, etc, etc.) I want the book,
                  > but I won't have money for it until MUCH later. Sadly. (I am a game
                  > designer, so you know by function--poor)
                  >
                  > Yet, I do empathize, and encourage you to take care and get a handle on
                  > the depression.
                  >
                  > -Tim
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > ------------------------------------
                  >
                  > Yahoo! Groups Links
                  >
                  >
                  >
                • dirkgentry2000
                  as I said over on rpg.net - I applaud you for manning up and admitting to your problems.
                  Message 8 of 9 , Nov 16, 2012
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                    as I said over on rpg.net - I applaud you for manning up and admitting to your problems.


                    --- In icons-rpg@yahoogroups.com, "Tim K." <silverlion@...> wrote:
                    >
                    >
                    > > I will come right out and say this: The delays, and the situations prompting them, have thrown me into a pretty bad depression (of which I have a history), which really came to a head yesterday (hence my blowing up on Twitter). I don't like to talk about that kind of thing, but there it is.
                    > >
                    > > I'm getting help for that.
                    > >
                    > > In the meantime -- ICONS TEAM-UP *will* go to Steve this week for his approval. I'll drop everything else to make sure that happens. You've all waited long enough.
                    > >
                    > >
                    > > Again, Samaritan -- I apologize. And I also apologize to everyone who has been waiting. I hope that I can earn your faith again, someday.
                    > >
                    > >
                    > > -Gareth-MIchael Skarka
                    > > Adamant Entertainment
                    > >
                    >
                    > Gareth, get well. I know its tough, as a game writer myself, I
                    > understand all the craziness that can come up.
                    >
                    > I did not pre-order, so i don't have a dog in this fight other than
                    > understanding the kinds of things you go through, and face. (Deadlines,
                    > inspirational crashes, money flow problems, etc, etc.) I want the book,
                    > but I won't have money for it until MUCH later. Sadly. (I am a game
                    > designer, so you know by function--poor)
                    >
                    > Yet, I do empathize, and encourage you to take care and get a handle on
                    > the depression.
                    >
                    > -Tim
                    >
                  • John McMullen
                    As a father of children with various problems (mostly ADHD and anxiety problems) and as a person who has cohabited with Churchill s Black Dog more than once,
                    Message 9 of 9 , Nov 16, 2012
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                      As a father of children with various problems (mostly ADHD and anxiety problems) and as a person who has cohabited with Churchill's Black Dog more than once, it does take a great deal to (a) admit problems like that and (b) do something about it. So, congratulations there.
                       
                      I wish that the work stopped when you or I decided to do something about it, but it keeps going on.
                       
                      Good luck.
                       
                      John
                       
                      John McMullen (Searching for a .sig)
                      jhmcmullen@...

                      From: dirkgentry2000 <dirkgentry2000@...>
                      To: icons-rpg@yahoogroups.com
                      Sent: Friday, November 16, 2012 11:26 AM
                      Subject: [icons-rpg] Re: ICONS, Gareth-Michael Skarka and customer service

                      as I said over on rpg.net - I applaud you for manning up and admitting to your problems.


                      --- In icons-rpg@yahoogroups.com, "Tim K." <silverlion@...> wrote:
                      >
                      >
                      > > I will come right out and say this:  The delays, and the situations prompting them, have thrown me into a pretty bad depression (of which I have a history), which really came to a head yesterday (hence my blowing up on Twitter).    I don't like to talk about that kind of thing, but there it is.
                      > >
                      > > I'm getting help for that.
                      > >
                      > > In the meantime -- ICONS TEAM-UP *will* go to Steve this week for his approval.  I'll drop everything else to make sure that happens.    You've all waited long enough.
                      > >
                      > >
                      > > Again, Samaritan -- I apologize.  And I also apologize to everyone who has been waiting.  I hope that I can earn your faith again, someday.
                      > >
                      > >
                      > > -Gareth-MIchael Skarka
                      > > Adamant Entertainment
                      > >
                      >
                      > Gareth, get
                      well. I know its tough, as a game writer myself, I
                      > understand all the craziness that can come up.
                      >
                      >  I did not pre-order, so i don't have a dog in this fight other than
                      > understanding the kinds of things you go through, and face. (Deadlines,
                      > inspirational crashes, money flow problems, etc, etc.)  I want the book,
                      > but I won't have money for it until MUCH later. Sadly. (I am a game
                      > designer, so you know by function--poor)
                      >
                      > Yet, I do empathize, and encourage you to take care and get a handle on
                      > the depression.
                      >
                      > -Tim
                      >




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