Contact: Langel Bookbinder

Phone: (734) 709-0367



Kill Date: April 10th 2016

Kickstarter Link

Battle of the Bits : A Friendly Competitive Music Platform

One cowboy coder needs your help building a better battle community experience with Kickstarter.

Raising $15,000 in 25 days for a passion project is much more appealing than looking for a next job, and it would also fulfill a ten year dream to build the greatest digital arts arena on the web.

BotB founder, architect, and community manager Langel Bookbinder says, “Basically it's a MMORPG... digital art competitive community with user classes, level ups and friendship.” Through battling on BotB over various formats and themes, users interact and challenge each other. For example, a remix battle includes a sample submission period to determine the bitpack, giving a specific set of sounds that limit BotBrs’ audio palette. All battle bits and entries are voted on democratically by the community or “BotBrs,” and Bookbinder hosts a live-stream awards show at the end.

Back in 2002, Bookbinder’s then housemate, Mike Blank, was organizing parties centered around playing back remixes done by local producers. Artists were limited to using the 25 samples from a CD offered by Blank personally at Ann Arbor, Michigan’s Fleetwood Diner, 48 hours beforehand. Bookbinder, both inspired by Blank’s meatspace efforts and his own poor online music competition experiences, set out to build BotB in his spare time while spending his college years toiling at a book factory. Within the month of May 2005, armed with nothing more than a php book and the inspiration, Bookbinder managed to build a website that could host the competitive process online, and blew the doors open for worldwide participation. The first multi-format chiptune battle followed at the end of that year, and one hour battles became a staple of the community in 2006.

Today, active BotBrs log in from at least 30 different countries. In the past decade, Battle of the Bits has hosted 2,700 battles both large and small, acquiring an archive of 17 thousand original music compositions and 2,000 original images. In 2015 had over one million page views and 30 thousand visitors with an average session time over 11 minutes. But Battle of the Bits could be so much more.

The main goal is $15k, providing Bookbinder with three months to work on a list of features he’s never had time to implement. This includes wandering NPC’s with items for sale that modify a BotBr’s experience, multi-account management, layout support for different screens and devices, and last but certainly not least, building a comprehensive modular battle engine that allows for all sorts of variations and fun. The stretch goal is $30k or more, giving Bookbinder the time to completely renovate the interface, bringing it up-to-date with current web technologies such as a fluid layout, a simple bluetooth-enabled app with push notifications, and a truly responsive experience.

The Kickstarter rewards include physical goods like stickers, t-shirts, a 7” vinyl record, and a limited edition 8-bit Nintendo cartridge full of the best NES music available on the BotB. Other rewards include custom songs and hosting your own battle. All backers are also rewarded with a custom badge on their BotB profile, as well as a dollar matching amount of altruist points and boons (BotB’s internal currency).

The true winner is everyone enjoying fresh original digital art: be it music or image.

BotB is free and open to all participants.

Battles encourage inspiration, practice and community

Kickstarter URL