Failure to Launch

Failure to Launch

Failure to Launch is a light-hearted, non-fiction tour of (so far!) unrealized technological and societal advances promised in years past, but which never came to be. What could have been, but wasn't.
$65,910 🎉
of $20,000 (USD) goal
Project Ended
Ended on




Copy Link


Hello, everyone! We're Iron Circus Comics! We're the premiere publisher of award-winning, critically-acclaimed graphic novels in the American Midwest, a small-mid house built from the ground up by founder C. Spike Trotman. Our a mission is to showcase the Strange and Amazing in comics. Our books are off the beaten path, one-of-a-kind, and one thousand percent worth the trip! We hope you'll come along!

Failure to Launch is a light-hearted, educational tour of the (so far!) unrealized technological and societal advances promised in years past, but which never came to be. What could have been, but wasn't. It tells the tales of space utopias, incredible inventions, societal revolutions, robot pets, and even predictions of planet-wide Armageddon!

History is often written by the winners, but this time? Join us in spotlighting those whose dreams sputtered out, somewhere on the spectrum between disappointment and disaster. And we promise, it's more fun than you think!

The Failure to Launch anthology is over 300 pages of full-color comics, and a full color collection of catastrophic concepts! That's a whoooole lotta hopes and dreams falling to pieces in one book.

The anthology features the following stories and creators:

Whether it's attempts at hippo domestication, talking to the dead, or building a floating city, this book is full of bad ideas you gotta see to believe!

Like all Iron Circus anthologies, Failure to Launch will be using our creator bonus pay model! That means, for every $5000 by which we surpass the funding goal, the creators in Failure to Launch will get their page rate increased by $5.

The money raised from our campaigns goes to pay our creators first, and other costs second. By supporting us directly, you are ensuring a larger payday for the creators you love!

But we have a whole list of bonuses lined up, too!

At $40,000: A cool cover effect!

We love giving our books fun cover effects! Foils, sheens, glow-in-the-dark patches. For Failure to Launch, we'd love to do something with the smoke billowing out of the failing robot. We won't give you too many details, though; that would ruin the surprise!

At $45,000: A bonus comic ebook for ALL backers!

We had to keep Failure to Launch's pagecount to around 300, for practical reasons; but that doesn't mean what didn't make the cut isn't worth seeing! If we hit $45k, we'll send out, during fulfillment, a free extra ebook comic to all backers!

At $50,000: A Failure to Launch hardcover upgrade!

A lot of backers ask us for durable, collectible, hardcover upgrades, and we're happy to oblige! If we hit $50,000, we'll provide a hardcover upgrade option during fulfillment, which will likely tack on a $10 or $15 upcharge, as well as extra shipping (for those backers who did not manage to score first-hour-only free domestic and reduced international shipping perks).

At $55,000: A poster add-on, by Skutch!

Skutch is the artist behind "The First Union," a Failure to Launch story made in partnership with YouTuber Hbomberguy. And if we hit $55,000, we'll offer an add-on poster, featuring the legendary Ned Ludd! The rough image is below!

At $60,000: ALL backers with physical orders get a limited edition Failure to Launch enamel pin, designed by Amanda Lafrenais!

ALL our first-day backers get themselves a swanky enamel pin to commemorate their support of the project, but if we hit $60k? All backers with a physical order, PERIOD, will receive this pin with their order! 

Want a sneak-peek of what Failure to Launch has to offer? Check out these preview pages!


This is Iron Circus Comics' thirty-seventh crowdfunding project. Thirty-two of our previous projects have been fulfilled and completed, and the others are currently in process of being fulfilled by White Squirrel. This ain't our first rodeo!

We're aiming for a Fall 2023 release date. However, due to the current volatility of the global market, we can make no guarantee that rewards will ship by that date. But we'll do our absolute best!

Because of our pre-existing distribution contracts, there is a possibility of seeing these books in stores before receiving your rewards. This is out of our direct control, and we are continuing to work as hard as we can to ensure rewards will be shipped as close to the planned date as possible.

However, while stores might get the books first, we have some special deals for early bird backers!

For the first hour only, special early bird pledge levels will be available to off free domestic shipping and discounted international shipping for folks who order the physical edition of
Failure to Launch.

Additionally, everybody who orders the physical book on the first day will receive a free pin celebrating the debut of Failure to Launch! Watch this space for the design debut of the exclusive pin!

Please take note of the estimated shipping charges listed with the backer level you've selected, and understand shipping charges may change between the project and fulfillment.

During the fulfillment process, BackerKit will calculate any shipping that may be required when you fill out your delivery address. Shipping costs will not be assessed and billed until then! You are only being charged for your pledge amount at this time. We hope this helps to keep the cost of shipping down due to current fluctuations in domestic and international shipping costs.

Iron Circus Comics, BackerKit, and our fulfillment partners are not responsible for any VAT, duty, or customs charges any packages may incur.

BackerKit surveys will be sent once all books involved in this campaign arrive at our fulfillment partner. Our current estimate for shipping is Fall 2023.


Promo video created by Matt Sheridan and Kel McDonald. Cover art by Roderick Constance. Comics pages by Blue Delliquanti, Erin Roseberry, Kel McDonald, Skutch, Rowan Oats, Triple Dream Comics, Iris Jay, Maki Naro, Tuisku H, and Marinna Rolin. Music by Adam Kelski.

Questions? Contact us at [email protected]!
If you believe that this project is not in compliance with BackerKit’s Community Guidelines or Terms of Service, you can file a report by sending a message via this link: Report this project