OK, as I’m going to give some opinion that is likely not going to be popular, I would like to first express the fact that I am quite grateful to Manuel for what he has done. Both back when this was “MakeHuman” and for his work on the Blender Addon this thread is about. It is a very useful tool being able to dial in the base proportions of a human figure instead of starting from scratch each time.
With this said, this is all you really get from the tool and has been for a while. From what I can see, the same base functionality is being refactored, rejigged, and redesigned since the first MakeHuman beta build I played with. Instead of moving forward and building on the foundation, Manuel has been remaking the foundations over and over… which doesn’t lend itself well to financial support.
If it were me and I was trying to make this into something people would support me on - I’d start building out from the foundation rather than rebuilding it again. I have a reasonable base mesh with a tonne of customisability. I don’t need to rebuild that, ti works and works well, what I need to do is add more to it.
Basically, what MBLabs is offering is a small subset of what DAZStudio & Poser do. One you can get for free, the other is (frankly) on it’s way out the door. Either way, they have a variety of figures already one can use, and it’s easy to import them, they have an ecosystem of support for textures, clothing, props, shaders, etc. And that works because they aren’t replacing the foundation meshes all the time. Settle on the base mesh, start building tools to make it easy for folks to add their own clothing/props/morphs to that base mesh (and share them), and you’d have a free & open-source competitor to DAZ, Renderosity, etc. However, if you keep reinventing the wheel, don’t be surprised when people move onto those that put four wheels together and an engine. Your wheel might be perfect, but people are going to gravitate to the imperfect wheels that go places.
However, ignoring all of that, I think it unwise for a single person on a niche project to so casually reject other means of funding. Patreon is, like it or not, the “kickstarter of patronage”. Yes, it takes a cut, but it has launched/sustained the careers of thousands of individuals who otherwise would not have the capability to do their thing. I think if Manuel actually wants to be the single coder doing his thing for the public, it deserves a look.
FWIW, I have never followed Manuel’s facebook, twitter, etc primarily because his releases were so few and far between. I didn’t know there was a funding request until all the hullaballoo here about it being cancelled and not enough.