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Space 4X M.O.R.E. Double Dips On Kickstarter

We’ve only mentioned M.O.R.E. once before, a brief nod in 2012 from the dearly departed Kickstarter Katchup when it succeeded in securing funding. It’s a space 4X which developers IdeaLcenter frowningly describe as the first to progress the genre since 1996’s Master of Orion 2, which influences it heavily. Hubris aside, they did rather well, nearly doubling their goal with over $90,000 received.

It turns out that wasn’t enough. Although the originally estimated delivery date of December 2013 has long gone, its developers have launched a second Kickstarter to fund additional content for the game. Hrmm.

IdeaLcenter explained their reasons for going back to Kickstarter in an update to the first campaign. It’s self-aware, admits the original delivery estimate was too optimistic, and keen to stress that the game will be finished either way.

The second Kickstarter outlines what they hope to add with the extra money:

This is our target for this campaign and for this we ask for a little more of your support. We want to make this game as good as possible, by creating some add-ons and new features which will make M.O.R.E. a more complete product. But reaching for your intellect isn’t enough for us. We also want to improve graphics, animations, sound effects, and music as much as we can. Because of that, it would be best to maintain all of our coworkers working on this game for as long as we can, so we will be able to realize most of our ideas.

They’re aiming for an extra $10,000, which will introduce “Deep Space Stations” to the game. There are then a number of stretch goals, which if hit will add those other new features, improved graphics and so on.

Along with the new pitch has been a series of videos, currently on three of eight, posted to the updates page. They’re far more in-depth looks at the systems that are already built into the game, how far along it is and what’s currently being worked on. That’s important to show given the questions about crowdfunding something like this raises: so far the M.O.R.E team haven’t delivered on any of their promises, and needing more money – even if it’s apparently not necessary – suggests mismanagement in some part of the process. It also just feels… icky.

It’ll also be interesting to see how the reality of crowdfunding in 2014 will affect the second campaign. Kickstarter’s an altogether harder place to make money now than it was in 2012. Equally, their low-ball initial target will likely help them over the finish line, but I’d be shocked if they get close to their first result again. $18 will fetch you the game at an Early Bird discount, $22 thereafter, with a revised release date of December 2015.

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