Psychonauts 2! Double Fine Crowdfunding A Sequel

Remember back in 2012 when Notch was like, “I could fund a Psychonauts 2!” and Double Fine were all, “Cool! $18m please!” and Notch was all, “Shiiiit, I was thinking more 25p, and – wow, look, an octopus on a tricycle!”? Well, that’s all history now.

Double Fine are looking to make Psychonauts 2. They’re after $3.3m from backers, alongside their own investment, plus external funding from a mysterious, possibly legal party. More Psychonauts! There’s a trailer too, of sorts.

Of course, Notch could now fund 111 sequels to Psychonauts, but that’s by the by. Double Fine are hoping the collective wallets of the world will see them through, asking for the same amount their Double Fine Adventure Kickstarter eventually raised. A bold request, what with that being one of the most successful gaming Kickstarters ever, and indeed the one that drove the whole KS gaming revolution. But then, this is Psychonauts 2, and people really want that. I really want that.

Things are complicated by this being fundraised on Fig, meaning as well as simply crowdfunding, people can invest in the project in a way that sees profits come back their way and… oh gawd, I don’t understand Fig, and I’m not going to get my head around it at 6.30am. But if you wanted to put in serious money to Psychonauts 2, as a proper business grown up person, you can do that too.

It’s an all-or-nothing fundraiser, so if there isn’t the interest to raise this really substantial goal, the sequel won’t happen. Half a million dollars has come in overnight, so that’s a good start, certainly – I suspect this one will make it, although without Broken Age’s astonishing ten-fold extremes.

So that seems like good news.

233 Comments

  1. Morcane says:

    lol no

    • Lars Westergren says:

      LOL YES!

      • Mirqy says:

        After carefully considering the merits of both your arguments I find I am more persuaded by Mr Westergren’s position.

        • Lars Westergren says:

          I’m glad you were swayed by my rhetoric. It was a high effort post I’m proud of.

        • Morcane says:

          Can I add in a ‘roflcopter’ to still convince you? Dammit.

          • Jac says:

            An LMAO and I feel you would have won what will surely go down in internet comment history as one of the great debates.

      • MikoSquiz says:

        lol maybe

        I have mixed feelings about this. I really wanted Psychonauts 2 for a long time, but after Double Fine released n+1 titles in a row that were, eh, kinda okay I guess, I’m not sure if I want to throw in the $39 for a potentially disappointing sequel to one of my favorite games of all time.

        I’d rather Psychonauts 2 was a cartoon. DF are exceptionally good at every aspect of making a game except for the ‘making’ and ‘game’ parts: Amazing visual design and art and writing and voice direction and music and sound design, setting and story and all perfectly on point, and after the project overruns by three years and runs out of money twice the gameplay component’s just “ehhh, I suppose it’ll do”.

        • dirtrobot says:

          I totally agree with that sentiment. Amazing creative minds, no idea on how to manage a project or taking it through final to ship.

        • ansionnach says:

          With those talents another thing they might do well is… an adventure game! I’d be interested in a new one of those if they’d make one…

    • wisnoskij says:

      The only thing worse that Psychonauts 2 never happening. Is Psychonauts 2 happening and being a huge disappointment.

  2. The Dark One says:

    Twitter user @vogon crunched some numbers and concluded that, based on the proposed investor ROI, the internal budget for the project is $13.5 million. link to twitter.com

  3. Dragonzeanse says:

    Oh boy, $3.3 million to a studio that couldn’t even properly budget that much for an adventure game? Where do I sign up for this golden opportunity? A Kickstarter knockoff? Sweet.

    • Lars Westergren says:

      A Kickstarter knockoff run by people from Obsidian, inXile, Harmonix and Double Fine Where you can actually invest and profit, not just get Kickstarter rewards, which people have been asking for for a long time.

      Disclaimer: I did reserve some shares. Which, if accepted, makes me partial. Which is unfortunate, because I really like DF and almost all their games, but if I’m defending them I could be accused of just trying to increase my profits. :-/

      • Dragonzeanse says:

        I’m familiar with Fig, even though it’s still obscure. Psychonauts 2 is going to test the viability of this platform.

        Good luck on your investment. You have much more optimism than I do.

      • dontnormally says:

        Do the crowdsource-rewards count as gross income / “sales” when determining investor returns?

    • Yachmenev says:

      Thing is, they did budget properly.

      You can do this two differens ways (at least).

      1. You know the scope of your project, you have the tools, and you have done similiar projects before – then you can make an estimate that’s hopefully near the truth. It won’t be exact, it never is. Not in software development.
      2. You don’t know these things. Which was Double Fine’s case. The reason for this being the initial pitch about a small game, and the plan to document the whole process. When the kickstarter raised so much more, they had to scale up, but the conditions for the project were of course the same. What you do then is that you make a much more rough estimate, build the tools, build a vertical slice of the game, and the reevaluate, when you have data that tells you how fast and efficient the team can work. Double Fine did this, it’s in the doc, and the descision to add more funds instead of adjusting the scope was a choice based on that.

      So, they actually acted very professional and mature in this aspect.

      If you think that #1 is the best option, then it’s the most likely way they will go with this. When it comes to Psychonauts 2, they know what they want to do, they know the style, they’re bringing back several keypeople from the original team with experience, they have some preproduction done, and they have the tools and the engine ready, their inhouse developed Buddha Engine.

      • Yachmenev says:

        Edit on myself: They will be using Unreal Engine this time, not Buddha.

      • solidsquid says:

        “When the kickstarter raised so much more, they had to scale up”

        This right here is what the problem is. They Kickstarted a project, but rather than use the money to polish that project as much as possible, or maybe part-fund another project which fans would enjoy, they massively up-scaled it to the point it was under-funded and ended up with something which, generally, seems to have been considered a disappointment to those funding it.

        Even if they give justifications for it, they took a gamble in scaling up the game as much as they did and it didn’t work out, so they needed more money. And if it does succeed then I’ll be delighted, and will happily pay for a copy, but I just can’t see them as reliable enough to invest in ahead of time

        • rustybroomhandle says:

          Exactly how much “polishing up” would you expect of them with $3.3 million on what was originally supposed to be a tiny throwaway game to support a documentary?

          And no, if they used the money to fund something else, the same people who find any excuse to whine at them would then have a different excuse to whine at them.

          • yusefsmith says:

            I think people are just whining at them for producing a desperately unfunny, lame game that sucked.

          • rustybroomhandle says:

            Don’t think it was supposed to be a funny game at all. I think people just love to be assholes in a pack.

        • skittles says:

          And there is the rub. They did Kickstart a project. The project was to create a simple game, and make a documentary about the process showing people inside the studio. This is what people don’t get. The original pitch barely amounted to a game, it was a short adventure that was more to show the process than be a game. Double Fine at the time did not believe they could get enough from crowdfunding to actually make a proper game.

          And then they raised $3m, and realised quite rightly that if they did not make a complete and fully featured adventure game. Some people would be royally pissed. They had to scale up the project. They couldn’t just “polish” their original intention, because there wasn’t enough there to polish.

          • wisnoskij says:

            Well I for one had no idea that when I shelled out $15 that I was paying for what was going to be a demo.

          • Baines says:

            Which, as you say, is the rub.

            They promised to do X with Y dollars. They got more than Y dollars, and decided to do something other than X. And the project promptly ran off the rails because they failed badly at budgeting not-X for not-Y dollars.

            The big mistake? Deciding to do not-X in the first place. They weren’t obligated to scale the game up just because the campaign was successful. If a game has double the expected number of preorders, you don’t suddenly decide to increase the campaign length by 50%. People paid for the promise of X, and anything raised beyond what is necessary to make X is profit. If you want to “give back”, then make X and then put your “excess” profits into making something else afterwards and give it to the backers of X for free or something.

            The “can’t-budget” issue? We don’t actually know that their original budget and schedule was sufficient for their original plans. Obviously DoubleFine couldn’t figure out a reasonable new-scale-to-new-budget, and they’ve shown budgeting issues on other projects, so there is a real chance that it wasn’t. (Of course the success of the campaign gave them more than enough cushion, until they changed the scope of their project.)

            The big potential issue? That DoubleFine knew what they’d promised with X wasn’t going to satisfy backers. While it could be a sign that they completely underestimated interest, it could also imply a miscommunication in the campaign (accidentally overselling what they were promising and underselling what it wasn’t), and can potentially imply deception.

  4. PedroTheHutt says:

    After Spacebase DF-9 and all the financial trouble Broken Age ran into I really have no confidence in getting into a crowdfunding venture with Double Fine.

    • TheSplund says:

      Broken Age has me shying away from anything Double Fine related, and potentially any Kickstarter too

    • LionsPhil says:

      Eeeeexactly.

    • Geebs says:

      Just before Brütal Legend was released, I was still utterly psyched for another Psychonauts game.

      Then, I played Brütal Legend. Not psyched any more.

      • wisnoskij says:

        I really liked BL

        • Baines says:

          Brutal Legend needed double the budget and a few more years to make, and maybe an accountant with enough power to keep them on track.

          Mind, if it had someone to keep them on track in the first place, then it might have managed to come out in better shape that the nest of unfinished ideas that was actually released. Just blindly feeding more money and time into the project would probably just have led to them adding more to the game rather than finishing what they had already started.

          • wisnoskij says:

            I don’t see that at all. I agree that the RTS was poorly designed, but that is all. It was poorly designed, and something similar but with some of the more interesting modern FPS-RTS hybrid ideas used instead. More autonomous, moba-esk, minions, maybe. But other than that, it is a great cartoony action adventure sandbox with a fantastic style that I think they realised quite well with the mechanics and story.

        • Geebs says:

          I wanted to love Brütal Legend. I’m a big fan of Judas Priest, Motörhead and the like, I don’t find Jack Black particularly annoying, and I liked everything Tim Schafer and crew had done up to that point. BL just had so little of the charm and wit of Psychonauts, the setting was so laboured – Headbangers! Dude! – and the gameplay was so limp.

          OTOH they have Eric Wolpaw and he is a funny, funny guy.

          • wisnoskij says:

            I could see that opinion being very prevalent. I think I benefited from only playing the game last year. I could see it not meeting expectations as the game they developed right after Psychonauts. But going in expecting a game that was pretty universally not well received, going in ages after Psychonauts, going in probably after they patched away some of the problems, it is an amazing sandbox action adventure. And I definitely see some of that DF charm.

        • Buggery says:

          I really liked Brutal Legend.
          And Broken Age.
          And Psychonauts.

          Shame on me for having bad taste I guess? :(

  5. leeder krenon says:

    Currently struggling through the desperately disappointing 2nd act of Broken Age, there is no way on earth I’d give them money up front to make another adventure game right now.

    • Urthman says:

      Did you miss the part where they’re getting Erik Wolpaw on the team? I’ve never failed to be entertained by anything that guy has done.

    • Premium User Badge

      Aerothorn says:

      Also, it’s not really an adventure game. Schafer says as much in the pitch video: Psychonauts is what it is, and what it is is a colorful, character-centric platformer.

      • leeder krenon says:

        yes, sorry, not sure where i got that from. think broken age has so annoyed me that i just had a mental block :)

        regarding Wolpaw, i’m not very good with names so had to look up his back catalogue. no quibbles there…

      • qrter says:

        And there’s my problem – I liked everything about Psychonauts, except the actual game. The platforming was pretty terrible, I thought.

        • jrodman says:

          I found it workable. Not a joy, but very rarely a chore.

          Faint praise? Anyway, my 2 cents.

    • finc says:

      I stopped half way through Act 2 and uninstalled it. I decided this would save some disappointment.

  6. Brus Sans Pitie says:

    After the Broken Age fiasco, why would people trust Double Fine with a project of this size again? They’ve demonstrated that they’re incapable of managing the money properly.

    • Lars Westergren says:

      I loved Broken Age, even part 2 which I am currently playing. Did you watch the documentary? I got the impression they learned hell of a lot from making one the first big Kickstarters. Massive Chalice was within budget and on time, and got fairly good reviews.

      • Kitsunin says:

        I dunno. I think people complain overmuch about Broken Age, considering they got something far more than what they should’ve expected considering the true goal of the Kickstarter.

        However, Double Fine simply hasn’t put anything particularly good out recently. Broken Age’s story is painfully average. Spacebase DF-9 is unfinished and pretty much outright bad. Massive Chalice really isn’t that good; in a vacuum it might be great, but it feels just like a crappier XCOM.

        • SuddenSight says:

          I really, really don’t get all the hate people throw at Double Fine.

          Broken Age was late and maybe not the best adventure game ever, but promises were fulfilled and it was a *great* adventure game. To this day, the only one I know of with built-in controller support. And a wonderful soundtrack, with excellent voice acting. Seriously, it is a good game.

          I also *prefer* Massive Chalice to XCOM. So you can hate my taste now, but the two games really are quite different. The only complaint I agree with is that it lacks in content – which is actually a compliment! The enemy designs are very original and incredibly well done, the eugenics mechanics are completely original and also well done. It is a fun game!

          Also, I bought SB9 *at full price*, so I fully understand (and agree with) the annoyance over it being abandoned. But that was just one project and they gave out Hack and Slash (another fun, if overly short game) for free.

          I just don’t get it. I feel like everyone all met somewhere and agreed that the bar for Double Fine must be higher than for anyone else. Nothing but perfection!

          • Kitsunin says:

            I guess that for me, the bar is just very high in general. I would never, ever recommend Broken Age to someone who hasn’t played Kentucky Route Zero, Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons, Undertale, or even a lot of old point-and-clicks. Painfully average is too harsh, I’ll admit, but there are just so many things that are amazing there’s no reason to bother with something that is merely great.

            But that’s me, and I suppose the fact that people still love Assassin’s Creed games is enough to show that DF truly deserves success. Even if what they’ve made of late doesn’t raise the bar like their old work.

          • Yachmenev says:

            Well, Broken Age is quite a different games then Kentucky Route Zero, Brothers and Undertale. It aimed to be like the old LucasArts point&click adventure games, which is far far away from what KR0 is.

          • Kitsunin says:

            True, but unlike them, it’s not funny, and its narrative is fairly weak as a whole. There is so much going for it and yet it just isn’t that well written.

          • Kitsunin says:

            Unlike old Lucasarts games, that is. I know the things I named are all a bit too serious on the whole, I was going for the best of the best. I think Telltale’s oldish Sam & Max, Back to the Future, and Monkey Island series’ are all better returns to form, while the games I listed before are generally far and away better stories. So again I don’t know who I would recommend Broken Age to.

          • finc says:

            They set the bar high for themselves with some of the best games of the 90s. It’s no conspiracy.

      • jrodman says:

        Thanks for the reminder about the documentary. Poking through it now.

    • tomimt says:

      Because in the end, Broken Age isn’t a bad game. If you wouldn’t know the whole production cycle of the game, you’d never know how much is ran over budget.

      Had it come out without KS, people would just see it as an okay adventure game, but now, with the whole production being documented, people still make far too much of the whole process, despite in the end a game was produced.

      • Czrly says:

        If Broken Age had been released as a perfectly polished and complete game (or even two proper episodes, correctly priced, now that Life is Strange has shown us how episodic content SHOULD be done), it would not have sold well at all.

        Reviewers both professional and amateur alike would not be shackled by their own personal investment, hype and desire for the game that they backed to be great. They would have described it more truly: a use-thing-on-thing point-and-click with little wit, weak humour and a purile story line.

        • Czrly says:

          (released without Kickstarter or the documentary, that is.)

        • tomimt says:

          And in that it’s perfectly fine game. It isn’t ground breaking, but it has nothing wrong about it. I think, in the end, people tend to over exaggarate their feelings towards the game. especially if they feel like they were burned in the campaign.

          Again, had people not been aware of how the production of the game went, there would be no debacle over it.

    • Crafter says:

      Broken Age fiasco ? they shipped the damn game.

      • Zhivko Yakimov says:

        They did, almost three years after the initial deadline. Sure, they got a lot more money than they expected and they expanded their original project, but they mismanaged it at almost epic proportions. The game itself isn’t bad, but it isn’t anything special either – they have done much better before. The documentary was very entertaining, I’ll give Double Fine that, so I don’t feel cheated in backing their Kickstarter campaign.

        The thing is, they are trying to do something even bigger now, with no meaningful oversight. Sure, Fig probably gives greater formal control of backers (or investors, whatever you call them), but face it – the majority of people who will throw money at Double Fine won’t have any idea how game development works, so they won’t make any difference. Watching a game-making documentary is far from enough to obtain the skills to manage a big project.

        Please mind that I am not talking at all about the qualities of the game. I am as excited as everyone who loved Psychonauts that we finally get a sequel. However, I don’t trust Double Fine in doing the job on their own. If this project were launched under the hat of a more experienced developer or publisher, I’d be throwing money at them at this very instant. However, I don’t believe this project will be any different than Broken Age.

        I will be eternally grateful to Double Fine that they helped turn crowdfunding into a legitimate platform for game development. Thanks to them being the pioneers, we now have a lot of incredible games which might not have seen the light of day otherwise. I wish them all the luck, but I won’t be joining this time.

        • Premium User Badge

          basilisk says:

          “If this project were launched under the hat of a more experienced developer or publisher”

          Think of them what you will, but you can hardly call DF inexperienced. They shipped more than a dozen games in ten years.

          • Corrector1 says:

            Except that the games you mentioned had a shorter delay than Broken Age did. Broken Age part 2 is also widely considered to be a weaker entry than part 1 was, even though it took a year to finish and didn’t have very many new locations. He’s not being a hypocrite, you’re just being a jerk.

            Yes, game development isn’t easy. But people need to stop acting like like everything that happened with Broken Age was completely unavoidable. Delays often happen because of mismanagment, not just because making games is hard.

        • Philomelle says:

          “They did, almost three years after the initial deadline.”

          Pillars of Eternity and Wasteland 2 both shipped a year after their intended release date, with Wasteland 2 later taking another year for a Director’s Cut.

          Banner Saga was two years late. So was Armikrog, which ended up being released in barely functional and isn’t much better now.

          Grim Dawn was promised to us in 2013 and is still not out, disregarding the open beta.

          In fact, Massive Chalice is one of the rare cases of a video game Kickstarter that was a mere 6 months late and fulfilled every single promise exactly as intended.

          So really, I’m not sure why you’re trying to tout “three years past their deadline” on a game that wasn’t even the Kickstarter’s intended goal (the documentary was), except as some sort of misplaced buzzword.

          • Zhivko Yakimov says:

            My apologies, it’s only 2.5 years after the initially announced deadline. Which still makes it two and a half years late. It’s not a buzz word, it’s a fact. Regarding other delays – if Double Fine had launched the entire game a year late, I wouldn’t complain – the project did become bigger than originally planned. But I don’t believe thay should get away with it so easily.

            Look, as I said above, I wish them all the luck in the world and I hope they make it. I’ll very probably buy the game when it is released. However, I don’t trust them enough to give them money upfront. I don’t believe this makes me malicious, it’s only my personal opinion, I don’t intend to force it on anyone, so if you disagree, feel free to back the project.

            By the way, I wasn’t quite happy with the original state of Wasteland 2, which is why I stayed away from The Bard’s Tale campaign. I did back Torment: Tides of Numenera, but it was before Wasteland 2 was released. Obsidian, on the other hand, is the example I always give how Kickstarter can work really well. They delayed their release, true, but they got more funding than planned and it was worth it. Same for Harebrained Schemes – they have a very good record and can have my support any time they wish.

          • Philomelle says:

            So what you’re saying is that you intentionally go out of your way to harass and persecute Double Fine for exactly the same thing that you compliment other companies, such as Obsidian, for.

            I’m not sure whether it makes you malicious, but it sure does make you one hell of a hypocritical asshole whose personal values don’t go further than making up excuses for how to look good while humping an internet bandwagon.

          • Distec says:

            “Hey, Psychonauts 2 seems cool and all, but I don’t personally trust this developer to manage it well, so I probably won’t be backing this.”

            “Why are you harassing and persecuting this developer? Have you no integrity, you hypocritical fuck?”

          • Philomelle says:

            He literally says “Double Fine delivering their game late means they mismanaged their project and shouldn’t get away with this easily, but these two companies who were equally late with their projects are paragons of how one should run a good Kickstarter and should be complimented.”

            That is indeed being a hypocritical fuck.

      • Corrector1 says:

        Except that the games you mentioned had a shorter delay than Broken Age did. Broken Age part 2 is also widely considered to be a weaker entry than part 1 was, even though it took a year to finish and didn’t have very many new locations. He’s not being a hypocrite, you’re just being a jerk.

        Yes, game development isn’t easy. But people need to stop acting like like everything that happened with Broken Age was completely unavoidable. Delays often happen because of mismanagment, not just because making games is hard.

    • Mo says:

      I just kinda assume that people who say this sort of thing are entirely oblivious to the production/scheduling/budgeting of any kind of software, never mind videogames.

      Software going off schedule is fairly common in videogames and in other industries. Good teams are the ones which track against their schedules, spot concerns ahead of time, and adjust their plans accordingly. Which is exactly what DF did.

      • jrodman says:

        I wonder how software compares to other planning and delivery scenarios. Bridges, office buildings, etc. Those always seem to come late in my experience too.

        Maybe I grumble about them a bit when they inconvenience me, but after it’s over I forget it soon enough.

  7. badirontree says:

    Broken age was fine … the Abandonment of Spacebase DF-9 really pissed me off

    • Yachmenev says:

      Spacebase was not handled well, but they have acknowledged that, compensated to some part with a free game and they have shipped several games after that, that were handled much better.

      • yusefsmith says:

        All this may be true, but it would probably be a good idea to see if they actually manage to release a game this time, before buying it.

        • Yachmenev says:

          Eh, ok? Release games? They have many times proved this, before the kickstarters, with the kickstarters, after the kickstarters. Before Spacebase, and after Spacebase.

          You’re well in your rights to wait for a finished products, but I’m not exactly sure what you want them to prove.

    • Premium User Badge

      Ninja Dodo says:

      That was definitely handled poorly. Mainly in the communication. I keep wondering what would’ve happened if they’d applied the Minecraft model and priced it low at first then increased as the game was completed. Might have resulted in more players and enough funding to keep going. Paying off the Indie Fund loan before 1.0 was a mistake I think but I wouldn’t be surprised if their hands were tied contractually. Does seem like something Indie Fund should rethink for future projects, ie not considering a game released until it is functionally complete and out of Early Access.

      • Baines says:

        From what I recall, Double Fine didn’t meet its promised public milestones even when they were working on it, which isn’t really a communications error.

        If one were being kind, they could call the reassurance that DF-9 wasn’t being abandoned a miscommunication. I guess no one higher up bothered to tell one of the main developers that the project was about to get the axe, and he did say that as far as he knew the project was continuing.

        But is it really okay to just call it “miscommunication” when you run a big promotional sale promising continued future development with full knowledge that you are about to axe the game if the sale doesn’t produce a massive boost in income? Double Fine had to know what they were doing there. It was a conscious decision to keep that information hidden while trying to convince more consumers to buy into it.

        • Premium User Badge

          Ninja Dodo says:

          They failed to adequately communicate that a wishlist for future development was not a guaranteed feature list.

  8. RobF says:

    FIG is basically a way of hoovering up as much money from as many sources as possible and the principle of it is to help folks raise budgets, well, like this one and erm, raise budgets.

    So it splits up between your normal get-nothing-but-a-reward KS backer stuff, accredited investors who have to be rich and stuff and now they’ve added in non-accredited investors into the mix too. Or in layman’s terms well, anyone who’s got more than a thousand dollars to throw at whoever is crowdfunding at the time.

    TBH, I think it’s awful. Not DF asking for money but pretty much everything around what FIG is. Pushing budgets up on this sort of scale is kinda asking for a nineties-again situation and I can’t see how this can end well. We’re already suffering the fallout from “no, this is how you do it 2006-2012” turning out to, erm, not be the universal advice it was sold as.

    Raising money in this way where it’s already top indies or top indie approved projects is a thing I’m sure would argue engenders a level of trust and I don’t doubt it does but I don’t want these people as arbiters in games no matter how much I adore their work. Kickstarter, for all its woes, is accessible to anyone no matter how batshit their idea.

    Inviting people who really don’t know business, especially gaming business, to invest is a scary thought when you consider how people react to just throwing in 79p on an app or something. Sure, they get no say but folks got no say in Minecraft either and that should be something folks take into account with this stuff. We have a situation where our most prominent named developer of the past few years felt like he couldn’t stay because of the demands folk made of him. People who don’t make games and this sort of thing aren’t generally the grandest mix.

    And for the folks putting a grand in or whatever? Games are really at the risky end of investment as it is and *flashes lights* proceed with caution.

    I mean, with a budget of 13.5 million, that’s *a lot* of money FIG/DF has to make back in order to start passing out dividends, right? And that’s assuming it stays on time/budget and all of that stuff that’s awkward at the best of times in games. I’m sure someone will be along to say “and yeah Double Fine’s record” as well and that’d be fair at this point although I’d go to great pains to point out “not just Double Fine, they just did it in public and all that”

    Regardless, that’s 700k copies or thereabouts and assuming that in however many years time, we’re still in a similar place to where we are now in games and that’s a relatively easy number to reach with a game like Psychonauts. It may well be! It probably will be! I don’t know. I wouldn’t be asking anyone who isn’t well insulated financially to take that risk though, right?

    I think in the long term, FIG is ABadIdeaTM for all those reasons and quite a few more I’m boring even myself with.

    But y’know, I’d really like Psychonauts 2 to happen and I just wish there was a better way than this. Maybe even Kickstarter *again* would be a better way, I dunno.

    • LionsPhil says:

      I think we’re in for some spectacular fallout when this one buckles under.

      • RobF says:

        I’m already looking into the knitting scene for a few years time. Just in case.

        • pepperfez says:

          I can highly recommend it. Much quieter and keeps your ears warmer.

        • LionsPhil says:

          It’s a pretty frustating hobby at times, but one huge upside is that it does not involve any computers.

          • RobF says:

            Weirdly less likely to want to stab out your eyes with knitting needles whilst knitting too. Most unlike games, that.

  9. cpt_freakout says:

    I’d love to get on this particular train but they chose the worst month of the year to launch it, what with all the deliciously senseless consumerism in the Christian tradition many of us indulge in. I do hope it gets thoroughly funded!

    To the naysayers: yeah, we know Double Fine is terrible with money. This is not a rational decision, if crowdfunding videogames ever was one. No need to keep flogging that horse in every damn post about Double Fine.

    • Buggery says:

      I will keep throwing money at Tim Schafer because he is a charming man with a company that makes charming games.

      At least it’s not Star Citizen!

  10. Chubzdoomer says:

    I’d be psyched if a competent team were behind it.

    • Kollega says:

      Trust me: if the game is half as offbeat as the first one, it’s going to be completely mental.

  11. Ur-Quan says:

    I can’t really wrap my head around fig. Sounds like a pretty big overhead if a lot of ppl invest 500 dollars.

    Anyway I looked at their numbers on the investment page and I’m a bit baffled. Those numbers look a bit dishonest because they include humble bundle sales in their Psychonauts 1 sales numbers. I mean the get very little return for those compared to day 1 purchases so they are pretty irrelevant for investors.

  12. keefybabe says:

    Well give every single Double Fine kickstarter has gone really well and delivered on every single promise they gave, this is a sure fire winner.

    This is like the kid who says, “can I have a look at your new toy” and then throws it off a hill laughing. Strangely after a while you stop giving him your toy to look after no matter how many hypothetical sweets he’s offering.

    • Lars Westergren says:

      > Well give every single Double Fine kickstarter has gone really well

      Personally I think they did. I got two great games out of them, even if delayed.

      > This is like the kid

      It’s actually nothing at all like that kid, even if I agreed with your statement that the original Kickstarters were failures. Seeing as they were the best efforts of people working damn hard for years to try to deliver a great product.

  13. Kollega says:

    Honestly, even with the whole “OMFG Double Fine can’t handle money!” thing, and even with the fact that I myself won’t be able to back this (I’m living in an ex-Soviet country with all that implies), I still hope the game is going to get its funding and get made. Double Fine games are hit-or-miss, not just miss-all-the-time, and I do hope this one is a hit, because I loved Psychonauts 1.

    The 50-second trailer up there is enough to sell me on the promise, honestly. It’d be so awesome if this time around we got to visit the mind of an MC Escher type, or a hardline communist, or an extreme sports superstar, or, or, or…

  14. Premium User Badge

    Ninja Dodo says:

    First of all: YAY! Cannot wait.

    As to the predictable negative comments, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: If you think a game being delayed or going over budget is a sign that the developer is “incompetent” or bad with money, or that these kinds of problems are in any way unusual you clearly have never seen the inside of a game development studio and you should probably stop talking about things you know nothing about. The only reason people give Double Fine shit is that their documentary showed all the things that go wrong with 90% of games. This happens everywhere and all the time. You just don’t hear about it.

    So yeah, Psychonauts 2 is probably going to be delayed too, but I’ll wager it will be worth the wait.

    • Premium User Badge

      Ninja Dodo says:

      Here are some games that have been delayed over the years:

      Witcher 3, Half Life 2, STALKER Shadow of Chernobyl, Team Fortress 2, Starcraft

      What happens when you don’t delay games:

      Assassin’s Creed Unity, Batman Arkham Knight

      • RobF says:

        Plenty of games ship on time and work just fine as well, you know.

        I mean, I get the point you’re trying to make but yeah.

        • Premium User Badge

          Ninja Dodo says:

          I don’t know. I can’t think of many games that weren’t extremely well-understood and predictable in scope (like clones, or by the numbers genre work) that didn’t get delayed at least once. Also we’re not even counting cancelled games here, which anecdotally I would say is probably half or even 2/3 of projects. If a game ships at all that’s already a success by this industry’s standards.

          • RobF says:

            Hah, I remember this coming up round about Moly-geddon interview time and quite a lot of people getting very upset that their work they shipped on time and *waves hands* mainly working bar the odd patch here and there *stops waving hands* got passed over in favour of the more extreme examples of games that really did need the extra time or whatever.

            But it’s a bit nebulous anyway because it depends on how much time folks got in the first place to build a thing. Not all milestones and ship dates are created equal.

          • Premium User Badge

            Ninja Dodo says:

            Rob, really not sure what argument you’re trying to make here. I don’t know if you’ve worked in larger teams but I know you make games yourself so you’re not unfamiliar with the process… My point that delays or plans changing is nothing out of the ordinary is really not something that is disputable. I can’t claim to know the inner workings of every game studio but I’ve worked at enough different places to have a pretty decent sample size. I worked on six cancelled games in a row before I ever shipped a game. Things go wrong sometimes. Double Fine’s documentary portrays by and large a very typical, and honestly relatively smooth, development process and to suggest otherwise is incredibly disingenuous.

          • RobF says:

            I’m not arguing that. I’m saying that reducing things down to:

            here is a list of games that got delayed: *good games*
            here is a list that didn’t: *broken games*

            is weirdly reductionist and doesn’t help anyone. There’s plenty of games that ship on time that are fine, plenty that miss the street date that aren’t. And, well, including STALKER in the former list given it was still notoriously broken on launch and all that etc…

            To add to that, obv. there’s “delayed internally and no-one ever finds out about it” and “missed a street date” and all manner of different levels of nuance here. But it’s not helped that I could list a bunch of games and go “and here’s what happens when they’re delayed” and they’d *still* be broken.

            Absolutely agree with you about the rest of the stuff but the list thing there is the sort of thing that keeps propagating weird ideas around making games and sort of undermines the rest of your points a bit, which are soundTM and I appreciate them a lot.

          • Premium User Badge

            Ninja Dodo says:

            It’s reducionist to illustrate a point, not that only games that are delayed are good, but that these things, while certainly not a 100% inevitable, are an entirely common part of the development process and their occurring do not reflect poorly on the quality of either developer or game… Maybe I am more fond of hyperbole for effect than you are.

            I was not aware of, or had forgotten, STALKER’s issues at launch but I included it mainly as a game that was forever delayed yet now highly regarded.

            But I’m glad we otherwise agree, then. :)

      • Philomelle says:

        To be fair, Unity was in development for four years. I’m not sure delaying it would have helped it, as a lot of its problems are nestled firmly at the base design level.

        • Premium User Badge

          Ninja Dodo says:

          Sure, Unity has design issues, but all the flak it got at release was for technical problems, most of which were later fixed in patches. I played it recently and while I’m not sure about some design choices it seems pretty solid now.

          Gamers complain loudly when a game is released in a less than perfect state, but when something is delayed to make sure it meets those standards this too is considered unacceptable by some. You can’t have it both ways.

          • Baines says:

            How many games is that true for, though? Game releases in a buggy state, game can be fixed through a few months of patching? It happens constantly on PC.

            Does it mean that the games would have been released in a much better state if they’d been delayed another six months or a year, though? No, it doesn’t. Why? Because that extra development time wouldn’t have been spent focused on simply testing and fixing issues.

            It isn’t just about time and money, it is about management and focus. Release dates, for better or worse, force people to push hard to finish a project as they approach the deadline. Post-release, well, you either focus on fixing the big issues that you ignored or never noticed, or you now publicly continue to ignore them. (Many companies do continue to ignore such.)

          • Premium User Badge

            Ninja Dodo says:

            All games are terrible until they are not.

      • akimbojoe says:

        The man is right, you have to delay a game to make it good, especially something as visionary as Duke Nukem Forever or Daikatana.

  15. PikaBot says:

    “Double Fine cannot into money” is a really tired meme, and not really accurate either. Broken Age was delayed, but games get delayed all the time (and Kickstartered games especially); when it became clear that they’d overscoped for their budget they made the conscious decision to slow-walk it out rather than scale it down. That’s pretty fair and responsible management. Meanwhile, their other Kickstarter, Massive Chalice, which for some reason never comes up in these discussions, was released on-budget and…well, not strictly on time, but in a timely manner.

    If you don’t think Double Fine’s games have been good of late, that’s fair and a good reason not to pay for more. But don’t pretend that pledging to their crowdfunding campaign is flushing money down the toilet in an attempt to scare people off from contributing, because evidence suggests: you give them money for a game, they’ll likely produce the game they promised.

    (And yes, yes, Space Base, but that’s a totally different funding model and an experiment that just didn’t pan out. Don’t buy early access games unless you’re content to play them in their current form, kids)

    • Baines says:

      Totally different?

      With Early Access, you are being asked to buy a partially finished game, with the promise that it will see continued development until it is finished, and the knowledge that the game might never be completed or even see another update.

      With Kickstarter, you are being asked to buy a game that may not exist much less be partially finished, with the promise that it will see continued development until it is finished and released, and the knowledge that the game might never be completed or see an update or see any form of release at all.

      Fig does change the equation a bit, as you aren’t being asked to buy a game at all. Instead you are being asked to buy into the idea that you can make a profit by investing in the creation of a game. Though I’m sure campaign organizers won’t complain if you really just want to buy the game.

      Early Access is a bigger gamble than preordering, and Kickstarter is a bigger gamble than Early Access.

      With preordering, you are all but guaranteed a game, though it might turn out to not be quite what you wanted, and can even generally get your money back if it never happens. Early Access has all the issues of pre-ordering, but adds that you are only ever guaranteed to get part of a game. Kickstarter has all the issues of Early Access, but adds that you might not get anything at all.

      • PikaBot says:

        Yes. You have indeed summarized all the ways in which those two things are completely different (although you missed the bit where with Kickstarter you don’t actually pay unless they get the amount of money they say they need, so if you pay money via Kickstarter you’re guaranteed to have helped create the conditions for success, whereas with Early Access if only you and a couple dozen other cranks buy it you haven’t helped development at all).

  16. Cantisque says:

    The first game still looks beautiful 10 years later.

    It’s the archetype example of how good art direction is what makes games look good, not the texture resolutions or polygon count.

    The thought of what they could achieve nowadays sends pleasant chills down my spine.

    • Samwise says:

      Hear hear

    • Malibu Stacey says:

      The first game still looks beautiful 10 years later.

      Agreed but with the exception of the cutscenes which look like arse because rather than making them in-game, they’re video recorded from in-game 10 years ago.

      Which is annoying because for a game which depends on the story to be entertaining, having half that story look terrible compared when you’re actually playing the game re-braining kids & introducing them to a pet turtle lets the whole thing down.

  17. Premium User Badge

    basilisk says:

    I am constantly amused by the inevitable rush of “Double Fine can’t handle money!” that follows any article about them.

    They’ve kept the studio running for fifteen years. With 30+ employees. In San Francisco, one of the most expensive places you can think of. Never making huge money, but always at least paying their bills, staying afloat and doing projects that they want to do. By any standard imaginable, they’re a success story.

    But no, it’s always ARGLEBLEGH THREE POINT THREE POX ON YOU TIM SCHAFER.

    • yusefsmith says:

      They kept the studio alive all that time… only to make a really crappy game that nobody liked. So it all comes out in the wash.

      • Premium User Badge

        basilisk says:

        Yes, only to make the one game that nobody liked, which is why it sits at 84% positive reviews out of 4,500 on Steam. The 12+ other games they released do not count at all, because of reasons.

        But if you’ve managed to ignore the hard facts so far, I’m sure you can continue doing so. Good luck!

      • Buggery says:

        What is this crappy single game they’ve made, and what about all the excellent games they’ve made along the way? Pyschonauts, Brutal Legend, Broken Age, Stacking, The Cave, the Grim Fandango remaster… All subjective, yes, but people (like myself) have enjoyed them.

    • anHorse says:

      So you’re suggesting that their decision to stay in a city with insane rent prices shows that they’re good at handling money?

      Really?

      • Premium User Badge

        basilisk says:

        Considering that their doors are still open, they can clearly afford the rent. And if they can afford the rent and want to be there, why shouldn’t they?

      • Yachmenev says:

        Moving a company costs a lot of money, both in logistics and in production loss, and then you will loose all your key people that aren’t prepared to uproot their family. And by that you will loose experience and company culture. Moving Double Fine could very well mean the end of Double Fine.

        So it does feel like a good descision to stay.

        • PancakeWizard says:

          Oakland is just down the road.

          • jrodman says:

            We’re a world away.

            (Realistically there are corridors of software shops that live from time to time along the Emeryville corridor which has even lower business costs than Oakland, but the lifestyle of working there does have a different flavor as compared to SF proper. F.D. I work a block away from double fine and live in Oakland.)

      • Sin Vega says:

        Yeah all businesses should leave expensive cities and move to somewhere cheap, which will definitely remain cheap and offer all the same advantages.

        • PancakeWizard says:

          Loads of game developers set up in places because of the financial perks. Why do you think it was so common for a while to hear everyone and their mother having an Austin studio?

      • Nereus says:

        Yeah man. That’s why Mogadishu is quickly rising on the list of top cities to develop in.

    • Moraven says:

      I doubt they have been able to keep everyone on board over those 15 years.

      Psychnauts and Brutal Legend had 4-5 development years. And they had to keep asking for delays and more money from the publishers. Hell, Activision no more and canceled Brutal Legend before EA picked it up. Their smaller titles seems to to actually get made in a reasonable time and budget and kept them afloat for 2-3 years, until the Broken Age KS, where they had to release half the game early to ask for more money to finish it.

    • Premium User Badge

      gritz says:

      As recently as 2014 they had a round of massive layoffs.

      • KestrelPi says:

        Not massive. Significant, but not massive. And it was because of a publisher cancelling a project by surprise. Also, the first time they have ever needed to make redundancies on that scale.

        DF have been remarkably resilient under financial pressure, especially as a studio that has never had a massive hit and tends to make nice titles

  18. Pliqu3011 says:

    Oh great, the armchair game/software-developers are back in the comment section, complaining about Double Fine as usual. Missed you guys.
    Seriously though, just watch the DFA documentary. It’s free on Youtube, it’s really, really good, and it contains an answer to just about every one of your complaints (release delay, managing of the budget, etc. etc.).

    • Lars Westergren says:

      Look into a mirror and say “Double Fine” three times, and they will appear.

      • int says:

        All that happened when I did that was Tony Todd appeared, and he had two damn heads!

    • Sin Vega says:

      You too can become an expert in project management, game development, and finace, all for a one-off payment of $20

  19. Banks says:

    I’d love to be excited about this as I trully love Psychonauts, but Double Fine has disappointed me way too many times so my hopes for this being good are really low.

    Spacebase, Hack N’ Slash, Massive Chalice, Broken Age, the Cave…

    I’m on the fence, why would I back this after those stinkers?

    • leeder krenon says:

      Massive Chalice is brill, tbf.

    • mukuste says:

      Haven’t played any of these other games, but calling Broken Age a “stinker” is ridiculous. It was a nice game with fantastic production values; maybe not a classic, but most people agreed that it was at least “good”. Most of the flak it got is basically because some people hyped themselves up to expect the second coming of LucasArts.

      • Crafter says:

        I have played them all, in my obviously subjective opinion DF-9 is the only stinker in that list.
        From the first version, the game did not click for me so I did not even care when it got canned.

        • Philomelle says:

          A quick check of Steam reviews indicates that your subjective opinion is supported by the vast majority of people who played these games, as they all have 75%+ positive reviews. The sole exceptions are Hack’n’Slash, for which the negative reviews are largely spite (three out of four public reviews outright admit they’re downvoting it because they failed to get around the game’s coding puzzles), and Spacebase DF-9 which is downvoted for obvious reasons.

          But kudos to Banks for trying so hard that he went out of his way to pretend that Brutal Legend (93% on Steam, PC version released after The Cave and got its share of additional balance updates above the console version), Costume Quest 2 (88%) and Grim Fandango Remastered (89%) do not exist.

          • Banks says:

            I did not take them into account because I honestly do not care about them. Grim fandango is still great, but the remaster didn’t do anything new. And Stacking was a brilliant concept, but It felt half baked.

            And that’s my honest opinion, all I’ve played from double fine since psychonauts hasn’t meet my expectations, and most of It even felt like a waste of money.

          • Philomelle says:

            Well yes, I just explicitly said that you lied in your post in order to support your “Double Fine only produces bad games.” narrative. You honestly didn’t need to repeat it, though it is nice to have a reassurance.

          • RobF says:

            It’s OK not to like Double Fine games or any games for that matter. Honestly, worth stepping back a bit here because y’know, quoting stats at someone who said they’re personally disappointed by a thing isn’t going to lessen that disappointment any.

          • Philomelle says:

            @RobF:
            I didn’t criticize him for disliking Double Fine’s works. I criticized him for attempting to sell a narrative that states “All games produced by Double Fine are bad.” by the means of omitting every single game that had a score above 80 and a release unmarred by controversy, as well as using the word “stinkers,” which is a word used to describe a work of notoriously poor quality.

            To put it simply, I criticized him for trying to sell a falsehood as a truth.

            Between this and chiming in a higher thread about how plenty of games ship on time without problems despite that having absolutely nothing to do with the poster’s argument, you seem to have a thing for deliberately misrepresenting other people’s arguments just to tell them how wrong they are. Perhaps you are the one in need of stepping back and taking a good look at your own words for a bit.

          • Llewyn says:

            @Philomelle: Stop being an ass, please.

          • Philomelle says:

            I think you’ll discover that the number of incidents that match your idea of someone being an ass will be considerably reduced the day people stop treating harassment of a developer as a sport.

          • wyrm4701 says:

            Nobody’s harassing anybody by saying “I didn’t like these games” or “I’m disappointed by how this turned out”, nor do those statements indicate a predilection to actual harassment. You may be marshaling a zealous defense against a nonexistent attack, at least in this wee subthread.

        • SuddenSight says:

          Just wanna mention that I really liked what DF-9 was turning into and was really bummed when it got canned. The release version has some stuff, but not enough to play for more than a few hours. :/

    • Y2Kafka says:

      I liked Hack n’ Slash.
      It didn’t go out and try to change the world. It was a nice experiment in seeing what a game would be like if your main form of interaction was messing with the code.

      • lokimotive says:

        That’s my opinion too. I feel like it should be commended for just straight up “going there.” You could seriously mess that game up if you didn’t know what you were doing with the certain variables (and I did mess it up… many a time), and it’s pretty impressive that a company would have that much faith in the audience to let them repeatedly break the game all while understanding that that’s part of the learning process.

        I think the biggest problem was how cumbersome the coding got after awhile (it would’ve been nice to just have a code editor instead of running around), and I never did finish it because I got stuck on either the last puzzle or one of the last puzzles. But still, kudos to them for releasing a pretty experimental game.

  20. Catchcart says:

    Just to address what the game might be rather than the meta-stuff… I’m pleased to see Lili getting equal billing (he’s slightly more foreground than her but supposedly left is higher than right. **SPOILER** The end of Psychonauts was awesome but leaving her behind when it was her father who got kidnapped was just a bit lame.

  21. Crafter says:

    I am not really in top * lists, but Psychonauts is one of my favorite games, from one of my favorite game studios.
    Impossible for me not to back it.

  22. Zekiel says:

    NO MEAT CIRCUS THIS TIME SCHAFER

  23. haldolium says:

    Some time ago, I think I would’ve been more excited about this news. Now I just wonder where they will screw up this time.

    Also DF can’t do good games. They are excellent in ideas, in humor, in interesting design. But their game mechanics are among the worst. Psychonauts is a mess of wonky controls and horrible collisions, shown through a madmans camera.

  24. Strategist says:

    Yes. I waited so long. Yes!

  25. anHorse says:

    “Double Fine Crowdfunding”
    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    And it’s fucking on their platform which is way worse for the typical backer than kickstarter. Guess they’re hoping that even after all their shit to still have fans who’ll fund anything

  26. Marclev says:

    Anybody still trust these guys after that space station game, and Broken Age Act 2 just recycling most of the locations from the first after how ever long they had to make it?

    Twice bitten…

    • Yachmenev says:

      Yeah, I was perfectly happy with Broken Age: Act 2, and with Spacebase, which was failure, I have this stance:

      1. The $15 I spent on that game did not hurt me that much that I need to hold it against a company forever. I’ve spent three times that on lousy meals on restaurants, and it’s equal to shitty movies at the cinema here in Sweden.
      2. I won’t hold one mistake against a company, as long as it’s not a repeated one. And the two Early Access titles they did after that – Hack&Slash and Massive Chalice, turned out finished, feature complete and totally fine.

      But I do find peoples ability to hold a grudge against a company like that very fascinating, at least when I only have to observe it from a distance. :)

      • wisnoskij says:

        I don’t hold a grudge against them. I wasted a lot more money on other KS champaigns. But I am aware of the fact that they simply no longer make good video games.

      • wisnoskij says:

        I don’t hold a grudge against them. I wasted a lot more money on other KS champaigns. But I am aware of the fact that they simply no longer make good video games. That no matter how huge their budget is, they produce underwhelming generic games, completely unlike what they used to make.

        • Yachmenev says:

          Is generic really the right word you were looking for there?

        • SuddenSight says:

          Are we playing the same games? Hack and Slash is completely unique. So is Massive Chalice. So is Stacking, though it wasn’t kickstarted. And so is Brütal Legend! They all have interesting and unique ideas.

          This is NOT just another studio turning out Call-of-Duty clone. I love the fact that Double Fine keeps looking for something new to do. But we got to this point because everyone seems upset that these games don’t have the universal acclaim that Psychonauts does.

          • wisnoskij says:

            HnS had a unique premise, that played like a crappy unpolished flashgame. And was boring as all hell for the hour or two I played it (and then skipping dialogue left me with a puzzle and power I did not understand in the least).

            I cannot say much about MC. I started the game, and just had no interest in what looked like a fairly generic modern turned-based combat game.

            Stacking is Fing amazing. Possibly better even than Psychonauts. I love Brütal Legend, and Costume Quest (at least the first one, the second one was more OK than great).

            But then you have Iron Brigade, The Cave (probably an OK game, but a huge disappointment), and Broken Age. BA is presumably a decent adventure game, but I cannot get over that one of the legends of classical adventure games promised an adventure game in the classical style and delivered one of the most modern adventures games. I was not particularly good, and it was worlds away from what they promised.

          • anHorse says:

            Massive Chalice is in no way “completely unique”, it’s one of the most unoriginal games of the year.

            The entire concept is just taking mechanics from several popular strat games and mashing them together. I can understand someone liking it (I didn’t) but I can’t understand someone thinking it’s unique

          • SuddenSight says:

            Unique is a tricky word, but I stand by it for MC. There aren’t any other games that have the breeding mechanics seen in MC. Plus, the enemy designs are all really great, as are the special researchable weapons, as well as the tactical maps.

            Sure, it takes most of its guts from XCOM, but IMO there is enough new stuff there to call it unique.

          • anHorse says:

            Crusader Kings, Monster Rancher, Digimon, Agarest, Disgaea

            Reproduction for superior soldiers isn’t anything new, the last two examples are even from very similar srpgs

          • SuddenSight says:

            I consider all of those games different.

            In CKII the eugenics aspect is almost always secondary to the politics. The only real control you have is in choosing a teacher, and the occasional event which has nothing to do with the kid’s parents.

            Digimon and Disgaea have very different character creation mechanics that are not at all similar to MC. Monster Breeder at least involves breeding, but even then you aren’t marrying people and each breeding event is completely player controlled and produces one kid.

            Agarest has only one line of heroes that produces babies at specific times, all of it scripted. Its more of a choose-your-own adventure thing.

            So none of these games are really comparable to MC (in my opinion) even without taking into account the fact that the combat side of things is also different for all of the listed games.

      • Marclev says:

        I don’t hold a grudge at all, I’m sure they’re lovely people!

        Just that, for whatever reason, there seems to be a decrease in quality of their output, and therefore it stands to reason, based on previous data, that there’s a not insignificant risk that any sequel they develop to an all time classic game may not reach the level of people’s expectations.

  27. wisnoskij says:

    What I don’t understand about Fig, is their website. You go to their main page, and you are brought to the P2 champaign. You go to their “champaigns” page and you are brought to the P2 page. The entire website seems to just be an about page and the P2 champaign. Does Fig actually exist? Are they just launching now, and only going with the one champaign until it finishes, or did they cancel all other champaigns to just focus on P2? Or is it just a one off site to raise money for P2?

    • Lars Westergren says:

      It’s the third campaign actually. They have forwarded to the current campaign all the time, but in the future they will do two concurrent campaigns (one big budget one, and one indie), so presumably they will do a real front page then.

    • Premium User Badge

      Ninja Dodo says:

      Not sure about the site design but I believe they only run one campaign at a time. The first campaign, “Outer Wilds”, was a moderate success (got some investment and made its crowdfunding, but only just). The second campaign, “Anchors in the Drift” by 5th Cell, didn’t make its funding as it apparently didn’t grab enough people.

      • Crafter says:

        I backed Outer Wilds (I have been following its development for years) but it is the first time that I hear about this second game.
        I don’t blame fig for not spamming me though .

        • Premium User Badge

          Ninja Dodo says:

          It looked really nice, but it was not for me so I didn’t back it and also I think it was partly F2P? Maybe not the right platform for it.

          • Crafter says:

            F2P ARPG with TCG elements. The fact that the Scribblenauts team is behind it makes it slightly more interesting, but even if I had known about it earlier on, I would not have backed it.

  28. Dezmiatu says:

    I just want to say fuck collecting Figments to level up. Even when I put my mind to actively trying to collect them all, it was just too fucking tedious. They flit in and out of visibilty on top of dancing in and out of reach.

    And fuck the meat circus. Even with the infinite lives patch, the angle on some of those jumps was frustratingly janky.

    Otherwise, good luck to everyone who wants to see the sequel.

    • wisnoskij says:

      I rather liked figments. With pretty much no effort you will be leveling up like normal as you progress. Then, you can get all competionist and go back to get the remaining (their are figment location walkthroughs that will tell you exactly where that missing figment is.). It is a hard balancing act to include some form of end game completionist collecting. Make it too hard and it is a chore, make it just right and you give those seeking more game play time just the right amount of push to get them to run through all the levels just once more.

  29. Fenix says:

    As I was watching the pitch video I tried my hardest to be skeptic of the whole thing, but then GabeN appeared and I fanstraighted right out.

    • unraveler says:

      PRASE LORD GABEN!!!

    • Urthman says:

      Has GabeN appeared in Kickstarter-type video since “Clang!”? Cause that worked out pretty well.

  30. shagen454 says:

    THIS TIME LOSE THE PLATFORM BULLSHIT AND NO QTE’S!!

  31. Premium User Badge

    gritz says:

    Let’s go step by step:

    Psychonauts – Beloved classic.
    Brutal Legend – One of the worst follow ups imaginable.
    Iron Brigade – A multiplayer game that is unplayably buggy in multiplayer, even after four years of patching.
    Broken Age – Completed years after deadline and still underwhelming.
    Spacebase DF-9 – The biggest fiasco in videogame crowdfunding history.
    Massive Chalice – Buggy, Unoptimized and Tedious, stuck in beta for 8 months after the planned release date.

    This company does not deserve to receive any form of crowdfunding ever again.

    • mrmalodor says:

      DF9 wasn’t crowdfunded.

      • wisnoskij says:

        Once could argue that Early Access is form of crowd-funding. It does not have to be every time it is used, but in this case it seems clear that it was. Not enough people funded it, so it was never finished.

    • Yachmenev says:

      Stuck in beta? It was a planned early access period, that they ran very well, with regular updates with new content, bug fixes and balancing patches, and it exited early access pretty much exactly about the time they talked about when it entered it.

      • Premium User Badge

        gritz says:

        Funny, the Kickstarter pledge rewards list makes no mention that the Estimated September 2014 version was going to be an unfinished Early Access beta test and remain so for the next 8 months.

        • Yachmenev says:

          No, it didn’t. But if you expect the initial release date on kickstarters to be hold, then you’re in for a dissapointment in pretty much EVERY case.

          • PikaBot says:

            Indeed. A friend of mine recently compiled a list of successful Kickstarters and whether or not they delivered on time (and how late they were). He could only find one Kickstarter video game which was delivered on time, and only a handful where the delay was six months or less.

    • Sivart13 says:

      No love for Costume Quest or Stacking?

    • Buggery says:

      Brutal Legend was fuckin’ awesome though?

  32. Vesuvius says:

    I love early Double Fine, I love Schafer’s humor, and I love their art, but I can’t back this.

    Of their last 6 games, only one was good (Broken Age- good but not GREAT), 2 had nice elements but mediocre gameplay (The Cave and Costume Quest 2), and 3 were bad (DF9, Hack & Slash, Massive Chalice).

    I can’t support that track record.

  33. rcguitarist says:

    I kept falling asleep while trying to play through the first one because it was so boring. Only made it about 1/3 of the way in until I couldn’t take it anymore and uninstalled the game.

  34. Yachmenev says:

    It just reached $1 million.

  35. Ako says:

    Double fine sure has a lot of fanatic consumers unable to see the truth. Good for them I guess.

    • PikaBot says:

      Aw, c’mon kiddo, don’t hold back. Bust out the ‘sheeple’, you know you want to.

    • Yachmenev says:

      What’s the truth? Do tell.

      • Ako says:

        Wow, you’re are really fast guys. That’s commitment ! :)

        • jrodman says:

          Still desperately wondering….

        • zapatapon says:

          Honestly, the quality of trolls on this site is going down the gutter lately.

        • Imbecile says:

          I dunno about fanatic. I like their originality a lot, but their games are a mixed bag, though I still have a lot more time for a company that produces Hack’n’Slash rather than another Assassins Creed. What I dont get is the vitriol, which seems somewhat undeserved to me.

          They’ve had a couple of funding experiments, one of which went so well they overran their deadline (not unusual these days), and another which went pretty badly, which they acknowledge and have apologised for. Their games vary in quality and divide opinion, even Psychonauts, but I still cant see the substance behind the wide-ranging criticism?

          Is it because if the Kickstarter thing? It was quite a big games-related story at the time, so everyone feels like they need to hold an opinion and as always things are black and white. You need to either hate DF with every fibre of your being, or love them, regardless of whether youve played any of the games?

          • Premium User Badge

            Ninja Dodo says:

            There seems to be a group of people who between being disappointed by one or two games, and having zero understanding of game development (re: delays and budgets) have developed a grudge against Double Fine that they cannot help but express at every opportunity.

            There’s also a contingent of gamergaters who can’t handle that Schafer had the guts to speak out against their bullshit and they’ll use any excuse to attack him.

  36. fupjack says:

    I enjoyed Psychonauts, Brutal Legend, Costume Quest 1 and 2, Stacking, Broken Age, and Iron Brigade.

    Psychonauts and Brutal Legend were both entertaining enough that my daughters liked to watch me play it over my shoulder – as in repeated nights of “Dad, are you going to go play? Let’s go play.” We probably could have done the same with Stacking, a game more people should know about. I’d end up playing through a Psychonauts chapter late while the kids were in bed, so that I was maxed out with figments and etc. and ready for the next level, the next night.

    Go ahead and complain about Brutal Legend not being a proper RTS or whatever thing is really really important to argue about, but no other games maker has given me that sort of shared experience. I’m happy to commit a few tens of dollars to having that again.

  37. caff says:

    I’ve backed it. Really enjoyed the original, one of my top 10 games, purely for Lungfish/Milkman mash up.

  38. Nereus says:

    I really enjoyed the original, but I scrolled down, saw their “early bird discount” was limited to 3300 backers. Fuck off. You want $39 for a game that would come close to $60 in my native currency, after currency conversion, and you have the balls to tell me I wasn’t early enough when you have 34 days left? That’s a great way to make me feel like my patronage isn’t appreciated for what it is. I’m finding myself looking at kickstarters and other crowdfunding ventures more and more and just seeing a big middle finger because I don’t religiously check new projects every hour.

    I’ll pick it up on Steam IF it’s good, because it will almost certainly be only slightly more expensive than what you’re asking for with this kickstarter.

    • Buggery says:

      It’s an early bird discount, for anyone who stumbles onto a thing and goes “hell yeah”, and 3300 is a lot of people. It’s not a personal sleight against you.

  39. PancakeWizard says:

    A bit shameful that RPS are posting this without at least mentioning the dubiousness of Doublefine+crowdfunded efforts and the DF9 debacle. Also Fig is like, zero accountability.

    I even doubt DF would be going near a Psychonauts sequel if it wasn’t for the fact they haven’t exactly done well out of their last few ventures, and are eager to dazzle people with a franchise they actually like.

    I expected RPS to be a bit more cautious, frankly.

    • jrodman says:

      A serious question: is FIG somehow even less accountable than Kickstarter? I’m willing to believe it’s true, but I’m not sure how, because I don’t think in practice Kickstarter has enforced any level of accountability beyond “you have completely falsified the kickstarter donations in order to scam people in a way that we were told about before the kickstarter even completed and was amazingly easy to track down.”

      I mean, maybe FIG will do less than that, but I’m skeptical.

      • PancakeWizard says:

        It’s exactly one extra layer of accountability. KS aren’t in DF’s pocket, and Fig is DF’s creation. It’s honestly that simple.

        • Zhivko Yakimov says:

          I browsed through the investor documents they had for this project, and it’s not so simple. To be fair, they have very clearly stated that the project is very risky and there is a considerable chance of no return. Furthermore, the potential conflict of interest is also spelled out clearly. Mind that it’s not only Tim Schaffer who is involved with Fig. The current Fig CEO, Justin Bailey, used to be the COO of Double Fine since 2012 until March this year. It doesn’t necessarily mean that there will be a conflict of interest, but at least investors have been warned.

          The idea to use Fig rather than Kickstarter is to draw as many investors as possible. Kickstarter is designed with mostly small investments in mind, which often permeate the boundary between investment and pre-order. Fig aims at bigger investments as well – the preferred stock sold for this project is $500 a share, for instance.

          Anyway, they look like they will reach their funding goal, given that they are already half way there, in just four days. It’s just too risky and when compared to the original project, they have more public pressure on their heads. I hope they succeed for the sake of the game itself, Double Fine do offer a unique take on gaming, but I am sceptical, which is why I am staying off the band wagon this time.

          • RobF says:

            It’s good fun to put some stabs at more realistic numbers into the calculator to see what happens. Given 700,000+ of the copies of Psychonauts floating around were sold in bundles, an undisclosed amount will be at deep discounts during Steam/GOG/Humble sales too and so on, it makes the investment numbers filled in by default to, erm, seem very hopeful indeed.

            If nothing else, it should certainly confirm why anyone would struggle to raise the finance for this without the public being involved to spread the risk around. The chances of it recouping in a short time are *waves hands around a lot*, never mind turning a reasonable to decent profit for any investors.

            Pyschonauts 2 would have to perform a whole lot better than the first title to see a good return by my beermat calculations. And a whole load of them at full or close to full price at that.

          • wisnoskij says:

            it makes the investment numbers filled in by default to, erm, seem very hopeful indeed. … Pyschonauts 2 would have to perform a whole lot better than the first title to see a good return by my beermat calculations. And a whole load of them at full or close to full price at that.

            That is sort of the whole point. Pyschonauts was a huge resounding success with reviewers, and people who played it, but is was a monetary loss. I do not know if they eventually made their money back, but at the time of launch it was a failure. The only reason 2 is being developed is because they are hoping that the cult following and critical success of the first one pushes the second one into mainstream success.

          • RobF says:

            Well. Given by their own numbers they’d need to shift over 700,000 copies at full price in order to break even and they’ve shifted double that of Psychonauts -in total- (with a huge chunk of that being made at incredibly deep discounts), it’s…

            I wish them luck with that. Let’s put it that way. It’s certainly an ambitious goal.

    • RegisteredUser says:

      +1
      What happened with Spacebase was a disgrace.

  40. Hmm-Hmm. says:

    Yeah, well, let’s see how you can do this time better, and without my support, Doublefine. If this actually turns out right (provided the Kickstarter succeeds), then we’ll talk.

  41. racccoon says:

    Fucking greedy assholes !!
    Begging for more cash!!
    No RESPECT!
    When they sold 1.2million of their first franchise
    Use your profits you moron!!
    They are nothing but Fucking losers & I feel sorry for the poor mugs who donate to rich BEGGARS with bowls.

  42. Sivart13 says:

    I really wonder what the ratio is of “People who complain about DF-9” vs “people who actually bought DF-9”

    I always saw DF-9 as a weird experiment and I’m not surprised that it failed. It’s odd that so many people seem to harp on it being DOUBLE FINE’S ULTIMATE TRAGEDY AND GREATEST FAILURE etc. Considering that if all these complainers really bought the game it probably would’ve made enough to continue development.

    • Hypocee says:

      I can see a big difference between that and any of their earlier activities. To adopt a funding model with huge thoroughly known flaws that Kickstarter became a phenomenon specifically by eliminating, and then to just straight up lie to at least the project lead but more probably the last wave of customers… delays happen, overruns happen, it’s a miracle the lights are still on, make cool stuff and all will be forgiven. To lie for money is crossing a big bold line, and I for one am slightly warier of them from that incident in particular.

      • wyrm4701 says:

        This is my overall feeling on DF as well. I’ve got several Early Access failures in my Steam library, but none of them earned my persistent suspicion the way Spacebase did. It’d have been a lot better if they hadn’t put the game on sale the week before cancelling, right after saying “we’re going to finish this game, promise”.

  43. Hypocee says:

    Said it before, say it again, I am utterly Bizarro on Psychonauts.I liked the high concept a lot, but the ‘real world’ ugly, zaaaayayayaaaany character designs only eventually stopped being awful for me and I found most of the characters and much of the story (the Tragic Secret Origin, the Telepathic Romance Slip) a tooth-grinding assault on my narrative centers.

    I quite liked the platforming in a mellow sort of way, including the meat circus. It was quietly pleasant. That and the stage designs pulled me through enduring the cutscenes and BACONNNN/intrigue/drama attempts until some kind of dicking around with a bear on a ball and the kid’s hat and the lungfish, then I saw something shiny or my computer broke or something and I quit without playing the fishtown or milkman bits that are so legendary.

    If this is going to have a Wolpaw story containing the Doublefine flavour…interested.

    • Buggery says:

      Erik helped write the script for the first game too. The characters were zany but… it was also designed with kids in mind so that’s fine, you know? Some of them had some interesting character development if you searched out secret areas.

      • Hypocee says:

        Oh. Well, that’s not necessarily good news, but I’m better informed. Thanks.

        • Buggery says:

          I’d actually sincerely recommend giving it another go. Yeah, the characters are very “Saturday Morning Cartoon,” but in particular, there’s at least the secret room in Agent Milla’s level that will make you seriously reconsider how well written the characters are.

          Some of the platforming is still quite rough, but the milkman level is fantastic, along with a bunch of other stuff.

  44. Emperor of the Void says:

    Yes, please. Psychonauts is only one of the most delightgully weird games I’ve played. It was just so unique!
    Backed with pleasure.

  45. zapatapon says:

    I only ever take my economical decisions based on indisputable rational arguments and after intense research came up with the following outcome probabilities if this gets funded:

    30% : Big letdown
    60% : Meh
    10% : INFINITE JOY

    Sold!
    (Greetings to: my good old friend Blaise P.)

  46. InternetBatman says:

    Jesus this comment section is dark. I like all the Doublefine stuff I’ve played, and considered Broken Age well worth the money.

    I’m not backing the game because the base tier is too high, but wish them well.

  47. iMad says:

    Can’t let myself invest into this new venture, not after the disappointing act 2 of Broken Age and Base DF-9 fiasco. Love Psychonauts, but I’m not buying into promises this time. Wish the new project and it’s investors well, will promise to get a copy if it’s good and exceed our expectations.

  48. Crafter says:

    Damn, they have already collected more than half of their 3.3 millions $ target.
    Sure, there is always a big spike during the first hours, but I can’t see this project not getting funded.
    On a new and fairly unknown crowdfunding platform, no less.

  49. Phantom_Renegade says:

    If Schafer hires a project manager who can call him to task I’ll consider it. Otherwise, it’s a definite no from me, I’ll pick it up if it releases and is actually good.

  50. RegisteredUser says:

    Yes, lets trust someone who mismanaged funds, didn’t finish Spacebase DF-9 and created a wholly unremarkable Massive Chalice.
    Why not just set fire to whatever money you intend to give, at least you know ahead of time exactly what will happen with it and nobody is going to lie to you about it.

    • Yachmenev says:

      Tim Schafer didn’t create Massive Chalice. He’s the CEO of the company that employs/employed the team that created Massive Chalie, but he himself didn’t have anything to do with the design of that game, or how the project was run.