There are plenty of pitfalls that come with crowd-funding. Hell, even successful campaigns suffer from cashflow problems. But I'd imagine Precinct, the spiritual successor to Police Quest, would rather be in that position than the one it's currently in. After a collapsed Kickstarter, the game's second attempt at bucket rattling hasn't taken in the necessary funds, with only $11,961 pledged in three weeks. In a sad statement to the community, the developers have announced that it's effectively cancelled.
While Precinct was another developer returning to a game series of yesteryear, it was at least a interpretation of that idea, turning the fiddly and hilarious adventure series of a cop on the beat into a first-person police procedural drama. But it appears that wasn't what people wanted. Writing on the game's site, Producer Robert Lindley announced:
We put every effort into making a crowdfunding campaign work but we have decided to end the Precinct campaign effective today. Your generous support not only made Precinct a possibility, it also gave us the fire to try and make this work when the going got hard.
But it wasn't enough. Precinct's attempted reroll after the original Kickstarter scored less than 14% of the Kickstarter pot in the same amount of time. That was too much for the producers to take, says Lindley:
We're fighters and fought our best. Unfortunately, our best wasn't good enough to overcome the challenges with crowdfunding Precinct. Our new approach attracted some terrific supporters and we are grateful. However, we simply don't have the momentum needed to meet the requirements of this project.
Depending on the situation, we may decide to try again someday. The backing community are wonderfully supportive of Jim Walls making a new game. Likewise, our team remains passionate about Precinct and are hopeful there is a way to make Precinct a reality in the future.
I hate seeing someone's passion failing to capture the interest of others, and a crowd-funding failure is a very public rebuttal. Not even the generous terms of the second funding attempt, where every pledge would receive a copy of the game, was enough to convince people to part with their money, and there's no fallback position this time.