It's one of those weeks where lots of projects sit on just over a week left, and a million miles to go. It's kind of a pessimistic read this week, I'm afraid. But don't be put off - there's fresh blood in there too, new hopefuls with sparks in their eyes and a youthful spring in their step. And a great big gaping hole in their wallets.
- Featuring a game in this list doesn’t mean we endorse it. We likely haven’t played, and as such can’t say whether it will be worth your cash. That’s your call.
- Letting me know about a game (which you can do via my name at the top of this article) doesn’t mean it will definitely be included. Leaving links in the comments is a good way to let other readers know about projects, but please email me if you want them considered for the list.
- We only include games where pledges reach developers only if the target is met.
- Projects asking for fifty billion dollars, with 45c in pledges, fall off the list eventually. It gives more space for other games.
- Projects that have reached their funding get included in the Winners list, and then aren't featured in the weeks after that, to give more attention to those that are still needing the cash. Tough if you don't like it.
- Maximum weight limit: 300lb
Coo, this one just sneaked in. Making the final fifth of its pledges in literally the final hour, it was down to four minutes before it finally cleared the hurdle. But it just snuck through, meaning we should see the sequel to a seminal roguelike by May next year.
In a rather odd twist, Brenda Braithwaite and Tom Hall have called their million dollar Kickstarter to an early end. Despite raising a quarter of a million already, and with other two weeks left on the clock, Shaker nee Old School RPG is going back to the drawing board. There's no question that their pitch video was extremely week - as I criticised at the time of launch, rather than saying what game they passionately wanted to make, they instead just said how games used to be good in the old days, as if they aren't good now. Games are good now, folks! And loads of them were shit in the old days. It seems simply invoking nostalgia has been recognised as not enough, and the team plans to go back and come up with a stronger idea. They say,
"Ultimately, our pitch just wasn't strong enough to get the traction we felt it needed to thrive. Sure, it may have made it. We could have fought our way to a possibly successful end. In reading your feedback and talking it over internally, however, we decided that it made more sense to kill it and come back with something stronger."
Who can know the collective minds of Kickstarter backers, but this promising RTS never caught on. Finishing with just over a third of its funding, they pledge to now find themselves a Plan B.
Three of the Digi-Pen team behind Nitronic Rush return with a new racing game - a spiritual successor to their student project. It's looking gorgeous already, hopefully embellishing on what made Nitronic special.
Oh, people, please check your mic levels before recording videos. If you can make out the whispering over the background noise, you'll learn that this is Guildford-based Born Ready's far-into-development space combat game. And it's already looking pretty damned impressive. They're after $100k to get it finished, and are already over a third of the way there. We've been following it pretty closely for a while, and they're after the money now to be able to extend the development time for implementing changes based on feedback at shows this year, and to give extended polish.
Inspired by classic arcade shooters, HotBod is a 3D scrolling shoot-em-up, featuring random level generation. The game looks pretty far on from the footage shown, the $75k funding the completion of the project, as well as adding a co-op mode.
Despite the most sleep-inducing Kickstarter video I've ever seen, this is a city building game falling somewhere between Minecraft and Settlers has seen massive funding this week. Leaping from $10k to $40k, it's tantalisingly close to its target, but with less than a week on the clock. I have a feeling this one's going to get there.
Another $11k has appeared this week, after $36k the week before, but it's still not making a dent in the target. And it's diminishing returns, too - more than halving its fundraising each week. It seems pretty inevitable this - as so many tactical space sims have experienced on Kickstarter - isn't going to get anywhere near it's utterly enormous target.
And talking of which. With just £7,000 added on in the last week, well, this incredibly ambitious MMO isn't likely to happen, despite three weeks still remaining.
One that certain has made it is Dysis, a hybrid RTS and FPS, that looks like Minecraft. Want to win at Kickstarter? Make a game that looks like Minecraft, but in a completely new genre. That's my tip. Already well clear of its tiny (so tiny as to be pretty pointless) goal, backers are ensuring they get a useful amount of money.
But then we're back to the sadness again. Yet another space sim, yet another project that's not even nudging at its goal. There's just over a week left for this one to increase its pledges by a factor of 20.
Not quite a space sim, so perhaps with more possible luck, Divine Space is part space sim, part RPG, and plans to be free-to-play (not free-free as I misreported last week). They've more than doubled their total this week, and while there's still a very long way to go, they've plenty of time to get there.
Heh. "Ars". Indeed, it's yet another table-top game looking for Kickstarter funding to make its way into computerland. They've got the license from Atlas Games to do it, but interestingly this isn't about making a digital version of the physical game, but rather a single-player RPG in the universe. $290,000 is a very tiny amount of money to make an RPG, and unfortunately the video waffles at great length about magic, and not about how they're going to do it. However, should they do it, this looks like one to watch. So watch it!
A last one for this week's depressing list of games that aren't going anywhere, Anarchy Enterprises' traditional point and click adventure is stil under $10k while wanting an awful lot more. It's hard to see how this one will turn around.
So let's finish with one that is going to make it. Albeit one that only last month was trying to get $15,000 with the same video. Now it's after a fifteenth of that. I really don't like that they don't acknowledge any of this on their Kickstarter, and I have no idea what they think they're going to be able to do with the $900 they'll have after fees if they make their goal.