Jump to content

Photo

Wasteland 2 on kickstarter


4 replies to this topic

#1 Hyper_Eye OFFLINE  

Hyper_Eye

    River Patroller

  • 2,746 posts
  • IDSPISPOPD
  • Location:Huntsville, AL.

Posted Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:26 PM

With the success Double Fine had on Kickstarter in getting their new adventure game funded we had to know that more small developer groups would come out of the woodwork who are known for games we loved in the past. These are developers that created amazing games that are not considered viable by the big publishers today without radical changes to the core elements of the games these developers are known for making. These Kickstarter projects are proving that there are people that still want these games. Not only do they want these games, they are willing to pay before a single line of code has been laid down if they believe their contribution will allow a game to be made that otherwise wouldn't in the current publishing market. When you look at these projects, the success of The Humble Indie Bundle, and the direction of the Desura platform you can see that the internet is changing the way content subscribers interact with content creators. You can also see that there is a large audience that wants to see less flashy, gameplay rich, and artistic games being made and becoming successful. These are users that often do common things their own way so they like to see their games made available for multiple platforms including Mac and Linux. They don't mind these games being provided to them through digital distribution if they feel they have the right to store it as they see fit once it is downloaded. Eventually the big developers and publishers are going to realize what is going on but it is amazing to take part in it in the meantime.

So, Wasteland 2 is finally going to get made. It has reached its funding goal on Kickstarter. When it surpasses $1.5 million the game will be made cross-platform. I think there is no question that goal will be reached. If you are unfamiliar with Wasteland you are undoubtedly familiar with the spinoff Fallout series. This was the game that started it all.

Here is the Wikipedia entry on Wasteland: http://en.wikipedia....28video_game%29
Here is the Kickstarter page: http://www.kickstart...ile/wasteland-2

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_FTLv50c8Qg

Edited by Hyper_Eye, Mon Mar 19, 2012 12:29 PM.


#2 Metal Ghost OFFLINE  

Metal Ghost

    Stargunner

  • 1,303 posts

Posted Tue Mar 20, 2012 10:30 AM

It is an exciting time to be a gamer. No doubt that there are multiple trends/occurrences currently taking place in the gaming industry that we may not like, or agree with. But what I think can be universally accepted as beneficial trends or occurrences can often be overlooked. This definitely falls in the latter category.

#3 onlysublime OFFLINE  

onlysublime

    Stargunner

  • 1,309 posts

Posted Tue Mar 20, 2012 3:05 PM

it's kind of funny that people are so willing to bear the burden and risk of a venture. Before, a company would assume the financial risks, make the product, and hope to reap the rewards from it. But with Kickstarter, the burden falls on the consumer. You give them money, hoping they spend it well to make a great game, but if they fail to finish making the game or the game is a dud, they don't lose anything by it. It was funded by you and so the failure falls on you. It's a win-win for the developer but a potential loss for the consumer. At least with the publisher, they paid the developer to make a game and if the game fails in the marketplace, the developer got paid and it's the publisher that takes the fall...

#4 Hyper_Eye OFFLINE  

Hyper_Eye

    River Patroller

  • Topic Starter
  • 2,746 posts
  • IDSPISPOPD
  • Location:Huntsville, AL.

Posted Tue Mar 20, 2012 3:24 PM

That's true but these are people who have a track record of making great games. Unfortunately some of their best games didn't sell well for whatever reason. Fans of Psychonauts or Grim Fandango would say those are two of the best games ever made but their sales numbers were pretty much abysmal. Wasteland 2 was a revolutionary game for its time and many games have borrowed elements from it ever since. This is a case where the risk is not that terribly high for the contributors. They are risking the amount it costs them for a single copy of the game to be made. The potential loss is not that high especially when you consider how little they are asking for the first contribution category. The gains can be great though because these guys have a track record of producing memorable and unique content. On the other hand, the risk to a publisher would be very high because the overall game market is not interested in these types of games. The market has become narrow and the only way for a publisher to consider the risk acceptable is to conform to what they find to be acceptable game elements. The biggest one would be that you have to turn your game into a first-person shooter. They even made X-Com go in that direction. Thank goodness we have found out a real X-Com game is coming. I think this is good for these developers and for the consumers that want to see these games get made.

#5 Metal Ghost OFFLINE  

Metal Ghost

    Stargunner

  • 1,303 posts

Posted Wed Mar 21, 2012 9:44 AM

Yea, I'd say that consumers taking on this sort of risk isn't going to happen (certainly not in the relatively large scale manner as it has for Brian Fargo and Tim Schafer) unless the Project Manager has a proven track record. In these two cases, they do.

I'd also point out that for some of these niche products, it's not even necessarily true that their prevous games were failures from a financial sense or that a publisher believes their proposed game would even be a failure from a financial sense. It may simply be that such a game doesn't meet a predetermined and necessary return on invested capital threshold. So, for example a Wasteland 2 game: a publisher is going to want probably at least 20% to 30% ROIC on that game. Brian Fargo just wants to recoup his time and money (in fact not even that in this case, since he offered $100K of his own money if necessary to reach $1M, which is why the original project goal was only $900K). So in cases like this we have an impasse: I can sympathize with a game publisher in this case....they need to make enough money to be lucrative, otherwise they might as well put their investors' money into a bank CD and earn interest! But it also prevents special situations like the two mentioned above from bringing a game to market. Solution: Kickstarter!

There's a 3rd Kickstarter I'm really interested in from a gaming perspective (I'm already in on Double Fine Adventure and plan on contributing to Wasteland 2 as well), and that's The Banner Saga. It's a turn based RPG that simply intrigues me. But again, it's from a team that has solid experience and a proven track record on other projects.

Not that all projects on Kickstarter are like that of course. Heck, I could start a project and see if anyone bites. But, as a potential backer, I wouldn't necessarily contribute either.

So I guess in my opinion I agree completely that a Kickstarter or similar type of arrangement does indeed place the financial risk on the backer. But as with anything, there's a risk/reward relationship: the reward of a game that the backer is really interested in and that wouldn't otherwise make it to market and, if it does make it to market, you have simply prepaid for the game. Since the barrier to entry is always so low (usually between $10 and $15), alot of people are willing to assume the risk.




0 user(s) are browsing this forum

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users