People have proven that they will back a game through crowdfunding if it’s something they want or if it’s from someone they like. Big names like Tim Schafer, formerly of LucasArts, and Brian Fargo, formerly of Interplay, have raised millions of dollars to make games using crowdfunding, and those successes have inspired many others to attempt the same thing.
SnowFury Studios is one of those developers that believes it can find a similar level of success on Kickstarter.
This morning, the company launched a crowdfunding project for a new massively multiplayer online role-playing game for mobile devices. The developer wants to offer an immersive world with stunning 3D visuals to players on iOS and Android … and it’s asking for $500,000 to make it happen.
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“Mobile phones and tablets are an increasing part of our lives, and while there are some great casual games, we think there’s a large crowd of gamers who, like us, want deeper story and a real-time battle style from mobile experiences,” SnowFury Studios founder William Diehl told GamesBeat. “If we’re right, we’re confident we can meet our goal because of the strength of the Kickstarter community.”
Kickstarter and other crowdfunding sites have seen games raise well more than $500,000. It is clear that Diehl and SnowFury watched those projects and believe they have something that matches those games in terms of scope.
“With multimillion-dollar projects like Project Eternity, Tides of Numera, and Wasteland 2, the online gaming community has shown time and time again that it has the power to enable ambitious projects like Snowstorm,” said Diehl.
Project Snowstorm is similar to some of the most successful crowdfunding games. It is a fantasy title that promises to mix up some of the old tropes with new mechanics.
SnowFury plans to build a giant fantasy world for players to discover. They can affect the storyline based on their choices and actions, and of course the developer packed the game full of mythology and lore.
As far as gameplay goes, the RPG features a story campaign and player-versus-player battles.
“In both, we offer 1-on-1 real-time battle system and 3-on-3 turn-based systems,” said Diehl. “Since we are mobile, not all head-to-head combat can be real time, so we include turn-based gameplay with a twist. If you and I battle over a week, and you kick my ass, you can hit one button and render that match out as though it happened real time and post it to Facebook with all of the bragging rights that go with it. Even in a traditional mobile gameplay model, we want to give it that real-time flavor.”
But for all of its ambition, Project Snowstorm is missing a marquee name or an appeal to nostalgia that helped many of the biggest projects raise the big bucks.
If you look at the most-funded games in Kickstarter history, the list is mainly projects from familiar creators or franchises. The top four most-funded video games can all attribute at least part of their success to something other than the quality of the pitch.
Torment: Tides of Numenera, Project Eternity, and Wasteland 2 — the three games that Diehl mentioned — are three of the four most-funded games. Tides of Numenera is a spiritual successor to one of the most-beloved PC RPGs of all time, Planescape: Torment. Project Eternity is the first crowdfunding project from Fallout: New Vegas developer Obsidian Entertainment. Wasteland 2 is an actual sequel to a cult-favorite PC RPG. The other game in the top four is the Double Fine Adventure Kickstarter. The success of that project relates directly to Double Fine founder Schafer.
SnowFury Studios doesn’t have that kind of name recognition and doesn’t appeal to nostalgia in the same way, and because of this, the developer won’t have an easy time reaching its goal.