With 13 days left and less than 25 percent of its $1 million goal raised, famed designers Brenda Brathwaite and Tom Hall have cancelled their Kickstarter project, Shaker.

Brathwaite and Hall are both experienced designers. Brathwaite is best known for her award-winning PC role-playing game, Wizardry 8. Hall cofounded id Software, where he worked on Doom and Wolfenstein 3D. The two planned to make Shaker a first-person, old-school RPG with sci-fi and fantasy elements.

The pair announced the news in a blog update on their Kickstarter page over the weekend. The developers thanked contributors for helping them raise the money that they did. As with any Kickstarter, that money won’t be charged to the backers since the project failed to reach its goal.

From the blog:

“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.

In game design, mercy killing is the law.

So, please accept our thanks and apologies in equal order. Expect something more soon.”

For those who didn’t see the original pitch, check it out here:

The video doesn’t show much, which suggests that the developer legitimately needed this funding, but it could also be the reason that gamers were cool toward the project. Kickstarter pitch videos require a very delicate balancing act. Show too much and potential backers will complain that the money isn’t needed. Show too little and those same backers may complain that the developer expects people to blindly throw money its way.

We’ve contacted Brathwaite and Hall and hope to learn more about their Kickstarter experience. We’ll update when we have that info.