Mighty No. 9 and The State of Kickstarter

Good evening everyone!

It is not typical for me to write generic articles related to the games industry, but a few people were asking for my opinion(s) on this subject over on Ask.fm and I decided that it was important enough to share and expand upon here.

Here is my answer when asked about the Mighty No. 9 launch a few days ago:

mighty no. 9?

“Ugh, ok. Games are difficult to make. Bigger games are more difficult to make than smaller games. Competing with a popular franchise (even if it was once your own) is more difficult than trying something else. Crowdfunding a game is difficult. Handling a large team is difficult. Handling a large budget is difficult. Handling player anticipation, expectation, and critique is difficult. Every fucking thing that this guy had to do to make this what everyone wanted it to be was difficult. Hell, it was impossible.

Yet, I find myself in a position where I feel it necessary to complain. It’s a very complicated situation because depending on how you look at it, the deck can either be stacked in favor or against the devs of Mighty No. 9. They had lots of money, lots of time, and lots of resources. Cool. I wouldn’t want that. The ONLY reason Fara will ship when it does is because I personally know the half dozen people who rely on its release and because we will be desperate and running out of money. This is not to say that I plan on half-assing our project and pushing it to market before it is ready, but what I am saying is that I can handle and comprehend the current team size, budget, and scope of the project. If you were to hand me $4,000,000 I would severely fuck this up. I guarantee it. We would hire people to help us transition to 3D. We would license new engines. We would expand upon content. We would toy with ports, networking capabilities, and spin-offs. It would be a disaster. Megaman had restrictions that kept it in a pocket where it could shine. Given different circumstances, the entire franchise may have been as much of a headache as the spiritual successor.

Have I complained? Yes. Have I made jokes? Yes. It’s easy to laugh this off because everyone saw it coming, but Kickstarter is NOT and will NEVER be a consistent storefront for high-quality deliverables. Kickstarter is a slot machine, at best. I do not envy the team who has such tasks on their shoulders.”

I continued to discuss the topic further on Twitter, if you’d like to continue the conversation or read more about my stance on Kickstarter, in general. You can find the original thread here. In short, when you double or triple a campaigns asking price, you aren’t just giving them a financial buffer, you are implying and insisting that they attempt to make a product that is also two to three times the original scope (consciously or otherwise). Most teams are incapable of comprehending and/or delivering your dream project. We gave Comcept too much and they were unable to cope with the scale that we set them up to deliver. I strongly believe that the game would have been better had they hardly reached their original asking price.I wish the best of luck to Comcept and their future endeavors.

Z

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Mighty No. 9 and The State of Kickstarter

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