Back when Kickstarter got its start, I thought it was a wonderful way to support creatives and developers for their projects. Especially if they couldn’t find another way to fund their vision into reality. There have been many great products, games, etc. that started out as Kickstarter projects and are now thriving. However, there are also some projects that never got to see the light of day or were cancelled some time after being funded.
I wanted to share a list of some games I backed on Kickstarter that failed to meet the funding goal or ended up turning into nothing after having a succesful Kickstarter campaign:
Campaign URL: kickstarter.com/projects/1312036782/project-awakened
Phosphor Games Studio’s Project Awakened was a very ambitious concept. In their words:
Project Awakened is a genre-defying game that lets you answer the question: “Who do you want to be?” For the first time in a modern AAA action game, you will have the opportunity to completely define your dream videogame character, from abilities to aesthetics, all while playing in an action-packed world that responds to your personal playstyle.
You would be able to manipulate every aspect of your character, which really caught my attention. I always enjoy creating characters attuned to magic, so being able to define the types of magic I wanted to use, add action skills to my repertoire to back up my magic, sounded like a really fun time.
Unfortunately, this campaign didn’t meet its funding goal of $500,000. They only reached $338,498 with 6,287 backers. I definitely think this idea of a game was ahead of its time back in 2013. With games like Dreams that are now thriving, I think this would have been successful if it was released around this time. I hope Phosphor Games try something like this in the future.
The Dead Linger
Campaign URL: kickstarter.com/projects/sandswept/the-dead-linger
With a lack of open-world/sandbox type zombie games around that time, Sandswept Studios proposed the following for The Dead Linger:
The Dead Linger is an FPS that embodies the gaming community’s hunger for a true, open-world, zombie apocalypse survival sandbox.
Having played so many hours of Left 4 Dead, I was craving another zombie game that would offer me more exploration and the ability to even fortify places for survival. The Dead Linger aimed to do that, and I was more than happy to support a small team that would give me that experience.
The campaign was successful, raising $154,968 (of a $60,000 goal) with 4,218 backers. However, the game ceased development about 2-3 years later. They had multiple game engine changes and the playable version of the game offered for backers had a lot of bugs, which was to be expected as they were developing. The thing is, I never got to experience the game they had promised, and that’s a shame, because the premise of it had so much potential. The studio stopped development for The Dead Linger and some months later started working on another project called Unfortunate Spacemen (I got a Steam copy of the game for being a TDL backer).
RAW (Open world MMORP game)
Campaign URL: kickstarter.com/projects/killerwhalegames/raw-sandbox-mmorp-game-with-attention-to-realism
This project aimed to be kind of a GTA Online but in a much larger scale. Their description:
The player acts as a citizen of the island state. The game offers a wide range of game styles and features. Players can own land, use air, water and land transport, build houses, work for the state or find a private job, as well as organize their own business in almost any field of activity. You can be on the side of the law or go beyond it. Or just fool around alone or with your friends.
There was a lot of speculation at the beginning of the campaign due to the low funding goal, compared to such a big scope for the game/project. They were only asking for $79,003, implying that they would keep doing other fundraising campaign in other platforms. The team behind the project (according to the info they provided in the description) was very small. And people were wondering if this would come to fruition or if it was a scam.
I loved the idea of being able to purchase land and manage properties in a MMORPG similar to GTA. So I gave them the benefit of the doubt and made a pledge. After joining their Discord, I started getting worried about the validity and seriousness of this team regarding to the development of the game. Especially when they didn’t have a solid demo or video showcasing their work up until that moment. Most of what was shown were placeholders.
One or two days after that, Kickstarter suspended the campaign for breaking their terms of service. It’s the first and only project I’ve backed on Kickstarter (so far) that has been suspended.
Have you backed anything on Kickstarter that fail to meet its goal or you never got your promised delivery? If so, what was it?