Kickstarting MMOs
Posted by Tobold's Blog [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 21 February 2014, 2:31 am
Syp is looking at MMOs on Kickstarter and wonder whether any of them are interesting to him. Personally I have a related but different question: Is it actually possible to finance a good MMO via Kickstarter? To the best of my knowledge the biggest funding a computer game ever got was around $4 million, and from there to the development cost of a triple-A MMO there is still at least a factor of 10, if not 50.

I do have high hopes for Star Citizen, which recently reported getting $38 million by crowdfunding. But only $2 million of that is from Kickstarter. Other games have mixed funding schemes, where some of the money comes from investors and some comes from crowdfunding. But if you get the majority of the development money from investors, how is that still a crowdfunded game? Isn't it likely that the devs are beholden to the people who put the most money into the project? And if that isn't the fans, then the Kickstarter minority funding part to me looks very much like a cynical attempt to get some free money from eager fans.

I do believe that good games can come from Kickstarter. Or from systems like Steam Greenlight, where the fans don't have to pledge money, but at least get to express their interest in a game before it is made. But I do think that those systems are more for indie games, and less for huge and expensive games like MMORPGs. What do you think?
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