$1.6 Million and Counting

#101 Edited by Wes (258 posts) -

@HelixNebula said:

Not everyone seems to like this.

Link Removed

He does bring up some valid points.

Duders this is pure spam, report it. The guy created his account today and posted this message 5 minutes after making the account. The name HelixNebula also happens to coincide with the name of the intro theme to their podcast, Helix Nebula by Anamanaguchi. His statement "not everyone seems to like this" is merely trying to drive up site views through confrontation. I would say the user is either the author of the piece or another contributor to the website.

Stop giving them hits.

EDIT: Made a modification based on Mumrik's input.

#102 Posted by Tamaster92 (271 posts) -

i agree wholeheartedly with Patrick on the fact that double fine seems to have never caught a break, im so glad they finally have been able to see just how many fans they really have.

#103 Posted by BrianP (414 posts) -

@Wes: A+ internet sleuthing

#104 Posted by Wuddel (2079 posts) -

Is it just me or I am the only person that does not want at all to know what this games is about or looks like until I receive my Steam key in the mail? I do not want to take part in creating. This documentary seems like a huge spoiler. Its cool to watch it afterwards though.

#105 Posted by Tordah (2471 posts) -

I can't wait to see what this game will be like.

#106 Posted by Mumrik (1076 posts) -

@Wes said:

@HelixNebula said:

Not everyone seems to like this.

http://www.blablabla.bla/sunday-edition-kickstarter-double-fine.html

He does bring up some valid points.

Duders this is pure spam, report it. The guy created his account today and posted this message 5 minutes after making the account. He stated "not everyone seems to like this" while there were NO COMMENTS on the post (he's just trying to drive up site views through confrontation). And the name HelixNebula just happens to coincide with the name of the intro theme to their podcast, Helix Nebula by Anamanaguchi.

Stop giving them hits.

Good call, though you're wrong on the "not everyone seems to like this" part. He is referring to the writer (who might be himself).

#107 Posted by JacDG (2114 posts) -

I don't have any affinity for Double Fine, have yet to play Costume Quest and Stacking (although I bought both) and I thought Trenched/Iron Brigade was.... bad, I don't like point and click that much either, yet I spend 35 bucks helping them out, why?

#108 Posted by EnchantedEcho (738 posts) -

Great story, great interview. Good job Patrick.

#109 Posted by paulunga (1936 posts) -

@JacDG said:

I don't have any affinity for Double Fine, have yet to play Costume Quest and Stacking (although I bought both) and I thought Trenched/Iron Brigade was.... bad, I don't like point and click that much either, yet I spend 35 bucks helping them out, why?

I trust them to produce an enjoyable game and that's why I gave them money, plus Grim Fandango and the Monkey Island series are probably my favourite point'n'click adventure games. I love Double Fine and I also have no idea why you would do that. Seems like a waste to me, really. Give the money to a charity instead if you have no interest in the product.

#110 Posted by Balex1908 (143 posts) -

@Cozmicaztaway said:

@Xevabis said:

@Balex1908: I'm gonna say that with the $20 million budget for Brutal Legend, at least 50% of it was for the voice actors.

The entire game was $24 million, which seems like a crazy amount of money and yet NOT super high, at the same time, weirdly.

No data on how much of that is voice actors and music licensing, however (and it was totally worth it because we got Lemmy, Motorhead, Bodom and Tim Curry, and other awesome things).

Source: http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/4308/postmortem_double_fines_brutal_.php?page=6

I forgot about the voice actors, makes more sense now.

#111 Posted by Kevin_Cogneto (1005 posts) -

@vinsanityv22 said:

I don't care much for graphic "adventures" (pointing and clicking isn't exactly Uncharted. I have no idea why this genre stole the word "adventure")...

It's because the first game in the genre was called "Adventure" and the name stuck.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colossal_Cave_Adventure

#112 Posted by budgietheii (156 posts) -

Wait, Giant Bomb doesn't want to take over the world? How disappointing.

#113 Posted by Wes (258 posts) -

@Mumrik: Yeah I agree with you there, changed my original post.

#114 Posted by Sergotron (477 posts) -

Great interview, nicely done Mr. Patrick.

#115 Posted by Zlimness (543 posts) -

This is so fucking cool. Pitched in $15. Make whatever you want, Schafer.

#116 Posted by SockLobster (456 posts) -

@HelixNebula said:

I'm a stupid spamming, edgy jerk face. Don't visit my website.
#117 Posted by Scotto (1173 posts) -

@Balex1908 said:

@Cozmicaztaway said:

@Xevabis said:

@Balex1908: I'm gonna say that with the $20 million budget for Brutal Legend, at least 50% of it was for the voice actors.

The entire game was $24 million, which seems like a crazy amount of money and yet NOT super high, at the same time, weirdly.

No data on how much of that is voice actors and music licensing, however (and it was totally worth it because we got Lemmy, Motorhead, Bodom and Tim Curry, and other awesome things).

Source: http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/4308/postmortem_double_fines_brutal_.php?page=6

I forgot about the voice actors, makes more sense now.

Keep in mind they made their own graphics engine for the game, too. In the QL for Trenched, Brad Muir made mention of the fact that it uses parts of the Brutal Legend engine.

#118 Posted by Scotto (1173 posts) -

@vinsanityv22 said:

I don't care much for graphic "adventures" (pointing and clicking isn't exactly Uncharted. I have no idea why this genre stole the word "adventure"), but I will kick a few bucks to the Kickstarter in the hopes that Double Fine will get around to releasing another Costume Quest (or Costume Quest-esque title) with the money. Or Psychonauts 2. And hopefully it will release on PS3 so I can play it, instead of this Xbox exclusive silliness that has taken control of their last two games...

Microsoft published their last two games. I'm sure they'd be willing to make a PS3 game, if Sony wanted to give them money to do so.

#119 Edited by Lucidlife (107 posts) -

I know Double Fine is loved by GB but Brutal Legend wasn't funny. At all. The minute Jack Black got involved it doomed that game.

#120 Edited by Branthog (7342 posts) -

I gladly gave them my money. There are a few guys in this industry that I will gladly just throw my money at, no mater what. Even if I don't think I'll truly enjoy their next project (that isn't the case, here - I'm sure I'll love it). The gaming industry needs people like Tim and I'm going to make sure that I do my part to support what he does.

@Pop said:

Tim said that a game selling 40.000 copies is a flop, but all those 40.000 ppl didn't donate just 15$ some donated 100 1000 etc. so some ppl bought the game 100 times xD, also this thing is crazy and doesn't kickstarter take a part of this?

To clarify a couple things. First, these aren't donations. These are people paying for things. They just don't get the product, yet. This is a company saying "so, we want to make this thing, but we don't have a business case to justify the investment of money and resources to do it" and then saying "but if we can get enough people to buy the game ahead of time -- to give us the funds to make the game for them -- we can totally do it". That's the entire point of Kickstarter, frankly. It's to generate capital to produce something that people want enough to pay for it ahead of time.

Second, 40,000 is obviously enough to support a game. You'll notice that more than 40,000 of the current 45,000 backers chipped in only $15 or $30 (for the game or the game plus HD version of the documentary). However, 40,000 buyers after the fact would not be enough to justify making and publishing the game. After everyone took their cut (including the publisher, who would take easily 50% of the money from every copy sold), you would need hundreds of thousands to justify the project.

When you cut out the middle-men, you can suddenly make a solid living with a much smaller audience. Google around for an essay (I forget who it was written by) called "1,00 True Fans". The premise is that you don't need to cater to everyone. If you can find 1,000 true fans of your work and cater just to their specific wants to the point that they're willing to give you $100/yr, you can make a solid living. This is why things like Trent Reznor giving albums away digitally, but then selling huge collector's packages with autographs and all sorts of goodies for $300 works. Because the smaller group of "true fans" will be eager to spend their money in support.

The beauty of this is that games like this and studios like Double Fine can appeal directly to the fans of a genre or franchise and say "look, there probably aren't enough people to buy this for a publisher to give us the greenlight on making it, but if enough of you support us by pre-ordering a copy and maybe throwing us a few extra bucks for cool goodies like posters and autographs and handmade artwork, we can afford it". That $1.6m goes a LOT farther when it all goes to the developers. It allows things to be made that never otherwise could. I don't know if this would ever be applied to a huge AAA game. I don't think it could and I don't think it would. But it's perfect for keeping games alive that don't have a guaranteed million seller market built in.

And, yes, Kickstarter takes 5% and VISA takes 3-5% for payment processing. That's fine. You're unlikely to find any way on earth that you could just put up a page and process transactions for less than that on your own. You're generally looking at 5% to 12% of every transaction, if you go it on your own. Plus, you wouldn't have the "escrow" type functionality that Kickstarter offers (allowing all funds to be returned if the goal isn't met). There is an additional "expense" to take into account here, too. Attrition. Something like 10% of all backers end up not following through. They cancel before the final day or on the final day, something is wrong with their credit card and the transaction can't go through. At worst, you're probably looking at their current $1.7m turning into about $1.4m. Pretty reasonable.

Of course, a couple million is still pretty low. The average game costs $20m. Most of Double Fine's recent games had a budget of $1.5-$3m. But the difference - again - is that this is all going straight to the developers and they're making a game that is much cheaper to produce. They're not making Costume Quest or Trenched, here. They're making a point-and-click adventure. This budget surpasses their previous point-and-clicks by two or three times (adjusted for inflation, I believe).

Anyway, the important thing for people to remember is that kickstarter funding isn't donating. It isn't investing. It's just saying "I believe in this project and I want this product and I'm willing to put my money down today so you can fund the project and bring me the product tomorrow". And all the nice little extras are there to entice higher bidding amounts. When else are you going to get a chance to buy your own character in a game from a beloved developer or buy a piece of custom artwork from the artists behind it?

#121 Posted by Branthog (7342 posts) -

@Tamaster92 said:

i agree wholeheartedly with Patrick on the fact that double fine seems to have never caught a break, im so glad they finally have been able to see just how many fans they really have.

Couldn't agree more. Schafer doesn't always make things that I love, but I am a big fan and will gladly support him in everything he does. The industry needs people like him and Double Fine to counter the lack of spirit and soul in much of the rest of the industry. I will continue to throw money at Tim Schafer, every time he asks. Period.

#122 Posted by Keeyez (17 posts) -

I hope Double FIne keeps up their good work. They seem like such a great group of people.

#123 Posted by contemporation (2 posts) -

Who cares how many articles are published and how many tweets are tweeted about this? The more people who are talking about this means more money in the kickstarter fund which means a more kickass game.

#124 Posted by myslead (925 posts) -

I have never played Full Throttle, but always wanted to play it, the Motorcycle guy looked so badass... never got around to rent it or whatever when I was younger :(

#125 Posted by Morrow (1828 posts) -

Sounds good!

#126 Edited by Cozmicaztaway (216 posts) -

@Branthog said:

Something like 10% of all backers end up not following through. They cancel before the final day or on the final day, something is wrong with their credit card and the transaction can't go through. At worst, you're probably looking at their current $1.7m turning into about $1.4m. Pretty reasonable.

Oh yeah, crudbuckets, my card isn't valid for that long. Damn, damn, damn, damn, damn!

It is good for the remaining period though, so hah, nevermind, we're all good DOuble Fine! Take my money, please!

#127 Posted by Branthog (7342 posts) -

@Lucidlife said:

I know Double Fine is loved by GB but Brutal Legend wasn't funny. At all. The minute Jack Black got involved it doomed that game.

And my guess would be that - with the price tag of development and everything else involved in it being a huge packaged production and rollout for consoles - it is the game Schafer has had the least input on and control over. Further illustrating why appealing to your fans to allow you to have autonomy over your own projects is so valuable.

#128 Posted by Nerdmotron (49 posts) -

Great interview.

#129 Posted by StitchJones (68 posts) -

Now hurry up and make the damn game!

#130 Posted by Branthog (7342 posts) -

@Cozmicaztaway said:

@Branthog said:

Something like 10% of all backers end up not following through. They cancel before the final day or on the final day, something is wrong with their credit card and the transaction can't go through. At worst, you're probably looking at their current $1.7m turning into about $1.4m. Pretty reasonable.

Oh yeah, crudbuckets, my card isn't valid for that long. Damn, damn, damn, damn, damn!

You should click the big "manage my pledge" button on the kickstarter page for Double Fine and update it with your new credit card information, before the fundraising ends. Seriously, there is about 10% attrition here, so they could lose $150k just in people not thinking about the fact that their credit card won't be processed until a month later. :)

#131 Posted by Airickson (120 posts) -

With this game being made without pressure/input from a publisher, it puts a fine point on the quality at the end of the day. If it's not well-received, it is 100% a reflection on DF -- there will be no way to deflect it. For this reason, I give big props to DF for going about things this way -- a lot of pressure on them to deliver.

#132 Edited by Kevin_Cogneto (1005 posts) -

@Branthog said:

@Lucidlife said:

I know Double Fine is loved by GB but Brutal Legend wasn't funny. At all. The minute Jack Black got involved it doomed that game.

And my guess would be that - with the price tag of development and everything else involved in it being a huge packaged production and rollout for consoles - it is the game Schafer has had the least input on and control over. Further illustrating why appealing to your fans to allow you to have autonomy over your own projects is so valuable.

Actually, since that game was without a publisher for the better part of a year after Activision dropped them, I'd say the opposite is probably true. Brutal Legend was his baby. I mean hey, I love Tim Schafer, but in my opinion the flaws of Brutal Legend can be placed at his feet just as equally as its strengths. He's a great writer and an incredibly creative person, but gameplay mechanics are not his strong suit, sadly. Which is why I'm psyched for this adventure game. He's already proven over and over that he can design the shit out of a good puzzle. An RTS encounter? Eh, not so much maybe.

#133 Posted by Cybexx (1155 posts) -

With Double Fine seeing some success with their recent projects I am curious now as to what the cancelled project was.

#134 Posted by NegativeCero (2976 posts) -

I have now started Day of the Tentacle after reading this.

#135 Posted by Undeadpool (4913 posts) -

From Monkey Island to Day of the Tentacle to Full Throttle, Tim Schaffer and co. have shown their mastery of the point-and-click adventure game. As much as I desperately want a new Costume Quest (you can't leave me hanging on that cliffhanger ending of the DLC!!), I say go with the gaming gods on this new project!

#136 Posted by HaroldoNVU (591 posts) -

That has nothing to do with the article the the images just make me wonder what is wrong with LucasArts that they don't just release those old games on GOG or other digital distribution services. Not just their adventure games, the old X-Wing and Tiefigther games too. There's a few old games on Steam, including Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis which is amazing, but that doesn't do enough justice to LucasArt's amazing library.

#137 Posted by Branthog (7342 posts) -

@Kevin_Cogneto said:

@Branthog said:

@Lucidlife said:

I know Double Fine is loved by GB but Brutal Legend wasn't funny. At all. The minute Jack Black got involved it doomed that game.

And my guess would be that - with the price tag of development and everything else involved in it being a huge packaged production and rollout for consoles - it is the game Schafer has had the least input on and control over. Further illustrating why appealing to your fans to allow you to have autonomy over your own projects is so valuable.

Actually, since that game was without a publisher for the better part of a year after Activision dropped them, I'd say the opposite is probably true. Brutal Legend was his baby. I mean hey, I love Tim Schafer, but in my opinion the flaws of Brutal Legend can be placed at his feet just as equally as its strengths. He's a great writer and an incredibly creative person, but gameplay mechanics are not his strong suit, sadly. Which is why I'm psyched for this adventure game. He's already proven over and over that he can design the shit out of a good puzzle. An RTS encounter? Eh, not so much maybe.

You know, I had completely forgotten about all of the drama. The lawsuits. The EA and Vivendi stuff. And it all went down around E3 time, I seem to recall. On the other hand, kudos to Schafer for reportedly calling Bobby Kotick a "prick". That still makes me smile. (I had to dig around to find the full context, it has been so long):

When asked in an interview whether Kotick can really be blamed for wanting to make as much money as possible, Schafer replied, "Well, he doesn't have to be as much of a dick about it, does he? I think there is a way he can do it without being a total prick. It seems like it would be possible. It's not something he's interested in. He definitely has that that kind of widget-maker attitude. I don't think he's great for the industry, overall. You can't just latch onto something when it's popular and then squeeze the life out of it and then move on to the next one. You have to at some point create something, build something. He could go to an industry that makes more money. Ball bearings... Something that suits his passions more. Weapons manufacturing?"

#138 Posted by RagingLion (1363 posts) -

Good to see this interview - just read another one with Tim beforehand, but I was really wanting to hear his take in more detail on things after it all kicked off.

Donesn't sound like Double FIne were doing perfectly does it beforehand from this.

#139 Posted by fidgetwidget (63 posts) -

This has been the most touching story in games I have heard in a long time. Not since the beginnings of Megaman Legends 3 and Megaman Universe (both which ended badly) have I felt so excited for this industry.

I really hope that more of these types of stories happen, but I worry that the stronger and more money hungry groups (Zynga for instance) try to capitalize on these new venues so quickly that many of the GOOD stories they are enabling won't get told.

I would even like to hear more of the stories of failure to be honest. I took two years to try and create a game on my own, and failed due to rough luck and a few bad decisions, and stories just like mine happen all the time... but no one hears them.

Wishing all the best for Tim and his crew, they are some of the best hearts and minds in gaming IMO!

#140 Posted by umdesch4 (772 posts) -

....aaaand....

Title needs updating to $1.7 Million and Counting

#141 Posted by superscatman (79 posts) -

@HelixNebula said:

Not everyone seems to like this.

http://www.pixelperfectmag.com/2012/02/sunday-edition-kickstarter-double-fine.html

He does bring up some valid points.

This guy seems to have a uninformed opinion on Double Fine's financial situation. Tim even said in this interview that they were worried that they were going to have to downsize .The person who wrote the article thinks that because he played the games or has at least heard of them it means they have to have been a financial success.

Also, the idea of giving the extra money to charity is really dumb. It was given to them to make a game, if the people wanted to give to a charity they would have in the first place.

The guy who wrote the article seems awfully upset that people who are fans of a company are giving a company money to make a game that they want.

#142 Posted by Brenderous (1098 posts) -

I want to see the video that this article's thumbnail was taken from.

#143 Posted by HaroldoNVU (591 posts) -

@Undeadpool said:

From Monkey Island to Day of the Tentacle to Full Throttle, Tim Schaffer and co. have shown their mastery of the point-and-click adventure game. As much as I desperately want a new Costume Quest (you can't leave me hanging on that cliffhanger ending of the DLC!!), I say go with the gaming gods on this new project!

I hear you. I've played through Costume Quest on the week before last Halloween and was completely hooked since the beginning. I'm not one to play a single game on huge sittings, usually will get tired after 1-3 hours, but I finished the game in one sitting, one smelly and sweaty ass on the couch sitting. I hope they get around to making that sequel this or next year.

But adventure is still my favorite genre and if people like Schafer, Tornquist or Jensen say they feel like making another one I just say "by your command".

#144 Posted by Cozmicaztaway (216 posts) -

@Branthog said:

@Cozmicaztaway said:

@Branthog said:

Something like 10% of all backers end up not following through. They cancel before the final day or on the final day, something is wrong with their credit card and the transaction can't go through. At worst, you're probably looking at their current $1.7m turning into about $1.4m. Pretty reasonable.

Oh yeah, crudbuckets, my card isn't valid for that long. Damn, damn, damn, damn, damn!

You should click the big "manage my pledge" button on the kickstarter page for Double Fine and update it with your new credit card information, before the fundraising ends. Seriously, there is about 10% attrition here, so they could lose $150k just in people not thinking about the fact that their credit card won't be processed until a month later. :)

Thanks for the tip, realized it's by the end of the pledge though, not when the game launches, so I'm cool. Yay!

And the Kotick-thing, Tim regrets he said that... out loud (while still totally sticking by what he said).

#145 Posted by Grimluck343 (1148 posts) -

So glad to see this be super successful.

#146 Posted by umdesch4 (772 posts) -

Yeah, so maybe they didn't have the first kickstarter project to break a million, but I'll bet it's the first project to break 2 million! That's slightly cooler, IMHO.

#147 Posted by HaroldoNVU (591 posts) -

@superscatman said:

This guy seems to have a uninformed opinion on Double Fine's financial situation. Tim even said in this interview that they were worried that they were going to have to downsize .The person who wrote the article thinks that because he played the games or has at least heard of them it means they have to have been a financial success.

(...)

Also uninformed opinion about the current state of adventure games. Sure, almost none are high budget projects like Heavy Rain, and the genre is not mainstream, but there are a lot of proper adventure games coming out every year, not just "escape the room" or "hidden-object" games as he implies. If there weren't people interested in those that wouldn't be so many. On Steam alone I usually see a new one almost every month.

#148 Posted by CanItRunBF3 (27 posts) -

While I have not liked a TS game since Psychonauts, this is still a really cool story and that was a good interview. How does this whole thing work? Are the 40,000 people investors in the game, and stand to profit, or is the 1.6M considered a donation?

#149 Posted by LordXavierBritish (6320 posts) -

I wish I could talk to Tim Schafer in a bathroom.

#150 Posted by KestrelPi (141 posts) -

@CanItRunBF3: It's not quite a donation and it's not quite an investment. It's a pledge - in return for pledging the money, you get various rewards: the game itself, soundtracks, other fancy things. So it's not really a donation, since you're getting something and not really an investment because the only return you're getting on it is the actual product itself and any other rewards depending on your pledge level.

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