This is like something you want to believe as some big joke. But apparently it isn't.
I'm shocked and saddened that he passed away, especially at his young age. I've been following Ryan and Giantbomb since 2008. I almost had the chance of meeting him at PAX, but I didn't. I thought to myself "well no worries, I'll see him next time". Now I regret it, I'll never get the chance.
The budget is actually quite conservative. Maybe high for kickstarter standards but conservative none the less for your average game. Though I'm not sure if this counts as an indie game, I have no idea how much it may cost to make an indie game with a decent budget.