Devs celebrate Double Fine’s Kickstarter success

Devs celebrate Double Fine's Kickstarter success

Here we present leading developers' responses to the events of the past 24 hours through a combination of interviews and tweets.

Markus ‘Notch’ Persson

Mojang (Minecraft)

"Hopefully this will lead to a lowered need to use traditional publishers, meaning more of the power gets put back in the developers' hands. This will in turn lead to more creative games and less DRM nonsense.

"Double Fine wouldn’t have been able to do this game without crowd sourcing, so they had a real need of the service. As a player, it's exactly the type of game I want to help fund."

"did you hear? the death-rattle of a million middle men."
— Phil Fish (currently working on Fez) @PHIL_FISH

"But I’m a bit nervous of it becoming the norm. Really good game design and vision comes from the sort of single-minded arrogance where one person can 'see' how the final product will look. When you crowdfund, you suddenly get thousands of people who legitimately feel that they own part of the design of the game. 

As a way of enabling indie games to get made that otherwise could not have been, it’s positive, but I suspect most indies who crowdfund a hit game would immediately move to self-financed when they have the means to do so."

"I like how apparently Double Fine has spent the last 10+ years working backwards from AAA to crowdfunded indie. The Benjamin Button of dev"
— Steve Gaynor (game writer and designer – worked on BioShock 2) @fullbright

Simon Oliver

Hand Circus (Rolando)

"This is huge – it has the potential to turn the traditional funding model completely on its head. One of the most significant aspects for me is that it removes barriers for the development of titles that have a clear audience but that don't fit well into a publisher's view of the landscape. The enormous response (already $500k in half a day) sends a loud message to them: 'Your evaluation system doesn't work'.

"And it’s working as a standard-bearer for the potential of crowd-sourced funding and energising the gaming community to take part in helping to get original games off the ground.

"On the other hand, Tim, Ron and Double Fine have an enormous fanbase and the demand for a new adventure game from such a talented team is huge. It would be a very different experience for an unknown team with a new IP. There's also the novelty factor in play here as this is a totally new phenomenon for such an established team, and a similar pattern to 'bundle-geddon' could occur as other developers try to replicate its success."

"The fact that this can happen is just amazeballs. kck.st/wEuJ8g @Timoflegend @gregricey My first game was a point and click!"
— Cliff Bleszinski (design director, Epic Games) @therealcliffyb

David Amor

Relentless (Buzz!)

"I contributed $20 to the Double Fine project before I'd finished watching the promo video. Tim Schafer? Ron Gilbert? An old-school adventure game? Where do I sign? The amount of people who could invoke that kind of reaction from me could be counted on one hand. 

"But for an unknown indie I would imagine raising Kickstarter funding would be about as hard as getting discovered on the App Store. I'm not discounting it, I'm just suggesting it would be difficult.

"Nonetheless, there's still a role for publishers, but some of the services they offer – such as manufacturing and distribution – are disappearing. They need to re-define what they offer the content creator."

"Double Fine managed to avoid about 57 meetings with publishing execs who would have told them that no one wants an adventure game anymore."

Dino Patti

PlayDead (Limbo)

"Right now many publishers have a person, or a board of people, who ‘green light’ games. While this seems innocent, it has some flaws which mainly come down to the fact that nobody can foresee the future (unless the board consists of very talented forture tellers). Having people put down money this early is a really good test of the potential market.

"If larger studios begin using Kickstarter to fund more projects, the challenge will be to get the trust of the consumer at an early stage, though. We don’t have the right to judge who needs the money the most – I think great initiatives should be supported. But I would personally be putting my money in projects where I know personal pride and love for games are the main drivers, like in Tim's example."